Duquesne Law Review


In late April of 1965 the Dominican Republic became embroiled in internal revolution. On April 25th the Dominican government was toppled by supporters of former Dominican President Juan D. Bosch. For the next three days the pro-Bosch rebel regime demanded the return of the former president. Bosch's return, however, was opposed by units of the Dominican naval and air forces under the command of Dominican Air Force General Elias Wessin y Wessin. The revolution appeared to collapse after heavy fighting in the Dominican capital of Santo Domingo on April 27th. That day the United States Embassy in Santo Domingo announced that the United States Navy was preparing to evacuate American citizens and other foreign nationals from the Dominican Republic.' Additional naval vessels with about 1500 United States Marines were reported standing offshore. On April 28th President Johnson announced that 400 marines had been put ashore to aid in the evacuation when it was learned. that local authorities would no longer be able to guarantee the safety of United States citizens. It was also revealed at this time that known Communist leaders and agitators, including some Dominican exiles and others who had received their training in Communist Cuba, had been identified among the rebel forces. As the fighting between the military and rebels continued in Santo Domingo, additional contingents of marines and airborne troops were dispatched in an attempt to restore order and deter the Communist elements.

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