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The Soldier and the Changing StateBuilding Democratic Armies in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas$
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Zoltan Barany

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780691137681

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691137681.001.0001

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After Military Rule in Latin America: Argentina, Chile, and Guatemala

After Military Rule in Latin America: Argentina, Chile, and Guatemala

(p.143) Chapter 5 After Military Rule in Latin America: Argentina, Chile, and Guatemala
The Soldier and the Changing State

Zoltan Barany

Princeton University Press

This chapter describes the politics following Argentina's and Chile's last bout with authoritarianism. In spite of some important similarities between Argentina and Chile, military rule and the subsequent democratization process have been dissimilar. The chapter argues that the disparate performance of the Argentine and Chilean praetorian elites yielded for them different bargains with the opposition. These different deals led to vastly different outcomes, that is, profound disparities between military politics in contemporary Chile and Argentina. In Chile, democratizers have succeeded in gradually reducing the military's political autonomy to a level acceptable by democratic standards. On the other hand, their Argentine colleagues have gone too far in what has amounted to a virtual vendetta against the military as an institution and, in the process, seriously impaired its ability to protect and project Argentine national interests. The chapter's secondary case is Guatemala, a Central American state ruled for most of the Cold War by unusually brutal military dictators.

Keywords:   Argentina, Chile, authoritarianism, military rule, democratization, praetorian elites, military politics, political autonomy, Guatemala, military dictators

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