Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Memory and the Right in Chile

Now get this logic. Chilean Defense Minister Rodrigo Hinzpeter criticized UDI (the party of the far right) Senator Hernán Larraín for saying the 1973 coup was an "error" and asking forgiveness for not blocking human rights abuses during the dictatorship. It goes like this:

The only way for the country to move forward is to act unified and not divided, because division is what led to the coup. You have the right to ask forgiveness, but ultimately it is a divisive action because some people don't believe they need to ask for forgiveness.

This reminds me of the constant exhortation to look to the future instead of dwelling on the past, as if the future can exist in a vacuum without historical foundation. Asking for forgiveness for society, though it is for the right. Cracks like this in the right are especially interesting and have accelerated after Augusto Pinochet died in 2006.

Update: Javier Sajuria makes a point on Twitter that this could be interpreted differently, namely that Hinzpeter was praising Larraín for making his statement at a book launch rather than at a press conference. In that interpretation, I guess he is actually criticizing the press instead and saying it's good to have more measured opinions. If you read Spanish, then check it out for yourself and decide.

Either way, the right is trying to deal with the very idea of forgiveness.


  © Blogger templates The Professional Template by 2008

Back to TOP