This week marks the 45th anniversary of a coup in Chile that overthrew the democratically elected president Salvador Allende and radically changed the course of Chilean history.
The violent events of of September 11, 1973 ushered in the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, who ruled through horrific political suppression and human rights abuses.
This hour, we talk with Tufts historian Peter Winn, who was on the ground outside the Presidential Palace on the day of the coup. We also hear from Chilean-Americans who now live in Connecticut about what it was like to live under the Pinochet regime.
How has the coup of ‘73 reshaped Chile--and our world?
- Peter Winn - Professor of Latin American history at Tufts University in Boston. He is the author of several books including Americas and Weavers of the Revolution: The Yarur Workers and Chile's Road to Socialism
- Conrado Ulloa - Chilean Americn who lives in Connecticut, and teacher at Stafford High School. He spent nearly three years as a political prisoner in Chile during the Pinochet dictatorship
- Werner Oyanadel - Chilean-American who lives in Connecticut. Also a senior commission analyst at the Commission on Equity and Opportunity (@Werner_Oyanadel)
West Hartford resident Adriana Falcón Trafford also shared her story of being arrested and interrogated by the Pinochet regime with Where We Live. Read it here.
ReVista: The Other 9/11: My Coup Diary (Peter Winn, 2004) – “When the army tanks started firing at the presidential palace, I was standing across the Plaza de la Constitution.By then, his police guard had deserted Salvador Allende, leaving the desperate defense of his democratic road to socialism to a score of friends and associates who had chosen to remain with him in La Moneda in the face of certain defeat and probable death. I had also chosen to remain—across the plaza. I was a historian, I had reasoned, and I had to bear witness to this watershed historical event. But as the bullets started to rain down all around me, it began to look like I had made a poor choice.”
SBS Australia: The Other 9/11 – “September 11 is a date marked by violence and sorrow in the minds of many around the world. For Chileans, it is doubly so, because on that day, in 1973, the country's democratically elected president, Salvador Allende was overthrown in a brutal military coup. What followed were years of repression, torture, forced disappearance, fear and for many Chileans, exile.”
Chion Wolf contributed to this show.