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Ya está

And that's that.

Heard the news while driving down la Ruta 5, returning to Santiago from a little town called Tongoy, about five hours up the coast; when my girlfriend got the call on her mobile, coincidentally or no, we were listening to a Ricardo Villalobos DJ set. Perhaps inconsequential, but I couldn't help but feel some sort of providential Chilean-ness to the moment. The rest of the drive we listened to the radio nonstop, heard voices pro, voices contra (mostly, it must be said, contra). At the gas station, a television over the counter was broadcasting scenes from the dictator's life. Entering the city, at the very first stretch of high-rise buildings, a hand-painted banner celebrated, "Ya se cagó el dictador!" Here in the neighborhood of Providencia, not far from the military hospital where his supporters mourned—mostly women, said a news report—you can hear helicopters overhead, but mostly the streets are quiet. Two officers sit atop their steeds at an intersection; a car screams by waving red Communist flags. Plaza Italia is reportedly the scene of a massive anti-dictadura demonstration, all chants and champagne. El Mercurio, meanwhile—a notoriously pro-Pinochet newspaper, financed before and after the coup by the CIA—has yet to update its website. Almost seven hours later, they lead with workaday stories about the economy. La Tercera is far more timely, with a blog-style update recounting details of the demonstrations.

On my stereo: Bob Dylan, "Masters of War," inspired by this incredible article by Greil Marcus. Not an exact match, but the closing stanza certainly seems appropriate.


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