As the 13th anniversary of September 11, 2001 approaches, we will remember with sadness what happened in the U.S. on that date. We will ask: "how could anyone hate us that much?"
Perhaps a place to begin that discussion is remembering that this September 11 is also the 41st anniversary of "The Other 9-11" an act of terror that began on Tuesday, September 11, 1973 in Chile — terror for which the U.S. bears responsibility.
On that date, the Chilean military, with the support of the U.S., overthrew the constitutionally elected government of Salvador Allende, a socialist considered a threat to U.S. corporate interests. Throughout the 60s, the U.S. poured millions into trying to prevent Allende's election. When he finally got elected in 1970, the U.S. tried to keep him from taking office. When he took office anyway, millions more were funneled through the C.I.A. to destabilize the economy and to fund right-wing neo-fascist groups. Our dollars funded campaigns of violence and sabotage to destabilize the Allende government which nevertheless remained popular with Chileans.
Allende rejected any undemocratic means of reform and scheduled a referendum for mid-September, 1973 to let the Chilean people decide if they wanted him to continue in office. The Chilean armed forces and the U.S. could not take the chance he would win and staged a bloody coup on September 11 of that year.
The leader of the military Junta, General Pinochet, claimed he was fighting "terrorism" and "communism. In addition to the thousands killed or "disappeared," at least 200,000 Chileans fled their homeland for exile, including some of Chile's best artists, musicians, and academics. Of those killed were two American citizens, student Frank Teruggi and journalist Charles Horman who were murdered with U.S. complicity. Over 100,000 were detained, some for months. At least 90 percent of those arrested were brutally tortured. Many torturers had been trained by the U.S.
The coup led to a 17-year military dictatorship. With other "anti-communist" dictatorships in South America, Chile, with U.S. help, formed "Operation Condor," an international terrorist network that targeted critics of those regimes not only in their own countries but also in Europe and even the USA. For example, Orlando Letelier, a former member of Allende's government, was killed by a car bomb in Washington D.C. along with his American secretary.
But, U.S. support for the regime was more than a matter of mere Cold War "anti-communism." The terror in Chile allowed neoliberal economists to have their way under a regime where no one dared speak out. In fact, many see Chile as the USA's first experiment in neoliberal, free-trade, "privatization" economics which is now being held up as a model for the United States and the rest of the world by American conservatives. Since the 1950s, the ultraconservative Economics Department at the University of Chicago under Dr. Milton Friedman had been providing scholarships for Chilean grad students to provide an alternative to other economic models in Latin America.
After the coup, the "Chicago Boys" were invited to totally reform the Chilean economy along strict "free market," libertarian lines. Unions were suppressed, many government services, including social security, were privatized, and government-run enterprises were sold off cheaply to private investors. Funding for education was cut and vouchers were provided for private and religious education. Supporters called these reforms the "Chilean Miracle" but in reality, it only made the rich richer and the poor poorer. It resulted in a debt crisis that, by the early 1980s, had resulted in a recession. It was then that Chileans took to the streets to get rid of Pinochet. Even Pinochet had to partially abandon "Chicago" economics and re-establish such social programs as public works and public housing projects.
Even today, Chile still struggles with the damage done by the dictatorship and by "free market" economics. The country now has the biggest gap between rich and poor of any South American country.
Apologizing for a wrong done is never a sign of weakness. Perhaps, this September 11, our Secretary of State could tenure an officials apology to the Chilean ambassador?
(Scott Cracraft is an American citizen, a taxpayer, a veteran, and a resident of Gilford.)
Last Updated on Monday, 08 September 2014 09:15
To The Daily Sun,
Belknap County Commissioner John Thomas, in a letter to the editor on Friday, requested the voters give him another term as commissioner, and I have to ask, "Why should we?"
The commissioners under his leadership have wasted our money on attorneys representing them in their war against oversight by the County Convention which is what the convention is meant to do. Their record so far is 0 and 3. After reading the judge's decision I can't believe they are going to waste more of our tax money requesting a review by the judge.
I'm just a layman when it comes to the law but I don't see how the judge could arrive at any other decision. My personal opinion is that there are over-sized egos in play and the people that possess them can't believe they are wrong. When you have a problem, and we have a few, you need someone in office who will be part of the solution. John Thomas is part of the problem.
Last Updated on Friday, 05 September 2014 11:29
To The Daily Sun,
My name is Richard Brothers and I am running to represent Tilton and Sanbornton at the N.H. House of Representatives.
I lived in Tilton for 9 years prior to moving to Sanbornton last year. My wife and I have two children, our son Joshua graduated from Winnisquam Regional High School in 2006 and our daughter Sara attended Sanbornton Central and is now a junior at Winnisquam Regional. My wife Rebecca is a nurse at the Veteran's Home in Tilton. We have deep roots and strong ties to the community and it is my strong desire to see that our communities are best represented both in Concord and at the Belknap County Convention.
I am well-qualified to serve as your representative. Prior to moving to Tilton, I served as a state representative in the North Country. I served on the Thornton School Board, I am a founding member of the board of directors of the Franklin Career Academy (N.H.'s first charter school), a founding member of the board of directors of the Laurent Clerc Academy (school for the deaf and hard of hearing), and I served on the Board of Trustees of the N.H. Community College System.
I served on Governor Craig Benson's staff as his health care policy advisor, and helped bring two health insurance providers into New Hampshire. I served as the chairman of the governor's task force on Employment & Economic Opportunity for people with disabilities.
I served as commissioner of the N.H. Department of Employment Security from 2004-2009. I was on the board of directors of the National Association of State Workforce Agencies. While on the board of directors, I served as chairman of the National Veterans' Affairs Committee. I am a veteran of the Marine Corps.
I am a registered nurse and have worked in the emergency departments at LRGHealthcare in both Laconia and Franklin. I am a nationally registered EMT and have been involved in EMS over the years. I served on the N.H. State Board of Nursing.
I have started and owned several small businesses in New Hampshire over the past 20 years. I am deeply committed to our state and our communities, and I have a long and consistent track record of bringing people together to solve problems in both the public and private sectors.
I would ask my neighbors and friends in Tilton and Sanbornton to cast their vote for Richard Brothers for State Representative on Tuesday, September 9th, 2014!
Last Updated on Friday, 05 September 2014 11:18
To The Daily Sun,
We in the veteran community want to state our appreciation for state Sen. Jeanie Forrester's support on behalf of the continuation of the POW/MIA awareness here in Meredith, as well as her effort on behalf of the veteran community and their families from around the state. Many may not know that she has sponsored or co-sponsored many veteran-related bills that have come before the Senate over the past years and is often the first to support a veteran-related cause. It doesn't matter what party or veteran organization a veteran may belong to, Sen. Forrester supports the issue and veteran community and for that we are all thankful.
We wish her continued success.
Last Updated on Friday, 05 September 2014 11:14
To The Daily Sun,
It is a privilege to introduce myself, share why I hope to represent Meredith and Gilford in Concord, and principles fundamental to my decision making.
A Meredith native, I received excellent public schooling from Lang Street and Humiston Schools, the vocational agricultural program at Laconia High School and the University of New Hampshire. Further study led to advanced degrees and research work, including a doctorate in biochemistry from the University of California and research work at the University of Washington.
Hodsdon family farming roots are more than two centuries old. I am proud to still farm and conserve land for agriculture and forestry in Gilford and Meredith. On the Daniel Webster Highway, Picnic Rock is an innovative partnership that saved rural heritage and an entry vista to Meredith for all future generations. Besides those 120 acres, I also own and farm 40 acres in Gilford.
It has been a special honor and volunteer commitment to serve on the Belknap County Conservation District (BCCD) for some 30 years. In roles as supervisor and chairman, I have gained perspective working collaboratively with local, regional, state and federal agencies, staffs, elected officials and citizens.
Experience and education in agriculture, the environment and science will be an asset to the state Legislature, with significant impact to Lakes Region communities. As a Belknap County delegation member I will work to pass a responsible budget that wisely applies taxpayer dollars. I support reasonable prison modification now, based on a cost-effective plan for its usefulness. Kicking this issue too far down the road could be more costly, however, the plan proposed by consultants is far too expensive.
Most county and state employees are dedicated, skilled and hard-working. Over the long term, we will save more money focused on retention, rather than hiring inexperienced staff for positions with critical community health and safety implications.
In short, I believe in a common sense approach to government. Civil, considerate and informed discussion should be the order of the day. Please consider my candidacy on Tuesday's Republican ballot for State Representative, District 2, serving Gilford, Meredith and Belknap County.
Last Updated on Friday, 05 September 2014 11:09