Augusto Pinochet

Dictator of Chile

Essential Question:

What tactics did Pinochet like other dictators we have studied use to keep power and the affection of some people?


Augutso Pinochet was born November 25, 1915 by the full name of Augusto José Ramón Pinochet Ugarte to a middle class family where he was the oldest of six children. His father worked for the government as his family, although French was of Chilean descent. Pinochet entered military school at 18 and prospered graduating in four years as a sub-lieutenant. There is not much else known of his family history or early life, because once in power his previous life was rewritten, altered, and erased to improve his overall public image. Augusto's gain to power came through the military as he soon became commander in chief of the Chilean army and held other positions of power appointed to him and taken over with force. This began in 1948 when young senator Allende found Pinochet one of his most valuable trustees. By 1973 his position of Commander in Chief had been achieved. It was here the power went to his head and the 17 year reign began. During this time period he would be convicted of being a ruthless dictator who was racist, brutal, and paranoid who committed countless atrocities against his people. He was to be charged for several war crimes (when Chile was not at war), genocide crimes (against Haitians) and countless senseless murders due to his paranoia concerning thought crimes. In total it is said he murdered over 2,000 people (that are known of). Charges against him for human rights violations as well as genocide and other war crimes were dropped due to his ill health and followed by his natural death in 2006.

Song Analysis

The song above highlights the controversy as well as the manipulation skill and charisma Pinochet embodied. Many people in the country viewed him as a hero because of his protective nature and the supposed economic growth he helped produce. This song was sung out of fear as well, if anyone opposed the great leader they would be sent to a death camp. Many death camps have only recently been discovered as insiders are coming clean about there role as bystanders. Pinochet was viewed as a God by some but by many a nightmare, a time bomb waiting to explode.

Creative Piece

Pinochet's Decree

Its not what is important to you but what is important to me

I shall ban all political parties

I shall disregard the constitution

I shall 'single handedly' socialism

There is no greater leader you shall ever see

I shall improve the economy

increase exports, remove trade barriers, better for all it shall be

Out with the foreigners Chileans reign supreme

Above all else shall be me, myself, and I

This is my honest unspoken decree

Analysis of Creative Piece

Pinochet was an extremely selfish corrupt leader. The interest of the people was never one his. He was manipulative and charismatic, as he had many followers who loved him so, but little did anyone know what he was actually doing until he died. His big leaps forward seemed to take many steps back upon his death. (The economic policies were good at first and other Latin American countries began to adopt them, but some soon after reversed them as they were more detrimental). Creating a national scapegoat of "socialism" all his atrocious acts were disregarded, until disaster struck and they came to light. Pinochet was dangerous and never to be questioned especially because of his unspoken secret decree.

Works Cited

"Augusto Pinochet." A&E Television Networks, n.d. Web. 04 May 2015. A&E Networks Television, n.d. Web. 04 May 2015.