Chile: Day of the Young Fighter


Universidad del Bio Bio Concepción

During Chile's dictatorship period, two brothers, Rafael and Eduardo Vergara were murdered. They were fighting against the government. Since then, some associations in Chile celebrate the day of the “young fighter.” This in not an official government issue. Unfortunately for us, the meaning of the celebration, related to struggle against Augusto Pinochet, has been forgotten. On Thursday, in the centre of the capitol, young students made disruptions and disorder in the name of the “young fighter.” They also said they were going to protest against the failure of Santiago's new transportation system.  Bloggers reacted immediately. Solylunnyta [ES] described the emotional atmosphere:

Que yo sepa, los jóvenes Rafael y Eduardo Vergara, tenían conciencia y una lucha muy clara….pelear por sus compañeros y sacar el gobierno dictatorial de don finao… Pero estos niños no tienen ni idea de quienes eran los hermanos Vergara¡¡¡…. no tienen ni idea cuales son sus ideales aún, ni menos saben cuales eran los ideales de los Combatientes de antaño….Apuesto lo que quieran que si les preguntan no tienen ni idea quienes eran los Vergara Toledo…. Además, por otro lado, queda claro que el tema no era el Transantiago y buscarle una solución… El tema era o la Piedra, ó la Molotov, ó la escopeta hechiza, o el saqueo, pero nada que ver con conmemorar esta fecha…

As far as I know, the young Rafael and Eduardo Vergara, had conscience and a really clear struggle … to fight for their peers and remove the dictatorship. But these kids don’t have any idea of who the Vergara brothers even were!!! They don’t even know what their ideals are and far less what the ideals of the combats of the past were … I bet you anything that if someone were to ask them who the Vergara Toledo brothers were, they wouldn't know … And furthermore, it is clear that the issue was not Transantiago and to search for a solution … The issue was the stone to throw, the Molotov, the homemade-shotgun, the looting, but nothing to do with the commemoration of this date.

One of the associations to commemorate this date is the Workers Collective [ES]. They made a very emotional invitation to all the people that were in some way involved in the period when the Vergara Brothers were murdered, to participate in a commemorative act. Here we translate an extract of the invitation:

Aquí están todos los días los hermanos y hermanas que estuvieron antes y los hijos e hijas que estarán pronto, están porque estamos, están porque somos alguien más que nosotros mismos: somos toda nuestra historia de días y noches de amar y de guerrear, somos la rebelde rebeldía y las manos siempre tiernas abiertas para abrazarnos y el puño en alto ante los enemigos del género humano; y claro, somos también cansancio, y un dolor que parte el pecho con su historia de infamia y nos hermana… pero ante todo somos los que somos por vencer las barreras de la pura bronca y del llanto necesario empuñando la necesidad de la sonrisa de todos los niños, porque hacemos de la memoria experiencia y de nuestra historia aprendizaje para seguir caminando nuestro compromiso con más y nuevas fuerzas.

Here, each and every day, are the brothers and sisters that were here before and the son and daughters that will soon be here. They are here because we are here. They are here because we are something more than just ourselves: we are all our history of days and nights of loving and fighting. We are the rebellious rebels and the affectionate hands always open to hug and the fists held high in front of the enemies of the human race. And, of course, we also are the exhaustion and the pain that starts in the chest with his story of disgrace and brotherhood us … but above all, we are what we are to defeat the barriers of conflict and the tears, bringing about the necessity of the smile of all children because we make experience from memory and from our knowledge of history to continue walking to our commitment with more and new forces.

Eduardo Arriagada (ES) published an invitation to the activities in Santiago and some photos about what happened yesterday in the city center.

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