Salvador Allende.
Horacio Labastida

Heroes greatness is not more than the peoples greatness reflex, because the hero, thus was written by Chinese wises near a millennium and a half, it is only the mirror where collectivities heart is reflected; and in this meaning the Latin American shoulds be calm. The fact is that with the exceptions of Brazil and Cuba, then delayed in the road, Latin America enters the universal history in the XIXth century dawn, when the great industrial capitalism revolutions destroyed monarchies and their depreciated aristocracies in Europe, shortening by this reason our independent history size if we compare it with the Europeans ones, for instance, not without receiving by such cause the many damages that have stopped the waited Latin American development. Our obvious agricultural and livestock-farming lag, caused by ranch owners who all costs prevented the demanded changes by the population --remember that until 1917 Mexico began an important agrarian reform--, and by a slow and committed association of the interest created with the powerful foreign importers, as well as with the dwindled industrialization, mercantile and financial effort, that attempted to capitalize with own means the subcontinent countries, Latin America ground by such burdensome negative duties was doomed to be a simple production and consumption market of foreign goods sustained to eat and survive in frail urban and rural economic structures.

There are two outstanding things in the Latin American history. The first is a continuous though injured adhesion to democracy; that is to say, one way or another we have been battled to establish in every nation a State of the people, by the people and for the people, but not only in the sense of the hoisted flags by Abraham Lincoln in the years of his famous Gettysburg speech, declaring slaves free, but in the setting of the deep conception that accompanied all the time the freedom rebellion led by José María Morelos y Pavón: democracy is a State duty in which people become politically organized, whose fulfillment is conditioned by the legal and moral requirements of managing auspicious social means for the respect of man's freedom and equity in the material and spiritual wealth allotment; neither rich each day richer nor poor each minute poorer, since otherwise it is not feasable in the history a people detached from hardship and exploitation, according to the demanded principles of real democracy. In front of this aspiration, Latin America has seen what's growing inside itself, within its own body, the thousand political perversion faces implicated in the presidential authoritarianism, from power's brutal militarizations which have debased Central and South America, without excluding of course Mexico, until dictatorships well or wrong disguised of democracies, but with a stamp that encompasses them thoroughly: their dependency on interior or foreign elites of economical power and the consequent ignorance of the national demands, a tragic panorama, ashamed and full of the blood of those who have dared to protest against the anti-patriotic tyranny .

Since his early youth, Salvador Allende realized that Chile would never reach democracy and justice without openly battling against their strange and known enemies, symbolized in the repugnant and cynical figure of satrap Augusto Pinochet; Salvador Allende Gossens but commanding respect to the great tradition of his country he decided to enter the combat within the democratic process. I remember Allende's very smart and sharp pronouncements in the season in which he faced Eduardo Frei, being Alessandri chief of the republic, and later, already president by the Popular Unit Party, I yet listen his words full of hopeful faith, very sure about the final victory in the actions that Chileans had undertaken against the NorthAmerican capitalism circles, took control of the country's main resources; without these in the Chilean estate, it would be impossible to jump forward; I will never forget the admiration words Allende said in his house, during the dawn of the day in which we were as guests, Porfirio Muñoz Ledo, Jesús Reyes Heroles and me; his eyes were shining with great animation when he refered the oil expropriation consummated by the great Lázaro Cárdenas.

Always inside the democratic task, Allende was on the point of obtaining the indispensable constitutional reforms for the march by the real democracy riverbeds, and this alarmed and activated the metropolitan interest; not only the NorthAmercian espionage and their experts in contra-libertarian strategies and coups d'état, but also affected companies by the copper mines nationalization and other goods of Chilean patrimony, unleashed the violence financing, sustaining with weapons and directing from secret offices the felony Pinochet commanded against the Palacio de la Moneda 25 years ago, in a black and ominous September 11th. Against a man alone, Salvador Allende installed in Palacio in his role of President of the Republic, trusting in the ethics and in the people's love that was seconding him, Pinochet sent his artillery, tanks, infantry and cavalry divisions, without lacking the warlike aviation, to bomb unmercifully the one who in that moment and forever represents the Chilean dignity. His death was an imperceptible death: Salvador Allende lives encouraging in Chile, in Latin America and all over the world freedom and justice ideals.

There's no doubt. Lázaro Cárdenas, Che Guevara, Augusto César Sandino, Farabundo Martí and Archbishop Romero, Fidel Castro, Salvador Allende, Camilo Torres and other eminent figures reflect in their greatness the Latin America greatness. We pay today with worship an homage to Chile and its president Salvador Allende.

Taken from the mexican daily "La Jornada"; September 11th, 1998.


Most recent revision: March 9, 2002.