Inter-American Peacekeeping

June 23, 1965

Report Outline
American Intervention in the Caribbean
Results of Earlier U.S. Interventions
Evolution of Inter-American System
Charter Revision at the Rio Conference

American Intervention in the Caribbean

Dominican Crisis and a Regional Peace Force

The inter-american system, three-quarters of a century old this year, faces a fateful decision. Will it establish permanent peacekeeping machinery to deal with political upheavals like that in the Dominican Republic? Or will it treat the Dominican crisis as an isolated emergency and continue to oppose armed intervention in member states? Answers to these questions may be forthcoming at the 11th Inter-American Conference, scheduled to open at Rio de Janeiro on Aug. 4.

The Council of the Organization of American States has already shattered precedent by creating a multilateral force to maintain order in the Dominican Republic. A resolution to that end was adopted May 6, eight days after the first 400 American marines had landed in Santo Domingo. It was not until May 14 that the first Latin American contingents—250 Honduran soldiers and 20 Costa Rican policemen—arrived in the Dominican capital. One week later, the United States announced that it would withdraw 1,700 of the more than 20,000 U.S. troops on occupation duty. The announcement was prompted by news that Brazil had decided to contribute 1,250 men to the O.A.S. peacekeeping force. To underscore the multinational character of the Dominican operation, a Brazilian general, Hugo Panasco Alvim, was appointed commander of the force, which includes men from six countries. About 7,500 American troops, including the entire contingent of U.S. marines, have been withdrawn from Santo Domingo since the end of May; the number remaining at latest accounts was 12,600.

Now the United States is pressing for establishment of a permanent inter-American peacekeeping force. President Johnson, speaking at Baylor University, May 28, said that “Out of the Dominican crucible the 20 American nations must… forge a stronger shield against disaster,” for “In today's world, with the enemies of freedom talking about wars of national liberation, the old distinction between the civil war and international war has already lost much of its meaning.” Two days earlier, Secretary of State Dean Rusk had told reporters in Washington that “The hemisphere needs to take up again the question of constituting some standby forces on a continuing basis, on prompt call, and the organization of political machinery for taking hemispheric decisions promptly in the face of fast-moving events.”

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Latin America
Sep. 14, 2018  Turmoil in Central America
Jun. 05, 2012  China in Latin America
Mar. 2008  The New Latin America
Jul. 21, 2006  Change in Latin America
Mar. 14, 2003  Trouble in South America
Nov. 09, 2001  U.S.- Mexico Relations
Sep. 19, 1997  Mexico's Future
Jul. 19, 1991  Mexico's Emergence
May 05, 1989  New Approach to Central America
Mar. 06, 1987  Soviets' Latin Influence
Dec. 26, 1986  Pinochet's Chile
Nov. 08, 1985  Troubled Mexico
Apr. 10, 1981  Latin American Challenges
May 05, 1978  Central America and the U.S.A.
Sep. 23, 1977  Mexican-U.S. Relations
Jun. 04, 1976  Relations with Latin America
Oct. 21, 1970  Chile's Embattled Democracy
Jun. 24, 1970  Mexico's Election and the Continuing Revolution
Apr. 02, 1969  Economic Nationalism in Latin America
Jul. 19, 1967  Guerrilla Movements in Latin America
Dec. 28, 1966  Militarism in Latin America
Oct. 20, 1965  Common Market for Latin America
Aug. 04, 1965  Smoldering Colombia
Jun. 23, 1965  Inter-American Peacekeeping
Dec. 11, 1963  Progress of the Alianza
Oct. 05, 1962  Arms Aid to Latin America
Dec. 13, 1961  Land and Tax Reform in Latin America
Jul. 26, 1961  Commodity Agreements for Latin America
Jan. 11, 1961  Revolution in the Western Hemisphere
Feb. 10, 1960  Inter-American System
Feb. 10, 1960  Inter-American System
Jan. 13, 1960  Expropriation in Latin America
Jul. 02, 1958  Economic Relations with Latin America
Mar. 02, 1954  Communism in Latin America
Jun. 20, 1952  Political Unrest in Latin America
Sep. 18, 1950  War Aid from Latin America
Oct. 31, 1947  Arming the Americas
Jul. 24, 1946  Inter-American Security
Jan. 02, 1942  Latin America and the War
Jul. 10, 1941  Export Surpluses and Import Needs of South America
Jun. 04, 1941  Economic Defense of Latin America
Jun. 25, 1940  Politics in Mexico
Nov. 01, 1939  Pan American Political Relations
Oct. 10, 1939  United States Trade with Latin America
Apr. 07, 1938  Protection of American Interests in Mexico
Mar. 04, 1936  Peace Machinery in the Americas
Sep. 27, 1933  Trade Relations with Latin America
Oct. 16, 1928  Pan American Arbitration Conference
Jan. 12, 1928  The Sixth Pan American Conference
Jan. 10, 1927  American Policy in Nicaragua
Dec. 27, 1926  Relations Between Mexico and the United States
Regional Political Affairs: Latin America and the Caribbean