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Anti-Chilean sentiment

Anti-Chilean sentiment refers to a diverse spectrum of prejudices, dislikes or fears of Chile, Chileans, or Chilean culture. Anti-Chilean sentiment is most prevalent in the neighbors of Chile; Argentina, Bolivia and Peru particularly in the later two that lost the War of the Pacific in the 19th century to Chile.

Hostile rethoric toward Chile and Chileans have historically emanated from the political elite of neighboring countries. In the case of Argentina anti-Chilean sentment rose high around 1900 due to border disputes with Chile, and Chiles rise to a regional power after the War of the Pacific. During the Beagle conflict in the 1970s anti-Chilean discourses were common as Argentina prepared for a war of aggression towards Chile. Anti-Chilean speeches in Argentina have commonly racist undertones.

In Bolivia anti-Chilean sentment is fueled by Bolivian claims for territory in the Pacific coast. A common political discourse attributes, at least partly, Bolivias underdevelopment to its loss of seaports in the War of the Pacific becoming thus a landlocked country.

In Peru and Bolivia the word roto (literally "broken") is used to refer despectively of Chileans. In Argentina the word Chilote is used to refer despectivelly of a Chilean instead of Chileno which would be the correct word for Chilean. Normally a Chilote is an inhabitant of the Archipelago of Chiloe but in Argnetina the word have been picked up to describe any Chilean and at the same time point out his "coastal condition", laziness and porverty three things usually associated with Chiloe.

Examples of anti-Chilean discourses

Argentine General Luciano Benjamin Menendez was a leading advocate for war during the 1978 Beagle conflict, and was known for of his aggressive and vulgar discourse against Chileans: Si nos dejan atacar a los chilotes, los corremos hasta la isla de Pascua, el brindis de fin de ano lo hacemos en el Palacio La Moneda y despues iremos a mear el champagne en el Pacifico.

Peruvian General Edwin Donayre became the center of an international controversy on November 24, 2008, when Peruvian media showed a YouTube video in which the general said "We are not going to let Chileans pass by (...) [A] Chilean who enters will not leave. Or will leave in a coffin. And if there aren't sufficient coffins, there will be plastic bags". The video, dated to 2006 or 2007, was recorded during a party at a friend's house attended by army officials and civilians. These comments caused widespread indignation in Chile, making headlines in the El Mercurio newspaper. The Peruvian president, Alan Garcia, called his Chilean counterpart, Michelle Bachelet, to explain that these remarks did not reflect official Peruvian policy. Bachelet declared herself satisfied with the explanations.

On November 28, in response to this incident, a Chilean government spokesman stated that a scheduled visit to Chile by the Peruvian defense minister, Antero Flores Araoz, might be inopportune given the circumstances. The following day, Flores Araoz announced his decision to postpone his trip after conferring with the Foreign Affairs Minister, Jose Garcia Belaunde. Several members of the Peruvian government commented on the spokesman's remarks including president Garcia who said the country "did not accept pressure or orders from anybody outside of Peru".Reuters, ''Peru leader rejects top general's remarks on Chile, November 29, 2008. Retrieved on December 3, 2008. Donayre defended the video, declaring that Peruvian citizens have a right to say whatever they want at private gatherings and that even though he is scheduled to retire on December 5 he will not be forced to resign early under external pressure. As a consequence of these exchanges, tensions between Peru and Chile rose again; president Bachelet met with top aides on December 1 to discuss the matter and possible courses of action. Meanwhile, in Lima, Congressman Gustavo Espinoza became the center of attention as the main suspect of leaking the video to Chilean press and politicians.CNN, Chileans angry over Peru general's 'body bag' remark, December 1, 2008. Retrieved on December 3, 2008. Donayre ended his tenure as Commanding General of the Army on December 5, 2008, as expected; president Alan Garcia appointed General Otto Guibovich as his replacement.Living in Peru, Peru appoints new army chief, replaces Donayre'', December 5, 2008. Retrieved on December 6, 2008.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Anti-Chilean sentiment

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