Inevitable Revolutions: The United States in Central America

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W. W. Norton & Company, 1993 - Political Science - 452 pages
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This book explains the history of US/Central American relations, explaining why these countries have remained so overpopulated, illiterate and violent; and why US government notions of economic and military security combine to keep in place a system of Central American dependency. This second edition is updated to include new material covering the Reagan and Bush years, and the Iran/Contra affair.
 

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If the historic artifacts presented in this book were evidence in a court case against the United States for (Every Crime Possible), it would not look good for the United States.
It was an amazing
read but not easy. It's loaded with hard to digest facts considering what we were taught and always believed in the US.
e.g. I always respected Dwight Eisenhower as an honorable man and admired Allen Dulles as the nations first spy. Both were professional warriors.
Now I see Eisenhower as a willing Imperialist and Dulles as a mass murder mercenary.
Some people will not be able to or want to read it.
Some will deny the facts contained in the book and say it didn't happen that way.
Some, who didn't know the whole story, will get it and it will make a difference in their lives.
 

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Many flaws, not that the Americans who will read this would care for another version.
Here are two:
a) A near-total lack of Spanish language sources cited; this deficiency is no doubt tied to LaFeber's insistence on the homogeneity and impotence of Central Americans as they do battle with the forces of Eeeeevil.
b) LaFeber tries hard (and succeeds through deceptive statistics and wordings) to frame Costa Rica as a typical Central American republic under the yoke of American domination caught up in turmoil. Much fuzzy math. An example: LaFeber cites, as evidence of Costa Rica's instability in the 1980s, the presence of homegrown "guerrillas." This highly obscure historical "piece of evidence" refers to a handful of armed chaps that never amounted to anything more than curiosities. He also fudges the truth on land ownership, income levels, health and so forth in Costa Rica to paint them as a perpetual nation of victims (these, the people who live longer than Americans by several years and boast ironclad democratic ideals)
c) This book harps on incessantly about Dependency Theory, which is becoming increasingly understood as false along with Modernization Theory, Marxism, etc. Many things are simply left unexplained (why was Costa Rica the first banana republic, and yet so relatively rich in 2000? Was Nicaragua ever really in the world economy? Where is Panama?), the USA is given WAY more credit for the mindsets of Central Americans, and Central Americans are pretty much pushed out of the picture entirely.
LaFeber has tried to unify idiosyncratic regions that are mostly unified only in US political policy, and even then not so much. I would recommend the works of Ivan Molina Jiménez (in Spanish) for a richer understanding of Nicaragua and Costa Rica, as a start.
 

Contents

AN OVERVIEW OF THE SYSTEM
9
The Revolutions of the 1970 and 17705
15
The Irrelevant Revolution
22
The Yankees Appearance
28
Justifying Intervention
34
The United States Destroys a Court
40
Nicaragua
47
Costa Rica and the
56
The Carter Approach
208
Bases for Christ and Other
218
The System Overthrown
225
Oligarchs Fall Colonels Rise Revolution Spreads
242
Turning a Country into a Cemetery
255
Main Girder in the Bridge
261
The Turning Point
267
Reagan and the Militarization of Policy
275

Creating the New Nicaragua
66
Guatemala
76
Doublelocking the System
87
The Clash at Bogota
95
Militarizing the Good Neighbors
108
Nixon and the Wobbling of the System 195459
129
The Turn in the Cold War and the Eisenhower Response
138
UPDATINC THE SYSTEM
147
Joh nson
157
5000 Little Dictatorsand Revolutionaries
166
The Alliances Proud Model
173
The Transformation of a Banana Republic
178
Degradation of a Democracy
186
Fall of the Alliance and the Rise of Romantic
194
Using the Military to Avoid 1776
201
Domination by Force Eliminates a Lot of Ticklish
278
Novak and Reaganomics for Latin Americans
284
The Outside Threats
292
Reagan the C I A and the Origins of
300
Refitting the Aircraft Carrier
310
Hobson s Choice
319
REARRANGING THE REMAINS OF THE SYSTEM
325
General Custer in Diplomatic Drag
333
Costa Rica and the Arias Peace
339
Coming to Terms with a Rearranged System
346
Expanding the Killing Fields
353
They re Poor Here They II Be Better Off
359
NOTES
369
BIBLIOGRAPHY
413
Copyright

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About the author (1993)

Walter LaFeber is professor of history at Cornell University and the author of The Clash and Inevitable Revolutions.

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