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Jose Toha

Jose Toha Gonzalez was a Chilean journalist, lawyer, political figure, and Socialist politician.

He was born in Chillan, the son of Spanish immigrant Jose Toha Soldavilla and of Brunilda Gonzalez Monteagudo. After completing his secondary studies in his natal city, he studied law at the Universidad de Chile. While there he was president of the student federation between 1950-51. In 1958 he joined the staff of the Ultima Hora newspaper, and in 1960 he became its editor and majority owner, a position he held until 1970. He married Raquel Victoria Morales Etchevers (known as Moy de Toha) in 1963, with whom he had two children: Carolina and Jose.

In 1942 Toha joined the Chilean Socialist Party (PS), while still in high school. He rose to member of its central committee. As the first democratically elected socialist president, President Salvador Allende named him his first Minister of the Interior and vice president, a position he held until he was cited by Congress accused of tolerating the creation of left-wing paramilitary organizations. Allende responded by naming him Minister of Defense, a deliberate challenge to his right wing detractors. As such, he had to deal with the Tanquetazo putsch, the first attempt at a military led coup d'etat.

Related websites

Biographical sketch

Memorial to Jose Toha

La Nacion newspaper

Alternative version of his death

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