Latin American Soldiers: Armed Forces in the Region’s History (Routledge, 2019)


“I recommend Bawden’s Latin American Soldiers: Armed Forces in the Region’s History to anyone interested in Latin American history, military history or civil-military relations in the Americas. While the book only covers four countries in Latin America, those four countries can be considered representative of the military in Latin America.” -José de Arimatéia da Cruz, Professor of International Relations and International Studies

The Pinochet Generation: The Chilean Military in the Twentieth Century (The University of Alabama Press, 2016)


The Pinochet Generation is an important counterpoint to most of the literature on the Chilean armed forces with original insights on the professional, strategic, and political views of the soldiers of the Pinochet generation.” – Brian Loveman, author of For la Patria: Politics and the Armed Forces in Latin America and Struggle in the Countryside: Politics and Rural Labour in Chile, 1917-1973

“Bawden weaves together a careful history of Chile and its armed services with an in-depth examination of the experiences of General Augusto Pinochet’s generation. Through this lens, this study offers a valuable new perspective to explain why the military took over in 1973; governed in a determined, harsh, and extended way; and insisted on a prolonged, managed transition back to democracy at the end of the 1980s.” – Paul W. Drake, author of Between Tyranny and Anarchy: A History of Democracy in Latin America 1800-2006

“Cutting Off the Dictator: the United States Arms Embargo of the Pinochet Regime, 1974-1988,” Journal of Latin American Studies, 45:3 (August 2013): 513-43.

Abstract: In 1976 the United States Congress halted arms sales to Chile. This paper analyzes the congressional debate over arms sales to Chile, the context within which the debate occurred, and the political and military consequences of the action. Scholarship has largely overlooked the embargo’s implications for US-Chile relations or regional security dynamics in South America. Initially US sanctions increased Santiago’s diplomatic isolation and military vulnerability, but Chile’s eventual ability to surmount the effects of the embargo increased Augusto Pinochet’s political independence vis-à-vis Washington. When the Reagan administration began pushing for a transition to democracy it lacked two key instruments to influence a military government: weapons sales and security assistance.

“Gazing Abroad, the Chilean Military’s Reading of International Events: Implications for Doctrine, Ideology, and Behavior, 1945-1975,” The Latin Americanist, 56:3 (September 2012): 5-30.

Abstract: This article, based on institutional publications and testimonial literature, has two principle objectives. First, it highlights the importance of an academic tradition in Chile’s armed forces. Second, it situates the Chilean military in relation to world events from 1960 to 1975 and demonstrates the significance of wars in Vietnam, South Asia, and the Middle East – among other events – for the ideological, strategic, and tactical dispositions of Chilean officers as they overthrew Salvador Allende, responded to the possibility of war with Peru, and implemented a national security doctrine after 1973. Drawing attention to the voice of Chilean military actors as they evaluated armed conflicts abroad demonstrates the importance of this international context for their doctrines and departs from a tendency to emphasize US military influence in South America while overlooking the indigenous perspective of South American military actors since 1945.

“Observadores Atentos: El Análisis Militar Chileno de Conflictos Periféricos, 1965-1971,” Centre d’Etude Des Relations Entre L’Union Européenne Et L’Amérique Latine, Revue No. 5 (2010): 65-74.

Resumen: Esta investagación examina el pensamiento militar en las décadas después de la Segunda Guerra Mundial con un enfoque particular en las varias conclusiones que un grupo de oficiales chilenos extrajeron de conflictos bélicos en Vietnam, el medio Oriente y Sud asiático en los años sesenta y setenta. Se sostiene que estas conclusions influyeron en la estrategia de los oficiales que desencadenaron en el golpe de Estado el 11 de Septiembre de 1973 en Chile. Estas conclusions demuestran que los oficiales chilenos no eran marionetas políticas del Pentágono.

Academic Translation:

Fabián Gaspar Bustamante Olguín, “Local History of a Charismatic Catholic Base Community during the Pinochet Dictatorship: The Dios con Nosotros Community, 1973-1983,” Journal of Religion and Society Vol. 17 (2015): 1-17.

Encyclopedia Entries:

“Chilean Development Corporation”, “Arms Industry in Latin America”, and “Treaty of Inter-American Reciprocal Assistance, 1982”, in Encyclopedia of U.S. – Latin American Relations, ed. Thomas Leonard, CQ Press, 2012.

Book Reviews: 

Review of Robert Niebuhr, ¡Vamos a avanzar!: The Chaco War and Bolivia’s Political Transformation, 1899–1952 in The Strategy Bridge (March 2022).

Review of Sefan Rinke, Latin America and the First World War in H-War (February 2020). 

Review of Leith Passmore, The Wars inside Chile’s Barracks: Remembering Military Service under Pinochet in The Hispanic American Historical Review 99:1 (February 2019): 197-199.

Review of Morris Morley and Chris McGillion, Reagan and Pinochet: The Struggle of US Policy toward Chile, in The Journal of American Studies, 50:2 (May 2016): 496-497.

Review of William Michael Schmidli, The State of Freedom Elsewhere: Human Rights and U.S. Cold War Policy toward  Argentina, in The Journal of Latin American Studies, 46:3 (August 2014): 600 – 602.

Review of Tanya Harmer, Allende’s Chile and the Inter-American Cold War, in The Latin Americanist, 57:2 (June 2013): 140-142.

Review of Paulo Drinot (ed.), Che’s Travels: The Making of a Revolutionary in 1950s Latin America, in The Latin Americanist, 55:3 (Sept 2011): 124-126.