Edward M. Korry

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Biographical Details

Edward M. Korry, the United States ambassador to Chile from 1967 to 1971, died in 2003.

"A former news agency reporter and magazine editor, Mr. Korry had previously served in the State Department as a consultant and as the ambassador to Ethiopia. A fervent anti-Communist, he was dismayed when Allende was narrowly elected president of Chile in 1970...

"Mr. Korry told senators and reporters that he had engaged in hardball diplomatic tactics to weaken Allende. But he insisted he had nothing to do with coup-plotting. Had he known of a plot, Mr. Korry maintained, he would have warned the White House to stay out of it, or risk getting mired in another Bay of Pigs...

"After leaving government, Mr. Korry served briefly as president of the Association of American Publishers. He taught international relations at Connecticut College from 1977 to 1979 and was a visiting scholar at Harvard's Center for International Studies from 1980 to 1982...

"He was briefly a copy boy and junior newsroom writer with the National Broadcasting Company, then worked for United Press from 1943 until 1954 in Eastern Europe, Yugoslavia, West Germany and at the United Nations.

"He joined Look magazine as a roving global correspondent in 1954, winning a citation for distinguished reporting from the Overseas Press Club. He studied at Harvard's graduate business school in 1960, then worked for public-service groups in Washington, where he was noticed by President Kennedy, who brought him into government." [1]

Chile Coup

"President Richard Nixon acknowledged that he had given instructions to "do anything short of a Dominican-type action" to keep the democratically elected president of Chile from assuming office, according to a White House audio tape posted by the National Security Archive today. A phone conversation captured by his secret Oval Office taping system reveals Nixon telling his press secretary, Ron Zeigler, that he had given such instructions to then U.S. Ambassador Edward Korry, "but he just failed, the son of a bitch…. He should have kept Allende from getting in."

"A transcript of the president's comments on March 23, 1972, made after the leak of corporate papers revealing collaboration between ITT and the CIA to rollback the election of socialist leader Salvador Allende, was recently published in the National Security Archive book, The Pinochet File: A Declassified Dossier on Atrocity and Accountability by Peter Kornbluh; the tape marks the first time Nixon can be heard discussing his orders to undermine Chilean democracy. The conversation took place as Zeigler briefed the President on a State Department press conference to contain the growing ITT/CIA scandal which included one ITT document stating that Korry had been "given the green light to move in the name of President Nixon…to do all possible short of a Dominican Republic-type action to keep Allende from taking power." Other declassified records show that Nixon secretly ordered maximum CIA covert operations to "prevent Allende from coming to power or unseat him" in the fall of 1970 but that Ambassador Korry was deliberately not informed of covert efforts to instigate a military coup."" [2]

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