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Flag of Chile
Chile's location in South America

Chile, officially the Republic of Chile, is a South American country occupying a long, narrow strip of land between the Andes to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. It borders Peru to the north, Bolivia to the northeast, Argentina to the east, and the Drake Passage in the far south. Chilean territory includes the Pacific islands of Juan Fernández, Salas y Gómez, Desventuradas, and Easter Island in Oceania.

As head of a major student union...(Gabriel Boric) shook Chile’s establishment by leading rallies that brought reforms to Chile’s privatized education system.


  • This instability was accompanied by mass repression and murder. The 1991 National Commission for Truth and Reconciliation Report in Chile determined that 2,279 persons were killed for political reasons during the Pinochet dictatorship between 1973 and 1990. Possibly 50,000 were imprisoned and tortured, and hundreds of thousands of people were fired from their jobs. The Guatemalan Commission for Historical Clarification Report in 1999 identified a total of 42,275 named victims, though others have claimed that as many as 200,000 were murdered in Guatemala between 1962 and 1996, 70,000 during the regime of General Efrain Ríos Montt, who was able to commit these crimes with such impunity that he could run for president in 2003; fortunately he did not win. The National Commission on the Disappearance of Persons in Argentina put the number of people murdered by the military there at 9,000 persons from 1976 to 1983, although it noted that the actual number could be higher. (Estimates by human rights organizations usually place it at 30,000.)
    • Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson, Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Poverty, and Prosperity (2012)
  • Those shops are popular, and there is a lot of anti-Semitism in Chile, very strong, especially in the South which became a refuge for Nazis and Nazi sympathizers, so these images of Hitler are on sale and people buy them.
  • The political future of Chile is a democracy, without a doubt.
    • Isabel Allende, Interviews with Latin American writers by Marie Lise Gazarian Gautier (1989)
  • Every time I felt the need to recover my country, I read Neruda because he is Chile, he is the voice of Chile. It is a beautiful metaphor that he died following the military coup. With his death, the voice of the people and the voice of freedom grew silent.
    • Isabel Allende, Interviews with Latin American writers by Marie Lise Gazarian Gautier (1989)
  • I come before the United Nations General Assembly as the first woman to be elected President of Chile. A country that has learned from its history. We Chileans lived through difficult times; the Assembly knows this. The learning curve was difficult, but fertile. From pain, hope was born. Major dissent gave way to major consensus. I come from a country where today the rule of law prevails, where the rights of persons are respected and promoted. A democracy that is experiencing economic growth and that in the past 16 years has helped millions of Chileans out of poverty. Chile is integrated with its neighbors and in the region looking at the world. My presence before this Assembly is symbolic of this Chile; the Chile that is unafraid to look back at the past and united in building its own future. We can say with pride that today, Chile is more free and more fair. As a society we have granted the basic dignity and respect that every citizen deserves.
  • As I say, we have all seen photographs of the stone figures, the moai; the pictures show single statues and groups of three or four, but I discovered that there are hundreds: the island [Easter Island] is strewn with them.
  • For a start, who were they, these long-dead hewers of stone? Did they come from Polynesia on the west, or South America on the east? Or both? No one knows. And when? The experts offer dates from the 7th century to the 16th, a more than ample leeway. No one knows. But the further we go into the mystery, the darker becomes our ignorance. What were the statues? Were they gods to be worshipped? Or tutelary deities? Or a strange form of lares et penates? Or monuments to their ancestors? Or stylized portraits of historic figures? Or art? No one knows. And when they were finally standing on their massive pedestals, what rituals, what ceremonies, what offerings did the islanders provide? No one knows. Boards, inscribed with an ideographic script, have been found, and there are beautiful and elaborate petroglyphs strewn about the island; scholars have pored over them for decades, trying to decipher the signs and thus learn the language. What did those people want to say to us? No one knows.
  • When I look back... I am embarrassed by the sense of superiority I often felt...I could not discuss my private meetings with men like Torrijos, or the things I knew about the ways we were manipulating countries on every continent.... When we talked about the power of the little guys, I had to exercise a great deal of restraint. I knew what none of them could possibly know, that the corporatocracy, its band of EHMs [economic hitmen), and the jackals waiting in the background would never allow the little guys to gain control. I only had to draw upon the examples of Arbenz and Mossadegh — and more recently, upon the 1973 CIA overthrow of Chile's democratically elected president, Salvador Allende. In fact, I understood that the stranglehold of global empire was growing stronger, despite OPEC — or, as I suspected at the time but did not confirm until later, with OPEC's help.
  • We practically wiped this nation clean of Marxists.
    • Augusto Pinochet, Speech (February 23, 1988), quoted in "Las frases para el bronce de Pinochet."
  • I have lived with my conscience and my own memories for over quarter of a century since the events of 1973.… These are not easy reflections for me. But I am at peace with myself, and with the Chilean people, about what happened. I am clear in my mind that the return to Chile of true democracy, and from that the true freedom to which all individual people are entitled, could not have been achieved without the removal of the Marxist government.
  • By right or might.
    • National motto
  • How pure, Chile, is your blue sky
And how pure the breezes that blow across you
And your countryside embroidered with flowers
Is a wonderful copy of Eden
How majestic are the snow-covered mountains
That were given to you by God as protection
And the sea that tranquilly bathes your shores
Promises future splendor for you.
  • Himno Nacional (Wikisource, 5th verse in official anthem.)
  • Starting in October 2019, hundreds of thousands of people participated in months of anti-government protests—a so-called “social explosion” — which culminated in a national vote in 2020 to rewrite the Pinochet-era constitution. If elected, Boric, who has spent the past seven years as a congressman arguing for the ideals expressed in the social explosion, promises to kill off the old model for good. A Boric - led leftwing coalition would hike taxes on major industries, ramp up public spending to overhaul services, and scrap the private pension system that has underpinned Chile’s capital markets. “If Chile was the cradle of neoliberalism, it will also be its grave,” he told a rally in July after winning the primary for leftist bloc Approve Dignity.
  • Socialist Gabriel Boric's victory in Chile's high-stakes presidential election Sunday was hailed by progressives worldwide as an inspiring example of how a democratic groundswell can overcome deeply entrenched forces of reaction and chart a path toward a more just, equal, and sustainable future. Riding a massive wave of anger at Chile's neoliberal political establishment and the economic inequities it has perpetuated... Boric, who ran on the promise to undo the lingering vestiges of Pinochet's regime, will become the youngest president in Chile's history when he takes office in March.... Boric, who has vowed to cancel student debt, impose higher taxes on the wealthy, oppose environmentally destructive mining initiatives, and scrap Chile's private pension system—another leftover from the Pinochet regime.

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