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A military junta led by Allende's Army Commander-in-Chief Augusto Pinochet eventually took control of the government, composed of the heads of the Air Force, Navy, Carabineros (police force) and the Army. Pinochet later assumed power and ended Allende's elected Popular Unity government, instigating a campaign of terror on its supporters which included the murder of former Foreign Minister Orlando Letelier. Before Pinochet's rule, Chile had for decades been hailed as a beacon of democracy and political stability in South America plagued by military juntas and Caudillismo.
The U.S. Government's hostility to the election of Allende in Chile was substantiated in documents declassified during the Clinton administration; involving the CIA, which show that covert operatives were inserted in Chile, in order to prevent a Marxist government from arising and for the purpose of spreading anti-Allende propaganda.