Recently disclosed US State Department and CIA records cast a new light on the Letelier assassination, revealing that the US had extensive awareness of a secret assassination operation and suggesting that US officials called off actions that might have stopped it.
Federal investigators have uncovered evidence that some of them believe is sufficient to indict Gen. Augusto Pinochet for conspiracy to commit murder in the 1976 car bombing that killed Orlando Letelier on Washington's Embassy Row.
While recently declassified documents are conspicuously lacking in information about the US role in helping Pinochet take and consolidate power, they are rich in detail about the inner workings of his bloody regime.
In May of 1978, the CIA’s National Foreign Assessment Center issued this comprehensive analysis of the Pinochet regime’s responses to being identified as responsible for the September 1976 car bomb assassination of Orlando Letelier and Ronni Moffitt in Washington DC.
CIA Director George Tenet is refusing to declassify hundreds of records on CIA covert intervention to destabilize the democratically elected government of Allende and support the violent consolidation of the Pinochet dictatorship.
After 27 years of withholding details about covert activities following the 1973 military coup in Chile, the CIA released a report acknowledging its close relations with General Augusto Pinochet’s violent regime.
High-level US officials are discussing a possible extradition request to bring Augusto Pinochet, the former Chilean strongman now held in London, to the United States to face questions the terrorist attack that killed Orlando Letelier and Ronni Moffitt.
As Augusto Pinochet continues to fight extradition from England to face charges of crimes against humanity, the historical record of US support for the former Chilean dictator remains disappeared, like so many victims of his violent regime.