Monday 11 September marks the 50th anniversary of the 1973 coup that overthrew president Salvador Allende in Chile and installed the brutal Pinochet dictatorship. We will be publishing a series of historical and contemporary articles analysing the events of the coup, starting here with a document written in 1979 by Alan Woods, analysing the history of the Chilean labour movement and the period of the Popular Unity coalition government of Allende. Who was behind Pinochet's coup? What interests was he defending? What were the policies of the Allende government and why despite all warnings was he unable to prevent the coup?