1. What are the main points of each of the historiographical perspectives on the USA’s intervention in Guatemala? (These historiographical perspectives are: Realist, Revisionist and Postrevisionist).
Realists believe that the USSR was the main aggressor of the Cold War with its expansionist empire. They also believe Jacobo Arbenz was a Soviet puppet and therefore see his stain removal from the Government of Guatemala as a necessary step to remove Communism from the Western Hemisphere. The text indicates that Realists believe Arbenz was a communist because of the propaganda thrown around by the US government to raise support for the coup along with the shipment of Czech arms and documents found that were previously Arbenz’s which had plans for a Communist stronghold in the Western Hemisphere.
Revisionists believe that the USA was the main proponent of the Cold War as the government kept trying to expand markets and foreign investments. They believe that the overthrow of Jacobo Arbenz was caused by economic imperialism as the USA responded to the call of the UFCO.
“The financial ties between U.S. government officials and the company, the massacre of at least 1,000 banana workers on a UFCO plantation immediately following the Liberation, and Castillo Armas’s decision to return land confiscated from United Fruit under Decree 900, all seemed to point toward a conspiracy.”
Postrevisionists are a harder group to pin down compared to both Realists and Revisionists. They believe economic and strategic factors were the cause of the Cold War while putting the blame for it more on the shoulders of the USSR. Postrevisionists believe that the US government was too blinded by the threat of communism to see that Jacobo Arbenz was a nationalist, not a communist.