Let’s start at the beginning: Salvadore Allende is making his farewell radio address to Chile. In the background, you can hear the sounds of guns firing. It’s September 11, 1973. Elements of the Chilean military, supported by the United States, have decided that it’s time for Chile’s democratically-elected president—and 48 years of Chilean democracy— go.
Let’s start with the a story: Salvadore Allende goes out in a blaze of glory, firing the gun given to him by Fidel Castro—inscribed, “To my good friend Salvador from Fidel, who by different means tries to achieve the same goals”.
No, let’s start with the truth: Salvadore Allende kills himself with his AK-47.
The final paragraph of an unsigned Wall Street Journal editorial:
“Egyptians would be lucky if their new ruling generals turn out to be in the mold of Chile’s Augusto Pinochet, who took power amid chaos but hired free-market reformers and midwifed a transition to democracy. If General Sisi merely tries to restore the old Mubarak order, he will eventually suffer Mr. Morsi’s fate.”I’ve been wracking my brains for an analogy that pierces this despicable rewriting of history. How can the Pinochet regime, which imprisoned, tortured, and killed with impunity, be praised by a publication as influential as the Wall Street Journal? How can that be midwifing “a transition to democracy?”
As one Chilean exile, Roberto Bolano, wrote: “History is like a horror story.” In other words, history is inexorable. In other words, the Journal can close its eyes and ignore history, but, in the end, history always wins.