Fifty years ago, General Augusto Pinochet overthrew Chile’s democracy and still shapes the country today.
Pinochet never faced trial. His ideas are alive in current politics. Oddly, left-wing parties are also gaining ground.
Today, 36% of Chileans see him as a hero. Ten years ago, this number was just 18%.
Luis Silva, a lawyer, called him a “statesman.” Silva’s party is making a new Chilean constitution.
President Gabriel Boric, born after 1973, rejects this view. He calls Pinochet a “corrupt dictator.”
In 1990, Pinochet lost a vote and gave up power. He led the army until 2002. His rule had 3,000 victims.
For 20 years, ruling parties ignored Pinochet’s history. This keeps his image strong, says sociologist Marta Lagos.
Pinochet’s economic plans still affect Chile. In 2019, people protested against inequality. The left gained power but lost a key vote.
No one judged Pinochet for his crimes. According to Francisco Hevia, a teacher, schools didn’t talk about him for almost two decades.
In short, Pinochet still influences Chile 50 years after his coup. His legacy poses questions for today’s politics.
Free-market theories inspired Pinochet. These economic policies led to growth but also increased inequality.
Pinochet’s rule was part of the Cold War. U.S. support was key in his rise to power.
In 1973, he ousted Salvador Allende, a Marxist president. This created tension between Chile and other countries for years.
Under Pinochet, many human rights were violated. Torture and disappearances were common. Some military personnel are in jail today for these crimes.
For years, Chile didn’t face its past. A “soft transition” happened after the dictatorship ended.
The democratic governments mostly avoided Pinochet-related discussions. This preserved the dictator’s ideas within society.
Only recently have trials gained momentum. Cases like Victor Jara’s killing in 1973 finally see justice.