There is footage of the bombing of 28,000 were tortured during the Pi- that Pinochet should share the fate
the presidential palace, as well as ex- nochet regime. At least 300 members of his victims: no burial place.
cerpts from generals’ conversations of the military have been indicted, These three works amount to the
during the coup. Taped by a ham and 30 have been convicted of hu- definitive portrait ofaman whonot
radio operator from an open mili- man rights crimes. only defined a period of Chilean his-tary channel, it includes Pinochet’s Although Pinochet was finally tory but became a reviled interna-comment on the generals’ offer of a able to escape trial on the grounds tional symbol of repression. They
plane for Allende and his family to of being mentally unfit, his senato- join the two-volume, Spanish-lan-use to go into exile. Revealingly, he rial immunity was lifted. At the time guage biography published in 2002
suggests that actions be taken to as- of his death, he was under house ar- by the conservative Chilean historian
sure that Allende does not reach his rest with seven indictments pend- Gonzalo Vial, Pinochet: La Biografía
destination: “If you kill the bitch, you ing. Among them were charges that (Pinochet: The Biography), as stan-get rid of the litter.” he falsified passports, assets decla- dard sources on the man and his era.
Particularly chilling is a lengthy rations and tax returns. Pinochet’s It is almost certain that there will be
interview with Osvaldo Romo, an claims of honesty and probity were more. Even in death, Pinochet con-infamous Pinochet-era torturer, who refuted by a U. S. Senate subcom- tinues to haunt and vex the country
later died while serving a prison sen- mittee report released in July 2004. he left behind.
tence. Romo, who describes torture It documented multiple Riggs Bank
as both an art and a science aimed at accounts that were designed to con- Paul E. Sigmund is Professor
extracting information, seems proud ceal $8 million in stolen funds. Emeritus of Politics at Princeton
of his professionalism. The film fittingly concludes with University. He has written numerous
According to official investigat- a helicopter lifting the casket from books and articles on Chilean
ing commission reports published Pinochet’s funeral to take it to a cre- politics and contributed to Patricia
in 1991 and 2004, nearly 3,200 Chil- matorium. One torture survivordryly Verdugo’s Chile, Pinochet, and
eans were killed or disappeared, and comments that it was appropriate the Caravan of Death (2001).
Literature and Arts of the Americas
Immigration and Culture
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