Nation of Enemies: Chile Under Pinochet

Pamela Constable, Author, Arturo Valenzuela, With W. W. Norton & Company $24.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-393-03011-2
In their rigorous examination of the regime of the ``Franco of Chile,'' the authors describe the 1973 coup that ended the brief socialist experiment of Salvador Allende (the first freely elected Marxist head of state) and explain how Augusto Pinochet came to dominate the junta and attained personal and institutional control ``unrivalled by contemporary military regimes anywhere else in Latin America.'' Based on hundreds of interviews with Chileans of all backgrounds and political views, Constable and Valenzuela chronicle the hate-driven campaign of oppression that sharpened divisions between left and right, rich and poor, civilian and military, and ``turned the state into a monster'' capable of torture and mass killings. The authors also describe the rapid economic development directed by Pinochet's ``Chicago Boys,'' a team of U.S.-trained technocrats who initiated a bold venture into free-market economics that led one segment of Chileans to prosperity while another sank into poverty. Finally, they describe the circumstances under which Pinochet, ``the last of South America's modern-day dictators,'' was forced to step down in 1989. Constable is foreign correspondent for the Boston Globe ; Valenzuela is director of the Center for Latin American Studies at Georgetown University. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 09/02/1991
Release date: 09/01/1991
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