Forty years ago, a CIA-sposored military coup in Chile ushered in a 17-year dictatorship.
On Sept. 11, 1973, the Chilean military attacked the presidential palace and overthrew of socialist leader Salvador Allende. Jets bombed radio transmitters and the president's resident in precise, effective attacks.
They rid Chile of Allende, the world's first democratically elected Marxist president, and replaced him with a military junta led by General Augusto Pinochet.
Memorials held Wednesday by the government and the opposition leaders still stand as a reminder of the still-present divide on how to commemorate the past.
Under Pinochet's military dictatorship, 2,300 people disappeared and 40,000 more were tortured. Chileans are in agreement that those crimes should be remembered so history will not repeat itself.
But in 2013, an election year, there is a divide politically on what it means to remember those crimes and a stark split between painful memory and widespread amnesia.
President Sebastian Piñera led a memorial Monday at La Moneda palace, which was bombed in the coup.
“The end never justifies the means,” Piñera said. “Human rights of all must be defended by all.”
Piñera said that while the military shoulders the blame for the dictatorship, there are civilians that benefited from the regime and have never taken responsibility -- but that overall, it is time for Chile to move forward.
"The past has already been written," he said at the memorial. "We can recall it, we can study it, we can debate it, but we cannot change it.
"Because of that, we should not remain prisoners or hostages of that past."
Former president Michelle Bachelet, who was a victim of torture under Pinochet, declined an invitation to the president's official memorial, and instead attended one held by opposition leaders at nearly the same time. Bachelet, with support from the right, is running for president again.
Like Piñera, Bachelet said that it was time to move forward, but the similarities in their speeches stopped there.
Bachelet said that it was impossible to reconcile without accounting for truth and justice. To achieve that accountability, Bachelet pushed for further investigations into human rights violations to clarify who is responsible for the abuses.
"Truth, because we need to know what the victims experienced and what happened to them. And justice, because where justice is denied, impunity fills the void, deepening the divisions," she said.
Efforts to identify and prosecute those that killed on behalf of the government have been stop-and-go, and confessions have been rare. Those convicted are held in what is described as a "five-star" prison.