14 October 2010

Bob Haldeman Interview (21)

Building Relationships with the Chilean Government 

Swent: How did you get these messages from them? 

Haldeman: When I got into Santiago and the general manager's job, I 
realized that I was still a foreigner, and I had to have a 
Chilean with some political know-how who would give me political 
advice and get me the contacts and open me the doors. 

Swent: Had Michaelson handed over anything to you? 

Haldeman: He was only there seven months. He just sprang in there and 
went out and left me. There was nobody prepared for that. 

Santiago view 1

Mario Illanes 

Swent: You had to do all your allying yourself? 

Haldeman: There was a man working in the office, a Chilean named Mario 
Illanes, who had been in the diplomatic service in the Chilean 
consulate in San Francisco and in Washington for several years. 
Turton had hired him to stay in Santiago and handle the 
politicians and so on, because Turton wouldn't work in Santiago; 
he wanted to live out in Coya in his nice house with a garden. 
So I got Mario Illanes, and I said, "Mario, I have to get to 
know the senators, representatives, ministers, the president, 
and all the businessmen in the National Manufacturing Society. 
I've got to get myself into the Chilean business and political 

Swent: Was there a Chilean Mining Society? 

Haldeman: Yes, but it was only mining engineers, and most of them were 
small miners. 

Santiago view 2

Swent: Your job was to get to know the Chileans, and about eight months 
of the year you were in Santiago? 

Haldeman: For about eight months of the year everybody was in Santiago. 
The other four months December, January, February, and 
March people started vacations, and Congress and the courts 
shut down. I said, "Every month, I'd like to have a lunch at 
the office." That was in the apartment they had built on the 
top floor of a five-story building in Santiago for Turton to 
live in. 

Index to Haldeman Interview

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