F-51D Mustang

The P designation for Pursuit on Mustangs was changed to F for Fighter; the F-51D Mustang shown here was the last Mustang to be produced, and the exact type that dropped thousands of pounds of napalm death on innocent Guatemalans in the late 1960s

This chapter of Guatemalan history is completely without record on Wikipedia. There is unlikely to be anything gained from the articles there. Google Books is a likely first source

While the war in Viet Nam began to accelerate, the US military was already busy in Guatemala (WP), practicing in secrecy that remains mostly undisturbed, the techniques which would become so widely infamous for their execution in Viet Nam (WP). Guatemala was also a less-known but far more extensive use of the USAID organization (together with the Office of Public Safety (WP) and the Alliance for Progress (WP))[1] to give funding for right-wing revolutions than the recent, better known 2013 coup attempt in Cuba.[1]

American pilots operated out of Panama; they bombed with napalm (WP),[2] areas where they suspected rebel presence. Free Fire Zones (WP) is what such areas came to be dubbed in Viet Nam, but the name comes from the earlier Guatemalan equivalent: Zonas Libres.[1] The US used reconnaissance planes to photograph terrain in order to better choose targets to bomb with napalm.[1] F-51D Mustang fighter planes were, by the time of the Korean War (WP), already fitted for carrying heavy loads of rockets, bombs, or specialized munitions like napalm. It was typical for the US to use old technology like the Mustang in developing nations like Guatemala, while the front line Wars for Capitalism conflicts with the USSR were outfitted with the latest jet fighters.

The operations by the US were an open secret: common knowledge, but officially denied and covered up. A US pilot that crashed and died on a bombing run was said to be "testing" the plane.[1]

Bolivia was another target of these anti-leftist interventions by the US[3]

At the very least, eight thousand Guatemalans met their deaths in the bombing and death squad campaigns.[4]

Guatemalan Civil War Edit

Main article: Wikipedia:Guatemalan Civil War

The brutality of the right-wing paramilitaries cannot be overemphasized.[1] The mass killings of leftists were matched by the killings of those who supported them. The freedom to roam the countryside was removed from the leftists by the fear instilled in the residents of the country.[1]

Factions Edit

The government, right-wing paramilitary organizations, and left-wing insurgents were all engaged in the Guatemalan Civil War (1960–96). A variety of factors contributed: social and economic injustice and racial discrimination suffered by the indigenous population, the 1954 coup which reversed reforms, weak civilian control of the military, the United States support of the government, and Cuban support of the insurgents.

Four principal left-wing guerrilla groups — the Guerrilla Army of the Poor (EGP), the Revolutionary Organization of Armed People (ORPA), the Rebel Armed Forces (FAR), and the Guatemalan Party of Labour (PGT) — conducted economic sabotage and targeted government installations and members of government security forces in armed attacks. Shortly after President Julio César Méndez Montenegro took office in 1966, the army launched a major counterinsurgency campaign that largely broke up the guerrilla movement in the countryside.

External links Edit

Also, many many more links at search for: 1967 napalm bombing in guatemala on Google Books:

Citations Edit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 [ Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II], William Blum, Zed Books, pages 233 on
  2. Masters of War: Latin America and U.S. Agression From the Cuban Revolution Through the Clinton Years, Clara Nieto, Seven Stories Press
  3. Incendiary weapons, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, Malvern Lumsden,MIT Press, Dec 15, 1975
  4. Global Air Power, John Andreas Olsen

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