This is a tough post for me. I love my country, the U.S. and I’m so proud to be American, I”ll fly my flag and celebrate the 4th with more commitment than most holidays.
Unfortunately there are parts of our history that many don’t know about because they aren’t taught to us. We’ve done so many things that I’m not proud of, even if some of these events happened 20 years before I was born. They just make me want to cry. Even current events are just as disturbing.
This video (click here) is from a short film with 11 different sections. The film is from the U.K. called 11’09″01 September 11 and this particular section is about the 1973 coup d’etat in Chile and the dictatorship that follows. Pablo, a Chilean singer and songwriter who was exiled from Chile, his home and never can return. He talks about his September 11th, a Tuesday just like ours in the United States, and shows his sadness about our September 11 and what really happened during his.
He treated his people with love and respect.
However, the U.S. didn’t want a communist country, especially during the Cold War, so they created an embargo against Chile which made inflation rates rise to 300%, we promoted and organized a strike of the truck drivers in Chile which was the main form of transportation of goods in Chile and that strike crippled the entire country. We put over 10 millions dollars into overthrowing Allende, which happened in 1973.
Allende was ordered to leave in 1973 but refused to leave the palace and his people and remained there, even as the capital was being bombed. He said one final speech before he was shot and killed. the following is an exert of that speech, in Spanish and English
“Trabajadores de mi Patria, tengo fe en Chile y su destino. Superarán otros hombres este momento gris y amargo en el que la traición pretende imponerse. Sigan ustedes sabiendo que, mucho más temprano que tarde, de nuevo se abrirán las grandes alamedas por donde pase el hombre libre, para construir una sociedad mejor.
¡Viva Chile! ¡Viva el pueblo! ¡Vivan los trabajadores!
Estas son mis últimas palabras y tengo la certeza de que mi sacrificio no será en vano, tengo la certeza de que, por lo menos, será una lección moral que castigará la felonía, la cobardía y la traición.”
“Workers of my country, I have faith in Chile and its destiny. Other men will overcome this dark and bitter moment when treason seeks to prevail. Keep in mind that, much sooner than later, great avenues will again be opened, through which will pass the free man, to construct a better society.
Long live Chile! Long live the people! Long live the workers!
These are my last words, and I am certain that my sacrifice will not be in vain, I am certain that, at the very least, it will be a moral lesson that will punish felony, cowardice, and treason.”
After that, Augusto Pinochet took control and killed over 30,000 people and had various concentration camp through out the country. The people were killed and tortured for no reason. Pablo, in the video linked above, states that he was shot in the knee and then beaten so badly that he lost consciousness. Now he can never return to his home because he’s considered a treat.
He says that his people, after Allende was elected, has just found dignity and “didn’t know how dangerous that was”.
The United States is supposed to support those countries that do wonderful things for their people and support democratic choices. Chile made an extremely bold move by holding a democratic election. Allende was loved by his people as a leader should be, he should be loved and respected. His people stood by him during the coup d’etat, they wanted to protect him, would we do that for our leaders?
It breaks my heart, to hate a man like Allende who took care of his people, to promote killing him just because of his political ideas. I don’t agree with a communist political view and I don’t see how it would ever work, but if that is what a country wants and if their leader treats them properly then that is their choice. I will not support leader that hurts their people, but Allende wasn’t one of those leaders. He was elected and treated his people extremely well. It just makes me want to cry, thinking of all of those who lost their lives because of our help in overthrowing Allende, all of the children who watched their families being tortured, all those victims, all those who just disappeared. The desaparecidos, the disappeared, whose families will never know what happened to them, their children, their mothers, their fathers, their loved ones. We fought the Nazi’s in World War II because of how disgusting they were, the torture, the killing, the concentration camps and then we support Pinochet, a man who Henry Kissinger our Secretary of State congratulated on his success, his success at killing, torturing, and his concentration camps.
Your condolences are appreciated. Your love, support and kind words in our time of need, our Tuesday, September 11th were beautiful and touching.
To you and all you have been through, to your family I offer the most sincere apologies and that will never be enough. I’m only 21 and wasn’t even born at the time everything happened, but the 1970 election was the first time you got to vote and this is the first time I’m voting. I’m not only considering what I need in my country, but how our decisions affect and destroy those around us.
The quote you said at the end of your video, from Saint Augustine, ““Hope has two beautiful daughters: their names are anger and courage. Anger that things are the way they are. Courage to make them the way they ought to be.” You have been one of the biggest inspirations in my life, I may not know much about yours but understanding the world around me and seeking knowledge is so important because you need the courage to change things that are wrong, especially in the States, where you can’t be hurt for your beliefs. We of all people should be the most vocal since we have that opportunity and that power to make such a huge, wonderful, beneficial difference in the world. We should use that power to do something positive.
Every year I will remember my September 11th and yours, when enemies of freedom destroyed your home and mine and I will remain vocal so that the United States of America will never again be that enemy of freedom.
With all the love in my heart.