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Race, Ideology, and the Decline of Caribbean Marxism$
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Anthony P. Maingot

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780813061061

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813061061.001.0001

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The Failure of Socialism and “Militarism” in Grenada, 1979–83

The Failure of Socialism and “Militarism” in Grenada, 1979–83

Chapter:
(p.204) 9 The Failure of Socialism and “Militarism” in Grenada, 1979–83
Source:
Race, Ideology, and the Decline of Caribbean Marxism
Author(s):

Anthony P. Maingot

Publisher:
University Press of Florida
DOI:10.5744/florida/9780813061061.003.0009

With Marxist-Leninist ideas and plans shaped in England and Trinidad, a small group of intellectuals calling themselves the New Jewel Movement began to oppose the erratic regime of Eric Gairy in Grenada. Knowing that they had no chance of an independent electoral victory, they joined a broad popular coalition of parties opposed to Gairy. Their plan was to position themselves for a swift coup d’état, and it succeeded magnificently. With Cuban and Soviet help, they began to establish a fully militarized state and society. As the economy (heavily indebted because of the building of a major airport) began to fail, the Marxist Party split between a Stalinist, militarist wing, led by Bernard Coard, and a group more open to moderation and negotiation with the United States, led by Maurice Bishop. In an open clash, Coard’s heavily armed faction imprisoned and executed the popular Bishop and many of his cabinet members. An American invasion put an end to any plans to establish a military dictatorship.

Keywords:   Marxist-Leninism, Stalinism, New Jewel Movement, Eric Gairy, coup d’état, United States, Bernard Coard, Maurice Bishop, invasion

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