They have also hailed its control of the armed forces, its respect for civil liberties, its expansion of suffrage and participation, and its gradual admission of new contenders, especially reformers, to the political arena. Bernardo O’Higgins ruled Chile as supreme director from 1817 to 1823. ... Beginning in 1987, the Chilean political opposition accepted that the Pinochet regime could not be overthrown by popular revolt or guerilla warfare, but had to be challenged from within the constitutional system that the military government had itself created. In the end, Allende received a plurality of the votes cast, getting 36% of the vote against Alessandri's 35% and Tomic's 28%. [56], Chile's constitution established that in 1988 there would be another plebiscite in which the voters would accept or reject a single candidate proposed by the Military Junta. A mobile people who engaged in trade and warfare with other indigenous groups, they lived in scattered family clusters and small villages. Among those favoring independence, conservatives fought with liberals over the degree to which French revolutionary ideas would be incorporated into the movement. In its "Agreement", on August 22, 1973, the Chamber of Deputies of Chile asserted that Chilean democracy had broken down and called for "redirecting government activity", to restore constitutional rule. 1807 – Spain loses its economic and political power. Chronological events in the history of Chile. After the defeat of his liberal army at the Battle of Lircay on April 17, 1830, Freire, like O'Higgins, went into exile in Peru. However, social discontents were also crushed, leading to the Marusia massacre in March 1925 followed by the La Coruña massacre. Chile’s political climate in the near term will be dictated by the process to rewrite the new constitution, which has the potential to cause substantial shifts in the nature of policymaking. Alessandri appealed to those who believed the social question should be addressed, to those worried by the decline in nitrate exports during World War I, and to those weary of presidents dominated by Congress. Chile's congressional elections replaces the binominal electoral system applicable to the parliamentary elections, by one of an inclusive proportional nature and strengthens the representativeness of the National Congress (D'Hondt System). "[21] Part of the CIA's program involved a propaganda campaign that portrayed Allende as a would-be Soviet dictator. Pre-Hispanic Chile was home to over a dozen different Amerindian societies. During their attempts at conquest in 1460 and again in 1491, the Incas established forts in the Central Valley of Chile, but they could not colonize the region. From 1906 onwards, the Radical Party demanded social reforms and the establishment of a democratic regime. He went into exile in Peruin 1823, dying there in 1842. During the conquest, the Araucanians quickly added horses and European weaponry to their arsenal of clubs and bows and arrows. Frei Ruiz-Tagle administration. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the two chambers of the National Congress. Nara B. Milanich is Associate Professor of History at Barnard College. After 20 years, Chile went in a new direction with the win of center-right Sebastián Piñera,[63] in the Chilean presidential election of 2009–2010. [53] In 1982 the two biggest banks were nationalized to prevent an even worse credit crunch. The Chilean Patagonia located south of the Calle-Calle River in Valdivia was composed of many tribes, mainly Tehuelches, who were considered giants by Spaniards during Magellan's voyage of 1520. Political polarization increased, and large mobilizations of both pro- and anti-government groups became frequent, often leading to clashes. Santa Cruz united Peru and Bolivia in the Peru–Bolivian Confederation in 1836 with a desire to expand control over Argentina and Chile. 1910-1914: Chile operates as a parliamentary republic, protecting the interests of the ruling oligarchy. However, Pedro de Valdivia, captain of the army, realizing the potential for expanding the Spanish empire southward, asked Pizarro's permission to invade and conquer the southern lands. In Chile a reformist coalition won the election of 1920, but strife between president and parliament brought a relapse into instability and short-lived military dictatorship. Despite good macroeconomic indicators, there was increased social dissatisfaction, focused on demands for better and fairer education, culminating in massive protests demanding more democratic and equitable institutions. Bachelet administration. In the medium term, Chile needs to reach political consensus on a policy response to social demands, while not eroding Chile’s traditionally sound macroeconomic management. The Chamber of Deputies has 155 members, who are elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms. [57] President Aylwin served from 1990 to 1994, in what was considered a transition period. The struggle for independence was a war within the upper class, although the majority of troops on both sides consisted of conscripted mestizos and Native Americans. The takeover of the government ended a 46-year history of democratic rule in Chile. In the 1970 presidential election, Senator Salvador Allende Gossens won a plurality of votes in a three-way contest. Regulation of the Chilean economy by the government is limited. "By 1968, 20 percent of total U.S. foreign investment was tied up in Latin America...Mining companies had invested $1 billion over the previous fifty years in Chile's copper mining industry – the largest in the world – but they had sent $7.2 billion home. Congressional members have tried repeatedly to relocate the Congress back to Santiago, where it operated until the Chilean Coup of 1973, but have not been successful. Chile's legal system is civil law based. On 27 February 2010, Chile was struck by an 8.8 MW earthquake, the fifth largest ever recorded at the time. Industrial output increased sharply and unemployment fell during the administration's first year. In the 1870s, the church influence started to diminish slightly with the passing of several laws that took some old roles of the church into the State's hands such as the registry of births and marriages. In the minds of most members of the Chilean elite, the bloodshed and chaos of the late 1820s were attributable to the shortcomings of liberalism and federalism, which had been dominant over conservatism for most of the period. His reform legislation was finally rammed through Congress under pressure from younger military officers, who were sick of the neglect of the armed forces, political infighting, social unrest, and galloping inflation, whose program was frustrated by a conservative congress. After his success Bulnes was elected president in 1841. Although the Araucanians had no written language, they did use a common tongue. Specific early human settlement sites from the very early human habitation in Chile include the Cueva del Milodon and the Pali Aike Crater's lava tube. O'Higgins dominated Chilean politics for five years after formal independence in 1818, but the landowning elite that first supported him soon objected to increased taxes, abolition of titles and limitations on inheritance. [32], According to the Vasili Mitrokhin and Christopher Andrew, the KGB and the Cuban Intelligence Directorate launched a campaign known as Operation TOUCAN. Piñera won the elections with 54% of the votes. North of that line cities grew up slowly, and Chilean lands eventually became an important source of food for the Viceroyalty of Peru. The protests that broke out in Chile this October have seen the biggest wave of social struggle since the end of Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship — and a revolt against the political and social order bequeathed by his regime. Embittered, O'Higgins departed for Peru, where he died in 1842. Many politicians relied on intimidated or loyal peasant voters in the countryside, even though the population was becoming increasingly urban. Congress decided to depose Balmaceda, who refused to step down. He installed the "autocratic republic", which centralized authority in the national government. From the year 2000 onward, Chile completely overhauled its criminal justice system; a new, US-style adversarial system has been gradually implemented throughout the country with the final stage of implementation in the Santiago metropolitan region completed on June 9, 2001. After winning a seat in the Senate representing the mining north in 1915, he earned the sobriquet "Lion of Tarapacá. A new parliamentary regime emerged from the civil war; it was the government of Fronda aristocrática. It is now believed the Patagons were actually Tehuelches with an average height of 1.80 m (~5′11″) compared to the 1.55 m (~5′1″) average for Spaniards of the time. A strong presidency eventually emerged, but wealthy landowners remained powerful.[15]. He first contests a presidential election in 1952 (coming on that occasion last out of four). It became the key force in coalition governments for the next 20 years. He repealed Liberal reforms that had threatened church privileges and properties. Some repressions kill hundreds of people. In 1932, constitutional rule was restored and the Radical Party emerged and dominated Chile until 1952. San Martín then led his Argentine and Chilean followers north to liberate Peru; and fighting continued in Chile's southern provinces, the bastion of the royalists, until 1826. In October 2019 there were violent protests about costs of living and inequality,[67] resulting in Piñera declaring a state of emergency. Toward the end of the 19th century, the government in Santiago consolidated its position in the south by persistently suppressing the Mapuche during the Occupation of the Araucanía. 1960s to 1990s. Shortly before his withdrawal from power, he drew up a new Constitution that was considered to be the advent of true democracy in Chile. The result of the bloody three-day confrontation known as the Battle of the Maule was that the Inca conquest of the territories of Chile ended at the Maule river,[6] which subsequently became the boundary between the Incan empire and the Mapuche lands until the arrival of the Spaniards. Due to the Caso Degollados ("slit throats case"), in which three Communist party members were assassinated, César Mendoza, member of the junta since 1973 and representants of the carabineros, resigned in 1985 and was replaced by Rodolfo Stange. Under Lagos’s administration, the economy improved and numerous social reforms were enacted. The next congressional elections are scheduled for December 2021. This article is part of our series of explainers on key moments in the past 100 years of world political history. In addition, the CIA's website reports that the agency aided three different Chilean opposition groups during that time period and "sought to instigate a coup to prevent Allende from taking office". This procedure had previously been a near-formality, yet became quite fraught in 1970. 1823-1829 – Period of chaos and instability followed O’Higgins departure. Chile’s isolation has lead to an interesting, colorful culture that is a blend of indigenous and European traditions characterized by friendly and thoughtful people. European and particularly British companies having appropriated a large part of the country's economy (saltpeter, bank, railway, trade), President José Balmaceda (1886-1891), leader of moderate liberals, decided to react by directing his policy in two directions: the nationalisation of saltpeter mines and the intervention of the State in economic matters. On September 11, 1973, the armed forces staged a coup d’état. France, led by Napoleon Bonaparte conquers Spain. In recent years, however, particularly when the authoritarian regime of Augusto Pinochet is taken into consideration, some scholars have reevaluated the Parliamentary Republic of 1891–1925. In 1808 when Spain was seized by Napoleon the Chileans saw an opportunity to gain independence. The civil struggle's harmful effects on the economy, and particularly on exports, prompted conservatives to seize national control in 1830. One voting table, with a ballot-box each, is set up for at-most 200 names in the voting registry. Main article: 1988 Chilean national plebiscite. In October 2006, Bachelet promulgated a multilateral trade deal with New Zealand, Singapore and Brunei, the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership (P4), also signed under Lagos' presidency. The Economist Intelligence Unit rated Chile a "full democracy" in 2019,[1][needs update] up .11 points and from being in the category of "flawed democracies" the previous year. In February 1991 Aylwin created the National Commission for Truth and Reconciliation, which released in February 1991 the Rettig Report on human rights violations committed during the military rule. Chile’s constitutional moment: history in the making. ... a centrist political leader of the Christian Democratic Party, ... Later he brought in a group of Chilean economists as advisers who had been trained at the University of Chicago and were therefore known as … Although opposed by many liberals, O'Higgins angered the Roman Catholic Church with his liberal beliefs. ;[45][46] this figure includes individuals killed, tortured or exiled, and their immediate families. By the 1920s, the emerging middle and working classes were powerful enough to elect a reformist president, Arturo Alessandri Palma. The Chilean War of Independence was part of the larger Spanish American independence movement, and it was far from having unanimous support among Chileans, who became divided between independentists and royalists. The political revolt brought little social change, however, and 19th century Chilean society preserved the essence of the stratified colonial social structure, which was greatly influenced by family politics and the Roman Catholic Church. Prieto and his adviser, Portales, feared the efforts of Bolivian general Andrés de Santa Cruz to unite with Peru against Chile. Ironically, she had been one of the many political prisoners who suffered during the Pinochet era. At first people lived by hunting and gathering but in North Chile they were farming by 2,500 BC. The Mapuche fought against the Sapa Tupac Inca Yupanqui (c. 1471–1493)[5] and his army. Like the church, the landed aristocracy felt threatened by O'Higgins, resenting his attempts to eliminate noble titles and, more important, to eliminate entailed estates. Senior Seminar Honors. In 2015 a series of corruption scandals (most notably Penta case and Caval case) became public, threatening the credibility of the political and business class. He was a Marxist physician and member of Chile's Socialist Party, who headed the "Popular Unity" (UP or "Unidad Popular") coalition of the Socialist, Communist, Radical, and Social-Democratic Parties, along with dissident Christian Democrats, the Popular Unitary Action Movement (MAPU), and the Independent Popular Action. The Argentine politico-economic Patagonic Region includes the Province of La Pampa. He committed suicide by firearm at the end of the civil war that his supporters lost. [11], The first European to sight Chilean territory was Ferdinand Magellan, who crossed the Strait of Magellan on November 1, 1520. Chile's political parties and social leaders on Monday demanded the dissolution of the Military police (Carabineros) three days after an agent shot … In June 1975, Pinochet announced that there would be no future elections in the country. In particular, two young parties grew in importance – the Democrat Party, with roots among artisans and urban workers, and the Radical Party, representing urban middle sectors and provincial elites. Alessandri soon discovered that his efforts to lead would be blocked by the conservative Congress. The Obama Administration has sought to build on these traditionally [49] Economic reforms were drafted by a group of technocrats who became known as the Chicago Boys because many of them had been trained or influenced by University of Chicago professors. In December 1993, Christian Democrat Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle, the son of previous president Eduardo Frei Montalva, led the Concertación coalition to victory with an absolute majority of votes (58%). developed into one of the most prosperous and democratic nations in Latin America. The beginning of the Independence movement is traditionally dated as September 18, 1810 when a national junta was established to govern Chile in the name of the deposed king Ferdinand VII. In the 1880s, the Liberals split into two factions: the moderates, who did not want to impose secularism too quickly and were willing to compromise with the Conservatives, and the radical Liberals, who joined the Radical Party founded in 1862 or the new Democratic Party with more progressive, if not socialist, ideas. Chile's first experiment with self-government, the "Patria Vieja" (old fatherland, 1810–1814), was led by José Miguel Carrera, an aristocrat then in his mid-twenties. Chile was the least wealthy realm of the Spanish Crown for most of its colonial history. The new constitution gave increased powers to the presidency. When the era of the parliamentary republic began in 1891, the struggle between liberals (pipiolos) and conservatives (pelucones) had already evolved due to the emergence of a multi-party system. In: P. Mirowski, D. Plehwe (Hrsg. The judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature of Chile. But under orders of Spanish judge Baltasar Garzón, he was arrested there, attracting worldwide attention, not only because of the history of Chile and South America, but also because this was one of the first arrests of a former president based on the universal jurisdiction principle. San Martín considered the liberation of Chile a strategic stepping-stone to the emancipation of Peru, which he saw as the key to hemispheric victory over the Spanish. One Pipiolo leader from the south, Ramón Freire, rode in and out of the presidency several times (1823–1827, 1828, 1829, 1830) but could not sustain his authority. [10], The Chilean part of Patagonia embraces the southern part of Valdivia, Los Lagos in Lake Llanquihue, Chiloé, Puerto Montt and the Archaeological site of Monte Verde, also the fiords and islands south to the regions of Aisén and Magallanes, including the west side of Tierra del Fuego and Cape Horn. He served two terms (1841–1846, 1846–1851). Congress, dominated by landed elites, exerts authority over the president's Cabinet appointees. Similarly, political uncertainty around the constitutional reform could weaken private sector confidence, dampening the recovery. [28] By 1972, the economic progress of Allende's first year had been reversed, and the economy was in crisis. The Senate is made up of 50 members elected from regions or subregions. Chile had a strong history of democracy before Salvador Allende. The first years of the regime were marked by human rights violations. Except for a military junta that held power from September 1973 to March 1990, the country has been relatively free of the coups and constitutional suspensions common to … O'Higgins's dictatorial behavior aroused resistance in the provinces. Throughout its history, however, Chile has depended on great external powers for economic exchange and political influence: Spain in the colonial period, Britain … Political authority ran from local electoral bosses in the provinces through the congressional and executive branches, which reciprocated with payoffs from taxes on nitrate sales. Although Chile's war of independence brought into place a system of representative democracy, the country's political history has not always been smooth. On 17 December 2017, Sebastián Piñera [63] was elected president of Chile for a second term. With a couple of hundred men, he subdued the local inhabitants and founded the city of Santiago de Nueva Extremadura, now Santiago de Chile, on February 12, 1541.[14]. From the mid-1980s to the Asian crisis in 1997, the Chilean economy grew at an average annual rate of 7.2 per­cent, followed by an average annual rate of 3.5 per­cent between 1998 and 2005. [58] Frei Ruiz-Tagle was succeeded in 2000 by Socialist Ricardo Lagos, who won the presidency in an unprecedented runoff election against Joaquín Lavín of the rightist Alliance for Chile,[59] by a very tight score of less than 200,000 votes (51,32%). Christian Democrat Patricio Aylwin, the candidate of a coalition of 17 political parties called the Concertación, received an absolute majority of votes (55%). By 1967, however, Frei encountered increasing opposition from leftists, who charged that his reforms were inadequate, and from conservatives, who found them excessive. He received 36% of the votes, the highest percentage among all 8 candidates. Although Valdivia found little gold in Chile he could see the agricultural richness of the land. Another of the earliest advocates of full independence, Bernardo O'Higgins, captained a rival faction that plunged the Criollos into civil war. A declaration of independence was officially issued by Chile on February 12, 1818 and formally recognized by Spain in 1840, when full diplomatic relations were established. By adopting a moderately liberal constitution in 1828, Pinto alienated both the federalists and the liberal factions. Then, after his last and remarkable radio address, he shot himself rather than becoming a prisoner. A little Chilean History . Approved in the plebiscite of September 11, 1980, the Political Constitution of the Republic of Chile – the tenth constitutional text in Chilean history – has ruled the country since March 11, 1981. It entered into force in March 1981. 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