On March 21, under the heading, "Is Chile Ready for U.S. Aid?," That Post said, editorially, "Chile is nowhere near regaining the functioning orderly democracy it enjoyed before the Allende regime lost control and the military took over." Massachusetts' Sen. Edward Kennedy might agree with The Post, but Radio Moscow would not.
In 1970, Salvador Allende, then leader of Chile's Socialist Party, which was somewhat to the left of the country's Communist Party, was elected president with communist support and slightly more than a third of the popular vote. After his government had engaged in gross violations of the civil rights of citizens and foreigners, after he had dismantled the country's economy, after Chile's Supreme Court had announced that he had "destroyed Chile's juridical system" and the Chamber of Deputies ahd concluded that "from the beginning (his regime) had tried to grasp total power with the evident intention of subjecting everyone to the strictest economic and political control of the state, and of setting up a totalitarian system totally and absolutely opposed to the democratic system which the constitution establishes," the military, with strong civilian encouragement and support, overthrew him.
When Portugal's communists were trying to seize power in 1975, Radio Moscow, which was supporting the revolution, announced: "A new slogan has been born in the broad movement of solidarity with the Portuguese democrates, a slogan that rings with grave concern: Portugal mustnot be another Chile!" For Radio Moscow, and for the international communist movement, Allende's overthrow was a defeat not for democracy, as The Post alleges, but for communism. The communists, in this case, were correct.