Military dictatorships are controlled by military officers. I am wondering which military dictatorship was the most economically successful, you can use any figure like GDP growth, GDP per capita, GDP (PPP), etc. to base your argument. I don't think the current Chinese government was a military dictatorship. Maybe Mao's government, but not the government that followed, so I am guessing China wouldn't count.

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    Pinochet's is a strong candidate. Though it was gis undoing, as a liberal economy entrains the liberal politics - very Marxist reason that Marxists hate to acknowledge in this case. Dec 16, 2023 at 6:36
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    @RogerV.: That's a common myth. Chile GDP per capita (2011$): 1973: $7,911, 1990: $10,203. (Same source as my answer below.) Average annual growth 1973–90 = (10203/7911)^(1/17)-1 ≈ 1.5%. See also "Pinochet's economic policy is vastly overrated". (One reason for this persistent myth is the influence of Milton Friedman and his disciples who perpetuate the myth.)
    – user103496
    Dec 16, 2023 at 6:51
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    @user103496 as compared to what? Your answer gives just one example - not enough for overrated*/*myth claim. Dec 16, 2023 at 6:59
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    @RogerV.: Over the same period (1973–90), the US (a much richer country which should not be expected to grow as rapidly as poorer countries) enjoyed 2.0% per capita GDP growth per annum. Yet no one spoke of a "US miracle" (whereas Friedman coined the myth of the "Miracle of Chile").
    – user103496
    Dec 16, 2023 at 7:08
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    @RogerV.: A country in a similar situation (also a military dictatorship around the same period) was South Korea, which enjoyed 7.6% per capita GDP growth per annum in 1961–87. So, no, Pinochet's is not a strong candidate.
    – user103496
    Dec 16, 2023 at 7:16

1 Answer 1


South Korea 1961–87

  • 1961 GDP per capita $1,606

  • 1987 GDP per capita $10,865

  • Average annual growth (10865/1606)^(1/26)-1 ≈ 7.63%.

(Source: Maddison Project Database (MPD) 2020. 2011$.)

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