Rafael Leonidas Trujillo: Causes And Control Of The Dominican Republic

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In 1930, Rafael Leonidas Trujillo Molina gained control of the Dominican Republic through questionable means, becoming head of police and then president, his regime was well recognized for its oppressive tactics and effective means of keeping the population controlled, by the time he was deposed and assassinated in 1961, he had been responsible for the deaths of as many as 50,000 Dominicans (U.S DoS), meaning that 1 in 66 was executed. As his time as president continued, more opposition grew, and eventually he lost the majority favor. Local citizens rose up and rebelled. An apprehensive church first remained neutral in the event, even favoring Trujillo, but as his monstrosities came to light, it became more and more difficult to remain passive, …show more content…
Sanctions imposed by the U.S. against Trujillo in sugar and oil (U.S. DoS) were the first major signs of opposition towards Trujillo, at the same time, papal investigations against the archbishop of santo domingo, spearheaded by the newly elected Pope John XXIII began to reveal the ecclesiastical corruption within the nation. This lead to a continually distancing stance from the church, mainly in little actions. One of the first blatantly anti-Trujillo actions by the church, was the publication of an anti Trujillo article in the catholic newspaper, The Tablet, which was a full 3 pages of the 24 page monthly publication. They claimed Trujillo had committed, “a grave offence against God and the dignity of man” (Correspondent 22), through his executions and tortures of priests and revolutionaries alike. These claims and others like them represent a major turning point in the relationship with the holy see and the church as a whole with …show more content…
His final months in office were left marked in blood, as his paranoia for internal collapse grew, it ricocheted in his attempts to interfere with international affairs. His attempt to assassinate long time opponent, president Romulo Betancourt of Venezuela, via car bombing was the final straw internationally. It lead to a sanction of 75% of all imports and exports to the nation. (U.S DoS). Meanwhile Trujillo arrested the two foreign bishops within the nation Bishop Panal and Bishop Riley of San Juan De La Maguana (Betances 43), after they held masses in which they lashed out against Trujillo and demanded the calls of the church be answered and the people’s rights respected. Their arrest and subsequent trials marked the official end of the relations held between the church and Trujillo (Figueredo). The murder of the notorious protesters, the Mirabal sisters only furthered aggression, within a year, Trujillo would be executed by his senior staff, and his regime would be toppled only months later, in its wake, thousands dead, and hundreds of thousands left scarred and

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