This article, Milton Friedman unraveled, here brought in exerpts, was first printed in the magazine The Individualist i 1971, and again in Journal of Libertarian Studies in 2002.
Exerpts from this article are brought here to shed light on the economic reforms executed under Pinochet and on their concequenses. Attention should be paid to the fact, at this article var written several years before the so called monetarism was introduced in Chile and later became the reigning doctrine for monetary policies worldwide, and leading in economic policy at large.
Murray N. Rothbard (1926-1995) of USA was a liberitarian economist, filosopher etc. in an anarko-capitalistic tradition in the so called »Austrian School of Economics«. When referred in the text to »Austrian«, »Austrians« etc., economists of that school are meant regardless of nationality.
Milton Friedman unraveled
By Murray N. Rothbard
Mention "free-market economics" to a member of the lay public and chances are that if he has heard the term at all, he identifies it completely with the name Milton Friedman. For several years, Professor Friedman has won continuing honors from the press and the profession alike, and a school of Friedmanites and "monetarists" has arisen in seeming challenge to the Keynesian orthodoxy.
However, instead of the common response of reverence and awe for "one of our own who has made it," libertarians should greet the whole affair with deep suspicion: "If he’s so devoted a libertarian, how come he’s a favorite of the Establishment?" An advisor of Richard Nixon and a friend and associate of most Administration economists, Friedman has, in fact, made his mark in current policy, and indeed reciprocates as a sort of leading unofficial apologist for Nixonite policy.
In fact, in this as in other such cases, suspicion is precisely the right response for the libertarian, for Professor Friedman’s particular brand of "free-market economics" is hardly calculated to ruffle the feathers of the powers-that-be. Milton Friedman is the Establishment’s Court Libertarian, and it is high time that libertarians awaken to this fact of life.
The Chicago School
Friedmanism can be fully understood only in the context of its historical roots, and these roots are the so-called "Chicago School" of economics of the 1920s and 1930s. Friedman, a professor at the University of Chicago, is now the undisputed head of the modern, or second-generation, Chicago School, which has adherents throughout the profession, with major centers at Chicago, UCLA, and the University of Virginia.
The members of the original, or first-generation, Chicago School were considered "leftish" in their day, as indeed they were by any sort of genuine free-market criterion. And while Friedman has modified some of their approaches, he remains a Chicago man of the thirties. The political program of the original Chicagoans is best revealed in the egregious work of a founder and major political mentor: Henry C. Simons’s A Positive Program for Laissez Faire. Simons’s political program was laissez faireist only in an unconsciously satiric sense.
Den bestod af tre hovedpunkter:
1. a drastic policy of trust-busting of all business firms and unions down to small blacksmith-shop size, in order to arrive at "perfect" competition and what Simons conceived to be the »free market«;
2. a vast scheme of compulsory egalitarianism, equalizing incomes through the income-tax structure; and
3. a proto-Keynesian policy of stabilizing the price-level through expansionary fiscal and monetary programs during a recession.
Extreme trust-busting, egalitarianism, and Keynesianism: the Chicago School contained within itself much of the New Deal program, and, hence, its status within the economics profession of the early 1930s as a leftish fringe. And while Friedman has modified and softened Simons’s hard-nosed stance, he is still, in essence, Simons redivivus; he only appears to be a free-marketeer because the remainder of the profession has shifted radically leftward and stateward in the meanwhile.
And, in some ways, Friedman has added unfortunate statist elements that were not even present in the older Chicago School.
Money And The Business Cycle
The third major feature of the New Deal program was proto-Keynesian: the planning of the "macro" sphere by the government in order to iron out the business cycle. In his approach to the entire area of money and the business cycle – an area on which unfortunately Friedman has concentrated most of his efforts – Friedman harks back not only to the Chicagoans, but, like them, to Yale economist Irving Fisher, who was the Establishment economist from the 1900s through the 1920s. Friedman, indeed, has openly hailed Fisher as the "greatest economist of the twentieth century," and when one reads Friedman’s writings, one often gets the impression of reading Fisher all over again, dressed up, of course, in a good deal more mathematical and statistical mumbo-jumbo. Economists and the press, for example, have been hailing Friedman’s recent "discovery" that interest rates tend to rise as prices rise, adding an inflation premium to keep the "real" rate of interest the same; this ignores the fact that Fisher had pointed this out at the turn of the twentieth century.
But the key problem with Friedman’s Fisherine approach is the same orthodox separation of the micro and macro spheres that played havoc with his views on taxation. For Fisher believed, again, that on the one hand there is a world of individual prices determined by supply and demand, but on the other hand there is an aggregate "price level" determined by the supply of money and its velocity of turnover, and never the twain do meet. The aggregate, macro, sphere is supposed to be the fit subject of government planning and manipulation, again supposedly without affecting or interfering with the micro area of individual prices.
Fisher on Money
In keeping with this outlook, Irving Fisher wrote a famous article in 1923, "The Business Cycle Largely a ‘Dance of the Dollar’ " – recently cited favorably by Friedman – which set the model for the Chicagoite "purely monetary" theory of the business cycle. In this simplistic view, the business cycle is supposed to be merely a "dance," in other words, an essentially random and causally unconnected series of ups and downs in the "price level." The business cycle, in short, is random and needless variations in the aggregate level of prices. Therefore, since the free market gives rise to this random "dance," the cure for the business cycle is for the government to take measures to stabilize the price level, to keep that level constant. This became the aim of the Chicago School of the 1930s, and remains Milton Friedman’s goal as well.
Why is a stable price level supposed to be an ethical idea, to be attained even by the use of governmental coercion? The Friedmanites simply take the goal as self-evident and scarcely in need of reasoned argument. But Fisher’s original groundwork was a total misunderstanding of the nature of money, and of the names of various currency units. In reality, as most nineteenth century economists knew full well, these names (dollar, pound, franc, etc.) were not somehow realities in themselves, but were simply names for units of weight of gold or silver. It was these commodities, arising in the free market, that were the genuine moneys; the names, and the paper money and bank money, were simply claims for payment in gold or silver. But Irving Fisher refused to recognize the true nature of money, or the proper function of the gold standard, or the name of a currency as a unit of weight in gold. Instead, he held these names of paper money substitutes issued by the various governments to be absolute, to be money. The function of this "money" was to "measure" values. Therefore, Fisher deemed it necessary to keep the purchasing power of currency, or the price level, constant.
This quixotic goal of a stable price level contrasts with the nineteenth-century economic view – and with the subsequent Austrian School. They hailed the results of the unhampered market, of laissez faire capitalism, in invariably bringing about a steadily falling price level. For without the intervention of government, productivity and the supply of goods tends always to increase, causing a decline in prices. Thus, in the first half of the nineteenth century – the "Industrial Revolution" – prices tended to fall steadily, thus raising the real wage rates even without an increase of wages in money terms. We can see this steady price decline bringing the benefits of higher living standards to all consumers, in such examples as TV sets falling from $2000 when first put on the market to about $100 for a far better set. And this in a period of galloping inflation.
It was Irving Fisher, his doctrines, and his influence, which was in large part responsible for the disastrous inflationary policies of the Federal Reserve System during the 1920s, and therefore for the subsequent holocaust of 1929. One of the major aims of Benjamin Strong, head of the Federal Reserve Bank (Fed) of New York and virtual dictator of the Fed during the 1920s, was, under the influence of the Fisher doctrine, to keep the price level constant. And since wholesale prices were either constant or actually falling during the 1920s, Fisher, Strong, and the rest of the economic Establishment refused to recognize that an inflationary problem even existed. So, as a result, Strong, Fisher, and the Fed refused to heed the warnings of such heterodox economists as Ludwig von Mises and H. Parker Willis during the 1920s that the unsound bank credit inflation was leading to an inevitable economic collapse.
So pig-headed were these worthies that, as late as 1930, Fisher, in his swansong as economic prophet, wrote that there was no depression, and that the stock market collapse was only temporary.
Friedman on Money
And now, in his highly touted Monetary History of the United States, Friedman his demonstrated his Fisherine bias in interpreting American economic history. Benjamin Strong, undoubtedly the single most disastrous influence upon the economy of the 1920s, is lionized by Friedman precisely for his inflation and price-level stabilization during that decade. In fact, Friedman attributes the 1929 depression not to the preceding inflation boom but to the failure of the post-Strong Federal Reserve to inflate the money supply enough before and during the depression.
In short, while Milton Friedman has performed a service in bringing back to the notice of the economics profession the overriding influence of money and the money supply on business cycles, we must recognize that this »purely monetarist« approach is almost the exact reverse of the sound – as well as truly free-market – Austrian view. For while the Austrians hold that Strong’s monetary expansion made a later 1929 crash inevitable, Fisher-Friedman believe that all the Fed needed to do was to pump more money in to offset any recession. Believing that there is no causal influence running from boom to bust, believing in the simplistic »Dance of the Dollar« theory, the Chicagoites simply want government to manipulate that dance, specifically to increase the money supply to offset recession.
The Impact of Friedman
And so, as we examine Milton Friedman’s credentials to be the leader of free-market economics, we arrive at the chilling conclusion that it is difficult to consider him a free-market economist at all.
Sunday, September 9th 1973 Carlos Altamirano Orrego (b. 1922), general secretary for president Salvador Allende's Socialist Party, Partido Socialista, made a radio transmitted speech in the sports arena Estadio Chile at a large political meeting. Carlos Altamirano was one of the most militant leftist leaders on the political stage in Chile in the years under the Popular Unity government. The speech, here rendered in exerpts, was allegedly the direct cause of admiral Merino deciding to execute the already prepared coup plans the following tuesday, September 11th 1973.
Carlos Prats González
General of the Army (Retired)
Santiago, September 15th 1973
Mr. General of the Army
Don Augusto Pinochet U.
The furture will show, who was wrong. If what You have done really gives the country general wealth and the populace really feels it brings a social justice then I will be glad to have been mistaken – I who so eagerly sought a political solution to avoid a coup.
May I be allowed to ask You that the case of Fernando Flores will be reconsidered. I have liked him and felt his opinions were of utter reason and very well considered despite his young age but he was in opposition to others because of his generous advise to the president.
I thank You for the opportunities You gave me that make it possible for me to leave the country. For me it is very sad and painfull to move away from my loved ones, away to lonelyness; but I think that I under the present circumstances have no other possibilities.
Commander in Chief og the Chilean air forces, Gustavo Leigh, was interviewed by the North American magazine Time Magazine in October 1973:
The General Explains
TIME MAGAZINE, October 29th 1973
More than five weeks have passed since the government of Marxist President Salvador Allende Gossens was overthrown by Chile's military junta. Yet the bloodletting goes on. Last week 21 more Chileans were slain, 15 by firing squads and six in a battle with soldiers.
Three jurists, members of the U.N. High Commission for Refugees, stopped in New York en route to Geneva last week with an account of widespread killings in Chile. »Every day, until the eve of the departure of the commission«, said a group statement, »corpses were pulled out of the Mapocho River [which runs through Santiago] or brought in great quantities to the morgue, or left to decompose in the places where they were executed, as if to reinforce the effect of the terror.« The jurists did not report on the number of persons slain since the Sept. 11 coup; an estimate based on official figures puts the toll at 588, but observers estimate it much higher, probably more than 1,000. In its economic policy, the junta was moving to restore free enterprise. Junta leader General Augusto Pinochet Ugarte announced that more than 300 foreign and Chilean companies taken over without compensation by the Allende regime would probably be returned to their owners. The companies include around 40 U.S. firms – but not the three large American copper companies of Kennecott, Anaconda and Cerro Corp. Combined assets for the copper firms is more than $500 million, and Pinochet said that his government was ready to negotiate compensation for them.
Murder Plot. To defend the junta's harsh rule, Air Force General Gustavo Leigh Guzmán granted a lengthy interview to TIME's Benjamin Gate and Rudolph Rauch in his suburban Santiago home. Leigh, 53, the most articulate of the junta's four members, showed Gate and Rauch a Soviet-made automatic rifle that, he said, was part of a leftist cache of weapons. The weapons were smuggled into Chile, presumably for use in »Plan Zeta,” a supposed plot to murder top military leaders and rightists. The military did not learn of Plan Zeta's details, said Leigh, until after the coup, when the document was found in a safe in the presidential palace. Nonetheless, military intelligence had got wind of the general outlines of the plan by monitoring telephone calls into the palace. »We started thinking«, recalled Leigh, »what does Zeta mean? We thought it would be dangerous for the security of the country. But we were worried by a lot of other more important things. Allende was cheating us, cheating the Chilean people. The country was paralyzed – industry, transport, everything.«
The spark for action came, said Leigh, on Sept. 9, when Socialist Party Secretary-General Carlos Altamirano admitted during a radio speech that he had urged sailors to disobey military orders. Leigh said he immediately contacted General Augusto Pinochet Ugarte, the army chief of staff, now the junta leader, and told him: »I can't resist one bit more. This country is going to disaster. The only thing I ask of you is, don't shoot at my troops, don't shoot at my planes, don't fire on my bases.« Pinochet's answer was a surprise. He said: »Gustavo, you are not going alone. I will go with you; the navy too.«
The decision to launch a coup was not an easy one, claimed Leigh, since the military had generally remained outside Chilean politics for the past 41 years. »I tell you, we sweated a lot,« he said. »It was like childbirth.« The speed with which Allende's government was crushed surprised even the military. »Never did we think we would rule the country so soon«, Leigh admitted. »We were not prepared. Now we are in a real emergency. We have no agriculture. We are spending $600 million for food alone. We have a $4 billion debt.«
No Compromises. Chile also has one of the world's highest rates of inflation, more than 300% for 1973. To bring the spiraling economy under control, the junta has devalued by more than half the wildly inflated escudo, and ordered huge price increases for such necessities as sugar (400%) and cooking oil (500%), which had been subsidized at prices far below their market value. It canceled the inflationary (300 %) wage increase in minimum salaries approved by Allende, but instituted a system of bonuses and benefits that has increased the minimum income to $42 a month.
»We are not promising any easy solutions,« said Leigh. »We are not saying that now the nightmare is over. We have to work hard. We will do what the politicians in the past 50 years in this country did not do. We want to reconstruct the country with our own resources, our own effort. We have made no compromises with anyone. We have our hands clean to operate. We are not politicians and we are not trying to be.«
Leigh defended the appointment of military delegates to control Chile's universities, saying that the schools had become »political factories«. They didn't care one bit about studies. If they try to get involved in politics or with politicians, we'll close them down. They'll stay closed until they decide to study.«
Leigh hotly denied that the junta was embarked on a campaign of terror. »We have not executed anyone who is just a politician. We have executed people who have planned assassinations or who fired against the soldiers after the coup. There have been no executions of those who were arrested or detained for whatever reason other than armed resistance.« As for the thousands of political prisoners, Leigh said that »right now we just want to keep them out of contact with the rest of the people. Later they will have to go before the military court and it will have to decide what to do to them. I don't know what charges can be made against these people. Many of them, I think, will have to be freed.«
Leigh, like the other members of the junta, insists that the military's plans for Chile are basically democratic. »We are not fascists«, he said heatedly. »We are not Nazis.« A commission has already been formed to write a new constitution, he said. »We want a constitution just for Chileans. We want to build up a constitution that would give us safeguards against the control of Marxists.« Asked when Chile would return to representative government, Leigh replied: »I think a decade is too long. But I'm not sure we could do it in five years. We do not want to rule this country forever. But we feel that if we pay this amount of blood, we want to leave to our descendants and to all the Chileans a country which is free and democratic and with the participation of all the people.«
The text is from the book Om tortur (On Torture) by Gorm Wagner and Ole Vedel Rasmussen, 1983. The introduction to the text says, that it is »a description of what a 28 year old married woman in Chile was put through after the present military rule had taken power by a coup. She was three months pregnant at the time of arrest.«
I August 1980 udsendte ærkebispestolen i Santiago med Raoul Silva Henriques i spidsen »ti bud« til chilenerne angående hvordan man skulle forholde sig i tilfælde af, at man oplevede nogle af de mange forsvindinger og tilfældige anholdelser m.v.
Denne tekst blev trykt i dagbladet Information d. 13.-14. september 1980 i en artikel af Jens Lohmann.
Gengivelsen af disse ti bud i dansk oversættelse lød som følger:
The Austrian-born economist and philosopher Friedrich von Hayes's books and thoughts had great influence on the political and economis reforms that were carried through under Pinochet's reign. Hayek was interviewed by the government friendly news paper El Mercurio in 1981. The first half of the interview was brought in the news paper on April 12th of 1981 and is rendered here in english in an edition of a translation from the Belgian Institut Hayek:
Friedrich von Hayek, Leader and Master of Liberalism
El Mercurio, 12th of April 1981, Santiago
The sole concession he has made to his 82 years, which he will be celebrating on May 8th next, is to finally give up his pipe. Today he merely sniffs from time a time a pinch of good English tobacco that he takes from an old silver snuff-box which he keeps in his waistcoat pocket.
Otherwise, Friedrich von Hayek retains his alertness, his explosive sentences, his pugnacity, his brilliance and his passion for liberty that have characterized the best years of his life.
He is an indefatigable workers and traveller. Once, when told off by someone for his intense activity at such an advanced age, von Hayek replied: »I had a spell of bad health when I reached 70. For 5 years I was practically out of circulation. Of course, no doctor correctly guessed what I was suffering from. Until one day, unexpectedly, I got up ... forgot that I was now 75 and began working as actively as ever. The joke that I always make nowadays is that I challenged old age. I don't like it, so I have decided to give it back. «
To define him only as an economist is to limit von Hayek's world of concerns. He is also a social philosopher, a psychologist, a doctor of political sciences and a humanist.
Nonetheless the world knows him best for his economic ideas with an old-fashioned liberal stamp. For continuing a school, »The Mont Pelerin Society«, that counted Montesquieu and De Tocqueville amongst it most illustrious representatives [sic]. For making himself the leader and master of the economists - he influenced entire generations from the universities of Chicago, New York and Los Angeles, including Milton Friedman and William Buckley — who today plead for an ever greater reduction of government's role in the economy and for the abolition of public welfare. It is for all this that in 1974 Friedrich von Hayek was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics.
It is on these themes that he has written no less than 54 books (among other things he foretold the Great Crash of the 1930’s).
For these reasons he also opposed the »sacred« economist of his day, the Briton John Maynard Keynes who, unlike von Hayek, defended cheap money and public investment during recessionary periods in order to maintain full employment. »The Keynesian remedy for unemployment, von Hayek commented then - has failed. This remedy has led us increasingly towards inflation, at the same time as increasing unemployment.«
One of his books in particular, »The Road to Serfdom«, published in 1944 and translated into 12 languages, made him unpopular and weakened his prestige in many countries, in particular the United States.
Nonetheless today we are witnessing a return to »Hayekism« by governments like those of England and even the United States.
It was precisely on the subject of Ronald Reagan's inaugural speech on 20 January that I interviewed Friedrich von Hayek, in Freiburg, a peaceful mountain city in Western Germany, close to his native Austria (he has since taken British citizenship).
The interview took place on the third floor of the Freiburg's Albert Ludwig University, where von Hayek has been professor emeritus for the past 14 years.
When I placed on the little round table the clipping with Reagan's speech he smiled. Without vanity. Almost with resigned wisdom, as he began this interview.
I would say, ultimately, that when you hear Friedrich von Hayek pronounce the word liberty - liberty in general and not just economic liberty - this word once again sounds attractive. Protective. Almost natural.
Reagan said: »Let us begin an era of National Renewal!« How do you understand that this will be a renewal?
I am placing much hope in this new administration. And if I were to meet Mr Reagan, I would tell him that his »new beginning« is on the right track. It is indeed a new beginning. For the past 50 years, since Franklin Roosevelt in the 1930s, the United States has been on the wrong path. Of course the situation has got much worse during the past 20 years. And for the first time I feel that the United States is today on the right track. Reagan understands that the best thing is to take the free market as his basis, as the only way of restoring the country's economy. He knows this, and he has also chosen very good advisers.
Do you personally know any of his advisers?
Mr Reagan, Mr Solzhenitsyn and I are honorary members of the Hoover Institution in Stanford, California. Reagan, you know, was governor of California, and his many advisers came from the Hoover Institution. I do not know him personally, but I do know the ideology of his advisers, almost better than he does. Advisers are fundamental for a government. And these advisers are going to take Reagan in the right direction. The new president also means a total turnaround in the way North America is governed. It signifies a return to the old American tradition of liberty, of which Reagan is a good connoisseur. For the past 30 years in which the United States has appeared to be moving towards becoming a welfare state, Reagan has been saying that the country's main problem is precisely the government. This move towards the welfare state has already done huge damage to the British economy, and was also threatening to destroy the North American economy. The first move in the contrary direction — that is towards limiting the government's powers — was made by Mrs Thatcher. Followed today by Mr Reagan.
In what other countries do you also notice this change?
There are certain intellectual movements in this direction in France, and also in the younger generation in Western Germany. In these four countries - United States, France, England and Germany - there is a clear return to what we call »classical liberalism«, as opposed to the liberalism that has reigned in North America during the past 20 years and which has smiled too often in the direction of socialism.
What would be your definition of »classical liberalism«?
We think that government should not be given discretionary powers. Government ought, of course, to provide certain services. But it should never have a monopoly. The one thing that government can do well is to make general and universally applicable laws. But it should not be given discretionary powers giving it the privilege of undertaking unpermitted actions. A government should not hold privileges. This is the basis of my philosophy. I am an enemy, I insist, of state welfare. This idea has, of course, made me notoriously unpopular during the past thirty years, amongst the economic currents which postulate different levels of government intervention in the economy, in order to cushion the effects of exchange rates on prices and unemployment. My theory, on the contrary, is that excessive public sector expansion, deficit spending by government, and generous money creation by the central bank are the main causes of economic problems in any country. I always take an example: when a government has to decide how many pigs have to be bred and how many buses should run, or the prices at which shoes have to be sold, this government is not able to apply pre-established principles. Take good note of the danger here: it is each successive government's point of view that will end up deciding what are the most important and priority interests it needs to attend to. And this point of view will arbitrarily turn into the general law of this country.
Ultimately, there is one sentence of Reagan's that would summarize your principles. »In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. «
Exactly, exactly. Right now the main task confronting us is to reduce the government's power. In this sentence Reagan clearly distinguishes between what a government should do and what it should not do. As I have already said, right now, in Western Germany, the government's role is being considerably reined in. In the past century limits were placed in England. Later in the United States. But today, of all the major countries, I would cite Germany and Switzerland - although the latter is a special case - as examples of this setting of limits. The fact is that socialist ideas have been very influential in English-speaking countries during the past 25 years. Whilst German-speaking countries took an opposing direction to Hitler's totalitarianism. In addition to Germany and Switzerland I would also cite Israel as a country which is in process of paring back the government's role.
And Mrs Thatcher's England ...
Good. Mrs Thatcher is moving in this right direction. But she faces an uphill battle with the trade unions. For me Mrs Thatcher is the only hope for England, but I am not certain she will win the battle against the trade unions. If she should lose the battle against trade unions - which are politically too strong - I believe there is no more chance of recovery for England. All hopes lie in Mrs Thatcher being successful. But of course, no one can predict this. If a society is to remain operating as a free society it cannot permit any monopoly that uses physical force to maintain its position, or threatens to deprive the public of essential services. All these practices of the English trade unions are highly dangerous. This intimidation, this abuse of strength which in certain cases leads them to close down companies, or to set up stick picket lines to prevent people who wish freely to work from doing so, are practices that should never be permitted in prosperous western countries.
In your book »The Road to Serfdom« you said that it is possible to have economic freedom without political freedom but that political freedom will never be possible without economic freedom. Is this not to posit the economy as the most decisive factor in countries' lives? Does this not limit or reduce everything that makes us human to economic value?
It is very simple: a country can have a proper political life only if the economic system allows its people to survive. Not counting, of course, with the ever-growing problem of population growth. Very well, people need to survive. And I am convinced that it is only in the free market, following the competitive market order, that all these people can be kept alive. It is precisely the policies of the left that attempt to impede those economic mechanisms that for me are the only ones that can give us everything we need. In the West, in particular, access by the masses to a certain degree of well-being has been the result of the general rise in a country's wealth, not of so-called »social justice«. »Social justice« has rather prevented the elimination of poverty. The interference of the powers that be in the mechanisms of the market has succeeded only in provoking greater injustices in the form of new privileges in favour of particular interests. Let me remind you that democracy needs the broom of strong governments. Unfortunately, democracies are at times allowing governments too much power. This is why I am very careful to distinguish between »limited democracies« and »unlimited democracies«. And obviously my choice is for limited democracies.
Could I ask you for examples of limited and of unlimited democracies?
In certain countries, what we call majorities are able to turn into discriminatory groups which favour certain people to the detriment of others. For me these are unlimited democracies. On the other hand, the limited democracy ought be able to give its own group of supporters the same possibilities as the rest.
In one volume of your latest book «Law, Legislation and Liberty«, you introduce the title »The Mirage of Social Justice«. You have already touched on this theme in an earlier reply, but could I ask you expand on this idea?
Almost always when a government is asked to intervene on behalf of a particular group, this is done in the name of »social justice«. Please, when you write these two words, place them in quotation marks, because for me they are lacking in all meaning, they are yet another demagogic phrase. The various authoritarian and dictatorial governments of our day have never stopped proclaiming this »social justice«. Sakharov has provided us with clear testimony of what is happening in today's Russia: millions and millions of people are victims of a terror which is seeking to cloak itself under the device of »social justice«. All movements in the direction of socialism, in the direction of centralized planning, involve the loss of personal freedom and end up ultimately in totalitarianism. And yet the call to »social justice« has become the most widely used and most effective argument in political discussion. From the outset, these two words have been the rallying point for all the aspirations of socialism. The essential difference between the social order to which classical liberalism aspires and the type of society people want to build in most countries lies in the fact that the first is governed by the principles of correct individual behaviour, whereas the second is committed to satisfying whatever demands »social justice« places on it. Liberalism demands the right behaviour of the individual. Today, instead, many societies attribute to an authority the power to dictate to people what they want to do. The pernicious idea that all public needs have to be satisfied by co-active type organizations, and that all collective needs must be controlled by the government, is totally foreign to the basic principles of a free community. The true liberal is a proponent of the proliferation of intermediate voluntary organizations between the individual and the government. I insist that the abolition of poverty is not achieved via »social justice«. Rather it is one of the biggest obstacles to the elimination of poverty. The only way to eliminate poverty is to increase a country's
Returning now to the topic of the United States. Do you believe that Reagan won the last elections, or that Carter lost them?
Quite honestly I don't know. But it is true that I am unable to take Mr Carter too seriously.
He is too naïve. He is a man of good intentions, but in fact he understands nothing about anything. I too am ready to recognize that in a certain sense he is an idealist. But a naïve idealist. And one of these naïve ideals consists of believing that good will is enough, of ignoring the fact that a government also needs to understand what a country's prosperity depends on.
Why then do you believe that the American people voted for Carter four years ago?
I myself was confused as to the reason. In fact I am unable to explain it. At best, yes, by Watergate. But more than anything because of the Republican government's being associated with certain international matters: disenchantment with the Vietnam war, for example. (Spanish not totally clear here, Translator's Note) For me the United States' big mistake was this: if you go into a war, you have to go in to win it. But firstly in Korea, and then in Vietnam, the North Americans attempted to conduct a purely defensive war. And you can never win a purely defensive war. To win a war, you need to attack. But the Americans were never really convinced of the need to carry off an offensive war. Which is why they never truly tried to defeat the enemy. It is simple: you cannot triumph simply by self-defence.
How did you view Carter's position towards Iran?
Very weak. Very weak. Given his position, it would have been better to abstain from using military power. But he ought at least once to have sent an ultimatum to Iran, indicating that Teheran would be bombarded if the hostages were not freed. This was a major mistake.
Who really succeeded in freeing the hostages, Carter or Reagan?
I think that too much importance was given to the matter. They ought to have been considered as prisoners of war from the start. If 52 soldiers are captured, one should not make major concessions. It may be necessary that 52 soldiers die. It is much more important to uphold certain principles of international law. And if Iran broke fundamental principles of international law, it ought immediately to be outlawed. So that, in summary I believe that it would have been better to take a much stronger position. Of course, I am sure that a stronger position was not taken out of fear of conflict with Russia. What frequently placed a brake on Carter's government was the fear of confrontation with Russia. As a result of which the Iranians understood perfectly from the outset that they were facing a weak president. Which is why they were ready to solve the problem before a strong man came into power. Obviously, I believe that the entire success of this freeing should be attributed to Mr Reagan. He was the first to say that these 52 hostages were prisoners of war. And no country would have made concessions like this in order to free prisoners of war. The Iranians made use of a very criminal type of blackmail. And no international law accepts blackmail. I have the same viewpoint towards terrorists. No government ought to give way to the demands of a terrorist group that kidnaps an important person. Obviously, from the human viewpoint, this is very sad and may appear impious. But no government ought to depart from general principles in order to make concessions to terrorists. And the Iranians, for me, are terrorists. Simply terrorists.
Let us continue, now, our analysis of Ronald Reagan's inaugural speech of 20 January. He said: »We suffer from the longest and one of the worst sustained inflations in our national history. It distorts our economic decisions, penalizes thrift, and crushes the struggling young and the fixed-income elderly alike. It threatens to shatter the lives of millions of our people.« Do you agree with these nefarious outcomes of inflation?
Totally. I am in absolute agreement. This will obviously be the first problem Reagan is going to have to solve. And I believe that his chances of doing so are better than those of Margaret Thatcher in England.
Because in North America the trade unions are much weaker than in England. And I would add that in North America the trade unions are not socialist in orientation. The English trade unions, on the other hand, are socialist and support a socialist party. This is why they are so strong. This is what makes the problem so complex. The worse thing about inflation is that it funnels productive forces towards those sectors which, in the long term, are unable to maintain them. In the short term, inflation reduces the unemployment rate. But in the long term it increases it horribly. Just think about it. From the political standpoint, inflation is very attractive, as in the short term it reduces unemployment. But, I insist, it is inevitable that in the long term this unemployment will rise.
If you had to mention just one fundamental cause - and one only - of inflation, what would it be?
Excess public spending by the state. Unable to raise enough money by taxes, a government pays part of its costs by creating money. And Reagan is right in saying that the huge burden of taxes is perhaps the hardest problem to resolve. It is very difficult, indeed, and very complicated to pare back the plethora of Government entities and services. Very difficult as a political problem, I mean.
May I ask you to comment on the sentence: »All of us need to be reminded that the Federal Government did not create the States; the States created the Federal Government.«
Here we return to the true roots of federalism. It is totally right from the historical viewpoint, and the formula is opposed to excessive government centralization. This is also my old fight. The general law requires the maximum amount of government possible to be devolved to the individual states. Central government should be empowered solely to legislate in the true sense of the word. Not in any way to instruct people in what they should do, but to establish the rules of correct behaviour. And also to defend external relations. But almost all other administrative tasks ought to be carried out by local governments, by city governments. Until a few years ago the United States was a genuine example of federalism. But Reagan is right when he says that there has been too much centralization.
Moving away a bit from the speech, do you believe that Reagan's past as an actor is positive or not for his task as the nation's president?
For me it is very important and very positive. You may not know it, but the present Pope John Paul II also wanted to be an actor. And he too, like Reagan, has this extraordinary capacity for publicity. And I believe this capacity to be fundamental for a leader.
Cannot this capacity for publicity at times become synonymous with demagogy?
For a government to function well, you need at the helm someone with something of an actor's talent. This is clear. Today, certain people use this talent for worthy ends, others for unworthy ends. In the first case, it is a blessing, in the second a tragedy.
Another sentence of Reagan's struck my attention: »If we look to the answer as to why, for so many years, we achieved so much, prospered as no other people on Earth, it was because here, in this land, we unleashed the energy and individual genius of man to a greater extent than has ever been done before. «
In other words, they had a system of liberty, and not an oppressive government.
Why is it so difficult to achieve this sort of government in Latin America?
The difference lies in its having another tradition. The United States takes its tradition from England. In the 18th and 19th centuries especially, this was a tradition of liberty. On the other hand the tradition in South America, for example, is rooted basically in the French Revolution. This tradition lies not in the classical line of liberty, but in maximum government power. I believe that South America has been overly influenced by the totalitarian type of ideologies. And I regret to say that this includes a famous Englishman, the utilitarian Jeremy Bentham, who effectively believed in the deliberate organization of everything. This is obviously very far from the liberal English tradition of the Whigs. So the answer is that the United States remained faithful to the old English tradition even when England partly forsook it. In South America, on the other hand, people sought to imitate the French democratic tradition, that of the French Revolution, which meant giving maximum powers to government.
What opinion, in your view, should we have of dictatorships?
Well, I would say that, as long-term institutions, I am totally against dictatorships. But a dictatorship may be a necessary system for a transitional period. At times it is necessary for a country to have, for a time, some form or other of dictatorial power. As you will understand, it is possible for a dictator to govern in a liberal way. And it is also possible for a democracy to govern with a total lack of liberalism. Personally I prefer a liberal dictator to democratic government lacking liberalism. My personal impression — and this is valid for South America - is that in Chile, for example, we will witness a transition from a dictatorial government to a liberal government. And during this transition it may be necessary to maintain certain dictatorial powers, not as something permanent, but as a temporary arrangement.
Apart from Chile, can you mention other cases of transitional dictatorial governments?
Well, in England, Cromwell played a transitional role between absolute royal power and the limited powers of the constitutional monarchies. In Portugal, the dictator Oliveira Salazar also started on the right path here, but he failed. He tried, but did not succeed. Then after the war, Konrad Adenauer and Ludwig Erhardt held initially almost dictatorial powers, using them to establish a liberal government in the shortest possible space of time. The situation called for the presence of two very strong men to achieve this task. And the two of them very successfully accomplished this stage towards the establishment of a democratic government. If you permit I would like to make a brief comment in this sense on Argentina.
I felt very disenchanted right from my first visit there, shortly after Peron's fall. At that time I talked with many officers from the Military School. They were highly intelligent persons. Politically brilliant, I would say among the most brilliant politicians in their country. For me it was a pity they did not make better use of this intelligence. I would have hoped they could have laid the foundations for a stable democratic government. And yet they did not. I do not know why they failed, in fact, but my impression is that they had the political ability and the intelligence to do so.
Which means that you would propose stronger, dictatorial governments, during transitional periods ...
When a government is in a situation of rupture, and there are no recognized rules, rules have to be created in order to say what can be done and what cannot. In such circumstances it is practically inevitable for someone to have almost absolute powers. Absolute powers that need to be used precisely in order to avoid and limit any absolute power in the future. It may seem a contradiction that it is I of all people who am saying this, I who plead for limiting government's powers in people's lives and maintain that many of our problems are due, precisely, to too much government. However, when I refer to this dictatorial power, I am talking of a transitional period, solely. As a means of establishing a stable democracy and liberty, clean of impurities. This is the only way I can justify it - and recommend it.
Mr Hayek, do you have hope? I mean, are you optimistic as to the future?
Yes, yes. I would almost say that if politicians do not destroy the world in the next 20 years, there are very good chances of achieving the just and proper society that mankind deserves. Of course... I am not very optimistic that the politicians are not going to destroy the world..., but this is another topic. And I believe that people today are aware that the ideals that dominated this 20th century were all based on superstitions. For example, a planned economy, with fair distribution. Or the ability to free oneself from repression and moral conventions. Or seeing a permissive education as a path towards liberty. Or replacing the market economy by a rational arrangement of a government with coercive powers. These ideals marked the age of superstitions. And what is the age of superstitions? It is a time in which people imagine that they know more than they in fact do.
Are you a believer? In the religious sense, I mean.
I was born a Catholic. I was baptized. I was married in the church, and they will probably bury me as a Catholic. But I have never been able to be an effective Catholic, a faithful Catholic. Despite this I was in Rome three weeks ago together with another twelve Nobel Prize winners to advise the Pope on political matters. I discovered the Pope to be a man of extraordinary intelligence, and an excellent conversationalist. Really, he impressed me a lot.
Do you believe in God?
I have never understood the meaning of the word God. I believe that it is important in the maintaining of laws. But, I insist, as I do not know the meaning of the word God, I am unable to say either that I do or don't believe in his existence.
Doesn't this doubt, this problem, occupy a good part of your time?
It takes up my entire life. For my entire life I have been asking the same question, without finding an answer. Nor has anyone been able to give me the answer.
This scepticism, is it a driving force to continue searching? I mean, are people who ask questions like you do closer than others to reaching the truth?
(Smiling). It's a good question. And I am going to answer it like this: I believe that we all have a duty to search for the truth. But at the same time we all need to admit that none of us is in full possession of all the truth. Of »all« the truth, I said. And if you wish me to define God as the truth, then I am ready to use the word God. And I'll go further. Providing that you do not claim to have the entire truth, I am ready to work with you in searching for God via truth. It's a fascinating challenge.
The Austrian-born economist and philosopher Friedrich von Hayes's books and thoughts had great influence on the political and economis reforms that were carried through under Pinochet's reign. Hayek was interviewed by the government friendly news paper El Mercurio in 1981. The second half of the interview was brought in the news paper on April 19th of 1981 and is rendered here in english in an edition of a translation from the Belgian Institut Hayek:
Friedrich von Hayek: From Servitude to Liberty
El Mercurio, 19th of April 1981, Santiago
At 82 he shows no signs of age. Slim and agile in his movements, even if the passing of time has forced him to abandon most physical activities. An indefatigable mountaineer, and great walker, today he has to limit his energies to intellectual work. Even during his stay in Chile, despite his countless obligations, Friedrich von Hayek is using the time available to complete the final chapters of the third volume of »Law, Legislation and Liberty«. He shows us an index of the topics that this work will cover, among them: »The Ethics of Liberty and Property«; »The Evolution of the Market: Trade and Civilisation«, »Poisoned Language«, »Workers Exploiting Workers«, »Statistics as Illusory Guides«, »The Reactionary Character of the Socialist Conception«, »The Megalomania of the Intellectuals«.
Hayek's logical rigour makes reading him - whether or not you agree with his postulates - an intellectual pleasure. Euphemisms and mythologies have no place in his writings. Everything is called into question and there are no problems facing humanity which are not raised and scrutinized in the search for new solutions. Winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1974, he is much more than a simple economist. He is a philosopher in the fullest sense of the word. His work »Road to Serfdom«, published during World War II, may one day be a milestone in the history of political thought and the most solid attack ever on the effects on human liberty of the advance of socialism. In it he sets out the danger of totalitarianism infiltrating in cloaked form the democratic institutions of the West.
The thought of the father of modern liberalism, even if he shuns the classification of neo-liberal, is being disseminated, with the natural slowness of ideas, years after it was first formulated. An isolated prophet in the thirties and forties when Keynes reigned over intellectual and political circles in England and the United States, he is today a »respectable« figure with a following among young European and North American academics. Also among governments like those of Reagan and Mrs Thatcher, which acknowledge him as a major source of inspiration.
In Chile, in his capacity as Honorary President of Centro de Estudios Publicos, »Centre of Public Studies«, he allows himself to be interviewed with the modesty that only great figures appear to possess.
His speaking manner is calm. His English is perfect after years of living in Great Britain - where he obtained British nationality - though with a strong and melodic Austrian accent. Impeccably dressed, he sports a necktie with the effigy of Adam Smith given to its members by the Mont Pelerin Society, of which he is the founder.
At the beginning of his conversation with »El Mercurio«, he quips: »Please sit to my right. I am deaf in my left ear which, as you will understand, lends itself to many political jokes.«
He accepted the presidency of the Centre of Public Studies because the case of Chile interests him:
From the little I have seen, I think it is no exaggeration to talk of a Chilean miracle. The progress in recent years has been enormous.
I would draw attention, yes, to the importance of continuing on the same path:
It is necessary to retain inflation completely and to avoid price controls or trade union privileges of any kind. I am not against trade unions, but I am against the idea that they should be entitled to privileges which other citizens do not have, because they can ruin the economy.
Today nearly every political movement has liberty on its banner. This must partly be due to the fact that it conceals different and even antagonistic meanings, and not only shades of meanings but in the very essence of the concept. What do you understand by liberty?
I am talking about the freedom of the individual. It is an abuse of the term to believe that it refers to the liberty of a majority in a representative assembly. This is because if this assembly has unlimited powers, it will inevitably end up constraining the freedom of individuals. For the individual, liberty means knowing in advance the rules that he needs to obey in order not to be coerced by the government. In this way freedom is the absence of coercion. This calls for a framework of known standards, the same for everyone, so that everyone can develop sensible plans and pursue his own ends. This does not mean that the government may not hold other powers. Simply that it should not have other means of coercion. I believe that the government can do a lot of good by providing the necessary infrastructure, although here again it should not hold the monopoly. I would say that it should do only that which it effectively does better than others.
Is this a negative concept of liberty?
Yes, effectively. The concept of liberty is a negative one. What is referred to as positive liberty, which allows certain people to enjoy certain rights to do special things, is irreconcilable with the idea of equality before the law, with the obligation that all governments ought to have to treating every one in the same way.
Some people maintain that it would not be right to legislate in an equal way for beings who are equal in appearance only? What do you think?
It is possible that certain governments, in certain countries, need to ensure a minimum level below which no one can fall. However, if justice is conceived of as de facto equality, this is unachievable. People are different, and nothing would be more unjust than to make equal beings who are not equal. The only thing that can be equal, I repeat, is the treatment everyone receives from the government.
Strange as it may appear, faced with the retreat of liberty as a driving force of civilisation, we are forced to ask the question »Why is liberty necessary? What we generally hear are rhetorical arguments, but you appear to have empirical arguments for this ...
Very, and indeed very empirical ones. Only the free market order enables us to feed the world's population. If we had never begun using the market, we would have continued a happy existence as savage collectors. But we have used the market and succeeded in increasing per capita productivity in order to keep alive a number of persons who, without the market, and without the division of labour that this permits, would have been unable to survive. The truth is that, unless we want to eliminate or kill off the excess population, we need to continue. We have created not only a civilisation, but also a population whose existence depends on maintaining the market order.
Might not these ends be achieved with planning?
I would say that today, and with the growing complexity of modern society, it is more impossible than ever before. It would be very easy if a single person or office could really have available to them all the information that is needed in order to take decisions. But it is not a question of the market adapting to facts that are known to everyone. It is a question of its functioning in a situation where nobody knows all the data in their entirety. We are dependent on the use of information which people bring into the market, which itself acts like a large computer, and it is the market results, the automatic signals that the market sends, which indicate what has to be done in every case. In this way the market acts as an essential guide, showing individuals how they can contribute in the best possible way to the whole. Other systems require us to dictate to people what they have to do and, worse still, without our really knowing what they ought to do.
Economic liberty is therefore vital?
It is impossible to separate economic liberty from other liberties. Liberty consists of being able to experiment, and people can experiment only if they can use all the resources to which they have access.
The distinction between economic freedom and intellectual or cultural freedom is an artificial one. There is no system which, after taking away economic liberty, has been able to guarantee intellectual liberty.
Do you believe that once the bases of a free economy are established, political liberty emerges automatically? Or can one conceive a situation of an authoritarian government remaining in power, which deprives citizens of many liberties but maintains a large degree of economic freedom?
This could be possible. It depends on what you mean by political liberty. If you are referring to the liberty of the majorities, yes, but if you wish to define political liberty as an absence of arbitrary powers, then this has to apply across the board. For this it is not necessary to list specific rights. It is enough to point out that the government does not have powers to coerce individuals, except by way of application of the same uniform rules applicable to everyone.
But do you not believe that said laws not only have to be uniform but they must also not be coercive in nature?
Laws that are the same for everyone are not, because they need to applied also to those who formulate them. I understand that restrictions may be necessary in a period of transition, but as a permanent state of affairs this would not be desirable.
One of the most common confusions in modern political theory appears to be the one between the concepts of democracy and liberty. You have already advanced this idea, but, could you specify more clearly in which sense these two concepts are different and even mutually hostile?
Liberty requires a certain level of democracy, but it is not compatible with unlimited democracy, that is, with the existence of a representative legislative assembly with all-embracing powers. Even so, for liberty to exist, it is vital that individuals be able to put an end to a government that is rejected by the majority. This is a major value. Democracy has what I would call a »hygienic« task, that of ensuring that political processes are conducted in a healthy way. It is not an end in itself. It is a procedural rule having as its objective to serve liberty. But in no way does it rank on a par with liberty. This latter requires democracy, but I would prefer to sacrifice democracy temporarily, I repeat temporarily, rather than have to do without liberty, even if only for a while.
Does any relationship exist then between individual liberty and democracy?
The only thing that liberty requires is for the individual to be able to do something to restrict the actions of the government. I do not believe that giving positive instructions to the government on what it is supposed to do is part of liberty. But the fact is that one cannot have liberty if we cannot exercise the right to prevent the Government doing certain things.
Nonetheless, it appears clear that democracy in the West is going through a credibility crisis. What, in your judgement, is this due to?
People supposed that democracy would be competent to legislate. This was in a time when legislating meant establishing general standards of individual conduct. But today we attach the name of law to everything emanating from authority, whether or not it has the character of law. Montesquieu's old precept of the separation of powers has been shattered. Once upon a time, when we spoke of legislation, this referred to something very different. Today the legislator's authority has become omnipotent. We lack any separation of powers, because Parliament has not only legislative powers, but can also administer, and use its full discretion in the process.
In other words, the problems are not intrinsic to democracy itself, but to the specific form in which it has come to function?
That is my belief. In my next book, the third volume of »Law, Legislation and Liberty«, I propose a new organization of democratic government. This would consist of two Chambers with differing purposes. The first would be a genuine legislative body with its powers limited to establishing general rules, and the second would direct government as such. This government would, of course, be limited by the general rules established by the first assembly.
How would authority be generated in these Chambers?
By a system of elections, but a different system in each case. In the chamber having governmental tasks, representation could be based on distinct sectorial interests. In the legislative chamber, on the other hand, the need would be more for experts, wise and experienced men who know their subject areas. They would also be elected, but not on a party political basis - as could be the case in the legislative) body - and also for longer periods. They would not be eligible for re-election, to avoid their being subject to party pressures. It goes without saying that the executive assembly would be subject to the general laws of the country.
Do you believe in natural law and that liberty and property, for example, are prior to the State?
No, in the traditional meaning, but yes in a certain sense. I believe that the best laws have been selected by an evolutionary process. They have not been constructed intellectually. Like other products of civilisation, one can legitimately say that there is more wisdom in tradition than in constructions that are the outcome of a process of deliberation. I do not want to say by this that all traditions are good. Tradition needs to demonstrate its goodness.
This can be measured by the success of the institutions it has produced, and in general it can be said that the tradition of law and of liberty has proved more successful than other traditions.
What relationship does this have, for example, with the right to property? Is this prior to the State or does it require it, as it is not mere possession, as Kant says.
The State is necessary to buttress law, but law is not a creature of the State. It is the product of an evolution that we deem to be good, not because it has been decreed by the State, but because it has created a sort of broad order which could never have been created by deliberation.
You have referred on other occasions to the apparent paradox that a dictatorial government may be more liberal than a totalitarian democracy. However, it is also certain that dictatorships have other characteristics which clash with liberty, even when conceived in the negative way you do ...
Obviously there are major dangers in dictatorships. But a dictatorship can place limits on itself and a dictatorship that deliberately sets limits on itself can be more liberal in its policies than a democratic assembly without limits. I have to admit that it is not very likely that this will succeed, even if, at a particular point in time, it may be the only hope there is. It is not a certain hope, because it will always depend on the goodwill of an individual, and there are very few individuals one can trust. But if it is the sole opportunity which exists at a particular moment it may be the best solution despite this. And only if and when the dictatorial government is visibly directing its steps towards limited democracy.
You have written that liberty is the source and the precondition for improving moral values ...
It is only when he enjoys liberty - and I refer, I insist, to individual liberty - that a person can behave in a moral manner. Only if this person has a sphere known to itself, within which it can choose, can it act morally, only if it is the person who decides how it should act.
What role does morality play in political theory?
As I have said, I believe that our moral beliefs are not the construction of our intellect. On the contrary, like other natural organisms they have been selected by an evolutionary process which is not directed by us. In order to understand why certain moral rules have, so to say, proved more successful, we need to understand what we mean by morally more successful. I have arrived at the conclusion that in the process of evolution we have managed to select those moral values that allow us to maintain the largest number of persons alive.
Morality - and in this I include property and contracts - need to be judged against the »calculation of lives«. History has proved that one system of laws tends to more effectively keep alive a greater number of persons than others. Although this might shock some people, this has been proved by capitalism's creation of the proletariat, a set of persons who would not otherwise have survived. The people making up the proletariat would simply not exist other than through capitalism.
Do you believe that liberalism is morally neutral or that the objectives it pursues carry a hierarchy of values?
A free society demands the existence of certain morals that, in the last instance, boil down to the maintaining of lives; not the maintaining of all lives, because it could be necessary to sacrifice individual lives in order to preserve a greater number of other lives. In this way the only moral rules are those which lead to the »calculation of lives«, that is, property and contract. I am deliberately remaining outside family and sexual morality because I am not an expert. In this field it is more difficult because certain innovations, such as birth control, have radically changed the foundations of family life. What is essential is that we recognize certain moral rules. I am convinced that we do not choose our morality, but that the tradition we have inherited regarding property and contracting is a necessary pre-condition for the existence of our current population. We can attempt to improve it, partially and experimentally.
To say that the right to property depends on a value judgement is equivalent to saying that whether or not to conserve life is a question of value judgement. From the moment that we accept the need to maintain alive everyone who exists today, we have no choice. The only value judgement refers to the estimates we make relating to the preservation of life.
Would you say that the Catholic Church has traditionally opposed liberalism?
Not necessarily. Only it opposed European rationalist liberalism, not the English currents of liberalism, because under the influence of the French revolution this rationalist liberalism became anti-church before the Church became anti-liberal.
Even so, relations have not always been harmonious.
In the 19th century the Church adopted a very anti-liberal attitude towards science. Right now there is a lot of hope of a reconciliation between science and the church. I have been involved in these efforts. Four months ago I was at a meeting in the Vatican along with a dozen other Nobel prize-winners to discuss the problems of the reconciliation of science and the Church. I do not know how far the Pope is ready to go. I have to say that I disagree with the extremely doctrinaire position on birth control. But on this occasion we were told that, apart from abortion - which remains outside discussion for the Church - we could talk freely about all the rest.
Even if the Church may not be anti-liberal, there have been ecclesiastical pronouncements against capitalism.
Listen. I don't like the word capitalism either, and I would be happy to change it. But I do not believe that the Church has come out officially against the market economy, and the old doctrines concerning interest are a thing of the past. Indeed, major Church representatives, including cardinals, and among them the primate of Germany, support the social market economy. There is no official opposition from the Church, it has simply abandoned a few restrictions. It has to be said, moreover, that priests' involvement in socialist movements is almost exclusive to Spanish-speaking countries.
Do you not believe that liberalism generates materialism?
No. Absolutely not. It puts within our reach the material means to satisfy our own objectives.
Tocqueville was perhaps the first to raise the question of the permanent tension between Liberty and Equality. What, do you believe, is the reason for the conflict which generally arises between the two?
The only feasible equality is equality before the law. As soon as you ask more than this, it immediately enters into conflict with liberty. If your intention is to create material equality, this can be achieved only by limiting liberty.
But, would you say that the idea of equality has contributed to transforming liberty from a privilege into a universal value?
Only in so far as it refers to equality before the law.
Do you not believe that it is essential to guarantee equality of opportunity?
This too is very difficult to achieve. The opportunities created by governments need to be equal, but it is not possible to ensure objective equality. People are very different. They have different parents, dissimilar levels of health, unequal biological constitutions.
But, for example, in the area of education, do you not believe it to be important not to have marked differences of opportunity?
Certain measures in this respect are useful. It is desirable that capable persons who are unable to finance their studies be aided, but I am not sure that we have not damaged worker families by depriving them of their most gifted elements.
And aspects like culture, where the law of supply and demand has historically safeguarded neither diversity or quality.
Previously I used to think that governments ought to do something here, but the Japanese experience, where all these leisure activities are in the hands of private enterprise, has convinced me that governments are not the most suitable players. They have never been. Neither in Greece, nor during the Renaissance, nor in the musical apogee of the 18th century. It is always patrons who have been the great instigators of culture. It is fitting for the moneyed classes to protect culture.
In our day, liberalism traditionally has been a mentality more than a rigidly structured doctrine, a pragmatic and empirical focus, an application of the principle of trial and error. There are people who believe that neo-liberalism is essentially distinct in this respect, because it offers a very solid structure which could be classified as a very consistent, global ideology. How can this be compatible, for example, with the idea of the great liberal Karl Popper that politics, like a scientific hypothesis, is no more than a conjectural proposition, without any value or ultimate truth.
Popper and I are in agreement in almost every respect. The problem is that we are not neo-liberals. Those who define themselves in this way are not liberal, they are socialist. We are liberals who are seeking to renew, because we belong to the old tradition which has room for improvement, but which cannot fundamentally be changed. The opposite is to fall into rationalist constructivism, into the idea that it is possible to construct a social structure conceived in men's minds and imposed according to a plan with no account taken of evolutionary cultural processes.
Do you not believe that in the case of Chile, for example, where an attempt is being made to apply a very consistent model in every sphere of national life, there are certain features of what you call constructivism?
I don't know the situation well enough to give an opinion. I know that the economists are solid.
But the model embraces more than the economy alone ...
It is possible that this is due to the enormous influence that positivism and utilitarianism have had in Latin America. Bentham and Comte have been major intellectual figures and liberalism has always been constructivist on this continent. Milton Friedman, for example, is a great economist with whom I agree on nearly every point, but we have our disagreements, and not only on the mechanical use of the money supply. I too am an economist, but I like to think that I am something more than that. I have always said that an economist who is no more than an economist, cannot even be a good economist. Yes, Friedman grew up in the tradition of the Bureau of Economic Research under Mitchel's influence. Mitchel maintains that since it is we that have created the institutions, we can change them as we wish. This is an intellectual mistake. It is an error. It is wrong. In this sense Milton is more constructivist than I am.
So in other words, a model which embraces all the institutions and which imposes itself without being generated by spontaneous forces, can, however much it pursues liberty, end up in conflict with liberty?
Talmon says that man finds himself struggling between two major aspirations: the desire for salvation by means of a creed that solves everything and encompasses everything, and liberty. I would add that it would be the simultaneous pursuit of both goals that leads inevitably to tyranny. Do you believe that the search of liberty that converts into an all-embracing, all-solving credo can in any event lead to certain forms of tyranny?
Yes, of course. Ultimately, when all is said and done, it is a problem of humility. That of being able to admit how little we know.
I would like to have your comments on the following judgement: Hegel, Marx and Freud are responsible for all the moral and intellectual dishonesty of the 20th century.
This is perhaps a somewhat exaggerated way of putting it. Let's just say they are the most conspicuous representatives of the mistaken path.
Julio Lavin Ahumada
Notary Public and judicial keeper of the archives
DECLARATION BY DON SANTIAGO JOSE TORIBIO MERINO CASTRO
In Valparaíso Februar 2nd 1996
My dear MARGARITA, the love of my life; daughters, grand children and sons in law, the time has come, I'm eighty years old; it is therefore in due time that I in this document that I call a »testament« pass on the recollection of some past events and lay down some recommandations for life for when I am no longer.
From my early childhood I wanted to join the navy since it was my fathers occupation and I achieved it with great effort and under great sacrifices. I knew that being in the navy meant being prepared to lose ones life - if nescesary - for the mother country and it has been the path I followed since the divine providence gave me the opportunity to serve God and neighbour. My father retired as commander in chief of the Navy in 1928 and lived on his modest pension of three thousand and two hundred pesos until the sixth of February 1941 when he died. At that time I was second lieutenant on Escampavía Cabrales, on an expecition at Punta Arenas which is one of the reasons why I was not present during his last days or his funeral as I did not return to Valparaíso till mid March and could meet my mother. It was a sad sight that met me there, for it was not only the solitude when someone is gone but also the fact that it had caused a lack of means. Carlos, my brother, was at Universidad Santa María and studied electrical engineering, my two sisters studied and my mothers pension had been reduced by twenty percent, WHICH MADE LIVE ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE. I therefore decided to give my mother half of my salary so she could finance my brothers studies, and my sisters began to give piano classes to help the households economy. The World was at war from July 1939. France, Germany, England, Poland, The Soviet Union, Japan and China, etc. I continued my service as usual, and gave courses in artillery from 1941 to 1942 aboard CL BLANCO ENCALADA. I achieved seniority and was transfered to DD SERRANO as an artillery officer. I volunteered to sign on an american cruiser that participated in The Second World War and served there from June 1944 till September 1945 aboard USS RALEIGH, as an extra officer on that ship. Those were the months of my service where I learned the most because I there saw what real war is, not just exercise. Everything I learned I wrote down in four months in some memoires, that were given to the Navy in the beginning of 1946. In 1951 I was appointed to go to The United States to find O'HIGGINSThis . This post lasted an entire year. As I returned to my mothers home, October 6th, I got to know Margarita, fell in love with her and proposed to her, we were engaged to be married December 24th og 1951 and decided to marry March 1st 1952, and I have been completely happy with her by my side during the hard times that we lived through ever after. I gave courses as a specialist in service in general staff, and later as a professor, wrote a manual on logistics and another on geopolitics for the students on the academy, and I was two years as a professor on that institution for futher studies. In Chile the political situation was complicated by the appeareance om political parties, that were wery hostile and that in no way contributed to solve a situation that was day by day more and more unbearable because of the economic crisis that affected the country because of the lack of imagination in the men who handled the situation. The crisis became out of control with the election of Mr. Frei as president of the republic and with the awfull changes to the constitution that Mr. Aylwin brought about, both christian democrats, but in reality socialist politicians who ruined the political stability this country had enjoyed. At the conclusion of Mr. Freis term and with the coming election in September of 1970 that had three candidates it was known that none of them would get the nescesary majority; but the christian democrat's hate against the right was so strong that they wouldn't build at majority against the candidates with the rest of Congress. The final result was that Allende, the candidate of the left, was the one with support from the masses and the media; and with the prospect of a possible bloody confrontation I decided to talk with our navy commander in chief to get authorisation to talk under private forms with Mr. Allende. I succeceeded and met with the candidate and other leaders from the left in Cocón on September 12th of 1970, we talked about several subjects but politics but the candidate felt supported by the Navy and let Frei know. The result was that Congress appointed Allende president of the republic and avoided a possible civil war. The government of Allende is the biggest catastrophe come upon Chile since independence. It succeseded in less than 1000 days to ruin everything this nation had build since September 18th of 1810. During a dinner in La Moneda on invitation from the president I had to pull my gun and lay it on the dinner table in reach while I ate. Back in Valparaíso I was convinced that this couldn't continue and that the government had to be stopped. This view was strenghtened by the fact that I ASSESSED that the cause of the UPRISING IN THE NAVY was that the responsibles [Oscar] Garretón and [Carlos] Altamirano could not be investigated by the intelligence agency though there was an arrest order issued for them and that they on Sunday from nine to eleven were on national television and urged the populace to revolution. When I heard this I took my note book and wrote the message, you know, to general PINOCHET and to general LEIGH, commanders in chief of the Army and Air Force, that read: »D-DAY IS THE ELEVENTH AND T-TIME IS SIX ...« I sent the message to them delivered by admiral Huidobro, mariner, and both gave their confirmation and this concluded the COMMUNIST GOVERNMENT and lead to CHILES salvation which cost SEVENTEEN YEARS OF HARD LABOUD FOR ALL CHILEANS WITH THE HEART IN THE RIGHT PLACE, WHO WEREN'T POLITICIANS, BUT STATES MEN ... WHO GAVE ALL FOR CHILE, AND NOT TO PROFIT FROM IT THEMSELVES.
Below are exerpts from a major interview that Pinochet gave to the journalist Jon Lee Anderson in the autumn of 1998 and that was published in The New Yorker just as Pinochet historically significant was detained in London on Spanish request.
The New Yorker, October 1998
»I was only an aspirante dictator,” General Augusto Pinochet said — a candidate for dictator. “I’ve always been a very studious man, not an outstanding student, but I read a lot, especially history. And history teaches you that dictators never end up well.” He said this with an ironic smile.
Pinochet’s famously stern public countenance has been softened by the passage of time. He smiles more than he scowls now, and the sinister dark glasses that he used to wear are gone. He looks like someone’s genteel grandfather. His voice is tremulous and hoarse, his carefully parted and combed hair and trim mustache are white. He has a potbelly, wears a hearing aid, and shuffles uncertainly. A conservative business suit and a tie accented discreetly with a pearl pin have replaced his military uniform.
Some things haven’t changed, though. Pinochet’s expression remains inscrutable. His pale-blue eyes are small and set in a wide, bullish face, and his stare is coldly foxy. The many lines around his eyes come from his smile, which appears suddenly but evaporates just as quickly. And his views don’t seem to have shifted much. “Lamentably,” he says, “almost everyone in the world today is a Marxist—even if they don’t know it themselves. They continue to have Marxist ideas.”
Pinochet explained that he had avoided the historical pitfall of dictators because he had never wielded absolute power. At the beginning, he and three other generals, the commanders of the branches of the armed forces, had made up a junta. “In time,” he said, “I became the one who led, because the thing led by four doesn’t work. You’re giving orders here, the other there, the other over there—it’s nothing, nothing. It doesn’t advance! That’s why I was chosen.” Then he had tackled Chile’s constitution, ushering through changes that, among other things, legitimatized his de facto rule by making him the country’s President. The old constitution had been a nuisance. “It tied one up! How can you let yourself be tied up? You have to be able to set the goalposts to be able to act! You can’t have a field where you don’t know where you’re shooting from. So I set the goalposts.”
Like Franco, Pinochet is an ultra-conservative Catholic nationalist, a military officer with an unremarkable personality who suddenly rose to prominence. Both men imposed their power through violence, and used security forces to maintain it. And, over time, both transformed their societies and built strong modern economies. Pinochet knows that he is frequently compared to Franco, and he is cagey about the analogy. “There is an appropriate leader for each country,” he said guardedly. “Franco was necessary for Spain.”
In 1943, he married another strong woman, Lucía Hiriart, the nineteen-year-old daughter of a former senator and government minister. When I met her in Santiago, Lucía Hiriart de Pinochet, a gracious woman in her early seventies, confessed that, as a politician’s daughter, she had found the “subjection” of her husband within the military hierarchy hard to take, and that she had urged him to strive for higher office. “When we discussed his future,” Mrs. Pinochet said, “he said he’d like one day to be Commander-in-Chief. I told him he could get to be Minister of Defense.”
“My husband had taught me that in a normal career he’d get to be colonel. Anything above would be good fortune and a bit of luck. He became a general because of politics. They call me messianic for saying so, but I believe it was divine Providence that he got to be President.”
Curiously, Pinochet’s popularity extends to the People’s Republic of China, which he has visited twice. China is a major client for Chile’s copper exports, and Pinochet has nurtured his relationship with Beijing. “They are very fond of me,” he says. “Because I saw that Chinese Communism was patriotic Communism, not the Communism of Mao.
Salvador Allende’s daughter, Isabel (not the novelist, who is her second cousin), bridles at the term “excesses,” which is the euphemism preferred by Pinochetistas when acknowledging that any abuses occurred during the General’s tenure. “There was slaughter, there was state terrorism!” Allende says. “Many people were murdered, in cold blood, their throats slit, burned to death. These weren’t ‘excesses,’ these were murders that were planned, premeditated, coördinated by the intelligence agencies and state agencies.”
Over drinks in her garden, an aristocratic Chilean woman who spends much of her time in Europe and who gives orders to her Alsatian guard dogs in French, said to me, “Chileans are isolated and insular, and, like the Germans, they are incapable of initiative; they need to be told what to do. That is why Pinochet was so good for them.” This analysis was echoed by several other Chileans I met, all of whom cited Chile’s geographical isolation and its hybrid mixture of imported nationalities as key factors in Pinochet’s popularity.
Pinochet told me that England is his favorite country—“the ideal place to live”—because of its civility and moderation, its respect for rules. As an example, he pointed to the impeccable driving habits of the British, compared with the “rude” road behavior of his countrymen. Chileans will tell you with pride that they are often called the English of South America.
Pinochet’s supporters, of course, have even worse things to say about the government that he replaced in 1973. One of the more common stories—delivered with expressions of shocked repugnance—is that Allende was drunk at the time he died in La Moneda: that an autopsy found his body to be “full of alcohol.” An octogenarian lawyer and former judge, Alfredo del Valle, told me, “Allende was a man without any moral calibre.” When I asked him what he meant, he paused, and then confided that among his friends was an Army officer who, after the coup, led a search of Allende’s home and became “physically sick” by what he saw. “What was there?” I asked. The old lawyer shook his head. “Pornography,” he replied in a disgusted whisper. “Mountains of it—of the worst kind.”
Financial corruption is not high on the list of things that Pinochet is accused of, but a congressional panel—determined to find him criminally liable for something—has demanded a sworn accounting of his personal assets. Although his pre-1973 tax returns reflected the typically modest earnings of a Chilean military officer, Pinochet is now believed to own at least five properties around Chile, worth several million dollars. The congressmen want to know how, and with what funds, he obtained them.
When a scandal erupted in 1990 over the revelation that Pinochet’s elder son, Augusto, Jr., had been paid nearly three million dollars by the Army after it bought a gun factory he owned a small percentage of, Pinochet sent troops into the streets of Santiago to express his displeasure. The investigation was quashed, but when it was reopened three years later he sent out the troops again.
A few weeks after I left Santiago, I met Pinochet in London, where he was having some medical checkups. He was staying in one of the modern five-star hotels on Park Lane favored by well-heeled Europeans, Arabs, and Americans. Lucía Pinochet, who was travelling with her father, had warned me that he was not feeling well and had cut back on his activities in London. He hadn’t called his friends; even his tea with Margaret Thatcher had been scratched. In a few days, she said, he was to see a doctor about a hernia. She hoped it could be operated on, but the prognosis did not seem good. Because of her father’s age, Lucía told me, they were afraid to put him under anesthesia: “Nobody wants to take responsibility when the patient is someone important.”
Lucía told me that her father’s visit to London might well be his last. His physical problems were catching up with him. Besides, things weren’t the same in London. People didn’t seem to recognize him anymore. The Burberry’s salesman was an exception. She was hoping he would feel well enough, after his medical examination, to come with her to Paris, to visit Napoleon’s tomb.
History, and Pinochet’s fascination with it, featured heavily in our talks. He expressed his admiration for Napoleon and for the Romans, and we also discussed Fidel Castro, whom he seemed to respect for standing up for his beliefs, and for being a “nationalist.” When it came to Mao, too, he seemed curiously uncritical. He described a visit to Mao’s tomb, and his voice fell into a dramatic hush: “They took me to a large temple, immense, how can I tell you? Like the American Congress building. Where, every day, thousands of people take flowers to Mao. I went to that temple, but Mao isn’t there. Mao is in a second temple further on, where all the walls are of black marble. In the middle is Mao’s catafalque. What a monument!—of silence. Dark . . . half-light, and the catafalque.”
I asked Pinochet how he hoped to be remembered by history, and he said, “As a man who loved his Fatherland, and served it all his life. I am eighty years old, and I know nothing else but service. I hope that they do justice to my memory. Each person will interpret it as he wishes.”
At du på eller omkring den 29. oktober 1976 som tjenestemand, nemlig øverstkommanderende for den chilenske hær, i forening med andre forsætligt påførte José Marcelino Gonzalez Malpu hæftig smerte eller lidelse, ved at påføre hans kønsorganer, skuldre og ankler elektrisk strøm og foregive at skyde hans tilfangetagne, nøgne moder for øjnene af ham, i forsætlig udførelse af tjenestelige pligter.
At du i forening med andre forsætligt påførte hæftig smerte eller lidelse på Pedro Hugo Arellano Carvajal ved at:
(a) binde ham til en metalseng og tvinge hans hænder mod en elektrisk ladet metalplade, så stødet kastede ham tværs gennem rummet;
(b) udsætte ham for elektriske stød med elektriske ledninger sat på hans bryst, hans penis og hans tæer;
(c) binde ham til et træ og piske ham;
(d) sætte ham ombord på en helikopter, skubbe ham ud med reb bundet til hans bukser, og trække ham gennem torne;
(e) binde et reb i ham og sænke ham ned i en brønd, indtil han næsten druknede, trække ham op igen og sænke ham tilbage i brønden da han ikke besvarede spørgsmål;
(f) udsætte ham for 'russisk roulette';
(g) tvinge ham til at tage alt sit tøj af i overværelse af den tilfangetagne Rodriguez-familie, som var blevet arresteret med deres sønner, tvinge ham til at overvære tortur af denne familie, da deres far blev tvunget til at røvpule sin søn, mens denne søn blev tvunget til at røvpule sin yngre broder;
(h) tvinge ham til selv at røvpule en af disse sønner;
i den hensigtsdrevne udførelse af tjenestelige pligter.
At du i forening med andre med forsæt påførte Irma del Carmen Parada Gonzalez hæftig smerte og lidelse ved at:
(a) tage tøjet af hende;
(b) påføre elektrisk strøm til hendes mund, skede og bryster;
(c) udsætte hende for voldtægt af to mænd;
(d) lægge hendes hænder i kemikalier og indføre dem i en maskine, så hun mistede bevidstheden;
(e) tvinge hende til at spise fordærvet mad og de jordiske rester af hende døde medfanger;
i den hensigtsdrevne udførelse af tjenestelige pligter.
At du den 24. juni 1989 som tjenestemand, nemlig øverstkommanderende for den chilenske hær, i forening med andre forsætligt påførte sytten år gamle Marcos Quezada Yanez hæftig smerte og lidelse ved at påføre ham hæftige elektriske stød, hvilket medførte hans senere død,
i den hensigtsdrevne udførelse af tjenestelige pligter.
At du i 1974 som tjenestemand, nemlig øverstkommanderende for den chilenske hær, i forening med andre forsætligt påførte andre hæftig smerte eller lidelse ved at udsætte dem for 'Papi', en mand, der havde synligt åbne syfilissår på sin krop, som voldtog kvindelige fanger, og ved at bruge en hund på dem, der var trænet til seksuel adfærd med mennesker,
i den hensigtsdrevne udførelse af tjenestelige pligter.
Here exerpts from an article in The Sunday Telegraph with an interview with Pinochet, that he gave to Christina Lamb in April of 1999 during his house arrest in London.
Pinochet Vows to Fight Extradition
The Sunday Telegraph, April 18th 1999
GENERAL Augusto Pinochet has promised to fight the extradition proceedings approved by Jack Straw, the Home Secretary, calling the move »politically motivated persecution«.
Speaking exclusively to The Sunday Telegraph, the former Chilean dictator said: »I will fight against this extradition with every ounce of my strength. I am innocent of the charges that I have been accused of, and in my capacity as a soldier of Chile and former President, I will fight to defend my honour and integrity, and that of my country.«
»I am prepared for a long battle even if it takes two years. This process is a sham that makes mockery of the British justice system.«
On Thursday night, after Mr Straw's decision to give the Spanish government authority to proceed with extradition, the 83-year-old general hosted a dinner for close friends at his home in Surrey, where he has been under house arrest since November.
He raised a glass of Chilean wine and proclaimed that he would rather die battling in Britain than be extradited to Spain, even though his lawyers warned that appeals are likely to carry on until spring 2001. »He is extremely defiant«, said one of those who was present.
In response to an urgent request from the Crown Prosecution Service, Mr Garzon faxed details of an additional 31 cases of alleged torture. But the general's lawyers argue that these cases are of localised police brutality toward common criminals that had no political motivation and were nothing to do with Gen Pinochet. »This is an example of the repeated abuses to which my family and I have been subjected in this politically motivated persecution«, the general told The Sunday Telegraph.
Documents in the possession of his lawyers, seen by The Sunday Telegraph, show that Mr Garzon was sent a list of 85 cases on March 25, the day after the Lords' ruling, by an extreme Left-wing Chilean organisation called CODEPU, »Corporación de Promoción y Defensa de los Derechos«. He selected 31 cases from this list early the following morning and faxed the details to the CPS, Crown Prosecution Service. »How could he possibly have investigated these cases in that time?«, asks Fernando Barros, coordinator of the Chilean Reconciliation Movement that is lobbying for Gen Pinochet. »This is a clear abuse of the extradition process. Under the extradition treaty it is assumed that the judge has done serious investigation, but these are trumped-up charges.«
But a member of the prosecution responded by saying: »Garzon has been investigating Pinochet for two years and has an extensive database which meant he need only cross-reference the cases. There are something like 500,000 cases of torture between 1973 and 1990 and these cases are just a sample.« Barros, however, insists: »We're not saying that there weren't wrongs done in Chile before the amnesty law in 1978, but to believe that 10 years later, when Pinochet was already negotiating his hand over to a democratic system and had himself signed the Torture Convention, there was still a policy of systematic torture, is ridiculous.«
Most experts believe the British courts are unlikely to accept that the Spanish request is not well-founded as this would cause chaos in other extradition hearings and open the door to hundreds of past cases to be reheard.
Hvordan videoer og internet hjælper generalen med at få tiden til at gå
General Augusto Pinochet, som nu har siddet interneret på sjette måned i Surrey, har anvendt sin ledige tid godt med at lære at surfe på internettet, så han nu kan følge begivenheder derhjemme gennem de chilenske aviser.
Antallet af besøgende i huset i Wentworth Estates er faldet dramatisk de seneste uger bortset fra en velannonceret kop te med baronesse Thatcher, og hans familie er taget tilbage til Chile.
I går var han vært for lederen af Chiles væbnede styrker, general Ricardo Izurrieta, som fløj til fra Santiago for at vise sin støtte, og skal mødes med baronesse Thatcher til morgen.
Men generalen tilbringer det meste af dagen inden døre alene med de fem betjente fra Surrey og sin chilenske butler og stuepige som tilbereder ham måltider såsom hans yndlingsgryderetter. Hans tilværelse forløber efter en stram tidsplan efter hvilken han laver 100 mavebøjninger hver morgen og går på politieskorterede gåture i haven efter middagsmaden.
Aftenerne går med at se lejede videoer i selskab med det altid tilstedeværende politi. Hans favoritfilm er katastrofefilm såsom Titanic og Deep Impact, en film, der blev lanceret sidste år med Morgan Freeman i hovedrollen som US-præsident, der beordrer huler bygget til 800.000 udvalgte mennesker for at redde dem fra en komet med kurs mod at kollidere med Jorden.
Below are exerpts from an article in New Statesman, an interview with Pinochet conducted by Christina Lamb in July 1999 during his house arrest in London.
I took tea with Pinochet
New Statesman, July 26th 1999
When I called a cab to take me to Wentworth Golf Estate, the driver expressed surprise that I was carrying no golf clubs, but seemed happy with my explanation that I was visiting someone for tea. I told him that I was a journalist from The Sunday Telegraph, but it was only when I directed him past one of the estate's dancing fountains to a leafy cul-de-sac guarded by two Scotland Yard officers in a white Portakabin that it dawned on him exactly who I was going to see.
»S'pose you'll be going to interview Milosevic next week«, he growled, as we pulled up at the tall iron gates of 28 Lindale Close, residence of one Mr A Pinochet since last November. Feeling guilty, I gave him a large tip and was shepherded by another Scotland Yard officer to join Dominic Lawson, the editor of The Sunday Telegraph, on the general's patio.
It is not every day that one takes elevenses with a dictator - even a retired one. That the encounter took place in a rose-filled Surrey garden on a hot summer's day, at a table overlooking a lawn in the middle of which fluttered a Chilean flag and a colourful plastic windmill, rather than in some sombre wood-panelled room lent an air of improbability. I was high on morphine, too, having only got out of hospital the previous day, after giving birth ten weeks early to my first child, and that added to the surrealism of the situation. Had any of Wentworth's other famous current or past residents such as Bruce Forsyth or Fergie dropped in, I doubt I would have lifted an eyebrow.
Gathered on the patio were several of Pinochet's advisers: since his arrest last October, I had often met them in smoky coffee bars of London hotels to hear the latest word from his camp. As we waited for the general to emerge, they shuffled nervously.
There was a sudden silence as Pinochet emerged from the French windows, then a chorus of »Buenos dias, mi general«. I stared at the man I had read so much about, joined protests against at university and written about since his arrest, who now shook my hand, smiling and congratulating me on the birth of my son.
Without his uniform and the sinister dark glasses he used to wear, he didn't look as I expected a dictator to look. Eighty-three last November, he was dressed in a navy suit with a high waistband, a pearl tie-pin on his silk tie. Leaning unsteadily on a crutch, a hearing aid in his right ear and his thin white hair ever so carefully combed, he looked like someone's elderly uncle. Adding to this impression was the pushchair propped against the wall, belonging to the youngest of his 25 grandchildren, three-month-old Augusta Victoria, who had just flown over with her mother from Chile. But the most unexpected thing was the voice. Instead of the military bark that I had expected was a high-pitched whisper.
»I do not normally authorise such meetings«, Pinochet began, with a smile which did not reach his pale blue eyes and was not at all reassuring. His advisers had told us that the current commander in chief of the Chilean army had been on the phone the day before, trying to stop the interview. Watching him gesture with liver-spotted hands for someone to pour the chilled water, I was fascinated by his fingers. They were flat and meaty like those of a butcher. We could, he said, ask him anything.
His arrest had been particularly hurtful because it had happened here in England, his favourite country, where he liked to shop in Burberry and Fortnum & Mason, visit Madam Tussaud's and take tea with his friend Margaret Thatcher. »As a child, my teachers and other people who educated me always said that Chile was one of Britain's best friends ... I was always happy when I came here because I felt Britain was a place where people really respected one another.«
Speaking so softly that we had to lean forward to catch what he was saying, his words often lost in the whir of the fan, he reminded us both of Marlon Brando in The Godfather. »Britain was famous for its justice system,« he whispered, before complaining with some justification about the farcical nature of the legal proceedings against him which have so far run up millions of pounds in costs and will probably never see him brought to trial. Even if he were tried and convicted in Spain, he is too old to go to jail.
»I'm the only political prisoner in Britain«, he added, banging his fist on the patio table. »Bandits, common criminals, violent people are all pardoned and allowed home.«
Brandishing the constitution, he jabbed at a section: »It is forbidden to apply any unlawful force on any person.« I thought of this later in his office, where I saw a shelf of Jean-Claude Van Damme videos.
Yet General Manuel Contreras, head of the DINA, the Chilean secret police, with whom Pinochet breakfasted every morning, claims that he did nothing without Pinochet's authorisation. Recently declassified Pentagon papers include one stating: »Gen Contreras reports exclusively to and receives orders from President Pinochet.«
The July sun was getting hotter and Pinochet's Chilean butler came and served strong coffee in tiny china cups. Clearly not leading anywhere on torture, the conversation moved on to his conditions at Wentworth. »Would you be happy confined to the same 80 square metres for ten months?« asked Pinochet. »Always seeing the same place, the same people?«
A tour of the house revealed it is less luxurious than the reported 12-bedroomed mansion. With some of Pinochet's family visiting for lunch - his favourite lamb stew, which his Chilean cook was making in the kitchen - the living-cum-dining-room was crowded. Two of the four bedrooms are taken up by Scotland Yard officers in case Pinochet tries to leg it, as is a small room next to the kitchen full of surveillance screens. There is little space for Pinochet's exercise bike, and he spends most of his time in a cramped office, reading books on his hero Napoleon or surfing the Internet to read the Chilean press.
Since last month, Pinochet has been allowed to move freely in the garden, though always monitored by Scotland Yard officers and various surveillance cameras and infra-red movement detectors. His greatest joy is his grandchildren. »I'm too old to run around or play ball, but we have a set of remote-control cars and hold races round the lawn«, he said.
With this unlikely image of the dictator and his toy cars, we bade farewell to the old man and left the redbrick house with the roses rambling over the white shutters where we had taken elevenses and chatted about torture.
The following charges are what were ultimately the charges brought against Pinochet in London on September 27th 1999 as the charges mentioned above had to be abandoned as the indicents happened before all involved countries had ratified the relevant extradition and torture conventions, the oldest case in the charges thus being from December 15th 1988.
The extradition proceedings started on September 27th 1999 in Londons Bow Street Magistrates' Court where these 35 charges – one on the planning of torture and 34 on cases of torture – from the last 14 months of Pinochet's time of government initially were read. Pinochet was not present on health grounds at the proceedings:
1. Between December 7, 1988 and March 12, 1990 you agreed with others that the following course of conduct should be pursued, namely: a. persons that you believed ... would be disposed to pose a threat to the ... political positions, comforts and beliefs of yourself and other members of the conspiracy, would be abducted, and undergo severe pain and suffering, causing grievous bodily harm; b. some of those victims would be killed; c. such pain, suffering, harm and murder would be inflicted by public officials ... commanded by you; d. it would extend to such pain and suffering as, through the accounts of survivors ... would terrify persons who might otherwise be disposed to criticise or oppose you; e. the fate of many hundreds of persons known as "the disappeared" ... would continue to be concealed from their families; which course of conduct ... necessarily involved the commission of offences of torture by public officials.
As Commander in Chief of the Chilean Army, Augusto Pinochet, jointly with other public officials, intentionally inflicted severe pain or suffering on the following people in purported performance of official duties:
2. On 15 December 1988 on Wilson Fernando Valdebenito Juica by inflicting electric shocks and causing his eventual death
3. On 16 December 1988 on Juan Fuentes Sepulveda by inflicting and threatening electric shocks
4. On 31 December 1988 on Dolores Paz Cautivo Ahumada by repeatedly beating her and by threatening to rape her sister
5. On 27 March 1989 on Pedro Alberto Ciudad Palma by beating him, inflicting electric shocks on him and suspending him
6. On 11 April 1989 on Hector Washington Maturanza Urzua by beating him, depriving him sleep and inflicting electric shocks on him
7. On 18 April 1989 on Pablo Andres Parada Apablaza by beating him, threatening him with instant death and inflicting electric shocks on him
8. On 18 April 1989 on Claudio Tapia Orellano by beating him and threatening him with instant death
9. Between 3 May and 8 May 1989 on Lincoyan Nery Caceres Pena by beating him, causing his eventual death
10. On 18 May 1989 on Claudio Torrealba Torrcalba by beating him and inflicting electric shocks on him
11. On 2 June 1989 on Hernan Sepulveda Pertner causing his eventual death
12. On 8 July 1989 on Manuel Antonio Arriaga Canales by inflicting electric shocks on him and beating him
13. On an unknown day in July 1989 on Edmundo Meza Schaffer by suspending him, inflicting electric shocks on him, beating him and by keeping him in conditions of acute physical discomfort
14. On 16 July 1989 on Jorge Alejandro Escobar Diaz by beating him, inflicting electric shocks on him and by forcing him to imbibe hallucinogenic drugs
15. Between 15 July and 1 August on Marcos Antonio Mardones Villarroel by beating him, inflicting electric shocks on him and burning him
16. On 19 July 1989 on Guillanno Saladori Calderon Leiva by inflicting electric shocks on him and beating him
17. Between 20 August 1989 and an unknown date in Spetember 1989 on Jessica Antonia Liberona Ninoles by depriving her of sleep, making threats about her nine-year-old daughter, conducting repeated interrogations while she was naked and keeping her in dark, solitary and insanitary conditions
18. Between 20 August 1989 and 10 September 1989 on Andrea Fabiloa Oyarzun Alvarado by interfering with her breathing, threatening her with instant death and keeping her in conditions of acute physical discomfort
19. Between 20 August and 10 September on Hilda Oriana Alvarado Jara by keeping her in conditions of acute physical discomfort
20. On 22 August 1989 on Luis Orlando Vargas Miranda by beating him and subjecting him to severe mental pain or suffering, precipitating his death
21. On 28 August 1989 on Julio Enrique Gerdin Salas by inflicting electric shocks on him while interrogating him and by beating him
22. Between 29 August 1989 and 10 September 1989 on Jorge Muzz Fernando by tying him, confining him in a small cage, suspending him and inflicting electric shocks on him
23. On 24 June 1989 on Marcos Quezada Yanez, aged 17, by inflicting severe electric shocks causing her eventual death
24. On 1 September 1989 on Avelino Villarroel Munoz by beating him, inflicting electric shocks on him, restricting his breathing and allowing him to hear the infliction of severe pain and suffering upon others
25. On 24 September 1989 on Victor Alfonso Diaz Gonzalez by beating him and restricting his breathing
26. Between 18 October 1989 and 27 October 1989 on Leonor Clara Espinoza Parra by depriving her of sleep, food and water for several days, keeping her in acute physical discomfort and by threatening that she would be tortured with electric shocks
27. Between 26 October 1989 and an unknown date in November 1989 on Patricia Irrazaval by beating her repeatedly, depriving her of sleep, food and water and keeping her in acute physical discomfort
28. On 26 October 1989 and 17 November 1989 on Marcos Ariel Antonioletti Ruiz by beating him, inflicting electric shocks on him, suspending him, depriving him of sleep, keeping him in condition sof acute physical discomfort, threatening him with instant death and damaging his sight
29. Between 26 October 1989 and an unknown date in November 1989 on Hector Raul Irrazabal Moya by beating him and suspending him repeatedly
30. Between 26 October 1989 and 1 November 1989 on Marcos Paulsen Figueroa by beating him, suspending him repeatedly, threatening him with instant death and threatening that his sisters would be tortured and sexually assaulted
31. Between 27 October 1989 and a date unknown in November 1989 on Andrea Paulsen Figuera by depriving her of sleep, food and water for several days and threatening that her five-year-old daughter would be tortured
32. On 10 November 1989 on Claudio Varela Moya by beating him, suspending him in a position of acute discomfort and by inflicting electric shocks
33. Between 30 November 1989 and 1 January 1990 on Marcelo Arturo Garay Vergara was by beating him, suspending him, keeping him in conditions of acute physical discomfort and by threatening that he would be disabled permanently
34. On 5 December 1989 on Luis Leyton Chamorro by inflicting electric shocks on him
35. On 21 December 1989 on Marcelo Samuel Gutierrez Hemandez by beating him, suspending him in a position of acute physical discomfort and threatening him with electric shocks.
Her er gengivet uddrag af det brev samt af de vedhæftede lægelige raporter, som UK's indenrigsministerium sendte til fire ambassader, efter en kendelse den 15. februar 2000 afgjorde, at indenrigsministeriet skulle sende materialet i fortrolighed til dem. Materialet blev imidlertid kort efter offentliggjort i aviser. Indenrigsminister Jack Straw besluttede på baggrund af disse rapporter at løslade Pinochet fra tilbageholdelsen, og dermed ikke udlevere ham til retsforfølgelse i Spanien.
Kilde: The Pinochet Papers, Reed Brody og Michael Ratner, red., 2000.
Britisk helbredsrapport om Augusto Pinochet [uddrag]
15. februar 2000
Den Spanske/Belgiske/Franske/Schweiziske Ambassade
Den juridiske samarbejdsenhed
50 Queen Anne’s Gate
SENATOR AUGUSTO PINOCHET
I lyset af dagens kendelse fra Højesteret har indenrigsministeren givet ordre til, at rapporten om helbredsundersøgelsen af senator Pinochet, som sat i værk af udenrigsministeren og udført den 5. januar 2000, samt visse relaterede dokumenter, skulle gøres tilgængelige for Belgien, Frankrig, Spanien og Schweiz. Jeg vedlægger kopier af disse dokumenter i dette brev.
På grund af dens tekniske natur, har det lægelige hold tilbudt den følgende prolog til doktor Wyke’s rapport:
I betragtning af den lægelig forhistorie, der allerede har været, og som antydede, at senator Pinochet havde lidt af lokal hjerneskade fra slagtilfælder, fandt de medicinske medlemmer af holdet det nødvendigt at få en analytisk bestemmelse af kognitiv funktion.
Skønt neuropsykologiske test er standardiserede, er en vis erfaring nødvendig for at håndtere dem for at sikre validitet og pålidelighed. Derudover anvender neuropsykologen både testreslutatet og observationer af patientens opførsel og registrerede forståelse og samarbejde for at vurdere betydningen af testresultatet. Det er derfor yderst nødvendigt, at testen udføres af en passende kvalificeret og erfaren person.
Neuropsykologiske test er lavet til at undersøge specifikke dele af den kognitiv funktion. Fortolkningen afhænger at mønsteret såvel som niveauet for scoren i de forskellige test. I særdeleshed er visse aspekter af kognitiv funktion mere modstandsdygtig over for hjerneskade end andre. I Weschler Adult Intelligence Scale, for eksempel, viser hukommelsesbaserede test, der indbefatter information og ordforråd, mindre svækkelse med alderen og med hjerneskader, end ikke-hukommelsenbaserede test, såsom hukommelsesspændvidde og blokforsøg. Man vil derfor forvente en ordforrådsscore, der står mål med, hvad der vides om patientens hidtidige beskæftigelse og uddannelse. En score lavere end forventet, bortset fra i en situation med fremskreden hjerneskade eller specifik skade på taleområderne i hjernen, ville gøre muligheden for depression eller svigagtighed aktuel, og begge vil normalt føre til en lavere score i alle test. En anden indikation for svigagtighed ville være uoverensstemmelse i besvarelser karakteriserede ved korrekte svar på svære spørgsmål og ukorrekte svar på nemmere spørgsmål. Dette er af særlig betydning med test i abstrakte sammenhænge såsom Progressive Matrices i hvilke det ikke er intuitivt og umiddelbart indlysende, hvilke opgaver, der er de sværeste. Et yderligere relevant aspekt af mønsteret i svarene er den virkning af svækkelse af hukommelsen og opfattelsesevnen, som gør det svært for patienten at have opgavens natur i hukommelsen samtidig med at patienten prøver at løse den. Dette besvær er åbenlyst i behovet hos patienten for hele tiden at bede om at blive mindet om opgavens natur.
De rå resultater fra neuropsykologiske test skal oversættes til en form for Intelligens Kvotient (IK), der gør dem relative. Dette er indlysende vigtigt for fortolkningen, men kræver normative data passende for patientens alder og – i tilfælde med sproglige test – sprog. Test måtte udvælges, for hvilke der var normative data tilgængelige.
SENATOR AUGUSTO PINOCHET UGARTE
Professor Sir John Grimley Evans, dotor M. J. Denham og professor Andrew Lees udførte en klinisk konsultation med sanator Pinochet på Northwick Park Hospital den 5. januar 2000. Konsultationen foregik på spansk. Også tilstede: Doktor Henry Olivi (observatør), professer D. J. Thomas (observatør), sygeplejerske Shelley Cape, Manuel Cerda (senator Pinochets hjælper).
Tidligere helbredsistorie på baggrund af tilgængelige journaler
1) Astma diagnosticeret i 1980.
2) Type 2 diabetes diagnosticeret i 1990. Behandlet oralt med hypoglykæmiske midler.
3) Diabetisk neuropati, der hovedsagelig berører de nedre lemmer. Ingen retinopati. God diabeteskontrol.
4) Fejl i hjerterytmen identificeret i 1992. En pacemaker blev indsat og aminodarone udskrevet.
5) Aminodarone-induceret Thyreotoxicose. Blokeringsterapi iværksat.
6) Leddegift i venstre knæ.
7) Nodøs struma.
8) Tidligere tilfælde af gigt.
10) tidligere brokoperation.
11) Døvhed på grund af akkustisk traume.
12) Diskusprolaps i lænden.
13) Forbigående anfald af smerter i iskiasnerven i juni 1997 og september 1998.
14) Symptomer på prostata-relateret natlig vandladning samt Trang-inkontinens. Forværret mellem den 27. juli 1999 og 5. oktober 1999.
15) Symptomer på parkinsons syge.
Budenoside, 400 µg, to gange dagligt (astmamedicin)
Metformin, 500 mg, tre gange dagligt (sukkersygemedicin)
Finasteride, 5 mg, dagligt (prostatamedicin)
Nimodipine, 30 mg, to gange dagligt (mod forhøjet blodtryk)
Allopurinol, 150 mg, dagligt (mod urinsyregigt)
Amiodarone, 200 mg, dagligt (hjertemedicin)
Thyroxine, 75 µg, dagligt (hjertemedicin)
Terazosin, 2,5 mg, dagligt (mod forhøjet blodtryk)
Citalopram, 30 mg, dagligt (»lykkepille«)
Colpidogrel, 75 mg, dagligt (blodfortyndende)
Terbutaline, inhalation efter behov (astmamedicin)
Senator Pinochet har en kompleks helbredsmæssig forhistorie, men de betydeligste helbredsmæssige problemer lige nu er diabetisk neuropati og nylig hjerneskade fra slagtilfælde. Den diabetiske neuropati bidrager til vanskeligheder med at gå og til den observerede tendens til stillingsbetinget for lavt blodtryk. Sukkersygen vil have en tilbøjelighed til at disponere for kredsløbssygdomme, som også en forhistorie med rygning vil.
Hjerneskaderne har vist sig dels som mindre slagtilfælde og apopleksi, men har også forvoldt tiltagende skade uden akutte symptomer. Der er klinisk bevis for udbredt skade på hjernen.
Egnethed til retssag
Fysisk: Senator Pinochet ville på nuværende tidspunkt være i stand til at deltage i en retssag, men som hjerneskaderne har udviklet sig på trods af optimal behandling (med god kontrol med sukkersygen og blodtrykket og hjertemedicinen), er yderligere svækkelse af den fysiske og mentale tilstand sandsynlig.
Mentalt: Det er vores vurdering, at senator Pinochet ikke på nuværende tidspunkt ville være mentalt i stand til en meningsfuld deltagelse i en retssag. Vi bygger denne vurdering på:
1) hukommelsessvigt angående både nære og fjerne begivenheder
2) begrænset evne til at forstå komplekse sætninger og spørgsmål på grund af hukommelsessvigt; manglende evne til passende behandling af verbal information
3) svigtende evne til at udtrykke sig hørbart, koncist og relavant
4) let trætbarhed
Med disse gener ville han være ude af stand til at følge med i en retssag tilstrækkeligt til at instruere sin advokat.
Stress i situationer, som er sandsynlige vil ske i en retssag, frembringer psykologisk respons, der kan accelerere udviklingen af hjerneskade. Vi fik imidlertid at vide, at senator Pinochet tidligere har vist bemærkelsesværdige personlige evner til at håndtere stress. Vi føler os derfor ikke i stand til at udtrykke nogen brugbar mening om de mulige indvirkninger på hans helbred ved at gå igennem en retssag.
Adfærd under test
General Pinochet var behagelig og samarbejdsvillig gennem hele testforløbet. Han besvarede alle spørgsmål stillet til ham, og gjorde sig umage med alle test.
Han var i stand til at give oplysninger om Chile tidlige historie. Han var til tider tøvende, når han skulle give nogle datoer, og rettede sig selv, og kom med yderligere information for at forklare sin tøven. Han var også i stand til at give grundlæggende detaljer om sin personlige forhistorie, såsom sit fødested og sin tidlige uddannelse.
General Pinochet viser moderat til alvorlig svækkelse af intellektuel funktion ud over den, der kan tilskrives hans alder. Han har været en person af høj intelligens, men på nuværende tidspunkt har han lav til middel intelligens. Korttidshukommelse, indlæringsevne og forsinket genkaldelse har alle svære mangler. Hans største besvær er med at huske information i længere tid.
Der er ingen tegn på, at general Pinochet forsøger at simulere svækkelse. Efter min mening ville han ikke være i stand til at overskue de juridiske aspekter af en retssag.
Efter 16½ måneders stuearrest i London fra oktober 1998 til marts 2000 og flere retslige afgørelser i perioden meddelte UK's indenrigsminister Jack Straw sin beslutning om at løslade Pinochet begrundet i Pinochets helbredsforhold. Straws erklæring til House of Commons bringes her i uddrag.
Kilde: The Pinochet Papers, Reed Brody og Michael Ratner, red., 2000.
Min rolle under Det Forenede Kongedømmes Udleveringslov af 1989 er en kvasi-juridisk een. Skønt ingen af dem er blevet inkorporeret i vor hjemlige lov, pålægger både den Europæiske Udleverings-konvention og FN’s toturkonvention UK betydelige forpligtelser, men jeg må se bort fra disse forpligtelser inden for de beføjelser og det ansvar, der er lagt på mig af UK-lovgivning.
Alle de beslutninger, jeg har truffet, har alene været mine, og har ikke været beslutninger af Hendes Majestæts regering. Hele forløbet igennem har jeg været klart bevidst om alvoren af de af senator Pinochet angiveligt begåede forbrydelser og om det ønske om retfærdighed fra de, som led under gerninger begåede af det tidligere chilenske regime.
Dette har været en sag uden præcedens. Både jeg og retsinstanserne har været nødt til at navigere i ukendt territorium. To juridiske komiteer fra House of Lords indtog forskellige positioner angående hvilke forbrydelser, der kan medføre udlevering. Helt for nylig kendte dommer, hr Kay, at min afvisning af Belgiens forespørgsel om åbenbaring af den lægelige rapport, var korrekt. Kort efter kom en splittet ret, der anerkendte argumenter fra begge sider, til den modsatte konklusion.
Jeg meddelte 11. januar de berørte parter, at i lyset af den lægelige vurdering, og under hensyntagen til tilkendegivelser modtagne indtil 18. januar, var jeg til sinds at konkludere, at der ikke var noget formål tjent med at fortsætte behandlingen af den spanske udleveringsanmodning. Den 25. januar blev der indgivet en anmodning fra Belgien og Amnesty International om afsløring af den lægelige rapport.
En kendelse fra 15. februar sagde, at jeg skulle afsløre rapporten for Spanien, Belgien, Frankrig og Schweiz på betingelse af streng fortrolighed. De udbedende stater blev indbudt til at gøre indsigelser mod den lægelige rapport inden tirsdag d. 22. februar 2000.
Det princip, at en anklaget person skal være mentalt i stand til at følge med i retsproceduren, til at instruere advokater og til at give sammenhængende vidnesbyrd, er fundamentalt for hele forestillingen om en retfærdig rettergang. Retssagen mod en anklaget i den tilstand, senator Pinochet er diagnosticeret med, kunne ikke være retfærdig i noget land, og ville være en overtrædelse af paragraf 6 i Den Europæiske Menneskerettighedskonvention.
Jeg er helt klar over, at de konkrete konsekvenser af at nægte at udlevere senator Pinochet er, at han nok aldrig vil blive stillet for retten nogetsteds. Jeg er meget bevidst om den følelse af uretfærdighed, som vil blive følt at de, der led under overtrædelser af menneskerettigheder i Chile i fortiden, såvel som af deres pårørende. Alle disse overvejelser er meget vedrørende, og jeg havde dem i stor grad med i mine overvejelser, da jeg overvejede bevismaterialet om senator Pinochets helbredstilstand.
De var blandt mine grunde til, at jeg udbad mig, at vidnesbyrdet om senator Pinochets tilstand skulle opfylde den højeste standard for ekspertise, grundighed, objektivitet og logisk overensstemmelse, før jeg var beredt til at handle ud fra den.
I sidste ende var jeg imidlertid drevet til den konklusion, at en retssag med de anklager mod senator Pinochet, hvor ønskelig, den end måtte være, simpelthen ikke længere var mulig.
Augusto Pinochet var en mand, der gav et formelt, anonymt og uudgrundeligt indtryk for så vidt som hans person angår. I forhold til at besvare spørgsmålet, om hvem og hvordan han var helt inderst inde, er der meget lidt at støtte sig til. Den her gengivne citat fra bogen Terroruddrivelse synes at være et udmærket bud på Pinochets sjælelige liv specielt i forbindelse med omstændighederne omkring kuppet i 1973 og det efterfølgende meget hårde diktatorregime.
Kilde: Terroruddrivelse, Ariel Dorfman, 2003.
Isabel Morel Letelier har en forklaring på, hvordan Pinochet udviklede sig til den mand, vi lige nu venter på at dømme. Ikke et umenneskeligt uhyre, ikke selve inkarnationen af det onde. Bare en mand.
Hun mødte ham første gang i slutningen af august 1973. Isabels veninde Moy havde allerede fortalt hende om Pinochet og beskrevet ham som en beleven, imødekommende og venlig mand, der altid bad familien Tohás børn om at kalde ham Tata. Ved en reception i anledning af Orlando Leteliers udnævnelse til forsvarsminister i Allende-regeringen var Pinochet kommet hen til Isabel og havde sagt til hende, at han følte sig heldig over at gøre hendes bekendtskab. Og han tilføjede: »Hvor er det også heldigt, at hver eneste ministers kone ser så godt ud.« Han var blevet ved på den måde, havde overgået sig selv med den slags komplimenter. Han havde udspurgt hende om hendes fire sønner, forsikret hende, at hæren var stolt over at Orlando – »vores Orlando«, som Pinochet kaldte ham – nu var blevet minister ... »Fordi han er en af vore egne,« sagde han, med en hentydning til Orlandos fortid som militærkadet og hvor godt han havde klaret sig dengang på militærakademiet.
»Jeg fik indtryk«, fortalte Isabel mig, »af en mand, der ville gøre alt for at behage mig. Og denne version af en både sukkersød og indsmigrende Pinochet bekræftede Orlando for mig, da han meget hurtigt begyndte at beklage sig over, at denne mand var så servil og slesk, at det gjorde ham nervøs. ”Han gør mig urolig” forklarede Orlando. ”Han insisterer på at bære min mappe, og manden er general! Og han prøver at hjælpe mig frakken på. Ved du, hvem han minder mig om? Disse hombrecitos, de der ydmyge små mænd, der før i tiden hjalp til hos de gammeldags barberer. Du ved, når man var blevet klippet, så kom de med en lille børste for at fjerne hårene fra ens jakke, og så rakte de hånden frem, og man blev nødt til at give dem drikkepenge.”«
Tre uger senere mødte Isabel Pinochet igen. Det var et par dage efter kuppet. Allendes ministre var blevet arresteret, og deres koner havde ingen anelse om, hvad der var sket med deres mænd. Derfor gik Isabel og hendes veninde Moy de Tohá hen til Forsvarsministeriet, hvor Pinochet på det tidspunkt havde installeret sig, for at bede om et møde med ham. På vej op ad trappen blev de, angiveligt af sikkerhedsgrunde, gentagne gange kropsvisiteret på en måde, som Isabel beskrev som ekstremt grov, men hun gik ud fra, at det virkelige formål var at ydmyge dem. På vej hen ad korridoren stødte de tilfældigvis på Pinochet omringet af en mængde fotografer. Han omfavner og kysser Moy, som om hun stadigvæk var hans gamle veninde og ikke gift med den mand, han har sat i fængsel. Denne første gang Moy ser Pinochet efter kuppet og mærker hans læber på kinden, kan hun umuligt vide, at hun fem måneder senere atter skal stå over for ham og tigge om sin mands liv. Lige nu er hun lettet over, at Pinochet vil modtage dem. Han giver ordre til en oberst, der står i nærheden, om at han skal arrangere et »møde med de damer.«
De bliver bedt om at komme tilbage et par dage senere, den 23. september - Isabel kan huske datoen, fordi Pablo Neruda blev begravet den dag. De går glip af Chiles største digters vældige begravelse, der endte med at blive den første offentlige udgydelse af sorg og trods imod diktaturet. De sørgendes taktfaste messen og råben blevet varsel om den voksende modstand i de kommende år. I stedet sidder Isabel, Moy og Irma, den tidligere udenrigsminister Clodomiro Almeydas kone, på to sofaer i et stort modtagelsesværelse i Forsvarsministeriet. De venter meget længe.
Isabel fortalte mig: »Så hører jeg døren bag ved mig blive åbnet, og en hel masse usammenhængende råb trænger ud, samtidig med at en nervøs stemme siger: ”Deres mænd har det helt perfekt, de får mad nok, tøj nok, de har det godt.” Jeg vender mig om og ser en utrolig vred Pinochet på vej ind i lokalet. I nøjagtig samme øjeblik skriger han: ”Hvis det havde været omvendt, så ...” Og Pinochet lader sin pegefinger glide hen over halsen, helt grotesk rækker han tunge, mens han laver en grimasse, som om han er blevet kvalt eller har fået halsen skåret over. Og jeg må beherske mig for ikke at komme til at le. Måske skyldes det alle de år, jeg havde tilbragt i udlandet, mens Orlando var i Interamerican Bank og senere ambassadør i Washington, men jeg havde simpelthen fået udviklet min humoristiske sans, og det hele virkede, nå ja, så absurd. Der sad vi tre kvinder, der var blevet tjekket af alle disse sikkerhedsvagter, vores mænd var forsvundet, og det var ham, der var bange, det var ham der var vred. På os. Alteradísimo.«
Jeg afbrød Isabel. »Det lyder nøjagtigt som det raserianfald han fik, da Moy opsøgte ham fem måneder senere.«
»Det er, som om Pinochet var vred hele tiden efter kuppet«, svarede Isabel. »Fordi så begyndte han at skrige endnu højere om Allende: ”Og den forræder, selvom han er død og borte ...” Og så rejste Irma sig op og sagde: ”Denne sprogbrug er uacceptabel, hr. general”, og hun begyndte at gå ud af lokalet. Og det lod til at dæmpe Pinochet lidt, for han blev roligere. ”Hvad kan jeg gøre for Dem, mine damer?”«
Hver hustru forklarede, hvad det var, der foruroligede hende. Isabel sagde, at hun blev ringet op fra Staterne, fra Holland og andre steder rundt omkring i verden, fordi man gerne ville vide, hvor Orlando var, men hun vidste ikke, hvad hun skulle sige. Hun havde ikke hørt fra sin mand. Det havde ingen af dem.
»Dette kan ikke besvares«, sagde Pinochet. »Der kan ikke svares.« Og han gentog at mændene fik tøj, mad og havde det perfekt. Igen var han meget vred.
»Må vi ikke nok kontakte vores mænd?«
»Men børnene«, sagde Moy, »Carolina og Jose. De vil gerne vide, hvad der sker med deres far. De kender dem jo.«
Pinochet tøvede et sekund, så sagde han: »Okay, de kan skrive et brev til ham.«
»Og hvad så med os?«
»Okay, så kan I også, I kan også skrive, nå ja, skrive noget.«
Isabel sagde, at alle tre kvinder følte sig opmuntret af denne udvikling: hvis de kunne skrive breve, betød det, at deres ægtemænd var i live. Men Moy syntes ikke, dette var tilstrækkeligt: »Og hvad så med de andre koner?« spurgte hun, fordi der var så mange andre, der havde brug for at sende en besked til deres kære.
»Okay, så gør det, gør det, gør det. De kan også skrive noget.« Pinochets stemme var fuld af raseri, som om han var blevet tvunget til at efterkomme en eller anden mærkelig militærkodeks om retfærdighed, der går ud på, at hvis en person får tilstået et privilegium, så skal alle andre have den samme chance.
Og det var sidste gang Isabel Morel de Letelier så general Augusto Pinochet Ugarte.
Begge har vi siden været forfulgt af spørgsmålet: Hvordan skal man forstå afgrunden mellem den ene og den anden Pinochet, hvordan var den galante og indladende mand fra for tre uger siden blevet sådan et uhyre?
Jeg spurgte hende.
»Hør her«, sagde hun. »Få dage før kuppet går det op for Pinochet, at alle er med komplottet, og han har ikke lyst til at være med, han har simpelthen ikke lyst til at være med. Men på et eller andet tidspunkt siger han til sig selv: ”Hvis jeg ikke slutter mig til det her, så slår de mig ihjel.” Og det er derfor - fordi han slutter sig til kuppet på et meget sent tidspunkt - at han begynder med dette vulgære sprog, al denne brovten, for at ingen skal anse ham for at være følgagtig. Han bliver nødt til at sætte sig højt til hest over de andre, han bliver nødt til at være vred hele tiden, han må gøre alle bange.«
»Porque tiene un miedo pánico. Fordi han er skræmt fra vid og sans. Det er sådan man skal forstå Pinochet. Han er en overlever.«
Kan denne fortolkning af Pinochet være sand?
Jeg har i så lang tid forsøgt at finde ud af, hvordan vi skulle uddrive Pinochet, og uden at det er gået op for os, var det måske hele tiden ham, der desperat forsøgte at uddrive os fra sit liv, ligesom Macbeth der forsøger at sove, prøver at slippe af med sine spøgelser.
Kunne dette være hemmeligheden, der løser gåden om Pinochet? Er det virkelig så enkelt? At den eneste måde, hvorpå Pinochet kunne udradere den mand, der bar Orlando Leteliers mappe, var at slå Orlando Letelier ihjel? At den eneste måde, hvorpå han kunne glemme den mand, der havde svoret Carlos Prats venskab og loyalitet, var at give ordre til snigmordet på Carlos Prats? At den eneste måde, hvorpå han kunne fornægte den mand, der havde taget gaver med til José Tohás børn, var at myrde deres far? Ret beset var det menneske, han var mest bange for, ingen anden end ham selv, den mand han engang havde været, manden han effektivt havde kvalt, da han sluttede sig til sammensværgelsen mod Allende?
Qué grandisímo hijo de puta.
Hvilket gigantisk røvhul.
Tænk, at jeg var lige ved at falde i den fælde, hvor jeg fik ondt af ham.
Dette er den tale, Pinochets barnebarn, kaptajn Augusto Pinochet Molina (f. 1973), holdt ved sin farfars begravelse. Talen førte til hans afskedigelse fra hæren.
Jeg vil i dag kort sige nogle ord til afsked med en mand.
At forsøge af opsummere denne mands værk, ville være en alt for ambitiøs opgave at give sig af med, hvorfor jeg blot vil tale om ham i forhold til, det jeg selv observerede ved ham.
Jeg kendte en mand, som var eksemplarisk som soldat, med alt, hvad det indebærer, en patriot, loyal over for sit land og dets historie, beredt til at ofre alt for sit lands bedste, ofre alt det mest kære, fordi det var hans pligt, altid ligevægtig, sjældent ophidset, men i alt meget varm og naturlig, som med et enkelt blik kunne tage bestik af en person, som blev en af de mest prominente ledere på verdensplan i sin tid, en mand som knuste, imdt under den kolde krig, den marxistiske model, der forsøgte at indføre sin totalitære model, ikke ved valgurnerne, [afbrud af klapsalver] men mere præcist med våbenmagt – ja, han var en mand, gjort at et særligt stof, præget af et meget speciel og vanskelig epoke for menneskeheden, med temaer som Den Store Depression og Den Anden Verdenskrig. Således var denne mand en fighter, en visionær og en stor patriot, der vidste at lede sit folk i tider med store farer, undgik altid unødig lidelse, men gik aldrig på kompromis med sit fædrelands grundlæggende værdier.
Sidenhen, mens gammel og træt efter at have bragt landet et nyt liv, en lys fremtid, kastede hans fjender sig over ham, og da man skulle mene, at han ville knække, løftede han sine skuldre i trods, og viste, at han stadig havde kraft at stå imod med.
Som jeg engang læste, er en mands fjender i løbet af hans liv fire: først frygt, så selvtilfredshed, fulgt af magt og sluttelig alderdommen. Denne mand besejrede dem alle fire: frygten, da han blev officer, hvilket han havde ønsket siden han var ganske ung; selvtilfredsheden, da han bestod optagelsesprøven til Adademia de Guerra; magten, godt så, da det lykkedes ham at overdrage et stabilt og velstillet land. [afbrud af klapsalver] Med en ligevægtig betalingsbalance og med en vækstrate aldrig set før i historien; men kampen var meget hårdere i hans alderdom, den fjende, der var sværest for ham at overvinde, den slog ham fysisk, hindrede hans evne til at bevæge sig, slog ham endnu hårdere psykisk, så han til fordel for sine politiske modstandere stod forsvarsløs, men endnu mere hårdt var det at se sin kone og sin familie anklager af dommere, som mere søgte berømmelse end retfærdighed.
Til den mand siger jeg farvel; farvel min præsident, farvel min general [afbrud af klapsalver], farvel og tak til min farfar!
Augusto Pinochet Molinas begravelsestale
Dette TV-klip lagt ud på Youtube viser Augusto Pinochet Molinas kontroversielle begravelsestale som transmitteret live på TV: