Law and Economic Coercion as Instruments of International Control: the Nationalisation of Chilean Copper
To the casual observer, the 1971 nationalisation of copper in Chile by the government of Salvador Allende and its aftermath may appear as a typical example of the power of multinational corporations to thwart the attempts at economic independence of nationalistic governments in underdeveloped countries. All the elements of the well-known drama were there: the attachment of Chilean copper in European ports by the expropriated American corporations; the intervention of the United States government both to block international financial support to Chile, and to provide direct covert assistance to opposition forces; the increasingly deteriorating economic position of the Allende government in 1972 and early 1973; the bloody military coup that put an end to the Allende experiment and to Chilean democracy in September 1973; and finally the rush of the new Chilean military rulers to settle the dispute with the American multinationals through agreement on the payment of satisfactory compensation.
KeywordsConstitutional Amendment Military Coup American Government Chilean Copper Excess Profit
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