Name: Augusto Pinochet

Alive: 1915-2006

Bio: Pinochet was a dictator of Chile between 1973 and 1990, and remained Commander-in-Chief of the Chilean Army until 1998. Pinochet seized power in Chile in a US-backed coup d’état, ending civilian rule. There were an estimated 3,000 murders under Pinochet’s rule and up to 30,000 people were supposedly tortured. Pinochet introduced a policy of free-market economic liberalization which stabilized the currency, banned trade unions and privatized social security and state-owned enterprises. Pinochet’s policies produced the “Miracle of Chile” in the 1990s.

Quotes:

“Sometimes democracy must be bathed in blood”

“Everything I did, all my actions, all of the problems I had I dedicate to God and to Chile, because I kept Chile from becoming Communist”

Popular Culture:

“No” – film, 2012

“Pinochet in Suburbia” – television movie, 2006

Further Reading:

  • Pamela Constable, A Nation of Enemies: Chile Under Pinochet (1993)
  • Peter Kornbluh, The Pinochet File: A Declassified Dossier on Atrocity and Accountability (2003)