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.
The argument over what action to take against Saddam Hussein is driven by the rhetoric of war. But can peaceful, legal action against Iraq's ruthless dictator be effective? The long campaign to bring Augusto Pinochet of Chile to justice offers an encouraging precedent.
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.
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.
Deeply involved in the preparation of the 1975 military coup in Chile, the so-called Chicago Boys convinced the Junta generals that they were prepared to supplement the brutality, which the military possessed, with the intellectual assets it lacked. Here Orlando Letelier, TNI's second director, reflects on the impact their economic ideology had on Chile and by default shares pertinent observations on the legacy that persists today.
A document bearing the signature of an imprisoned Chilean military officer appears for the first time to directly implicate Chile's former president, Gen. Augusto Pinochet, in the 1976 ntelligence operation that resulted in the car bomb assassination in Washington of exile leader Orlando Letelier.