Search Results for independence movements

Algeria’s Struggle for Independence

The modern-day People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria is now a proud, sovereign state in North Africa that readily influences the region. However, before 1962, Algeria had been a French colony, dating back to the French invasion of Algiers in 1830. Following a brutal conquest that some termed as genocide, France began a policy of “civilizing” […]

Posted in A Moment in U.S. Diplomatic History, Cold War, Middle East, Military Tagged , |
French Colony to Sovereign State: Moroccan Independence

Moroccans celebrate November 18 as Independence Day in commemoration of their Sultan’s return from exile in 1955 and Morocco’s transition from French protectorate to autonomous nation the following year. France claimed Morocco as a protectorate in 1912. Moroccan nationalists would eventually base arguments for independence on declarations such as the Atlantic Charter, a U.S.-British statement that […]

Posted in A Moment in U.S. Diplomatic History, Africa, Espionage, Europe, Middle East, Military Tagged |
Losing “The Congolese Bet” — The Belgian Congo’s Violent Road to Independence

Remembered as one of the most tragic victims of European imperialism, the Belgian Congo suffered decades of exploitation, violence, racism and repression. By restricting access to higher education and monopolizing political and military leadership positions, the Belgians maintained an iron hold over their resource-rich colony. Then, after a wave of African independence movements and without […]

Posted in A Moment in U.S. Diplomatic History, Africa, Consular, Military Tagged , , |
Unexploded Ordnance, Spam and Moonshine–Life as Ambassador to Micronesia

The Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), sometimes known simply as Micronesia, consists of four states — Yap, Chuuk, Pohnpei and Kosrae – spread across the Western Pacific Ocean. They are north of Australia, south of Guam, west of the Marshall Islands and almost 2,500 miles southwest of Hawaii. Together, the states comprise 607 islands spread across a distance of […]

Posted in A Moment in U.S. Diplomatic History, Cold War, East Asia and Pacific, Foreign Service, Humorous, Military, Post-Colonialism, Spouses and children Tagged |
Martinis, Carpets and Sacks of Gold: A U.S. Diplomat in French Tunisia

Tunisia achieved independence from France after almost 75 years as a protectorate. Life under French rule was pleasant for some, including foreign diplomats. The number of French colonists grew, ultimately occupying one-fifth of the arable land of Tunisia, and the French directed the building of roads, ports and railroads, and the development of mines. But […]

Posted in A Moment in U.S. Diplomatic History, Africa, Europe, Foreign Service, Humorous
The Last Emperor – The Fall of Haile Selassie

None could be more considered more central to the modern history of Africa’s longest independent nation, Ethiopia, than Emperor Haile Selassie.  Regent from 1916-1930, he became emperor of Ethiopia on November 2, 1930 and ruled for nearly 45 years. While Ethiopia was able to avoid colonization and remained a political leader and symbol of African independence throughout […]

Posted in A Moment in U.S. Diplomatic History, Africa Tagged |
Establishing Ties with Pakistan — 1947

It was the end of one era and the beginning of another. In August 1947 the British Empire, which had ruled the Indian subcontinent as part of the Raj since the mid-19th century, granted independence to the India and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. The Muslim League, which arose in the 1930s in order to […]

Posted in A Moment in U.S. Diplomatic History, Humorous, South Central Asia Tagged |
The Sudden Rise of Muammar Qaddafi and a Hostile Libya

On September 1st, 1969, a group of young Libyan military officers overthrew the Libyan royal family and established the Libyan Arab Republic. The mastermind of this coup d’état was a 27-year-old officer named Muammar al-Qaddafi, who following the coup effectively established himself as both the country’s head of state and head of the armed forces. […]

Posted in A Moment in U.S. Diplomatic History, Middle East, Military Tagged |
Igniting Iraq’s Invasion of Kuwait – Loans, Land, Oil and Access

Iraq invaded Kuwait on August 2, 1990 largely for economic reasons, but the contiguous Gulf countries had long-standing territorial conflicts as well. The decision to attack was based on the need to erase Iraq’s massive debt: Iraq had largely financed its 1980-1988 war with Iran through loans and owed some $37 billion to Gulf creditors […]

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What Have I Gotten Myself Into? Tales from Rough First Tours

Life in the Foreign Service certainly has its advantages – working in often exotic locales, meeting fascinating people, being a part of important, sometimes historical, events. But, like other glamorous jobs, it has its drawbacks, not the least of which come with the drudgery of first and sometimes second tours, where most FSOs end up […]

Posted in A Moment in U.S. Diplomatic History, Africa, Consular, Foreign Service, Hostage, Humorous, Women and Minority FSOs Tagged |