Salvador Allende


Salvador Allende

Infobox President | name=Salvador Allende
nationality=Chilean


order=29th President of Chile
term_start=November 3, 1970
term_end=September 11, 1973
predecessor=Eduardo Frei Montalva
successor=Augusto Pinochet
order2=56th President of the Senate of the Republic of Chile
term_start2=1966
term_end2=1969
predecessor2=Tomás Reyes Vicuña
successor2=Tomás Pablo Elorza
birth_date=birth date|1908|6|26|mf=y
birth_place=Valparaíso, Chile
death_date=death date and age|1973|9|11|1908|7|26|mf=y
death_place=Santiago, Chile
spouse=Hortensia Bussi
party=Socialist
Salvador Isabelino Allende Gossens [Pronunciation (IPA2|salβaðor aʝεnde] (June 26, 1908 – September 11, 1973) was President of Chile from November 1970 until his death during the coup d'état of September 11, 1973.

Allende's involvement in Chilean political life spanned a period of nearly forty years. As a member of the Socialist Party, he was a senator, deputy and cabinet minister. He unsuccessfully ran for the presidency in the 1952, 1958, and 1964 elections, until his election in 1970.

Early life

Allende was born on June 26, 1908 in Valparaíso. [ [http://www.salvador-allende.cl/biografia/Trayectoria.pdf Biography of Allende] from his official website.] He was the son of Salvador Allende Castro and Laura Gossens Uribe. Allende's family belonged to the Chilean upper-class and had a long tradition of political involvement in progressive and liberal causes. His grandfather was a prominent physician and a social reformist who founded one of the first secular schools in Chile Patricio Guzmán, "Salvador Allende" (film documentary, 2004) ] .

Allende attended high school at the Liceo Eduardo de la Barra in Valparaíso. As a teenager, his main intellectual and political influence came from the shoe-maker Juan De Marchi, an Italian-born anarchist. Allende then graduated with a medical degree in 1926 at the University of Chile..

He co-founded the section of the Socialist Party of Chile (founded in 1933 with Marmaduque Grove and others) in Valparaíso and became its chairman. He married Hortensia Bussi with whom he had three daughters. In 1933, he published his doctoral thesis "Higiene Mental y Delincuencia" in which he criticized Cesare Lombroso's proposals [ [http://www.elclarin.cl/fpa/temas/20.html Unmasked defamatory libel on Salvador Allende] , May 27, 2005, with link to thesis, on the Clarin's website en icon (Spanish version available) ]

In 1938, Allende was in charge of the electoral campaign of the Popular Front headed by Pedro Aguirre Cerda. The Popular Front's slogan was then "Bread, a Roof and Work!". After its electoral victory, he became Minister of Health in the Reformist Popular Front government which was dominated by the Bourgeoisie and the Radicals. Entering the government, he relinquished his parliamentary seat for Valparaíso won in 1937. Around that time, he wrote "La Realidad Médico Social de Chile" ("The social and medical reality of Chile"). After the Kristallnacht in Nazi Germany, Allende and other members of the Parliament sent a telegram to Adolf Hitler denouncing the persecution of Jews [ [http://www.elclarin.cl/fpa/pdf/p_020605.pdf Telegram protesting against the persecution of Jews in Germany] on Clarin's website es icon] . Following Aguirre's death in 1941, he was again elected deputy while the Popular Front was being re-named Democratic Alliance.

In 1945, Allende became senator for the Valdivia, Llanquihue, Chiloé, Aisén and Magallanes provinces; then for Tarapacá and Antofagasta in 1953; for Aconcagua and Valparaíso in 1961; and once more for Chiloé, Aisén and Magallanes in 1969. He became president of the Chilean Senate in 1966.

His three unsuccessful bids for the presidency (in the 1952, 1958 and 1964 elections) prompted Allende to joke that his epitaph would be "Here lies the next President of Chile." In 1952, as candidate for the "Frente de Acción Popular" (Popular Action Front, FRAP), he obtained only 5.4% of the votes, partly due to a division within socialist ranks over support for Carlos Ibáñez and the prohibition of communism. In 1958, again as the FRAP candidate, Allende obtained 28.5% of the vote. This time, his defeat was attributed to votes lost to the populist Antonio Zamorano. In 1964, once more as the FRAP candidate, he lost again, polling 38.6% of the votes against 55.6% for Christian Democrat Eduardo Frei. As it became clear that the election would be a race between Allende and Frei, the political rightndash which initially had backed Radical Julio Duránndash settled for Frei as "the lesser evil".

Allende's socialistic ideology and friendship with Cuban president Fidel Castro made him deeply unpopular within the administrations of successive U.S. presidents, from John F. Kennedy to Richard Nixon; they believed there was a danger of Chile becoming a communist state and joining the Soviet Union's sphere of influence. Allende publicly condemned the Soviet invasion of Hungary (1956) and of Czechoslovakia (1968) while he later made Chile the first Government in continental America to recognize the People's Republic of China (1971).

Various U.S. corporations (including ITT, Anaconda and Kennecott) owned property and mineral rights in Chile. The Nixon administration feared that these companies might be nationalized by a socialistic government, and was openly hostile to Allende. During Nixon's presidency, U.S. officials attempted to prevent Allende's election by financing political parties aligned with opposition candidate Jorge Alessandri and supporting strikes in the mining and transportation sectors.

Relation with the Chilean Communist Party

Allende had a close relationship with the Chilean Communist Party from the beginning of his political career. Actually, on his fourth (and successful) bid for the presidency, the Communist Party appointed him as the alternate for its own candidate, Pablo Neruda.

On March 15, 1953, during a ceremony paying tribute to the then recently deceased Joseph Stalin on Teatro Baquedano, on Santiago, Allende statedFact|date=June 2008: "Stalin was for the Russian people a flag of the revolution, of creating execution, of human sentiment enhanced by paternity; symbol of edifying peace and heroism without boundaries; worshipped by his people, he astonished the world correcting his own mistakes in a human effort and worthy of superation. But above all this aspects, almost hierathics, of his personality, there is his huge faith in Marx and Lenin's doctrine, his irrevocable marxist conduct. Everything he did was on the people's service, with Lenin's image in the eyes and with the fire of marxism in the heart. [...] Stalin has died, there is an unspoken protest in the consciences and sorrow in the souls. Men of the Soviet Union, we the socialists share your mourning, which has universal commotion. Your consolation: knowing that there are men that do not die. Stalin is one of them."

Later he would state: "The Communist Party is the party of the working class, the Communist Party is the Party of the Soviet Union, the first socialist state in the world, and whoever wants to create a socialist government without the communists is not a marxist; and I am a marxist."

During his presidencial term, Allende's proximity to the Communist Party led him to take the more moderate positions held by the communists, in opposition to the radical views of the socialists. However, this situation tended to revert toward the end of his mandate. [ Gonzalo Rojas Sanchez; Columna Centenaria, 2008.]

Election

Allende won the 1970 Chilean presidential election as leader of the Unidad Popular ("Popular Unity") coalition. On September 4, 1970, he obtained a narrow plurality of 36.2 percent to 34.9 percent over Jorge Alessandri, a former president, with 27.8 percent going to a third candidate (Radomiro Tomic) of the Christian Democratic Party (PDC), whose electoral platform was similar to Allende's. According to the Chilean Constitution of the time, if no presidential candidate obtained a majority of the popular vote, Congress would choose one of the two candidates with the highest number of votes as the winner. Tradition was for Congress to vote for the candidate with the highest popular vote, regardless of margin. Indeed, former president Jorge Alessandri had been elected in 1958 with only 31.6 percent of the popular vote, defeating Allende.

The CIA alleged that Allende's campaign received $350,000 from Cuba. [ [http://foia.state.gov/Reports/ChurchReport.asp#C.%20The%201970%20Election The 1970 Election: a "Spoiling" Campaign] , Staff Report of the U.S.Senate Select Committee To Study Governmental Operations With Respect to Intelligence Activities (the "Church Committee"), December 18, 1975. Accessed September 21, 2006 on U.S. Department of State FOIA site.]

On October 22 General René Schneider, Commander in Chief of the Chilean Army, was shot resisting a kidnap attempt by a group led by General Roberto Viaux. Hospitalized, he died of his wounds three days later. This attempt followed two others on the 19th and 20th. Viaux's kidnapping plan had been supported by the CIA, although it seems that then-US Secretary for Foreign Affairs Henry Kissinger had ordered the plans postponed at the last moment. Schneider was a known defender of the "constitutionalist" doctrine that the army's role is exclusively professional, its mission being to protect the country's sovereignty and not to interfere in politics.

General Schneider's death was widely disapproved of and, for the time, ended military opposition to AllendeMark Falcoff, [http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=10612 Kissinger and Chile] , originally in "Commentary Magazine", November 10, 2003. Accessed September 21, 2006 on FrontPageMag.com.] , whom the parliament finally chose on October 24. On October 26, President Eduardo Frei named General Carlos Prats as commander in chief of the army to replace René Schneider.

Allende assumed the presidency on November 3, 1970 after signing a "Statute of Constitutional Guarantees" proposed by the Christian Democrats in return for their support in Congress. In an extensive interview with Regis Debray, Allende explained his reasons for agreeing to the guarantees. [ [Regis Debray, The Chilean Revolution: Conversations with Allende Vintage Books: New York(1972)] .] Some critics have interpreted Allende's responses as an admission that signing the "Statute" was only a tactical move on his part. [ [http://www.elcato.org/node/2108 Cómo Allende destruyó la democracia en Chile | elcato.org ] ]

Presidency

Upon assuming power, Allende began to carry out his platform of implementing socialistic programs in Chile, called "La vía chilena al socialismo" ("the Chilean Path to Socialism"). This included nationalization of large-scale industries (notably copper mining and banking), and government administration of the health care system, educational system, a program of free milk for children (given out arbitrarily by GAP "Group of Personal Friends of the President"), and a greatly expanded plan of land seizure and redistribution (already begun under his predecessor Eduardo Frei Montalva, [es icon [http://web.archive.org/web/20050307181050/http://icarito.latercera.cl/icarito/2003/912/pag1a.htm La Unidad Popular] on icarito.latercera.cl, archived 7 Mar, 2005 on the Internet Archive.] who had nationalized between one-fifth and one-quarter of all properties liable to takeover). [Collier & Sater, 1996.] The Allende government's intention was to seize all holdings of more than eighty basic irrigated hectares. [Faundez, 1988.] Allende also intended to improve the socio-economic welfare of Chile's poorest citizens; a key element was to provide employment, either in the new nationalised enterprises or on public work projects.

Chilean presidents were allowed a maximum term of six years, which may explain Allende's haste to restructure the economy. Not only did he have a significant restructuring program organized (the "Vuskovic plan"), he had to make it a success if a Socialist successor to Allende was going to be elected. In the first year of Allende's term, the short-term economic results of Minister of the Economy Pedro Vuskovic's expansive monetary policy were favorable: 12% industrial growth and an 8.6% increase in GDP, accompanied by major declines in inflation (down from 34.9% to 22.1%) and unemployment (down to 3.8%). However, these results were not sustained, and in 1972, the Chilean "escudo" had runaway inflation of 140%. The average Real GDP contracted between 1971 and 1973 at an annual rate of 5.6% ("negative growth"); and the government's fiscal deficit soared while foreign reserves declined [Flores, 1997] . The combination of inflation and government-mandated price-fixing, together with the "disappearance" of basic commodities from supermarket shelves, led to the rise of black markets in rice, beans, sugar, and flour.es icon [http://web.archive.org/web/20030922064807/http://icarito.latercera.cl/icarito/2003/912/pag1b.htm Comienzan los problemas] , Enciclopedia Escolar Icarito. Archived on the Internet Archive, September 22, 2003] The Chilean economy also became the victim of a US campaign against the Allende government [United States Senate Report (1975) "Covert Action in Chile, 1963-1973" "U.S. Government Printing Office" Washington. D.C.] .

The Allende government announced it would default on debts owed to international creditors and foreign governments. Allende also froze all prices while raising salaries. His implementation of these policies was met with strong opposition by landowners, employers, businessmen and transporters associations, some middle-class sectors like some civil servants and professional unions, the rightist opposition, led by National Party, the Roman Catholic Church (which in 1973 was displeased with the direction of educational policy [es icon [http://www.iglesia.cl/iglesiachile/2003/1973/aplenenu.html Declaración de la Asamblea Plenaria del Episcopado sobre la Escuela Nacional Unificada] , April 11, 1973. Accessed online September 21, 2006 on the site of the Conferencia Episcopal de Chile] ), and eventually the Christian Democrats. It also was a reason for growing tensions with foreign multinational corporations and the government of the United States.

Allende also undertook Project Cybersyn, a system of networked telex machines and computers. Cybersyn was developed by British cybernetics expert Stafford Beer. The network transmitted data from factories to the government in Santiago, allowing for economic planning in real-time. [ Eden Medina, [http://www.informatics.indiana.edu/edenm/publications/publications.html "Designing Freedom, Regulating a Nation: Socialist Cybernetics in Allende's Chile,"] Journal of Latin American Studies 38 (2006):571-606.]

In 1971, Chile re-established diplomatic relations with Cuba, joining Mexico and Canada in rejecting a previously-established Organization of American States convention prohibiting governments in the Western Hemisphere from establishing diplomatic relations with Cuba. Shortly afterward, Cuban president Fidel Castro made a month-long visit to Chile. The visit, in which Castro held massive rallies and gave public advice to Allende, was seen by those on the political right as proof to support their view that "The Chilean Path to Socialism" was an effort to put Chile on the same path as Cuba.

October 1972 saw the first of what were to be a wave of confrontational strikes. The strikes were led first by truckers, and later by small businessmen, some (mostly professional) unions, and some student groups. Other than the inevitable damage to the economy, the chief effect of the 24-day strike was to induce Allende to bring the head of the army, general Carlos Prats, into the government as Interior Minister. Allende also instructed the government to begin requisitioning trucks in order to keep the nation from coming to a halt. Government supporters also helped to mobilize trucks and buses but violence served as a deterrent to full mobilization, even with police protection for the strike breakers. Allende's actions were eventually declared unlawful by the Chilean appeals court and the government was ordered to return trucks to their owners. [Edy Kaufman, "Crisis in Allende's Chile: New Perspectives", Praeger Publishers, New York, 1988. 266-267.]

Throughout this presidency racial tensions between the poor descendants of indigenous people and slaves who supported Allende’s reforms and the white settler elite increased. [Richard Gott. [http://www.guardian.co.uk/venezuela/story/0,,1948020,00.html Latin America is preparing to settle accounts with its white settler elite] . Guardian Unlimited, November 15, 2006. Retrieved on December 22, 2006.]

In addition to the earlier-discussed provision of employment, Allende also raised wages on a number of occasions throughout 1970 and 1971; these wage hikes were negated by in-tandem inflation of Chile's fiat currency. Although price rises had also been high under Frei (27% a year between 1967 and 1970), a basic basket of consumer goods rose by 120% from 190 to 421 escudos in one month alone, August 1972. In the period 1970-72, while Allende was in government, exports fell 24% and imports rose 26%, with imports of food rising an estimated 149%. [figures are from Nove, 1986, pp4-12, tables 1.1 & 1.7] Although nominal wages were rising, there was not a commensurate increase in the standard of living.

Export income fell due to a decline in the price of copper on international markets; copper being the single most important export (more than half of Chile's export receipts were from this sole commodity [Hoogvelt, 1997] ). Adverse fluctuation in the international price of copper negatively affected the economy throughout 1971-2: The price of copper fell from a peak of $66 per ton in 1970 to only $48-9 in 1971 and 1972. [Nove, 1986]

Throughout his presidency, Allende remained at odds with the Chilean Congress, which was dominated by the Christian Democratic Party. The Christian Democrats (who had campaigned on a socialist platform in the 1970 elections, but drifted away from those positions during Allende's presidency, eventually forming a coalition with the National Party), continued to accuse Allende of leading Chile toward a Cuban-style dictatorship, and sought to overturn many of his more radical policies. Allende and his opponents in Congress repeatedly accused each other of undermining the Chilean Constitution and acting undemocratically.

Allende's increasingly bold socialist policies (partly in response to pressure from some of the more radical members within his coalition), combined with his close contacts with Cuba, heightened fears in Washington. The Nixon administration began exerting economic pressure on Chile via multilateral organizations, and continued to back Allende's opponents in the Chilean Congress. Almost immediately after his election, Nixon directed CIA and U.S. State Department officials to "put pressure" on the Allende government.

The coup

There were rumors of a possible coup since at least 1972; in 1973, partly due to Allende's economic policies, partly as a result of the rapidly declining price of copper (Chile's main export), but especially because of lock-outs and sabotage by factory owners, the economy took a major downturn. By September, high inflation (508% for the entire year) and shortages had plunged the country into near-chaos. [Flores, 1997]

Despite declining economic indicators, Allende's Popular Unity coalition actually increased its vote to 43% in the parliamentary elections early in 1973. However, by this point, what had started as an informal alliance with the Christian Democrats [ [http://countrystudies.us/chile/85.htm Development and Breakdown of Democracy, 1830-1973] , U.S. Library of Congress Country Study on Chile ( [http://countrystudies.us/chile/ TOC] ) based on information available as of March 31, 1994.] was anything but; the Christian Democrats now joined with the right-wing National Party to oppose Allende's government, the two parties calling themselves the Confederación Democrática (CODE). The conflict between the executive and legislature paralyzed initiatives from either side.es icon [http://web.archive.org/web/20030922064040/http://icarito.latercera.cl/icarito/2003/912/pag1c.htm Se desata la crisis] , Enciclopedia Escolar Icarito. Archived on the Internet Archive, September 22, 2003]

On June 29, 1973, a tank regiment under the command of Colonel Roberto Souper surrounded the presidential palace (La Moneda) in an unsuccessful coup attempt known as the "Tanquetazo". [Ewin Martínez Torre, [http://www.geocities.com/educhile_1970s/tanquetazo.html Second coup attempt: El Tanquetazo (the tank attack)] , History of Chile under Salvador Allende and the Popular Unity. [http://www.geocities.com/educhile_1970s/index.html TOC and introduction] )] On August 9, General Carlos Prats was made Minister of Defense, but this decision proved so unpopular with the military that, on August 22, he was forced to resign not only this position but his role as Commander-in-Chief of the Army; he was replaced in the latter role by General Augusto Pinochet.

In August 1973, a constitutional crisis was clearly in the offing: the Supreme Court publicly complained about the government's inability to enforce the law of the land and, on August 22, the Chamber of Deputies (with the Christian Democrats now firmly uniting with the National Party) Allende's government of unconstitutional acts and called on the military ministers to assure the constitutional order. Among other things, Allende was accused of disregarding the courts, attempting to restrict freedom of speech, and supporting unauthorized seizures of farms and private industry for the purpose of establishing state control of the economy. The Chamber of Deputies also attacked Allende for seeking to "establish a totalitarian system absolutely opposed to the representative system of government established by the Constitution." [cite news
author=Paul Craig Roberts
title=The Power of Propaganda
url=http://www.lewrockwell.com/roberts/roberts189.html
publisher=lewrockwell.com
date=2006-12-27
accessdate=2008-05-10
]

In early September 1973, Allende floated the idea of resolving the crisis with a plebiscite. His speech outlining such a solution was scheduled for September 12, but he was never able to deliver it. On September 11, 1973, the Chilean military staged a coup against Allende.

Death

Just prior to the capture of La Moneda (the Presidential Palace), with gunfire and explosions clearly audible in the background, Allende gave his (subsequently famous) farewell speech to Chileans on live radio, speaking of himself in the past tense, of his love for Chile and of his deep faith in its future. He stated that his commitment to Chile did not allow him to take an easy way out and be used as a propaganda tool by those he called "traitors" (accepting an offer of safe passage), clearly implying he intended to fight to the end.Shortly afterwards, Allende died. An official announcement declared that he had committed suicide with an automatic rifle, [cite web|url=http://www.presidencia.gob.cl/view/viewGaleriaPresidentes.asp?id=31&seccion=Presidencia%20por%20Dentro&interfazseccion=Galeria%20Presidentes#a31|title=Salvador Allende Gossens|publisher=Presidencia de la República de Chile|accessdate=2006-04-08] purportedly the AK-47 assault rifle given to him as a gift by Fidel Castro, which bore a golden plate engraved "To my good friend Salvador from Fidel, who by different means tries to achieve the same goals." [James Whelan, "Out of the Ashes: The Life, Death and Transfiguration of Democracy in Chile" (Washington: Regnery Gateway, 1989), 511-512 and 519-520, cited by Andrew J. Rhodes, Chilean Civil-Military Relations, [http://www.geocities.com/ajhrhodes/doc-three.htm#_ftn3 Chapter Three:Rise and Fall of "La Cofradía Blindada", footnote 3] , thesis for The Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University, May 2001.] Verify source|date=September 2007

In his 2004 documentary "Salvador Allende", Patricio Guzmán incorporates a graphic image of Allende's corpse in the position it was found after his death. According to Guzmán's documentary, Allende simply shot himself with a gun, and not a rifle.

At the time and for many years after, his supporters nearly uniformly presumed that he was killed by the forces staging the coup. In recent years, the view he committed suicide has become more accepted, particularly as different testimonies are confirming the details of the suicide in news and documentary interviews. [Camus, Ignacio Gonzalez , "El dia en que murio Allende" ("The day that Allende Died"). Instituto Chileno de Estudios Humanísticos (ICHEH) and Centro de Estudios Sociales (CESOC), 1988. p. 282 and following.] Also, members of Allende's immediate family including his daughter, accept that it was a suicide. [ [http://www2.eluniversal.com.mx/pls/impreso/noticia.html?id_nota=164983&tabla=notas Admite hija de Allende suicidio de su padre] ]

Foreign involvement in Chile during Allende's Term

oviet involvement

According to Vasili Mitrokhin, a former KGB bureaucrat, regular Soviet contact with Allende after his election was maintained by his KGB case officer, Svyatoslav Kuznetsov, who was instructed by the centre to “exert a favourable influence on Chilean government policy”. According to Allende’s KGB file, he “was made to understand the necessity of reorganising Chile's army and intelligence services, and of setting up a relationship between Chile’s and the USSR’s intelligence services”. Allende was said to react positively.

In October 1971, on instructions from the Politburo, Allende was given $30,000 “in order to solidify the trusted relations” with him. On December 7, in a memorandum to the Politburo, the KGB proposed giving Allende another $60,000 for what was termed “his work with political party leaders, military commanders and parliamentarians.”Christopher Andrew and Vasili Mitrokhin, [http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/article568154.ece How 'weak' Allende was left out in the cold by the KGB] (excerpt from "The Mitrokhin Archive Volume II"), "The Times" (UK), September 19, 2005.]

According to Christopher Andrew's account of the Mitrokhin archives, "In the KGB’s view, Allende's fundamental error was his unwillingness to use force against his opponents. Without establishing complete control over all the machinery of the State, his hold on power could not be secure."

US Involvement/Corporate Business Interests

The possibility of Allende winning Chile's 1970 election was deemed a disaster by a US government desirous of protecting US business interests and preventing any further spread of communism during the Cold War. In September 1970, President Nixon informed the CIA that an Allende regime in Chile would not be acceptable and authorized $10 million to stop Allende from coming to power or unseat him. The CIA's plans to impede Allende's investiture as President of Chile were known as "Track I" and "Track II"; "Track I" sought to prevent Allende from assuming power via so-called "parliamentary trickery", while under the "Track II" initiative, the CIA tried to convince key Chilean military officers to carry out a coup. [http://foia.state.gov/Reports/HincheyReport.asp Hinchey Report] CIA Activities in Chile. September 18, 2000. Accessed online November 18, 2006.]

After the 1970 election, the Track I operation attempted to incite Chile's outgoing president, Eduardo Frei Montalva, to persuade his party (PDC) to vote in Congress for Alessandri. Under the plan, Alessandri would resign his office immediately after assuming it and call new elections. Eduardo Frei would then be constitutionally able to run again (since the Chilean Constitution did not allow a president to hold two consecutive terms, but allowed multiple non-consecutive ones), and presumably easily defeat Allende. The Chilean Congress instead chose Allende as President, on the condition that he would sign a "Statute of Constitutional Guarantees" affirming that he would respect and obey the Chilean Constitution, and that his reforms would not undermine any element of it.

"Track II" was abortive, as parallel initiatives already underway within the Chilean military rendered it moot. [ [http://foia.state.gov/Reports/ChurchReport.asp "Church Report. Covert Action in Chile 1963-1973"] , December 18, 1975.]

The United States has acknowledged having played a role in Chilean politics prior to the coup, but its degree of involvement in the coup itself is debated. The CIA was notified by its Chilean contacts of the impending coup two days in advance, but contends it "played no direct role in" the coup. [ [http://cbsnews.cbs.com/stories/2000/09/11/world/main232452.shtml CIA Reveals Covert Acts In Chile] , CBS News, September 19, 2000.]

President Allende's economic policy had involved nationalizations of many key companies, notably U.S.-owned copper mines. This had been a significant reason behind the United States opposition to Allende's reformist socialist government, in addition to his establishing diplomatic relations and cooperation agreements with Cuba and the Soviet Union. Much of the internal opposition to Allende's policies came from business sector, and recently-released U.S. government documents confirm that the U.S. funded the truck drivers' strike, [Jonathan Franklin, [http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,260382,00.html Files show Chilean blood on US hands] , "The Guardian", October 11, 1999.] which had exacerbated the already chaotic economic situation prior to the coup.

The most prominent U.S. corporations in Chile prior to Allende’s presidency were the Anaconda and Kennecott Copper companies, and ITT, International Telephone and Telegraph. Both the copper corporations aimed to expand privatized copper production in the city of El Teniente, Chile, the world’s largest underground copper mine. At the end of 1968, according to Department of Commerce data, U.S. corporate holdings in Chile amounted to $964 million. Anaconda and Kennecott accounted for 28% of U.S. holdings, but ITT had by far the largest holding of any single corporation, with an investment of $200 million in Chile. In 1970, before Allende was elected, ITT owned 70% of Chitelco, the Chilean Telephone Company and funded El Mercurio, a Chilean right-wing newspaper. Documents released in 2000 by the CIA confirmed that before the elections of 1970, ITT gave $700,000 to Allende’s conservative opponent, Jorge Alessandri, with help from the CIA on how to channel the money safely. ITT president Harold Geneen also offered $1 million to the CIA to help defeat Allende in the elections. [Daniel Brandt, [http://www.namebase.org/chile.html U.S. Responsibility for the Coup in Chile] , Namebase, November 28, 1988.]

After General Pinochet assumed power, U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger told U.S. President Richard Nixon that the U.S. "didn't do it," but "we helped them...created the conditions as great as possible." (referring to the coup itself) [ [http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB123/chile.htm The Kissinger Telcons: Kissinger Telcons on Chile] , National Security Archive Electronic Briefing Book No. 123, edited by Peter Kornbluh, posted May 26, 2004. This particular dialogue can be found at [http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB123/Box%2022,%20File%203,%20Telcon,%209-16-73%2011,50%20Mr.%20Kissinger-The%20Pres%202.pdf TELCON: September 16, 1973, 11:50 a.m. Kissinger Talking to Nixon] . Accessed online November 26, 2006.] . Recent documents declassified under the Clinton administration's Chile Declassification Project show that the United States government and the CIA had sought the overthrow of Allende in 1970 immediately before he took office ("Project FUBELT"), but claims of their direct involvement in the 1973 coup are not proven by publicly available documentary evidence, but many documents still remain classified.

Legacy and debate

Family

On May 3, 2007, newspaper "La Tercera" published a story claiming Gloria Gaitán, daughter of Jorge Eliécer Gaitán, had an unborn child with Allende. [ [http://www.tercera.com/medio/articulo/0,0,3255_5664_266608320,00.html "La Tercera"] ]

Memorials to Allende include a statue in front of the Palacio de la Moneda and Place Salvador Allende in Villeneuve d'Ascq, France near the Auchan store.

Additional information

ee also

*Cuban packages
*Allende stamps

References

Other sources

* [http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB8/nsaebb8.htm Chile and the United States: Declassified Documents relating to the Military Coup, 1970-1976] , (From the United States' National Security Archive).

External links

* [http://www.abacq.org/calle/index.php Photos of the public places named in homage to the President Allende all around the world] es
* [http://www.cyberussr.com/hcunn/for/chile-73.html Chile under Allende and Pinochet]
* [http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/allende110906.html Salvador Allende's "Last Words"] Spanish text with English translation. The transcript of the last radio broadcast of Chilean President Salvador Allende, made on September 11, 1973, at 9:10 AM. MP3 audio available [http://www.salvador-allende.cl/Audio/Salvador_Allende_11sept_1973.mp3 here] .
* [http://www.elclarin.cl/fpa/hemeroteca.html Caso Pinochet] . While nominally a page about the Pinochet case, this large collection of links includes Allende's dissertation and numerous documents (mostly PDFs) related to the dissertation and to the controversy about it, ranging from the Cesare Lombroso material discussed in Allende's dissertation to a collective telegram of protest over Kristallnacht signed by Allende. es
* "An Interview with Salvadore Allende: President of Chile", interviewed by Saul Landau, Dove Films, 1971, 32 min. (previously unreleased):
** [http://www.elclarin.cl/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=12166&Itemid=73 Video] (Spanish with English subtitles) in "El Clarin de Chile". (Alternative location [http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-2562611999831760993 at Google Video] , added June 8, 2008)
** [http://www.lanacion.cl/prontus_noticias/site/artic/20050925/pags/20050925205502.html Transcript] es in "La Nacion", September 24, 2005.
* [http://www.josepinera.com/pag/pag_tex_quiebredemoc_en.htm Alternate source] of the Resolution of August 22, 1973 (English, Spanish, French, German, Polish
* [http://www.misantiago.cl/pxs/entrete/pxs12.htm Map of the Surroundings of La Moneda Palace] es

succession box
title=Minister of Public Health,
Social Assistance and Welfare

before=Miguel Etchebarne
after=Eduardo Escudero
years=1939-1942
succession box
title=President of the Senate of Chile
before=Tomás Reyes
after=Tomás Pablo
years=1966-1969
succession box
title=President of Chile
before=Eduardo Frei Montalva
after=Augusto Pinochet
years=1970 - 1973

Template group
title=History of Chile
list =

Persondata
NAME= Allende, Salvador, Gossens
ALTERNATIVE NAMES=
SHORT DESCRIPTION=President of Chile
DATE OF BIRTH=July 26, 1908
PLACE OF BIRTH= Valparaíso, Chile
DATE OF DEATH=September 11, 1973
PLACE OF DEATH= Santiago, Chile


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