Release Date: March 28th 2016
Published by: University of North Carolina Press
In the early twentieth century, the United States set out to guarantee economic and political stability in the Caribbean without intrusive and controversial military interventions--and ended up achieving exactly the opposite. Using military and government records from the United States and the Dominican Republic, this work investigates the extent to which early twentieth-century U.S. involvement in the Dominican Republic fundamentally changed both Dominican history and the conduct of U.S. foreign policy. Successive U.S. interventions based on a policy of "dollar diplomacy" led to military occupation and contributed to a drastic shifting of the Dominican social order, as well as centralized state military power, which Rafael Trujillo leveraged in his 1920s rise to dictatorship. Ultimately, this book demonstrates that the overthrow of the social order resulted not from military planning but from the interplay between uncoordinated interventions in Dominican society and Dominican responses.
Telling a neglected story of occupation and resistance, Ellen D. Tillman documents the troubled efforts of the U.S. government to break down the Dominican Republic and remake it from the ground up, providing fresh insight into the motivations and limitations of occupation.