Monday, December 13, 2004

Pinochet Under House Arrest

Good news. A Chilean judge has charged Pinochet 'over the kidnapping of nine dissidents and the killing of one dissident' and has ordered him to be held under house arrest. See here for more info.

The judge decided that Pinochet was fit to stand trial after watching a recording of an interview he did recently with a Miami TV station. Pinochet must be kicking himself that after several years of pretending to have gone a bit mental, he forgot to turn up to the TV station with a pair of pants on his head and pencils stuck up his nostrils - you know, the old Blackadder trick.

No doubt Mrs Thatcher will soon make a statement condemning the heartless treatment of this kindly old man (fresh from a teary phone call to her son - also in a spot of trouble with the law over a bit of coup-plotting).

Unfortunately it seems that the rulers of Chile have gone a bit soft on those suspected of criminal activities these days. Under Pinochet during the coup thousands were rounded up and held in Santiago's football stadium and many of them were brutally tortured and executed by the military. In the weeks after the coup people suspected of criminal activities against the state were paid a visit by the rather self-explanatory 'Caravan of Death' and were given a bit more than a slap on the wrist. Regretably, no 'Caravan of Death' will be rolling up to the General's front door. Instead, Pinochet will be 'suffering' in the luxurious surroundings of his expensive home, in the company of his family and of his various wealthy friends from Chile's social elite.

I couldn't resist cutting and pasting this gem from the BBC News website's 'Your comments' section. It's posted by 'Harry' from the UK. Not that I'm implying anything here.

Pinochet should not be tried; not because of his age but because he is responsible for saving Chile from communism and making it one of the most stable and prosperous countries in Latin America. If this is how patriots are to be treated, what will be anyone's incentive to stand up for their country's welfare in the future?
Harry, UK

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