Wednesday, September 25, 2013

La Moneda and al Ittihadiyya - 9/11 and July 3rd

40 years ago this month , the military coup against president Salvador Allende occured , starting with the attack by the Chilean air force on the presidential palace La Moneda. Salvador Allende took his own life defending the constitution and the presidency rather than surrender to the Junta. The date 9/11 has been a commemoration for Chilean democracy , freedom and also opposition to General Pinochet´s rule during the seventeen long years of autocratic rule.

There has been a lot of comparison between what happend in 1973 and the July third coup in Egypt , some have bearing , and some not. Ellis Goldberg has written a long and thoughtful piece on the two coups and i can´t help but love the way he begins the blog post and i´m wondering if someone in forty years time will have a framed picture of Morsi on his wall and get the same reaction of why and whom this man is. Surely there are still people having Nasser on their walls , even in their shops , but a man like the first president and July 23rd army coup figure head Muhammed Naguib is almost forgotten by the large public , or at least was until Jan25 2011.

Here is how Ellis Goldberg starts off his Tale of Two Coups:

I keep a black and white photograph on the wall. It’s a grainy old black and white photo, poorly mounted and inexpertly framed. Very few people who mount the stairs from the door to my living room recognize the faces in the picture. Usually they ignore it completely but sometimes their attention is drawn by the large hammer and sickle in the center foreground. It has been years since any visitors recognized that the unsmiling, somber figure just above and behind the Communist emblem is the former President of Chile, Salvador Allende. He is, appropriately perhaps, surrounded by members of the Popular Unity government and yet appears to be abstracted and isolated. Only the Minister of Labor, Luis Figueroa, is looking directly at Allende who lay dead in Chile’s presidential palace, La Moneda, a week after the photograph was taken. General Augusto Pinochet had seized power in a military coup and the Chilean Air Force had bombed Chile's own government center.

The rest of the long and well written piece that pose many important questions can be read here.

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