Why Pinochet must be condemned

16 January 1999

To the editor:

I know that unfortunately right is always determined by power, and that if Pinochet is condemned for crimes against humanity, Clinton and Blair should also be condemned for their crimes against the children, women and men of Iraq. I know also that the fact that Pinochet may be judged for the crimes against Spaniards is a tremendous irony, considering all the thousand of Chileans who were killed and tortured by Pinochet and his circle.

Nevertheless, I decided to write this letter because I am a woman and I feel ashamed of being a woman after I watched on TV some Chilean women in London, defending the monster Pinochet. Of course I am aware that most of the thousands of decent women who were the victims of the killer Pinochet cannot afford to travel to London to show the truth because they never were rich and they did not get richer under the dictatorship.

People who defend Pinochet do not seem to be aware of the following:

1. Pinochet commanded a fascist military coup against a democratically elected socialist government and KILLED the president, Salvador Allende, and Chilean democracy.

2. Pinochet was put into power by the USA government. Because of that it is hypocritical and immoral that today advocates of Pinochet can say that the monster's arrest is an attempt against Chilean sovereignty. I do not remember them complaining about colonialism and external interference when the American government destabilised Allende's government and helped Pinochet. Also I do not remember those people criticising the lack of political sovereignty as a result of the liberalisation policies and globalisation that meant destructive effects on the environment as a result of foreign investment in Chile under the Pinochet´s dictatorship.

3. The "kindly grandfather" Pinochet presided over a regime of terror in which, for instance, women were RAPED BY DOGS in the concentration camps to which the monster and his friends sent political opponents. It was in the same kind of concentration camps that the singer Victor Jara had his hands and tongue cut off and the babies of women prisoners were stolen.

4. Pinochet implemented economic policies which implied the social polarisation of the society. The supposed "economic success," which is very controversial even in term of pure economics, meant that more than 70 per cent of population are living under extreme poverty. In my view the ex-dictator must be put in jail not only for political crimes and torture, but for economic genocide.

The ignorant people who compare Pinochet with Castro may not know that Fidel did just the opposite of Pinochet because Fidel gave food and education to most of the population while Pinochet took food and education from the majority of Chileans. And if the Cuban economy is today facing tremendous problems, it is mainly because of the policy of imperialism carried out by the "sincere" and "just" American government which has never left Cuba in peace. The boycott and harassment imposed to Cuba by the American government is a good example of the colonialist attitude.

OL

January 15

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