Mr. Coolidge’s Jungle War

Forty years ago, American Marines tangled with a tough Latin-American guerrilla leader whose tactics against “the capitalists” would evoke an unhappy shock of recognition in Vietnam today.

The United States was first introduced to the vexations of large-scale guerrilla warfare forty years ago in the mountain jungles of Nicaragua. There for the first time Americans were confronted by an elusive partisan leader of a type to become bitterly familiar not only in the Caribbean but in Southeast Asia, a man who pioneered techniques of warfare when Che Guevara and Fidel Castro were in rompers and Mao Tse-tung was an obscure revolutionary. “Mr. Coolidge’s War,” the affair has been called.Read more »