More than a million people demonstrated in Santiago de Chile on Friday 25 October, in what was called #LaMarchaMásGrandedeChile (Chile's largest march) – and certainly, it was, being larger than the NO campaign closing rally in 1988 that brought together a million people. The mobilisation on Friday was repeated in cities and communes throughout the country and took place one week after the


The following is a translation of an article we received about the current insurrectional movement in Chile, which began with youth-led protests against a hike in public transport fares. From a widespread campaign of fare dodging, a mass movement has developed against the government, which was responded with brutal repression. 

On Monday, the Chilean teacher's strike entered its fifth week. More than 70 percent of the teachers voted to reject the latest government offer and want to continue the national strike indefinitely. The strike has involved hundreds of thousands throughout the country, with particularly active participation in the regions. For her part, the education minister Marcela Cubillos has shown great arrogance, and only last week agreed to dialogue amidst controversy over police brutality. After large marches of tens of thousands in the past weeks marked a milestone in the teacher’s movement, the high point was the cacerolazo (banging on pots and pans as a political protest) of the patipelados


In the vicinity of Ercilla, in the Araucanía region in southern Chile, 24-year-old indigenous Mapuche, Camilo Catrillanca, was murdered by members of the so-called Comando Jungla of the Chilean national police. The young man, a nephew of the local Mapuche chief of Temucuicui, leaves behind his pregnant wife and a daughter of six. Camilo was driving a tractor and was accompanied by a 15-year-old minor when they were showered by bullets, one of which found its way to the back of his head. This is just one more case in the brutal history of police assassinations against the Mapuche people. The lives of dozens of youth and minors are being taken. Meanwhile, the authorities are quick to deem


Las elecciones en Chile del 19 de noviembre produjeron una serie de resultados significativos. El candidato de la derecha no sacó el resultado que esperaba, pero sobretodo presenciamos la irrupción en el panorama político nacional del Frente Amplio, cuya candidata logró un sorpresivo 20%. Con sus limitaciones políticas y de su propia composición, el Frente Amplio expresa los deseos de cambios radicales de un significativo sector de la sociedad que se ha movilizado en las calles en los últimos años.

46 years ago during Salvador Allende’s government, the Chilean Congress voted unanimously for the nationalization of Chilean copper. During the murderous Pinochet dictatorship, the road was open for foreign investment, which in actuality takes more than two thirds of the benefits produced by the exploitation of this resource and those who work it. Nevertheless, what is left over, still constitutes 13% of Chile’s GDP, and has been called ‘the salary of Chile’. While the state company CODELCO is the largest producer of mine copper in the world, the surface mine with the largest copper production in the world is Minera Escondida, controlled by BHP Billiton.

With 3.4 million votes – 62.16% of the votes cast but only 25.6% of the electorate – Michelle Bachelet has been re-elected for a second term as the President of Chile, an office that she held from 2006 to 2010. Her victory was mainly due to the massive mobilisations that had taken place during the period of the Pinera government as was shown by the election of ex student leaders as MPs – Camila Vallejo and Karol Cariola of the Communist Party, Giorgio Jackson of Democratic Revolution and Gabriel Boric of Autonomous Left.

This article deals with the presidential primaries and the general situation of the workers’ and youth movement and the electoral policies and alliances of the left parties. It provides useful background analysis to the first round of the presidential elections which took place yesterday. It was published in July in issue 8 of America Socialista.

For the last 10 weeks the capitalist media has been whipped into a frenzy by the story of 33 trapped miners in the San Jose Copiapó copper and gold mine in Chile. Though the event has been widely covered, it has not been much reported on, but rather, it has been turned into a narrative that leaves an increasingly unoriginal Hollywood salivating with eyeball dollar signs. The television reporting, as the miners were being rescued, was nothing less than abysmal.

The huge earthquake that struck Chile back in February has revealed all the negative consequences of decades of deregulation and privatisation, as the people come to the terms with shoddy building methods and lack of services to deal with such a catastrophe. Privatisation literally kills!

A recent screening of Part Two of The Battle of Chile (The Coup d’État) in Bolivar Hall in London highlighted the events that led to the September 11, 1973 coup that removed Allende from power. That experience is full of lessons for today’s revolutions in Bolivia and Venezuela, and beyond.

On Friday, October 19, the screening of the first and second parts of the legendary documentary film “The battle of Chile”, organised by Hands off Venezuela, drew a very large audience at the Bolivar Hall in London.

On June 25, miners from El Salvador, Andina, El Teniente and Ventana mines carried out a total strike, which was successful despite brutal police repression. Ever since, the tension at the mines and confrontations with the police have been increasing due to the aggressive and repressive attitude the company and the Bachelet government have adopted.

The death of Pinochet sparked off celebrations in Chile and around the world. He was a hated figure, a living example of the real nature of capitalism. He died without being brought to justice. But his was merely the fate of one man. The task is to make sure that the system that created Pinochet is buried once and for all. That task lies ahead of us.

There is another 9/11 to remember today, the Pinochet coup that overthrew the Allende government in Chile. In 1979 Alan Woods posed the question of who was behind Pinochet's coup. What interests was he defending? What were the policies of the Allende government and why despite all warnings was he unable to prevent the coup? Alan Woods had previously written an article in September 1971, two years before Pinochet's military coup, in which he warned against the threat of a military coup if the Popular Unity government failed to mobilise the masses and carry out a genuine socialist programme.
Lessons of Chile 1973...

Today is the 30th anniversary of the coup staged by Pinochet against the elected president of Chile, Salvador Allende. This anniversary has been overshadowed in the last couple of years by the dramatic events that took place at the World Trade Center in New York in 2001. The same date falls on a tragic day for the Chilean proletariat, full of lessons to be learnt.

On August 13 the Chilean Trade Union Confederation (CUT) called a one-day general strike. This was the first general strike since the fall of the Pinochet dictatorship. It marks the beginning of a new epoch and has to be seen within the context of the general situation in the whole of the South American sub-continent.

Today is the anniversary of the coup that overthrew president Salvador Allende in Chile and installed the brutal Pinochet dictatorship. We publish here a document written in 1979 by Alan Woods analysing the history of the Chilean labour movement and specially the period of the Popular Unity coalition government of Allende. Who was behind Pinochet's coup? What interests was he defending? What were the policies of the Allende government and why despite all warnings was he unable to prevent the coup?

Written by Alan Woods in September 1971, two years before Pinochet's military coup. Warned against the threat of a military coup if the Popular Unity government failed to mobilise the masses and carry out a genuine socialist programme.

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