William Cummings, "New York Times Reactions to the
Election of Salvador Allende"


available facts. It was clear that Allende was committed to nationalizing U.S. corporate holdings within Chile, and to a serious program of agrarian reform.16 The assumption that such policies, and the prevalence of communists and socialists within the UP, necessarily threatened the "survival of freedom and democracy elsewhere in the hemisphere-and beyond,"17 is illustrative of powerful paranoia and an anticommunist bias incapable of differentiating between reformers and revolutionaries, or democratic socialists and hard-line communists. In this sense, the Cold War perspective of the New York Times was identical to that of the U.S. Government. It is critical to note that the editorials cited above were written months before Allende took office. The New York Times had condemned Allende as a threat to global stability without him having committed a single official act.

In addition to an editorial stance that treated Allende's election as a catastrophe, the Times's ostensibly more objective news articles, through their emphases, tone, omissions, and selection of sources, betrayed a perspective hostile to Allende. The sense of alarm within the editorials is also conveyed, albeit more subtly, in New York Times articles through, for example, the choice to introduce Allende to the reader as "a Marxist who says he would like to see Chile follow the road of revolutionary Cuba."18

16. Juan de Onis, "Allende, Chilean Marxist, Wins Vote for Presidency," 16; Joseph Novitski, "Election Affects Chile´s Economy," New York Times, September 8, 1970, 8; Juan de Onis, "Chile's Winning Coalition," New York Times, September 8, 1970, 3; and Tad Szulc, "U.S. Government and Business Resigned to a Marxist Chile," New York Times, September 21, 1970, are but a few examples of articles that address the nationalization promised in Allende´s platform. For a translation of that platform see "Popular Unity Program," in The Salvador Allende Reader: Chile's Voice of Democracy, ed. James D. Cockcroft (Melbourne, New York: Ocean Press, 2000), 257-285.
17. "Severe Tests for Chile."
18. "Allende, Chilean Marxist, Wins Vote for Presidency,"1.
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