1945 - 1954: Ten years of spring

    On 19 October 1944, a small group of soldiers and students led by Jacobo Árbenz and Francisco Javier Arana attacked the National Palace in what later became known as the "October Revolution". Some historians will call this period until 1955 as "10 years of spring in Guatemala".

    Until 1951 president was Juan José Arévalo. His presidential term was marked by the assassination of Colonel Arana whom US politicians marked a healthy, conservative element of the revolution in Guatemala. He was killed at the Bridge of Glory in Amatitlan. This opened a way for a second president, Jacobo Arbenz Guzman, who was labeled leftist.

    Arbenz did several things that raised the eyebrows of Americans. First, he took idle land from the United Fruit Company, then he opened a port in Santo Tomas to compete with American owned Puerto Barrios. Also, he started to build the road from Guatemala city to those Atlantic ports, the road that has his name nowadays.

    At the same time in the USA was very strong McCarthyism, a form of anticommunism that simply couldn't let Arbenz stay in power. Cold War times were pressuring Arbenz's reforms. Therefore, he was taken down in a very strange coup named "operation PBSUCCESS". Unfortunately, this coup triggered the 36-year long civil war in Guatemala.

    Tower of the reformator 1945
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