Chile: Against Piñera and the Pact, for Human Rights of Yesterday and Today

By Maura Gálvez and Joaquín Araneda // Movimiento Anticapitalista.

Once again, Piñera has echoed the government´s perspective that began with its declaration of war against the people. This time, in a CNN interview that has just gone viral, in which he claims that the videos that show state agents violating human rights are faked. This policy of the Executive is protected by the “Pact for peace and the new Constitution”, which ultimately means a subordination of human rights to a solution within the margins of current institutions. Today, confronting Piñera and the Pact means returning to democratic guarantees for the 99%.

The Dictatorship Nostalgia of a Cornered Government

On October 18, the historical revenge of the Chilean people was imposed. It has called into question the continuity of a model that was created at gunpoint by the dictatorship, an economic, political and social framework that solidified with the transitional pact of the 90s and was the backdrop of the political scene during the last 30 years. This fact is significant in order to understand the actions of a government that has been cornered by social mobilization, given the role impunity has played in building the antidemocratic bases of the “oasis” and the constitution of its Armed Forces. The intelligence apparatus of the dictatorship did not disappear overnight when the regime changed by plebiscitary route. On the contrary, it is estimated that about 1,200 CNI agents were assimilated to the army just in the 1990s, while Pinochet died in absolute impunity with all the benefits of being life-long Senator, as well as the building of luxury jails for human rights violators as part of the Concertación government´s guarantees to the guardians of neoliberalism.

The transitional pact meant an agreement to grant complete freedom and impunity to each and every one of the accomplices of the dictatorship. Hence, today, the arrogance of a government nostalgic of Pinochet is consistent with Piñera’s statements: “The campaign of misinformation, from false news to montages to create a sense of disorder and a total crisis has been gigantic. There has undoubtedly been participation of foreign governments and institutions”. The heart of the matter is a political determination to support the full freedom of action of the Armed Forces from October 18 onward, which needs a story, based on the absurd reports that emanate from the government, to justify the repression: “a very powerful enemy“, “aliens” and the “K-Poop“.

In other words, it is the absolute deregulation of repression for the benefit of a concentrated minority based on arguments against the 99%. A result of the natural activation of institutions formed in the image and likeness of the dictatorship that, in real terms, means hundreds of mutilations, murders, rapes and torture.

The opposition and human rights to the degree that is possible

Various international reports ranging from Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights have proven what we have been experiencing for over two months and is evident: violations of human rights by state agents are systematic, these agencies even made recommendations for reforms to Carabineros.

Beyond the reports that are mere “recommendations” and have very limited correlation in reality, the truth is that they cannot hide Piñera’s indisputable political responsibility in the systematic violations of human rights since the outbreak of the revolution. Ignoring this undeniable reality, the “parliamentary left”, along with the rest of the opposition, echoed the 90s pact with a second call to consolidate an agreed solution by institutional means, with guarantees of impunity and behind the people’s backs. An orientation that gives them the possibility of projecting themselves in power from behind the curtain imposed by the Pinochetist right. This policy subordinates the profound changes raised by the rebellion to administering them under the decisive clout of the right, the constitutional change based on a 2/3 majority, the limits to freely discussing the issues that people imposed from the streets, while the agreement, as we mentioned earlier, is based on impunity and is in defense of a government that declared war on the people. The Broad Front (FA) and the Communist Party (PC), through the Pact are responsible for a criminal policy to sustain a murderous government that has less than 10% approval.

Democracy for the 99% is without Piñera and without the Pact. For the freedom of all imprisoned for protesting

The agenda of the revolution made it clear that the process will not be stopped either by repression, or by the Pact, or by criminalizing protests. An example that liberal democracy falls short of providing the most basic rights that the mobilized people demand. More than two months in the streets express that the plebiscite was already held and that Piñera must go, while the process was giving birth to democratic institutions that deliberated the foundations of a new country, this time without privileges for a few.

Therefore, any change that occurs cannot be isolated from advancing in the trial and punishment of those responsible for human rights violations and the freedom of all those who have been persecuted. That is why the struggle for human rights and democracy is central to any policy that aims to be minimally transformative. To move forward, we propose:

Freedom to all imprisoned for fighting.

Dismantling of the Pinochet Armed Forces.

Against the impunity of yesterday and today, formation of an Independent Investigative Commission.

Open all classified archives of the last 30 years.

Against Piñera and the Pact, trial and punishment of all responsible.

In order for these ideas to gain momentum, we propose to discuss them among left wing and democratic organizations, thus promoting the necessary unity to stop repression and face the continuity of the model by retaking the streets as the decisive force of the process.

Build a New Democratic and Anti-Capitalist Left

The uprising in our country is part of a global revolt against capital, in which the working class as a whole faces the offensive of capitalism in crisis, so authoritarian lines are reformulated to impose their plans, exacerbating patriarchy and colonialism to maintain the power of the 1%. That dynamic makes democracy an obstacle for the various governments who apply their policy through brutal repression, with women and feminized bodies being the most affected. Chile is an example of that line. Although it is also an example of the powder keg for the revolution, a situation that quickly puts to the test political sectors that see institutionalization as the way to achieve for changes, transforming them into true appendices of the regimes that advance in anti-democratic policies, among them the PC and the FA by prioritizing agreements with the Pinochetist right and thus subordinating human rights.

In short, the current context clarifies contradictions and puts the organizations’ policies to the test, which is why we face a great challenge: to establish ourselves as a new political alternative that is projected for the new Chile that emerged from the revolution, ready to democratize everything and confront repression and human rights violations. Our bases are in feminism and anti-capitalism to dismantle an outdated system and set up a new, totally different one.