To this day, few Americans are aware of the total involvement of the United States government and corporations such as ITT in the internal affairs of Chile.
According to secret portions of a Senate report, several members of the current Chilean government worked directly for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in the campaign to overthrow Salvadore Allende.
One of them, Chile’s current foreign minister, Hernan Cubillos, was for several years a “principal” agent of the CIA.
That revelation came in a closed hearing on October 23, 1978, in the trial of former ITT official Robert Berrellez. The leak was part of a defense effort to convince the Department of Justice to drop the case rather than risk further disclosures of “national security” information in court.
Berrellez was threatening to make public the fact that 20 leading Chileans, many now in government, had been members of a CIA-financed think tank, the Institute of General Studies (IGS). CIA funding for IGS began in 1971 and continued after the coup — at least until 1974.
Members of the IGS were not simply CIA contacts — they were CIA agents, a counter-elite that the CIA backed to replace the Allende government. After the coup, with the military primarily concerned with internal security, IGS members largely took over the administration of the country.
The IGS still functions at 276 Merced, Santiago. Its members engage in junta PR, censorship, economic planning, cultural affairs and rewriting of the constitution. It is now the nerve center of Chilean public life, just as it was once central to the CIA’s psychological war against Salvador Allende.
At a time when America’s intelligence agencies are seeking and winning renewed secrecy for their covert operations, it would appear important for Americans to fully know of their behavior in the past.
This latest revelation was provided by author-researcher Fred Landis who was a consultant to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.
The failure of the mass media to provide on-going coverage of the misdeed of the CIA qualifies this story for nomination as one of the “best censored” stories on 1979.
Inquiry, Feb. 19, 1979, “How 20 Chileans Overthrew Allende for the CIA,” by Fred Landis.