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United States Foreign Policy Involvement With Latin America

1059 words - 5 pages

politicians resolved that, “US foreign policy could be made on the assumption that the unbalanced system could never be effectively addressed by Central Americans. The United States then continued to integrate with Latin America into its political, economic and military orbit.
While the findings suggested the challenges and limits relying on an authoritarian government, American dollars steadily increased their presence in El Salvador, increasing 18 million in investment in 1950 to 31 million in 1959, without much attention to the regime’s governmental style. (___) In El Salvador, the American task was easy, the United States, to encourage stability, defined as limiting insurrections, simply had to support those in power, the military, the landed oligarchy and hence dictators. Nixon, while serving as vice president during the 1955, himself claiming that the question in the Latin American region was, “how far is dictatorship necessary” declared, “we must deal with [Latin American] governments as they are and work over a period of time towards more democracy.” (Ambrose)
But the idea that the United States was involved in Latin America to encourage the creation of democratic institutions that could effectively enact reform and enable public discourse seemed far-fetched given how President Eisenhower and Nixon dealt the coup that followed in 1960. Before President Lemus caused a full-scale revolution with the massacre of the student protesters that was waiting to happen, moderate military officers organized a coup and overthrew the president. While the officers promised to implement the reforms promised by liberal generals in the late 1940s and to hold elections in 1962, Eisenhower “found the promises insufficient,” and “withheld recognition apparently because the US Ambassador in San Salvador, Thorsten Kalijavri, believed several junta members admired Castro.” (__) By not recognizing the junta, Eisenhower denounced the moderate reformers, who were then overthrown by radical right wing officers under the leadership of Rivera who “pledged to take tough actions against the students, cut relations with Castro and warmly welcome foreign investment.” (___)
In 1960s, with the revolution in Cuba, the United States under President Kennedy hoping to block the advance communism in Latin America encouraged reform in El Salvador by creating the "Alliance for Progress." The Alliance supported the formation of opposition political parties, urged land reform and recommended new laws to require the country’s upper class contribute more in taxes. The reforms were unsuccessful due to the resistance of both the socio-economic elite and the military rulers. While aid given by the United States, 63 million between 1962-1965, helped El Salvador to modernize and industrialize its economy, the majority of the population did not see the benefit of economic growth. (___)
In order to compensate for the economic loss caused by falling cotton and coffee...

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