Lesson 19: Intervention and Migration in Central America, Part 2

April 5, 2017 at 10:00 am  •  Posted in s17-econ320 by  •  0 Comments

Wed, Apr 5


  • Intervention and Migration in Central America (Part 1)
  • Puerto Rico
    • US control after Spanish-American War
    • Held as territory to maintain profitable sugar production operations
    • Declared citizenship for Puerto Rico residents pre-WWI, drafted 20k
    • Recruited to the US industrial northeast during post WWII-era
    • Approx 5 million Puerto Ricans living in US today
  • Guatemala
    • Post-WWII had progressive government enacting land reform
    • CIA infiltration and overthrow of government
    • Brutal repression of political opponents and indigenous population
    • Over 200k killed and 50k missing during decades of turmoil
    • Documents confirm death squads were trained by CIA
    • More than 1 million Guatemalans living in US today
  • Mexico
    • Most of southwest US was originally Mexican territory
    • Modern border along Rio Grande River since Mexican-American War
    • Over 350k Mexican Americans served in WWII
    • Mexicans recruited during 1950s-1960s to Industrial Midwest
    • More than 33 million Mexicans living in US today
  • Cuba
    • US occupation of Cuba, support of Batista in 1930s, 40s, 50s.
    • Batista repression fueled dissent and inspired Castro-led revolution
    • Turmoil led to refugees leaving Cuba and migrating to Florida
    • More than 2 million Cubans live in the US (70% in Florida)


  • US Policy in Central America and resulting emigration
    • Documentary: Harvest of Empire (begin at 48 min mark)
    • Profiling Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, El Salvador


  • Prepare for Immigration discussion and debate


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