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History of U.S. Interventions in Latin America 

Location Period Type of Force Comments on U.S. Role
Argentina 1890 Troops Buenos Aires interests protected
Chile 1891 Troops Marines clash with nationalist rebels
Haiti 1891 Troops Black workers revolt on U.S.-claimed Navassa Island defeated
Nicaragua 1894 Troops Month-long occupation of Bluefields
Panama 1895 Naval, troops Marines land in Colombian province
Nicaragua 1896 Troops Marines land in port of Corinto
Cuba 1898- Naval, troops Seized from Spain, U.S. still holds Navy base at Guantanamo
Puerto Rico 1898- Naval, troops Seized from Spain, occupation continues
Nicaragua 1898 Troops Marines land at port of San Juan del Sur
Nicaragua 1899 Troops Marines land at port of Bluefields
Honduras 1903 Troops Marines intervene in revolution
Dominican Republic 1903-04 Troops U.S. interests protected in Revolution
Cuba 1906-09 Troops Marines land in democratic election
Nicaragua 1907 Troops "Dollar Diplomacy" protectorate set up
Honduras 1907 Troops Marines land during war with Nicaragua
Panama 1908 Troops Marines intervene in election contest
Nicaragua 1910 Troops Marines land in Bluefields and Corinto
Honduras 1911 Troops U.S. interests protected in civil war
Cuba 1912 Troops U.S. interests protected in Havana
Panama 1912 Troops Marines land during heated election
Honduras 1912 Troops Marines protect U.S. economic interests
Nicaragua 1912-33 Troops, bombing 20-year occupation, fought guerrillas
Mexico 1913 Naval Americans evacuated during revolution
Dominican Republic 1914 Naval Fight with rebels over Santo Domingo
Mexico 1914-18 Naval, troops Series of interventions against nationalists
Haiti 1914-34 Troops, bombing 19-year occupation after revolts
Dominican Republic 1916-24 Troops 8-year Marine occupation
Cuba 1917-33 Troops Military occupation, economic protectorate
Panama 1918-20 Troops "Police duty" during unrest after elections
Honduras 1919 Troops Marines land during election campaign
Guatemala 1920 Troops 2-week intervention against unionists
Costa Rica 1921 Troops
Panama 1921 Troops
Honduras 1924-25 Troops Landed twice during election strife
Panama 1925 Troops Marines suppress general strike
El Salvador 1932 Naval Warships sent during Faribundo Marti revolt
Uruguay 1947 Nuclear threat Bombers deployed as show of strength
Puerto Rico 1950 Command operation Independence rebellion crushed in Ponce
Guatemala 1954-? Command operation, bombing, nuclear threat CIA directs exile invasion and coup d'Etat after newly elected government nationalizes unused U.S.'s United Fruit Company lands; bombers based in Nicaragua; long-term result: 200,000 murdered
Panama 1958 Troops Flag protests erupt into confrontation
Cuba 1961 Command operation CIA-directed exile invasion fails
Cuba 1962 Nuclear threat, naval Blockade during missile crisis; near-war with Soviet Union
Panama 1964 Troops Panamanians shot for urging canal's return
Dominican Republic 1965-66 Troops, bombing Marines land during election campaign
Guatemala 1966-67 Command operation Green Berets intervene against rebels
Chile 1973 Command operation CIA-backed coup ousts democratically elected Marxist president
El Salvador 1981-92 Command operation, troops Advisors, overflights aid anti-rebel war, soldiers briefly involved in hostage clash; long-term result: 75,000 murdered and destruction of popular movement
Nicaragua 1981-90 Command operation, naval CIA directs exile (Contra) invasions, plants harbor mines against revolution; result: 50,000 murdered
Honduras 1982-90 Troops Maneuvers help build bases near borders
Grenada 1983-84 Troops, bombing Invasion four years after revolution
Bolivia 1987 Troops Army assists raids on cocaine region
Panama 1989 Troops, bombing Nationalist government ousted by 27,000 soldiers, leaders arrested, 2000+ killed
Haiti 1994-95 Troops, naval Blockade against military government; troops restore President Aristide to office three years after coup
Venezuela 2002 Command operation Failed coup attempt to remove left-populist president Hugo Chavez
Haiti 2004- Troops Removal of democratically elected President Aristide; troops occupy country
Honduras 2009 Command operation Support for coup that removed president Manuel Zelaya

Sources:

Blum, William. Killing Hope: U.S. Military and CIA Interventionism Since World War II. Monroe, Maine: Common Courage Press, 1995.

Ege & Makhijani. "180 Landings by the U.S. Marine Corps" (History Division), Counterspy (July-Aug. 1982). Foreign Affairs Division, Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress.

Richard Grimmet, Instances of Use of Armed Forces Abroad, 1798-2001. CRS Report for Congress, 2002.

Grossman, Zoltan. Over a Century of U.S. Military Interventions. Self-published, revised Jan. 1, 1995.

Sklar, Holly. "Who's Who: Invading 'Our' Hemisphere 1831-," Z Magazine (Feb. 1990).

U.S. Congress, Committee on Foreign Affairs' Report. Background Information on the Use of United States Armed Forces in Foreign Countries. Washington, D.C.: 91st Congress, 2nd Session, 1970.

Zinn, Howard. A People's History of the United States. New York: Perennial Library, Harper & Row, 1980.

Also see Zoltan Grossman, From Wounded Knee to Iraq (A Chronology of U.S. Imperialism)


Please send any suggestions, comments, corrections, additions, etc. to Marc Becker at marc@yachana.org.

Last updated: 2011

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