Grenada Revolution

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  • Topic: Trade union, Grenada, Maurice Bishop
  • Pages : 4 (1268 words )
  • Download(s) : 1662
  • Published : October 30, 2006
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Prior to March 13, 1979, few people had ever heard of Grenada, one of the smallest countries of the Western Hemisphere. It all began in 1973, when the National Jewel Movement (NJM) formed to oppose the dictatorship of Eric Gairy, successor to British colonial rule, who was as treacherous and brutal as Papa Doc was in Haiti. Many activists, both in Grenada and worldwide, were inspired by the movement's call for a populist socialism. After six years of growing mass mobilizations that created a virtual stalemate with the Gairy regime, the revolutionary forces launched an armed uprising on March 13, 1979. In 1979, Gairy was ousted in a bloodless takeover and the People's Revolutionary Government (PRG) came to power, headed by Prime Minister Maurice Bishop. Under Bishop, Grenada aligned itself with Cuba and other Soviet bloc countries, which alarmed the U.S. and other Caribbean nations. The people of Grenada adored Bishop, but the Reagan administration viewed him as diabolically suspicious, particularly for his close relationship with the Cuban government. In his 1983 Hunter College speech, Bishop mockingly paraphrased a State Department report, bringing down the house: "Grenada is a particular threat as an English-speaking, Black revolution that could have a dangerous influence on Blacks in the U.S."-which indeed it did, and on progressives worldwide. But the inability of Grenada's new leaders to resolve differences over governance-probably fed by Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) aid to opposition factions-led to the turmoil that opened the gates for the U.S. invasion. Bernard Coard, the finance and Deputy Prime Minister, began waging factional warfare against Bishop and his allies, culminating in the October 13 military coup. Twelve days later, under the pretext of protecting U.S. medical students on the island, President Reagan authorized the invasion. He felt justified in moving against a government that was using Cubans to build an airport and was a threat to...
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