My partner and I arrived from Santiago to the US 3 years ago to work in our fields of academic expertise. America delighted us with its art, universities, and research centers, all proof of your being at the vanguard of arts and technological progress.
We watched every debate between the Presidential candidates of both parties. On February 11 during the Milwaukee debate, Ms. Clinton described Henry Kissinger as one her foreign policy advisors (her "friend and counselor") and we were shocked. As Chileans, we are horribly aware of Kissinger's role in overthrowing our duly elected President, Salvador Allende, in 1973. We read in detail about Kissinger's actions to enable the Augusto Pinochet dictatorship (in the official NSA records released in 2003). As Chileans, we experienced first-hand the tragic events precipitated by Kissinger's actions, including 36,000 tortured or "disappeared" Chileans.
After many years in exile, experienced politicians from Chile observed the energy of the 80's generation. They saw from abroad how courageous college students on the streets in Chile defied the Pinochet regime, and used that courage to destabilize Pinochet, requiring him to call a plebiscite in 1988, which he lost, thus forcing the 1989 Chilean presidential election.
These experienced politicians created a coalition called Concertacion (English: Coalition of Parties for Democracy), but left out the young people. Their presidential candidates won every election from when military rule ended, until the conservative candidate Sebastian Piñera won the Chilean presidential election in 2010. Concertacion was effective at using that 80's generation courage (and votes) to hold office, but failed to change Pinochet's policies. In 2015, a Chilean majority realized that the leaders were unable to keep their campaign promises because Concertacion's leaders, like Pinochet, were manipulated by the major economical powers.
Sometime after the debate we realized Ms. Clinton was using Kissinger to appeal the Republican base, perhaps clever to many gullible Americans, but it is appalling for Chileans. During her years in politics, Hillary has excelled at negotiating with the powerful, but we ask you: what are the limits to and implications of Clinton's cuddling up with Kissinger? Where are the transcripts of her talks to Wall Street? Is she the best candidate to lead America's evolving into a more fair society?
And judging by the demolishing victories Bernie has been seeing in the below 35 demographic, young Americans already have answers to these questions. These younger Americans vote for a candidate who works for them, and not for the richest 1%! We #feelthebern.
Trinity Piriz and Demian Arancibia
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