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Response to Name removed (Reply #3)

Thu Oct 29, 2020, 08:42 PM

5. Being able to order genocide was icing on the cake for Nixon and Reagan.

Their monstrous spirits rejoiced, apparently, at being able to send other people to slaughter so many others, while pretending it was an action needed to protect the US American people. No one can be more twisted, more perverse than that.

Efraín Rios Montt, Guatemala dictator, was finally tried and found guilty by Guatemalan people for genocide, although he had it lifted for retrial before kicking off. Reagan easily persuaded US televangelists to turn their followers to support Rios Montt, financially support him, as well, when they learned he had become an evangelist preacher, himself.

Got the t-shirt.

~ ~ ~

The devastating earthquake that hit Guatemala in 1976 was used as a pretext for American born Protestant evangelicalism—mainly Pentecostalism—to gain entry in the Guatemalan society. A major consequence of the earthquake relief efforts by American evangelicals, is that their meddling also intensified the Mayan genocide during the Guatemalan Civil War (1960-96). This thesis explores the complicit relationship of religion and politics in the Guatemalan Civil War, focusing on the evangelical dictator Efraín Ríos Montt’s regime (1982-83). Firstly, it examines how Christian evangelicalism played a pivotal role for conservative Republican candidate Ronald Reagan and, later through his administration, for Ríos Montt’s dictatorship. It traces the origins of this relationship back to the American culture wars of the Cold War era, with close attention to televangelists and the counterculture youths involved with the Jesus Movement. Secondly, this thesis examines how American evangelicalism successfully entered and transformed the Guatemalan social life after the 1976 earthquake. This thesis argues how evangelicalism became a political-theological ideology for Ríos Montt and was used by him to justify an increase in violence against Mayan peoples. With an analysis of Ríos Montt’s evangelical broadcasts to the nation, is presented in order to follow the logic of his justification for the “Mayan Holocaust.”

. . .

The Guatemalan Civil War started in the 1960s and ended only in 1996. Many thousands
more Guatemalans were killed as a result of the conflict than the 1976 earthquake. The Commission for
Historical Clarification (CEH) organized by the United Nations estimates that the number of persons
killed or disappeared during it reached a total of over 200,000. As I will show in this thesis, evangelical
efforts from the U.S. greatly influenced the course of the Guatemalan Civil War, especially during Efraín

“Aggression was directed against elements of profound symbolic significance for the Mayan culture, as
in the case of the destruction of corn and the killing of their elders. These events had a serious impact on
certain elements of Mayan identity and disturbed the transmission of their culture from generation to
As an ultimate act of racism—an act of cultural genocide, in fact—the Guatemalan army
attempted to destroy Mayan communities by desecrating the spiritual representation of Mayan identity,
and denying it to future generations. A professor at the University of Texas at Austin, Virginia
Garrard-Burnett states, “[t]he sharp focus of violence on Mayan people during the early 1980s has given
rise to the phrase ‘the Mayan holocaust.’”7 It is in this context that the thesis of paper is that there was a
complicit relationship of religion and politics in the Guatemalan Civil War that was supported by
American evangelicals. This relationship influenced the President of the U.S. and President of
Guatemala and led to the Mayan holocaust. In the following pages, I will examine how Christian
activism became increasingly conservative and gained political influence in the U.S. before it was then
exported to Guatemala, where it eventually influenced the Ríos Montt regime. I will show how
conservative evangelicals in the U.S. were mobilized for national politics before Ronald Reagan came
into power, and how their influence eventually shaped the Ríos Montt regime.


~ ~ ~

Ríos Montt's historic offer to the impoverished majority of Guatemalan people:

“If you are with us, we will feed you,” he said in an address to Guatemala’s peasants. “If not, we will kill you.” Beans for the obedient, bullets for the rest.


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AlCarroll Oct 2020 OP
Karadeniz Oct 2020 #1
Name removed Oct 2020 #3
LineLineLineNew Reply Being able to order genocide was icing on the cake for Nixon and Reagan.
Judi Lynn Oct 2020 #5
flotsam Oct 2020 #2
Name removed Oct 2020 #4
EX500rider Nov 2020 #6
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