Monday, December 11, 2006

Not a leaf moves...

Augusto Pinochet, the notorious dictator of Chile, died yesterday at the age of 91. He is quoted as having said "Not a leaf moves in this country if I'm not moving it."See CNN.

On September 11, 1973 Pinochet staged a coup overthrowing democratically elected President Salvador Allende. Most believe this coup was backed by the US.

Pinochet ruled Chile for the next 17 years. Under his rule, at least 3,000 people were killed for political reasons. He disbanded Congress, banned political activity and crushed dissent. In addition to the dead, more than 1,000 victims remain unaccounted for. Thousands more were arrested, tortured and forced into exile.

When investigators uncovered coffins that had been stuffed with two bodies each in the aftermath of the coup, he dismissed it as a "a good cemetery space-saving measure."

CNN reported that Pinochet showed little regard for the concept of human rights. During an interview Pinochet stated:

Human rights, that's an invention of the Marxists.
Not only was he murderer, but he was a thief as well. In 2004, Chilean investigators found that Pinochet had stashed nearly $27 million in overseas bank accounts. Efforts to bring him to justice were frustrated by his failing health.
What is it with these old dudes living into their 90s and never taking resposibility for the death and chaos over which they presided? See previous post re: South Africa's Botha.
Where is the justice?

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