Thursday, October 20, 2005

The Chilean Coup and the Allende Murder of the 1970s

I thought it was set here.

The film It’s Raining in Santiago is such a brilliant film because it is relevant today as it were during the days of the CIA-sponsored military dictatorships in Latin America and the Philippines. At a time of growing political dissent by the people over grave socio-economic inequalities, the venue is ripe for social revolution but at the same time fertile ground for maneuverings by a fascist miltary out to take power for themselves. A struggling people in the Third World can never triumph by the use of parliamentary struggle alone, if at all by electing a leftist people to the highest position of the land, as parliamentarism and legalistic struggle can never undo decades of social contradictions and power relations that have transformed the socio-political landscape of a country.

It should never be forgotten that Third World semi-colonies will always be protected by the US from progressive militants, especially communists out to takeover their precious investments in those semi-colonies. The fall of Allende and the rise of Pinochet validates the claim of Althusser that the accumulation of contradictions in a country will have two raods to take – one towards revolutionary rupture on the one hand and historical inhibition on the other. In Chile, it was the latter that took place. Instead of winning against enemies of the people, the progressive forces were overwhelmed by the power of the fascists and reactionaries.

Could it be said though, that this was because of the utter reliance to parliamentarism? Perhaps. Why did the masses not stand together with the radicals? Is it because grassroots organizing has been put into the backburner by the leaders? Did Unido Popular maintain the basic alliance between the workers and the peasants, the campesinos in particular or there was a primacy in organizing the working class without due regards for other oppressed classes in a US semi-colony? Thus, it could be inferred that there was no broad united front that existed to put up a big fight against the fascists. The balance of power has always been in the hands of the rightists despite Allende in power, as other sectors were unorganized to fight for socialism. The Chilean experience brings to mind the need for armed struggle as well, as a strategy or a tactic in tipping the balance of power in favor of the people and the Left. Without arms, leadership in reactionary politics is paper influence and paper power.

This is unlike Hugo Chavez, though, who won through popular elections. Chavez had links to the military and part of its patriotic and idealistic group were the ones who brought Chavez back to power after the attempted coup by the rightwing forces. The Chilean experience serves as a reminder as well for the current political situation in the country. There can never be total victory for the people if all hope is pinned on this united front against the regime and even in the event of a transition government of progressves and some reactionaries, the people should never put their guard down. The surviving clique of reactionaries can still outmaneuver the progressive bloc in the transition government by commanding an unreformed and mercenary armed forces to ous the progressives out of the new government.

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