Augusto Pinochet Ugarte was born in Valparaiso, Chile, in 1915, and entered military academy in 1933. He was married in 1943 to Lucia Hiriart; in 1951 he began to teach Geopolitics and Military Geography (what!?) at the Military School of Chile. In 1971 he got the title of commander, and on August 23, 1973, less than a month before the military coup d'etat on September 11, 1973 he got the title of general of the army of Chile.
Thousands were detained, tortured and killed by the military government that was, as everybody knows, backed by the CIA. (That could be one more reason why the terrorists chose September 11, 2001 to throw a plane over the Pentagon.)
Many more were sent to exile, mainly to Europe (Sweden and France), and also to Canada. Thousands more chose to leave the country to avoid arbitrary detentions or torture.
In 1980, he and all the other "milicos" in charge, made a complete fraud when they changed the constitution of Chile by means of a popular vote. This will be regarded as the living dead's vote because of the number of dead people that voted. In 1995, he held another election and he had to admit that over 60% of Chileans were tired of the atrocities of the military regime.
He later went to England for a medical operation, and he was detained there for more than a year. Now he is back in Chile. He went to trial and was freed on the basis of his old age and medical tests that proved subcortical-origin dementia.
Most people think he was already crazy years ago and no medical tests were necessary.
Pinochet died of natural causes on December 10, 2006, one week after suffering a heart attack. - Ed.