Residents of Vieques, a small island just off the east coast of Puerto Rico, live wedged between an ammunition depot and a live bombing range for the US Navy. Since the 1940s when the navy expropriated over two-thirds of the island, residents have struggled to make a life amid the thundering of bombs and rumbling of weaponry fire. Like the army's base in Okinawa, Japan, the facility has drawn vociferous protests from residents who challenged US security interests overseas. In 1999, when a local civilian employee of the base was killed by a stray bomb, Vieques again erupted in protests that have mobilized tens of thousands of individuals and transformed this tiny Caribbean Island into an international cause celebre. Katherine T. McCaffrey gives a complete analysis of the troubled relationship between the US Navy and island residents. She explores such topics as the history of US naval involvement in Vieques; a grassroots mobilization - led by fishermen - that began in the 1970s; how the navy promised to improve the lives of the residents - and failed; and the present-day emergence of a revitalized political activism that has effectively challenged naval hegemony.
|Publication date:||31st August 2002|
|Author:||Katherine T. McCaffrey|
|Publisher:||Rutgers University Press|
|Categories:||Political oppression & persecution, International relations, Naval forces & warfare, Demonstrations & protest movements, Colonialism & imperialism, National liberation & independence, post-colonialism,|
Katherine T. McCaffrey is an assistant professor of anthropology at Montclair State University, New Jersey.More About Katherine T. McCaffrey