Vieques, the Navy, and Puerto Rican Politics / Edition 1

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Overview

"This book highlights a political struggle engaged in by Puerto Ricans which raises attention regarding the inconsistencies between the United States as a democratic society and its treatment of a nation that continues to be colonized."--James Jennings, Tufts University

In this analysis of the dispute over the U.S. Navy's bombing range in Vieques, Puerto Rico, Amilcar Barreto looks at the political fallout from the accidental killing of a civilian in 1999, including its impact on Puerto Rican nationalism and ethnic mobilization. In so doing, he finds in the Vieques crisis a metaphor for a larger set of Puerto Rican crises and conflicts.
Barreto sets the scene for understanding why Vieques has become a defining protest issue in Puerto Rican politics by providing a comprehensive historical account of protest by Puerto Ricans living in Puerto Rico and in the United States and by telling the story of the island's nagging colonial status under the United States. While the political nature of the Vieques issue remains the focus of the book, he highlights its military aspects, particularly the policy stances of the U.S. Navy. He demonstrates how the U.S. military in the Vieques crisis became not just a catalyst for but an unwitting accomplice in the process of Puerto Rican ethnic mobilization, helping to set the stage for the emergence of a more vigorous and militant cultural nationalism. Barreto also supplies a credible explanation for the surprisingly consensual reaction among Puerto Ricans of all political stripes to what many observers regarded as an unjust assault on the life and livelihood of Vieques residents and an example of U.S. political arrogance.

In the course of identifying Vieques as a defining protest issue in Puerto Rican politics, Barreto avoids a weakness common to other treatments of the island's politics by documenting the links between protest and activism in Puerto Rico and in the United States.

Amilcar Antonio Barreto is assistant professor of political science at Northeastern University.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813024721
  • Publisher: University Press of Florida
  • Publication date: 6/28/2002
  • Series: New Directions in Puerto Rican Studies Series
  • Edition description: First
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Maps
List of Tables
Foreword
Acknowledgments
Abbreviations
Introduction 1
1 Settlement and Fortifications 6
2 Target Practice 21
3 The Canonization of David Sanes 37
4 Clemency and Consensus 53
5 Politics in El Barrio 71
6 Transnational Identities 86
7 A New Era 98
Notes 105
Bibliography 127
Index 161
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