Augosto Pinochet was the dictator who ruled Chile for 17 years. He began as the Commander in Chief to the president at the time, Salvador Allende. Little did Allende know, Pinochet was plotting with the CIA to overthrown him and his communistic government. On September 11, 1973, Pinochet led his troops into Santiago to take over Allende’s rule. Immediately upon gaining power, Pinochet suspended the Chilean constitution, eliminated the parliament, restricted all political and trade union activity, and strictly monitored the media. According to John Simkin (1997) in his biography “Augosto Pinochet”, in Pinochet’s first few years as president “over three thousand Allende supporters were killed”. Pinochet’s mission, remarked web page”Augosto Pinochet”, was to “exterminate leftism in Chile” (2013). Pinochet’s new policies to achieve this goal created an even larger gap between the rich and poor. This caused mass protests to take place in Chile in 1983. In 1990, Patricio Aylwin beat Pinochet in the race for presidency. Although Pinochet was no longer president, he still maintained his role as the commander in chief of the military, so much of Chile’s fate was still in his hands. Finally, in 1998 Pinochet resigned from his position as commander in chief to be a senator, granting him parliamentary power for life. It was not until 2005 that it was discovered that Pinochet had illegally obtained 28 million dollars during his rule. He was subject to arrest but died shortly after on December 10th, 2006.
John Simkin (1997, September). Augosto Pinochet. Retrieved from http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/COLDpinochet.htm
by Estée Park