|Posted on Friday, September 13, 2002 - 6:03 am: |
It wasn't just local. The new government sent a couple of terrorists to the States, too. In 1976, also in September, car-bombed former Chilean Ambassador to the U.S. Orlando Letelier and his aide Ronni Moffitt. It was part of Operation Condor, organized to harass and kill former Allende officials and the junta's other enemies abroad. Amazingly, the killers got life in jail, and an American who helped them got 5 years for testifying for the feds. The CIA didn't have a direct role in this, but they helped set up DINA, the Chilean secret police, and possibly contributed intelligence on the victims. Then National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger completely approved of these tactics.
What goes around comes around, but rarely to the right place. If it had, only the Langley, VA campus would be a smoking crater and this week's outpouring of grief would have been purely local.
|Posted on Tuesday, September 10, 2002 - 9:49 am: |
More images of the other September 11:
|Posted on Tuesday, September 10, 2002 - 9:48 am: |
There is another 9/11, one that still sears the conscience of a nation 29 years after it occurred. I'm referring to September 11, 1973, and the country it divides is Chile.
On that September 11, Chile's own White House -- the Moneda Palace -- was bombed from the air. The attackers weren't Muslim terrorists: they were the jets of Chile's own Air Force. Can you imagine the U.S. Air Force deliberately doing this to the White House? Unthinkable, right? That's what most Chileans thought about their own "White House" -- until it happened.
For Chileans, September 11, 1973, was the day that democracy collapsed. Half the country still feels that a coup d'etat was necessary, and I tend agree with them. The other half feels that the long military dictatorship that followed -- and the thousands of tortures and executions that accompanied it -- were unconscionable. I agree with them too. But no matter where Chileans stand, they all feel that the photo above is the saddest in their history. And this in a country whose leaders still refuse to declare September 11 a day of national mourning. No wonder the wounds haven't healed.
Tomorrow, when you see all those TV documentaries about "The Year After", remember that many nations around the world have their own enormous, unresolved tragedies. There's more than one September 11.