Sept-21-76: Pinochet Kills Dissident in DC Car Bomb

Operation Condor Strikes on Washington’s Embassy Row

On September 21, 1976, Orlando Letelier, a Chilean political figure and later United States-based activist, along with his American assistant, Ronni Moffitt were killed by a car bomb explosion while driving in Sheridan Circle in the heart of Washington’s embassy row.  The assassination by agents of the Chilean secret police DINA is believed to be part of “Operation Condor” which was  an intelligence-sharing network used by six South American dictators of that era to eliminate dissidents.

Letellier, was the Chilean ambassador to the U.S. under President Allende and was described by his colleagues as being “the most respected and effective spokesman in the international campaign to condemn and isolate” Chilean General Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship. Letelier was assisted at the Institute for Policy Studies by Ronni Moffitt, a 25-year-old fundraiser who ran a “Music Carryout” program that produced musical instruments for the poor, and also campaigned for democracy in Chile.


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