One of the world’s most famous Spanish authors has described Donald Trump as an “imbecile” for denying climate change.
Popular author Isabel Allende, 77, who is the first cousin once removed of former Chilean President Salvador Allende, made the comments at a press conference before the Barcino International Historical Novel Award held in Barcelona, in the eastern Spanish region of Catalonia.
The Chilean writer ter, who has more than 70 million readers and 24 books, said of Trump: “How is it possible that the President of the United States denies climate change, with what that means materially and for the image of politics, for the message given to the world? Who could deny it? It can only be denied by an imbecile.”
The author, whose book The House of Spirits was turned into a 1993 film starring Jeremy Irons, Meryl Steep, Winona Ryder and Antonio Banderas, said “old, antiquated people running the world” should be ashamed that a girl like teenage climate activist Great Thunberg had shaken their conscience.
Speaking about the current social crisis in Chile, she said that the huge protests were “an extraordinary surprise” as the country “appears in statistics to be a Latina American oasis but the data does not show the income, resources and inequality of distribution, which is one of the highest in the world”.
She added the one percent of the Chilean population was 25 percent of the wealth while 40 percent cannot afford “basic services, everything is private, with a neo-liberal system set up by the Pinochet dictatorship, according to the Chicago Boys, which could be set up because there was no working representation”.
The Chicago Boys were a group of Chilean economists who were prominent in the 1970s and 1980s, the majority of whom trained at the Department of Economics of the University of Chicago under Milton Friedman and Arnold Harberger.
The author tackles the refugee in her latest novel Largo Petalo de Mar (A Long Petal of the Sea) and she said at the conference that at the moment the United States is going through “a true crisis of human rights at the border with Mexico, since Trump is president, with situations against people, with detentions centres which are actually prisons”.
Allende added that “it was the time” to move Spanish dictator Francisco Franco’s body from the Valley of the Fallen monument near Madrid, as happened last month after a long legal battle.
Salvador Allende was the President of Chile from 1970 until 1973 and was the first-ever Marxist to be elected president in a country with liberal democracy.
On 11 September 1973, the Chilean military moved to oust Allende in a coup d’etat supported by the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Later that day, Allende committed suicide with an AK-47 rifle gifted to him by Fidel Castro, according to a Chilean court’s investigation which had the help assistance of international experts in 2011.
Dictator Augusto Pinochet then took over the country and ruled with a military junta until 1990.