Talk:Anastasio Somoza García

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Quote accuracy[edit]

I thought the "son of a bitch" quote was in reference to Rafael Leónidas Trujillo. Anyone know for sure? Richard Cane 03:08, 29 Jan 2005 (UTC)

In the excellent book by Diederich, Bernard (1989, Somoza and the legacy of U.S. involvement in Central America. Maplewood, N.J. Waterfront Press) the quote is said to be applied to Somoza as well.

Thanks for clearing that up. Richard Cane 00:04, 8 May 2005 (UTC)

According to this site: http://www.marxmail.org/archives/july98/somoza.htm, the most likely person to the have mentioned the quote is Secretary of State Cordell Hull in relation to Trujillo. There is even a theory that the first use of the quote was by Senator Thaddeus Stevens. Either way, attributing it to Roosevelt seems shaky at best, so I'm removing it from the article. Viking880 22:25, 10 February 2006 (UTC)

I've added some more information about the "son of a bitch quote" from the historian David Schmitz's book Thank God They're on Our Side. It seems quite likely that Roosevelt never said this, but simply because it is so widely perceived that he did (even in history textbooks) I think a brief comment on this point with the conclusion that the quotation is apocryphal is the best way to handle it. --Bigtimepeace 18:47, 28 October 2006 (UTC)

AC adds:

The ‘son of a bitch’ quotation is a myth.

Since that particular vulgarity so monotonously persists in historical studies of US-Central American affairs, it is worth noting that it clearly predated Somoza’s presidency, and that what was possibly its first appearance in print was a reference to Franklin Roosevelt himself. A book published in 1934 says this:

‘After the 1932 Chicago Convention [at which Roosevelt was first nominated for the presidency], General Hugh Johnson … was asked what he thought of his nomination. Johnson replied by recalling a story of a county convention of Democrats in which the wrong man had been chosen. Driving home from the meeting, two politicians were comparing notes. Both had opposed the successful candidate. One said to the other, “Damn it all! … he’s a son of a bitch!” The other man sighed and said nothing for a long time. Then he cheered up. “After all,” he observed, “… he’s our son of a bitch”.’

See John F. Carter, The New Dealers. By the Unofficial Observer (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1934). Emphasis in the original.


The matter is discussed in Andrew Crawley, “Somoza and Roosevelt: Good Neighbour Diplomacy in Nicaragua, 1933-1945 (Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, forthcoming in March 2007).

In the context of US-Nicaraguan relations at the time, it seems quite plausible that one of the most recurrent quotations of inter-American historiography originated with Somoza rather than with Roosevelt. The language, certainly, was much more Somoza’s style, and the notion conveyed would have served him well.

Neutrality[edit]

"Though the Somozas were ruthless and exploitative dictators..."

That may or may not be true, but it doesn't sound very neutral, IMHO. Josh 02:40, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

Early political career[edit]

Why has this section been deleted? The info shoud be easily verifiable and I found it informative and helpful in understanding the person. J. Peterka 20:04, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

I've reverted the deletion. I find unless a wholesale change is explained it's best to just restore it. Snocrates 20:59, 5 November 2007 (UTC)

Location of body[edit]

It has been stated that the body of Somoza is situated in a mausaleum in Florida, yet his son is interred with him in Nicaragua. Sorry but I don't see the sense or the link in this. Can someone please clarify? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 124.177.165.132 (talk) 09:21, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

Let's talk about ASSASSINATION...[edit]

I've come back to read this article a couple times over the past few days, and noticed the assassination section has been changed...yet every time I've read it, there has been NO REFERENCE to Somoza's assassination - nothing about it in the article. Considering that he WAS assassinated, and that there was purportedly CIA involvement... perhaps there should be a mention? Or will that just be 'mysteriously deleted'?... MisplacedFate1313 (talk) 22:19, 28 February 2009 (UTC)

Somoza's religion[edit]

Does anyone know which religion (if any) Somoza adhered to? I know his sons were Catholic (Anastasio Somoza Debayle mentioned being a Catholic in his memoirs), but Bernard Diederich's Somoza and the Legacy of U.S. Involvement in Central America says that the elder Somoza had never been a practicing Catholic; complicating matters further, John Gunther's Inside Latin America, does not list a religion, but notes that Somoza was the only Central American president who was "not a Catholic." Josh (talk) 08:23, 9 January 2013 (UTC)