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Military Dictatorships.docx

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Western University
History 2501E
Luz Hernandez- Saenz

March, 07, 2013 Military Dictatorships Characteristics: -The power is in the hands of the military and they usually come as a reaction to the populist regimes they had -Populism tried to share wealth but it didn’t work out and there were problems that the military stepped in to solve and the tried to revive the economies by consolidating their ties with the international economic forces -When they got loans from organizations like the World Bank there were certain conditions they had to follow involving restructuring and stopping wasting money so many cuts had to made costing jobs and social services -People don’t respond well to this and this is why military regimes were necessary because they could enforce things and they were usually parties coming out of the political right -To achieve unpopular goals the needed to stop political opposition so other parties are wiped out The Chilean Background: -Chile is a strange country because it is like a ribbon running down the coast and this causes problems with transportation to the north and south while the width is very small -Most of the bases of the economy are concentrated in the centre of the country near Santiago where 70% of the population and industrialized employment -The north is also important because that was where the copper mines were and that was where the unions concentrated as well and it was a blue collar area -The economy in the 50-60’s was mostly agrarian with little industrialization and Chile was supposed to be one of the most traditional and democratic country because there were less revolutions there but it was not truly democratic because politics was dominated by a small group of land owners -They made sure their workers would vote for certain candidates and this swayed politics greatly but for a while it worked but when they started fiddling around with the structure of how land was divided and weakening landowners the whole system changed -There were many strikes in 1907-1919 and the government sided often with the employers and it was also a system in which on some occasions when things were getting out of hand they government would ask the government to take over until things calmed down then they would go back to their more democratic system -This happened more than once and it happened with Pinochet -During the cold war in the 1950’s the Catholic church was also afraid of the Communists and they tried to combat them by giving the workers better conditions and more benefits so they would not be swayed and many priests went to actually live with the workers and actually do their jobs with them to better understand how to help them -At the same time there were other organizations that were trying to do the same in the Americas and they felt if you gave people a better standard of living they wouldn’t become Communists and the result was that in Chile there were many workers organizations that became politicized and they supported peasant rights and organised them so by the 60’s there was a network of organizations working for the same goal but it was complex -They achieved many things they wanted and people were better able to fight for their rights -Also by the 60’s there was a Marxist influence and some groups started leaning more this way and the Alliance for Progress also funded Chile at this time and there was support for land reforms -Chile was of interest to the US because they were dependant on them economically and 40% of the products sent to Chile were from the US and 90% of the technology needed for mining and most of their debt was to the US -The USA started funding some of the political parties fighting for power in Chile under the table -There were two main regimes and one of them in 1964-70 saw Eduardo Frei as president who was left of centre and supported by the USA because he was seen as a reformer but not an extremist and his campaign announced a revolution in liberty and he raised expectations about what the people would get from him but this was all for liberty and no one would be forced to do anything -He nationalized corporate industry with a lot of support, agrarian reform, tax reform, and promoting industrial growth and the population was growing fast and they also had to deal with housing and the shanty towns so he wanted to organize groups to bring infrastructure to the areas -He achieved some progress but it didn’t fix the problem because he couldn’t reach everyone and this causes resentment among the people March, 07, 2013 -He also with the agrarian reforms achieved some goals and he gave land to those that had none but he couldn’t give it to all that needed or wanted it and again they were frustrated Bureaucratic Authoritarianism in Chile – 1973-88: -The Junta controlled what happened and the leader was Pinochet and they gradually changed some of the laws and came up with a different constitution and they concentrated the power with themselves and later in Pinochet -In 1973 the National Congress was dissolved, universities were taken over (suspected Communists in trouble there), unions were suspended, and they put in place rules that if the government decided you were an enemy they could take your Chilean citizenship (bad because take passport to can’t belong anywhere) -By 1974 they tightened many of the previous measures and political parties were dissolved and politics was basically taken out, all organizations were suspended from having elections, and they created the DINA which was the National Intelligence Directorate and supposedly they coordinated intelligence operations but really they were the ones doing the kidnappings and transporting victims -The same year Pinochet was appointed the supreme chief of the nation and there was no one for the family of the disappeared to go to because the authorities were the one doing the killings and kidnappings -There was a case that became very important of two Americans that were there during the coup and they disappeared and they were Charles Horman and Frank Teruggi and they worked with an organization that had to do with films for the Allende government -Charles Horman was 30 years old and Teruggi was 24 and Horman’s wife looked for the two of them and later on a book was written on the case and it was made into a movie in 1982 and it was very important for the case -Horman’s wife went to the American embassy and tried to figure out what happened and finally the US released a number of documents that allowed people to piece together what happened -Charles had gone to a place on the coast where the coup started and they were stuck there but they got a ride back with another American and apparently this man talked too much and they figured out the US was involved in the coup and when they arrived in Santiago they were taken and they disappeared -His wife was in the city but there was a curfew and she couldn’t go out but when she arrived to where they were staying together he was gone and his family came over to help -Teruggi was picked up later and the two of them were taken to the National Stadium and finally after many years and pushing the government they released documents with much information blacked out and they were only later released in full -His wife learned that the
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