Wednesday, September 11, 2013

forty years later

Today is the 40th anniversary of the coup in Chile. Thirty years ago, I attended a major event on the eve of the 10th anniversary:

which was a huge arena event with lots of big names. The head of the regional government and future federal president Johannes Rau was sitting in the first row with his very young wife (and I was two rows behind them), when the evening's host Dietmar Schönherr, speaking about the US interference in Nicaragua, referred to the then US president Ronald Reagan as an arsehole. That was front page news the next day.

Based on what I learned that evening and later (eg from books like Joan Jara's excellent biography of her husband Victor), I have never been able to hear any US politician trying to take the moral high ground without grumbling, but look at what your guys did to Chile. And even though it has now returned to democracy, the recent student demos have reminded us that Pinochet's legacy persists in the education system as elsewhere.

Oh well. There doesn't seem to be much going on around here today. Just me and my Victor Jara LPs.

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