Translation by: Ivo Dragojevic and Alexis Ayala
Proofreading by francisca Erazo
Chile is in the midst of a social outbreak product of the constant abuses of the State against citizens. The civilian population got tired of the robberies carried out by senior commanders of Carabineros de Chile -Chilean police- (more than $38 million dollars from the chilean treasury), the sale of the sanitary concessions to privates leading to less people getting access to this basic need, the unpunished and bloody war against the Mapuche people, the repeated collusion of the companies in order to impose ridiculous prices on products and services to the population. In addition to this, the great AFP scam towards the working class and so many other social issues which the State have not been taking care of; rather, we have witnessed how the ministers of the government of Sebastián Piñera have been mocking all the Chileans during press conferences and treating citizens with an unsettling disregard.
Just as an example, the Minister of Economy Juan Andrés Fontaine, when talking about the increases of the public transport fees, invited all the citizens to “get up earlier” in order to pay a lower rate in public transport, or when the Minister of Finance, Felipe Larraín called for help by asking “Chilean mothers to pray to put an end to the trade war”(in the context of the CPI variation rate of 0.0%, in September and the trade war between China and the United States).
But the last straw that broke the camel’s back was the former Undersecretary of Healthcare Networks, Luis Castillo saying: “Patients always want to arrive early to the medical center, some of them, not only because they want to see a doctor, but also because they consider the whole thing a social event, like any common get-toguether.” The latter toguether with so many other unlucky statements which have deeply penetrated into the dignity of most Chileans, who sacrifice themselves everyday at their working places just to lead with unilateral rising of living costs come out of the blue and with despotic attitudes. These policies come from those who believe that we are still living in the colonial times, when farm patrons humiliated and constantly exploited workers in exchange of piecework.
Today Chile stands up and demands a new redistribution of the resources and profits of all citizens and focusing on the dignity that has been flouted not only by the Piñera government but by all those who have usurped and exploited this country since the Arrival of democracy.
It’s been three days since the implementation of evening curfew in several cities of the country. The military forces roam the streets reliving the ghosts of the Pinochet dictatorship. Today “The official” death toll has been release where 15 people were killed during the protests according to statements by the Under Secretary of the Interior, Rodrigo Ubilla. These are the same numbers that the Medical College refutes making a call to handle the figures of injured and dead with transparency since they exceed those declared officially.
Today we see how the law enforcement uses their constitutional freedoms against the poorest and most vulnerable sectors of the country by hitting, firing and entering their homes justifying the use of violence just because the people manifest themselves against what is happening in Chile. Thanks to modern technologies we have been able to witness what is really happening in these sectors, unlike other times when the censorship in the news (which also exists today) leaded to the misinformation of the population generating terror and endorsing the hoax that the dictatorship accomplices created. Hundreds of social media posts explicitly showing the military, civilian police and carabineros firing non stop and without judgment, abusively and unnecessarily to dozens of citizens and making illegal detentions.
Those in power – especially Interior Minister Andrés Chadwick, who was an active participant in the military dictatorship using repression and intimidation against students who opposed the dictatorship at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile – they argue that the extreme repression which they have been targeted with is due to the actions of violence of organized groups, and the discussion has been focused on this, ignoring the hundreds of strikes and protests that have been carried out over decades to demand a fairer country and invalidating any social demands. The outbreak was inevitable but both the Nueva Mayoria (left conglomerate) and Chile Vamos (right coalition) ignored all these actions and demands, overestimating the people. No one believed that Chileans would go out to the streets and rise against the oppression.
Meanwhile, the President of Chile is living in a sort of parallel existence, appearing on television stating that “we are at war against a powerful enemy” and immediately we can’t help but wonder who’s the “mighty foe” that this man is talking about. The town is unarmed, manifesting in the streets with pans and wooden spoons, and despite having no weapons to defend ourselves we stand powerful and we have managed to destabilize the system. Piñera on his side keeps on making inconsistent statements, completely out of control and deranged, expresses a hateful message to the people. But this will not be forgotten, we will always remember that he and his team of “professionals and advisers” brought the military back on the streets, them with the rest of the political class have, as well, mocked and dismissed the Chilean citizens power.