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García Godoy, Héctor (1921–1970)

García Godoy, Héctor (1921–1970)

Héctor García Godoy (b. 1921; d. 1970), Dominican provisional president (1965–1966). Born into one of the Dominican Republic's old elite families, García Godoy distinguished himself as a career diplomat whose skill, tact, and moderation prepared him for his role as provisional president after the overthrow of Juan Bosch (1963) and subsequent U.S. military invasion of his country (1965). Offered the position of president by U.S. ambassador Ellsworth Bunker, García faced the difficult task of reconciling opposing forces, the left-leaning Constitutionalists and the right-wing military elements, who had kept the country in a chaotic civil war since Bosch's fall. During his nine months in office, he faced pressures from both factions as well as the United States. He rose to the occasion by eliminating the most troublesome military leaders who had refused to negotiate. His presidency smoothed the way for elections in June 1966 and for the birth of a new Dominican government led by Joaquín Balaguer. Afterward, García served as Dominican ambassador to Washington. Many Dominicans hoped that, upon his return, he would run for president. In 1970, García founded the Movimiento de Conciliación Nacional (MCN) in preparation for the 1974 presidential campaign. Soon thereafter, however, he died of a heart attack.

See alsoBosch Gaviño, Juan; Dominican Republic.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Howard Wiarda, The Dominican Republic: A Nation in Transition (1969).

Ian Bell, The Dominican Republic (1981).

Additional Bibliography

Chester, Eric Thomas. Rag-tags, Scum, Riff-raff, and Commies: The U.S. Intervention in the Dominican Republic, 1965–1966. New York: Monthly Review Press, 2001.

Hartlyn, Jonathan. The Struggle for Democratic Politics in the Dominican Republic. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1998.

Palmer, Bruce. Intervention in the Caribbean: The Dominican Crisis of 1965. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1989.

                                      Pamela Murray

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