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September 28, 1979 - Image 9

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1979-09-28

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The Michigan Daily-Friday, September 28, 1979-Page 9

Author reports Chile
ruined by overthrow

At their groceries in 1978, Americans
bought the equivalent of 79,318,000 one-
pint jars of pickles, making them a
bigger seller than corn, tomatoes,
beans or peas, according to National
Geographic.

UNDERGROUND COMIX
orporate crimp ,
anld more'
A Periodical Retreat.
o -Cc ATfloor bixrksto
I0oks " periodic als
°a cards " paper cuts
3364 2S.STATEF,663-0215 r>

By MARY GAITSKILL
"You just can't imagine the horror.
Death, torture, beatings, and mass
jailings were commonplace. Social ser-
vices such as public health were
dismantled. There's now no medical
care for most people; if you have a sick
baby in Chile, it will die."
This is how Caroline Richards, an
American history professor and writer,
describes life in Chile during and after
the military coup overthrowing
President Salvador Allende in 1973.
Richards and her husband lived in Chile
from 1966 to 1974, and she has written a
novel about the coup called "Sweet
Country."
"AMERICANS DON'T fully under-
stand what went on there," Richards
said in an interview yesterday. "Our
country helped overthrow a
democratically elected president and is
still keeping the junta in power. This
has- happened repeatedly. It's no ac-
cident that there are no democratic
countries in South America."
Richards describes "Sweet Country"
as a paradigm of what happens when a
leftist government tries to carry out
middle of the road reform without using
force.
She said that when she arrived in
Chile, it was a progressive, stable and
democratic society with wide political
,--participation and a highly developed
, Tabor movement. Chileans were ob-
sessed with politics, said Richards, and
did not separate it from their private
lives.
RICHARDS ALSO said dominance is
4 key concept in Chilean psychology,
that the main question in Chile is,
'Who's going to dominate me?'
Chileans, unlike Americans, don't
generally think in terms of escaping
domination, she explained, but only of
resettling the situation so that the
domination is less painful.
With Allende's election, there was at
last hope that this trend might be
broken, she said. "That hope was part
of why the tragedy was so intense."
No one really expected Allende to win
the election, said Richards, and when
he did, "the working class left was
jubilant - they wanted to prove that a
Marxist leader could take the country

into socialism peacefully."
ALLENDE'S Popular Unity Coalition
was reformist, not revolutionary, and
Allende was very cautious about
preserving traditional freedoms, said
Richards.
In three years of power, Allende
nationalized major industries (which
upset ITT in Chile), put factories to
work full steam, started agrarian
reform and instituted many social
welfare programs, said Richards. The
GNP went up, she continued, and
unemployment was dramatically
reduced.
However, she continued, after a year
of the Allende regime, the opposition
was able to organize. Richards said the
opposition was largely the middle-
class, who were afraid of the left and
who were "victims of propaganda."
ACCORDING TO Richards, the up-
per-class right-wing had almost full
control of the broadcast and print
media, while the governnient only had
one radio station and one TV station.
"The major papers in the country
were running full page ads exhorting
the military to overthrow the gover-
nment," said Richards, "and Allende
allowed it because he didn't want the
rightists to be given a chance to
scream, 'The Communists are taking
our freedom away'."
Richards also said the right promoted
sabotage and formed terrorist groups.
The U.S. provided arms and money for
the right-wing junta. The U.S. went so
far as to pay Chilean truckers $10
million to go on a strike which
paralyzed the entire country, she said.
Richards added that in Chile, truckers
are in the middle-class, and were
largely opposed to 'Allende to begin
with.
DESPITE THE conflict and
upheaval, when the next election oc-
curred, Allende won by a large
majority, said Richards. Then, she con-
tinued, the army, which has been
largely trained in the U.S., realized it
would have to use force.
She describe4,:the aftermath of the
junta as "terror" with torture, death
and neighbors "denouncing" each
other regularly.

abortion .
_Free Pregnancy Testing
Immediate Results
rConfidential Counseling
Complete Birth Control Clinic
Medicaid e Blue Cross
(313)941-1810 Ann Arbor and
Downriver area
t l(313) 559-0590 Southfield area
Northland Family Planning Clinic, Inc
U-M Office of Major Events
Presents
EAGLES
TH E LONG RUN

I'

Dolly Photo by DAVID HAFR
AUTHOR CAROLINE RICHARDS was at East Quad last night to discuss
Chile before and after the military coup that ousted Marxist President
Salvador Allende in 1973.

TO11U R

7

9

the Uniersity of Michigan
school of Music Deportment of Ance
Offers Fall Courses in
Beginning-Intermediate Modern Beginning Ballet
Intermediate Modern Intermediate Ballet
Advanced Modern Children's Ballet (ages 8-12)
Young Dancers Contemporary Dance Workshop (ages 12-18)
September 24-N9ovember 17,1979

Don)011 Ilcy *ZiGlm Frcy
Don Feidcr eC Wa ish
T-1111o tll)yB. Schil-iit
T-Two concerts
SATURDAY AND SUNDAY

Group wants special
prison unit closed

OCT. 13, 14

Crisler Arena

Faculty: Gay Delanghe
Willie Feuer
For information call 763-5460 or
write: Department of Dance

Christopher Flynn
Susan Matheke
Dance Building
1310 N. University Ct.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109

Tickets $12.50- $10.00, $7.50
at Michigan Union Box Office,
Schoolkids' Records, Huckleberry
Party Store, Where House Records,
all Hudson Stores
[OfR INE O RNA rLI N: 763-2071

(Continued from Page 1
figure was originally determined by the
Federal Bureau of Prisons.
BUT MIKE AUN, public information
officer for the bureau, said the federal
agency "never made that statement."
A Justice Department spokesperson
also denied that the department made
that statement, saying "There hasn't
been one (a suicide in the unit) since '76
r '77."
The prisoners in the control unit filed
a class-action suit against the gover-
nment in 1975, charging that several
characteristics of the program - like
the long hours of solitary confinement,
alleged harassment, and small cells -

were unconstitutional since they were
cruel and unusual punishment.
The ruling in that case, handed down
in 1978 by U.S. District Court Judge
James Foreman, allowed the program
to continue with a few modifications:
every cell door would have to have an
opening, and 30 minutes per day would
have to be allowed specifically for
exercise. The case is presently in the
appeals process.
Meyers' committee, which was foun-
ded in 1975, currently is collecting
signatures to present to prison officials,
urging that interfaith religious leaders
be allowed to tour the unit. One such
request was rejected last year.

IN

CONCEIT
HILL AUDITORIUM

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5

Oscar

Peterson

SEP1. 30

;DEXTER GORDON
U &
SUN R A

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