The modern history of Chile is inescapably punctuated by the events that took place on September the 11th in 1973. After several unsuccessful campaigns (1952, 1958 and 1964), Dr. Salvador Allende became the first Marxist leader to be democratically elected to government in 1970. The left saw it as an opportunity to follow socialist ideals within a peaceful political framework, while the Chilean ruling class were naturally less impressed, eventually becoming resentful of the industrial and land reforms that were to follow. Furthermore, global players with a vested interest in the political direction of South American nations also had concerns over the election result. Henry Kissinger has the rather controversial statement on Chilean politcswidely attributed to him: "I don't see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist due to the irresponsibility of its people. The issues are much too important for the Chilean voters to be left to decide for themselves".