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The Invaded

In 1912 the United States sent troops into a Nicaraguan civil war, solidifying a decades-long era of military occupations in Latin America driven by the desire to rewrite the political rules of the hemisphere. In this definitive account of the resistance to the three longest occupations-in Nicaragua, Haiti, and the Dominican Republic-Alan McPherson analyzes these events from the perspective of the invaded themselves, showing why people resisted and why the troops eventually left. Confronting the assumption that nationalism primarily drove resistance, McPherson finds more concrete-yet also more passionate-motivations: hatred for the brutality of the marines, fear of losing land, outrage at cultural impositions, and thirst for political power. These motivations blended into a potent mix of anger and resentment among both rural and urban occupied populations. Rejecting the view that Washington withdrew from Latin American occupations for moral reasons, McPherson details how the invaded forced the Yankees to leave, underscoring day-to-day resistance and the transnational network that linked New York, Havana, Mexico City, and other cities. Political culture, he argues, mattered more than military or economic motives, as U.S. marines were determined to transform political values and occupied peoples fought to conserve them. Occupiers tried to speed up the modernization and centralization of these poor, rural societies and, ironically, to build nationalism where they found it lacking. Based on rarely seen documents in three languages and five countries, this lively narrative recasts the very nature of occupation as a colossal tragedy, doomed from the outset to fail. In doing so, it offers broad lessons for today's invaders and invaded.
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About the Author

Alan McPherson is Professor of International and Area Studies, ConocoPhillips Petroleum Chair in Latin American Studies, and Director of the Center for the Americas, University of Oklahoma. He is the author of the prizewinning Yankee No! Anti-Americanism in U.S.-Latin American Relations and of Intimate Ties, Bitter Struggles: The United States and Latin America since 1945, and editor of Anti-Americanism in Latin America and the Caribbean, co-editor of The Anti-American Century, and editor of The Encyclopedia of US Military Interventions in Latin America.


<"Alan McPherson has produced a unique contribution to the literature on U.S. Latin American relations. Viewing this work in relationship to his previous scholarship, it is easy to conclude that he has become the foremost young scholar in the field....This book should be required reading for any policymaker, U.S. or other, contemplating military intervention and occupation, and that is high praise indeed.>"-Jason Colby, H-Diplo Roundtable <"Like the best international histories, McPherson mines an impressive array of chart endogenous and exogenous factors that influenced the arc and scope of the occupations. He convincingly proves that in each case the intervention proved costly in human and fiscal terms, and that each failed in its efforts to bring about what we today call 'regime change,' in part because the Marines and diplomats were not infrequently at cross purposes.>"-Allen Wells, American Historical Review Timely and indispensable.... As most studies of occupations by definition focus on the occupier, McPherson refreshingly tells much of the story through the 'eyes of the invaded.'...The Invaded shows the reader how new technologies and media allowed guerrilla foes to fight back in the court of public opinion. McPherson believes these American occupations and the propaganda campaigns of the invaded sparked international solidarity movements that were as central to the struggle as the armed insurgents themselves."-The American Interest important contribution to the limited historiography on U.S. occupations. * The Register of the Kentucky Historical Society * Alan McPherson's outstanding new book does much more than chart the sweeping impact of the major U.S. occupations in the Caribbean. It also does more than remind us vividly and in greater detail of some of what we already knew about the conduct of those occupations... McPherson's book is not merely a breathtaking compendium of evidence about the sordid nature of the occupations drawn from sources from five countries in three languages. It also benefits from his rare ability to engage in historical comparison through multinational research and deep knowledge of more than one country. * Max Paul Friedman, ReVista * The Invaded offers a careful, sophisticated, and relevant analysis of American occupation efforts in the Western Hemisphere during the first half of the twentieth century. Alan McPherson shows that native resistance aimed at preserving independence undermined American ambitions, forcing the withdrawal of U.S. soldiers. This is a book that everyone interested in modern warfare, diplomacy, and counterinsurgency should read. Twenty-first century American experiences in the Middle East echo this compelling history of Latin America a century earlier. * Jeremi Suri, author of 'Libertys Surest Guardian: American Nation-Building from the Founders to Obama * Successive generations of scholars from different fields have written on the U.S. interventions and occupation in the Caribbean and Central America in the heyday of U.S. empire in the early twentieth century. Alan McPherson's contribution to this genre stands far above the rest. Using a broad array of sources, McPherson has given us a model study of three occupations from the era, in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and Nicaragua, and brings to center stage the story of the motives, makeup, and successes of who resisted these occupations. * Lester D. Langley, author of The Banana Wars: United States Intervention in the Caribbean, 1898-1934 * The research for The Invaded is impressive in scope and depth. ... [McPherson] mined [archives, oral history collections, and various primary and seconday] sources for information, participant anecdotes, and colorful perspectives. ... This book will enlighten scholars and students looking to understand US involvement in the Caribbean area. * T. Schoonover, Hispanic American Historical Review *

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