Augusto Pinochet

Dictator of Chile


Augusto Pinochet was born in 1973 in Valparaiso, Chile. From 1973-1990 he ruled over Chile in the position of military dictator and army officer. He was a harsh, ruthless, disciplined, demanding dictator who used violence to control the people. He was very strict and strived to gain power. His inspiration to be an intellectual came from the five books he wrote on politics and warfare. He advanced quickly to higher ranking positions by the command of President Allende, Pinochet used this to his advantage to take down Allende and take control. Pinochet was running a concentration camp for communists until he was later promoted to commander-in-chief of the military. He used this to his advantage to take over the government even though Chile's economy and people were suffering. He arranged an aircraft attack on the president's house resulting in the death of Allende and intending to take total control. He got Chile involved in what is called Operation Condor, along with other partaking countries, to control leftists. This was done through violence as there were kidnappings, disappearances and killings executed by the secret police they created. Pinochet’s created a group of economists to encourage his reforms which in the end caused wages to plummet and unemployment to increase. After those years of ruling, he is mostly known for his unmerciful and cruel actions that negatively effected Chile.

Remembering the Devastating past

Chile: a "memory journey" of Augusto Pinochet's crimes

Remembering the past of Pinochet's Horror

The video above emphasizes most on the physical abuse and torture of the citizens commanded by Augusto Pinochet and executed by his military coup. Students were taken from schools and brought to the stadiums in the capital where they were detained and manipulated. Abuse had no limit they were forced to wear clothes of the killed, electrocuted, beaten, suffocated and deprived of their rights. Pinochet focused on creating military coups that would preform the tasks that he wanted done. Pinochet's manipulation of power is shown through his lack of leadership qualities and extreme violence. There is a cemetery in Santiago, Chile where many visit to pay respects and reflect on the hug wall with all the names engraved on it.

Journal Entry - Augusto Pinochet

The Power - Journal Entry #1

Now promoted to President of Chile, I now have the power to control all actions. I have big plans for the country followed by lots of changes. I have already started making restrictions to the citizens which will soon change their traditions and lifestyles to revolve around my ideals. I have already created my military coup that will report to me for everything and will preform any task demanded. They are well put group that disciplines well although I would like to see a harsher punishment. I have gained lots of support from citizens and from the U.S. helping with military support. That is all I have to write for now but hopefully when I write next I will have gained more power and are closer to reaching total control.

Essential Question

How does the effect of Augusto Pinochet's leadership and harsh ruling compare to Fidel Castro?