Fifty years ago this month , Salvador Allende was democratically elected as President of Chile. Three years later on 11th September 1973 he and his government were overthrown in a violent and deadly coup organised by the American Central Intelligence Agency – the CIA.
The United States was determined to undermine the election result from the outset. The CIA had actively interfered in the election campaign but despite its efforts Allende had won.
At the time, Henry Kissinger, Nixon’s Presidential Assistant for National Security Affairs, displaying his anti-democratic, imperialist credentials, declared: “I don’t see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist due to the irresponsibility of its own people”.
In line with his political programme, Allende commenced the process of nationalisation of the banking, communications and automobile industries. In July 1971, he authorised the nationalisation of the massive Chilean copper industry.
The coup of 1973 signalled the commencement of 17 years of military dictatorship, terror and mass human rights violations in Chile.
Following a sustained campaign of destabilisation the US sponsored right wing militias to sabotage and undermine the Chilean economy, President Allende and his supporters.
Despite this Allende and his Popular Unity Party won the March 1973 elections. The U.S. destabilisation campaign had failed.
Now the CIA was instructed to organise a military coup d’état.
On 11 September 1973, under the command of Augusto Pinochet the Chilean military and navy mutinied and the air force attacked the Presidential Palace. Armed troops surrounded the Communist Party Central Committee building. President Allende and many of his ministers were murdered
September 11, signalled the commencement of 17 years of military dictatorship, terror and mass human rights violations in Chile.
The intervention of the US in support of barbarous regimes in Chile, Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Paraguay are part of the legacy of imperialism in Latin America and the threat of imperialist intervention remains a reality across the continent and the world.
Today we send our solidarity and fraternal greetings to the Communist Party of Chile as we remember the coup d’état of September 1973 , the overthrow of the democratically elected government and the murder of President Salvador Allende