What the death of the dictator means for Chile

By Ricardo Israel Z. (for Safe Democracy)

Ricardo Israel Z. explains the significance of the death of Augusto Pinochet for Chile, and its division of Chilean society into two camps: those who saw Pinochet as an obstacle to the creation of a new Cuba; and those that remember his human rights abuses and crimes against humanity. In Israel Z.‘ opinion, Pinochet‘s death will have no significant economic consequences, nor will it greatly impact the fight of the victims of Pinochet‘s crimes to seek justice in the courts. And Chilean law will continue to link itself to Pinochet‘s legacy. Yet, the death of the dictator will play a role in the intensification of internal conflicts in Chile‘s coalition government, now that the enemy, and uniting element of Chilean democracy is gone.

Ricardo Israel Z. is a lawyer and a political scientist. He has a PhD and a master’s in Political Science from the University of Essex and is a Professor of Political Science at the University of Chile. He is the Director of the International Center for Quality in Democracy and of the School of Juridical and Social Sciences at the Aut