Dominican Republic 1962

Let Dominicans Decide

Written: 1962;
Source: The Young Socialist, Vol. 5, No. 3, 1962. p.2;
Transcribed: by Amaury Rodriguez, 2014.

Transcriber’s note: This editorial was originally published in The Young Socialist, organ of the Young Socialist Alliance (YSA), the youth group of the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) formerly Fourth International affiliated.

Corrected grammatical errors for clarity.

The Dominican Republic has suffered tyrannical rule since the day American Marines landed to protect U.S interests. Trujillo, the late dictator, got his start as a pimp for U.S. Marine officers during the U.S. occupation[1] and through Coronel Richard M. Cotts became a leader in the special Dominican army built by the U.S Marines. After the Marines were removed Trujillo[2] won an “election” (he was the only candidate) and became the Dominican Republic’s permanent ruler.

The United States backed his regime through three decades of tyranny, mass repressions, murders, misery and starvation among the workers. Now the Cuban Revolution has had a strong effect on the masses throughout Latin America and the U.S has had to try new maneuvers in order to maintain its position against the rising tide for social change.[3] One of these maneuvers is the support of the dumping of Trujillo who became a point of embarrassment for the State Department.

Once again the U.S sent gunboats into Dominican waters to guarantee its interest. The propaganda line of the State Department was that the boats were sent to prevent the re-emergence of tyranny, i.e.; the tyranny the U.S put into power and supported for three decades. The local man who was to prevent this re-emergence and set up a constitutional government is none other than a great admirer of the late Trujillo, Joaquin Balaguer the “New Frontier” type of dictator.[4] He wrote a book during Trujillo reign called Dominican Reality which tells us: “it is the purpose of this discourse to prove, absolutely impartially, that President Trujillo is the actual organizer of the Republic in its present integrated form. This work does not rank as a eulogy...” If today we constitute an intelligent free nation, possessing powerful moral energies and consciousness of our historical destinies it is because Trujillo has given lasting characteristics to the accomplishments of the founder of the Republic, consolidating the nation created by them and endowing it with the unity of conscience necessary to keep it firm and true to itself.”

While Balaguer’s government is busy shooting women who are protesting the continuation of the tyranny, in Cuba the literacy brigades are finishing up their work which will wipe out illiteracy in Cuba. The open military support which the U.S gives to the continuing Dominican tyranny indicates what kind of “freedom’ it hopes to establish in Cuba by armed force. The State Department fears that if they are allowed to determine their own destiny, the Dominican people will follow the Cuban example in order to win their basic freedom from poverty and oppression. The fear is undoubtedly well founded.


1.This refers to the first U.S. military occupation (1916 to 1924).

2. Rafael Leonidas Trujillo Molina.

3. The word “rising” is misspelled as “raising” in the original text.

4. The word “than” is misspelled as “then” in the original text.