The headless Thompson gunner : marines, diplomats, Secretaries of State and the U.S. interventions in Nicaragua, 1924-1933.
The U. S. intervention in Nicaragua of 1927-1933 was
both a long-term success and a short-term failure. The
United States' most important policy goals for
Nicaragua--the protection of the flanks and sea lanes of
the Panama Canal and the Nicaraguan canal route, the
maintenance of American hegemony in Central America, and
continued access to Central American markets--were
achieved through the intervention--along with several
less important secondary aims, such as sponsoring free
elections and the preservation of `democratic'
institutions. However, frequently flawed and short-term
thinking, an unwillingness to make policy commitments,
and inconsistent and often inaccurate intelligence made
the cost of long-term success considerably higher than
necessary. The work focuses upon U. S. policy towards the
1924 Nicaraguan elections, the creation of the Guardia
Nacional de Nicaragua (GNN), the 1925 Chamorro
revolution, the 1926 Liberal counterrevolution, the U. S.
decision to intervene in January 1927, the Stimson
mission to Nicaragua, and the 1927-1933 U. S. /GNN war
against the Sandinistas. With the use of documents from
the U. S. State Department, U. S. Marine Corps, several
U. S. intelligence agencies, and the British Foreign
Office, The Headless Thompson Gunner traces the policymaking
process up through the intelligence cycle, into
the offices of decisionmakers, and back down to the
diplomatic and military officers on the spot--along with
the successes and failures of that policy.