Anastasio Somoza García

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Anastasio Somoza García and Perón

Anastasio Somoza García (born February 1, 1896 in San Marcos ; † September 29, 1956 ) was the dictatorial president of the Central American state of Nicaragua from 1937 to 1947 and from 1950 to 1956 .

Anastasio Somoza García was born in San Marcos in 1896 as the son of a coffee farmer. In contrast to his arch-conservative father, he politically sided with the liberals, the traditional rivals of the conservatives in Latin America, at an early age .

The way to power

In Nicaragua, there has been armed conflict between the two rival movements since a conservative coup in 1909. In 1926 Somoza took part in the fighting on the side of the Liberals, whose presidential candidate was his uncle-in-law Juan Bautista Sacasa .

Due to his good knowledge of English, Somoza later worked as an interpreter for the US troops , which had been in the country since 1912, initially to support the conservative government, later they had to mediate between the warring parties.

In 1927, the USA founded the Nicaraguan National Guard to slowly withdraw itself from the fighting and to prepare for the withdrawal of its own troops, which finally followed in 1933. After Sacasa's election victory, Somoza became Supreme Commander of the National Guard in 1932, now mainly tasked with fighting the social revolutionary guerrilla movement of General Augusto César Sandino , which had been operating against the American occupation since 1926.

Somoza had supporters and alleged supporters of Sandino kidnapped and murdered. In 1934 he finally had the popular guerrilla leader murdered himself. Sacasa, who is considered a weak president, has been deprived of power more and more by Somoza. In 1935 the National Guard had almost the whole country under its control and had uprisings suppressed with blood. At that point in time he was de facto the most powerful man in Nicaragua. In 1936 Somoza forced Sacasa to resign and Sacasa left the country.

Somoza resigned supreme command of the National Guard in order to be constitutionally elected president. In 1937 he took office for the first time. This marked the beginning of the 40-year rule of the Somoza family , whose members the new president created influential positions in the state and amassed a fortune.

In 1947 Somoza withdrew his new candidacy due to national and international pressure, but remained unofficially unrestricted ruler of Nicaragua and was again leader of the National Guard, whose commander in chief in 1955 was his second son Anastasio Somoza Debayle . In 1950 Anastasio Somoza Garcia was re-elected president.

From 1952 to 1954 Somoza was actively involved in the planning of the CIA operations Operation Fortune and Operation Success or Operation PBSUCCESS , which aimed to overthrow Guatemalan President Jacobo Arbenz Guzmán . The invasion force that Arbenz overthrew in June 1954 had been trained in Nicaragua; u. a. on a private property in Somoza, El Tamarindo.

During a visit to León, a stronghold of the once liberal and later anti-Nazi resistance, he was shot by the young poet Rigoberto López Pérez on September 21, 1956 and died eight days later of his injuries.

His two sons Luís Somoza Debayle and Anastasio Somoza Debayle continued the reign of terror of the Somoza clan until the victory of the Sandinista in the 1979 revolution .

Because of his corpulence he got the nickname Tacho (garbage can), his son Anastasio Somoza Debayle got the name Tachito (small garbage can) as an allusion to it .

predecessor Office successor
Carlos Alberto Brenes Jarquín
Víctor Manuel Román y Reyes
President of Nicaragua
January 1, 1937 - May 1, 1947
May 21, 1950 - September 29, 1956
Leonardo Argüello
Luis Somoza Debayle

Individual evidence

  1. Archived copy ( memento of the original from March 9, 2009 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  2. Nicaragua under the whip of the Somoza clan ( Memento of October 18, 2014 in the Internet Archive ), Hamburger Abendblatt No. 143 of June 22, 1979, page 14