U.S. occupies the Dominican Republic, twice


Aug 21, 2016

Earlier I told you a few fascinating tidbits I learned about Christopher Columbus and the Dominican Republic. Our historian Miguel divulged a few other interesting facts during our tour that completely astounded me. For instance, that the U.S. Military had occupied his country not once, but twice, during the 1900’s.

It all began back in 1911 when a group of rebels attacked President Caceres of the Dominican Republic and killed him.

Several years of instability followed, and in 1914 President Woodrow Wilson told the Dominicans to install a president or we would impose one. They elected a president, who resigned within two years, and we were all back at square one.

Wilson then ordered the Marines to take control of the Dominican Republic. They landed in May 1916 and had complete control of the island within two months. U.S. Rear Admiral Harry Knapp set up a government, revived the Dominican economy, reduced the national debt, built a network of roads that we used just last week, and created a National Guard.

The U.S. left the Dominican Republic in 1922 and within 8 years the dictator Rafael Trujillo had seized control. Trujillo was a true dictator in every sense of the word, and even renamed Santo Domingo after himself.

In 1961 Trujillo was shot and killed in his blue 1957 Chevy Bel Air and the country fell under the rule of a military junta until 1963. Elections were organized with the help of you know who (the United States of America) and President Gavino was elected.

On April 24, 1965 a rebellion led by the Dominican Revolutionary Party resulted in the necessary evacuation of over 3500 U.S. citizens. On April 28 a group of armed civilians attached the Villa Consuelo police station and executed every officer found inside.

President Lyndon Johnson took matters into his own hands and authorized a military intervention. On April 30, the 82nd Airborne landed and initiated contact. That day the U.S. Military had signed a cease fire with the loyalists and the rebels. By September 1966 a new government was installed and the final peacekeepers withdrew from the island.

Our guide and historian Miguel had nothing but good things to say about the U.S. interventions in his country. In fact he told us that in recent years, as the Dominican economy has struggled and Dominicans have died in droves trying to make it to Puerto Rico, the obvious affection for the United States has become even stronger and more blatantly evident.

The Dominican Republic, like so many other Caribbean nations, has suffered under corrupt politicians and policies for centuries. The general populace carries a heavy burden of inadequate education, debilitating poverty and of course lack of opportunity.

Tourism is one of the brightest lights in the Dominican Republic. Tourism brings job opportunity to even the most uneducated, unskilled worker. In fact tourism accounts for over 188,000 jobs in the coastal areas alone.

Last year the Dominican Republic welcomed over 5 million tourists. That number has more than doubled since the last time I was in the country, nine years ago.

The progress the country has made through the tourism tax of $10 per person upon entry is astounding. The roadways are now excellent, the upkeep along the highways is substantially improved. Excursion opportunities have been expanded exponentially. I saw very little of the Dominican Republic I met back in 2007.

I encourage you to meet the new and improved Dominican Republic. It’s gorgeous, the people are friendly and accommodating, and the resort areas are second to none.

Joy Gawf-Crutchfield owns and operates The Joy of Travel. Contact Joy at 918-339-4805



Pope Francis accepts anti-LGBT Dominican cardinal’s resignation

July 4, 2016 at 10:11 am EDT | by Michael K. Lavers

Pope Francis accepts anti-LGBT Dominican cardinal’s resignation
Cardenal Nicolás de Jesús López, Gay News, Washington Blade
Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Cardinal Nicolás de Jesús López Rodríguez of the Archdiocese of Santo Domingo. (Photo via Wikimedia Commons by Starus)

The Vatican announced on Monday that Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Cardinal Nicolás de Jesús López Rodríguez of the Archdiocese of Santo Domingo.
The Holy See said in a statement that the pontiff has named Monsignor Francisco Ozoria Acosta of the Diocese of San Pedro de Macorís as López’s successor.
López has repeatedly used homophobic slurs to describe gay U.S. Ambassador to the Dominican Republic James “Wally” Brewster.

López told reporters during a 2015 press conference that Brewster should “go back to his embassy” and “stick to housework, since he is a man’s wife.” The cardinal in 2013 referred to Brewster — who is married to Bob Satawake — as aSourcot” after President Obama nominated him to become the next American ambassador to the predominantly Catholic country.
Neither the Vatican nor the Dominican government has publicly rebuked López over his comments.
“I would hope that the Vatican — as we would not do that with their officials — would understand and condemn those types of words to any official with any government, but especially with one of their strongest allies, which is the United States, and to the president’s personal representative in the country,” Brewster told the Washington Blade in March during an exclusive interview at the State Department.
The Vatican announced López’s resignation a day after Brewster and thousands of others took part in Santo Domingo’s annual Pride celebration.
“I feel a great peace of mind,” Cristian King of Trans Siempre Amigos, a Dominican advocacy group, told the Blade on Monday.
Deivis Ventura, a prominent LGBT activist who ran for a seat in the lower house of the Dominican Congress in May, noted to the Blade that Osoria is a “black bishop” who “has fought for migrants.”
López supported the Dominican government’s plan to legalize undocumented immigrants — the majority of whom are Haiti(ans) — that sparked controversy in the Caribbean country and around the world.
“Monsignor Osoria is a man who is known for his moderation and prudence in the management of religious and social issues,” Ventura told the Blade. “I am sure that this man will show a distinct vision of the church.”


Tropical Storm Earl leaves 6 dead in Dominican Republic, moves toward Mexico

  • NOAA Earl DR.jpg

    NOAA satellite image taken Tuesday, Aug. 2, 2016 at 12:45 PM EDT shows Tropical Storm Earl 210 miles south of Grand Cayman. (ap)

A weather system that already has caused at least six deaths in the Dominican Republic has been designated as Tropical Storm Earl.

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said Tuesday that Earl was threatening to bring heavy rains, flooding and high winds to Mexico, Belize and Honduras. All three of those countries issued Tropical Storm warnings for some areas, and a hurricane watch was issued for part of the Mexican coast.

On Sunday, Earl was still a weaker tropical wave but knocked down power lines in the Dominican Republic’s Samana Peninsula and started a fire that killed six passengers on a bus filled with people returning from a beach excursion. The fire also injured 12 others.

On Tuesday, the storm was centered about 210 miles south of Grand Cayman in the Caribbean. It had top sustained winds of 50 mph and was speeding west at 22 mph.

Earl is expected to bring damaging winds and rain to much of the northeast coasts of Honduras and Guatemala before making landfall on Belize sometime in the early morning hours of Thursday. The storm is then projected to barrel across Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula and cross part of the Gulf of Mexico before making landfall again sometime on Saturday back in Mexico.

Forecast models are unsure what the strength of the storm will be when it reaches parts of Mexico later this week.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Source: http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/news/2016/08/02/tropical-storm-earl-leaves-6-dead-in-dominican-republic-moves-toward-mexico/

New York State Senator Poised To Become First Dominican-American In Congress



| July 19, 2016 – 9:40 am

In light of this year’s endless drama in the immigration department, 61-year-old senator Adriano Espaillat is just the fresh face we need. Favored in November’s general election after winning the Democratic primary in Harlem and parts of the Bronx, Espaillat has a high chance of becoming the first-ever Dominican-American in congress once Charles Rangel is retired.

An immigrant himself who lived in the United States undocumented like countless others in our society, Espaillat hopes his story will inspire and evoke change during such turbulent political times. Prior to his interest in congress, Espaillat had also taken part in the State Assembly and spent several years doing community service work.

In 1964, Espaillat took a “vacation” to New York City to visit his grandparents, but stayed past the expiration date of his family’s visa. His grandparents then requested for his family to finally become citizens, having lived undocumented in the United States for several months. Espaillat told Fox News Latino that he was cautious stepping foot into the streets of the Big Apple, admitting “there was a level of fear … that Immigration would come in, at any time.” As such, Espaillat considers his success to be a “strong message against the intolerance that’s being spewed by the Trumps of the world.”



Adriano Espaillat


My full statement on the ballot count in

Curious to see how his own story will sit with those opposed to the immigration reform in congress, Espaillat has no interest in making friends upon his arrival. “How will they feel knowing that I have the same vote as they have on the floor of Congress?” he asked. “I would love to see what the reaction is.” According to FNL, out of more than 12,000 people who have served in Congress in the history of the United States only 407 were foreign-born.

Slowly the number of minority representatives are increasing and there’s no doubt it has to do with the diversity our nation is seeing today. “The election is a reflection of how the reality of the district has already shifted,” Espaillat said, “and whatever symbolic significance it has is because of Harlem’s place in black culture.” In the general election this November, Espaillat will face Republican candidate Tony Evans and Green Party candidate Daniel Vila Rivera.

“I’m not a stranger to Harlem,” he continued. “I don’t think there should be any fear, because I am a New Yorker.” Whether he becomes the first Dominican-American in congress or not, here’s a toast to diversifying our nation’s political landscape.

Source: http://www.vibe.com/2016/07/senator-adriano-espaillat-first-dominican-in-congress/

Vatican replaces Dominican archbishop who clashed with gay U.S. ambassador

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    Francisco Ozoria Acosta, Santo Domingo’s new archbishop. (EFE)

The appointment on Monday of Francisco Ozoria Acosta as Santo Domingo’s new archbishop brings to a close the almost four decades of the episcopate of Nicolas de Jesus Lopez, a period marked by substantial controversy.

Pope Francis on Monday named Ozoria Acosta, 64, to replace Lopez, the Vatican said.

The pontiff had accepted Lopez’s resignation as archbishop in accord with Article 401/1 of the canonical code, which stipulates that nobody may serve as archbishop after age 75.

Ozoria Acosta will continue to head the eastern San Pedro de Macoris diocese until he take over the archbishop’s duties in the capital, a transition scheduled for Sept. 4.

In his presentation on Monday in Santo Domingo, the new archbishop expressed surprise at his selection and said that he will endeavor to provide continuity for the Church’s local mission.

The “most surprised person is me,” he said, going on to thank the pope for his “undeserved appointment.”

He also said that his aim is to continue the mission of the Catholic Church in the Dominican Republic and “look after the lambs, teach and sanctify.”

He went on to note that he was ordained a priest by Lopez, to whom he is bound by “deep links.”

Lopez, 79, will continue as cardinal, a post to which he was named in 1991, after the death of Antonio Beras Rojas, the first Dominican cardinal.

As cardinal, Lopez – long one of the country’s most influential figures – will retain his prominent pulpit and will continue to impress his personal stamp on local affairs, an approach that has been marked by controversy and criticism on issues such as homosexuality, abortion, pedophilia within the priesthood, corruption and national policy, among others.

Deemed daring and courageous by some and an opportunist by others, the cardinal has always managed to hold the attention of his countrymen due to his confrontations both inside and outside the Church.

Lopez is known for saying that legitimizing gay marriage is “something savage,” perverse and unnatural.

His latest controversy came in December 2015 and concerned U.S. Ambassador James Brewster, who is gay, when he said he should “go back to his embassy and, as the wife he is of a man (his husband, Bob Satawake), concern himself with the affairs of the home. That is what he should do.”



El papa nombra a Ozoria Acosta nuevo arzobispo de Santo Domingo


Publicado el 04 julio, 2016 por EFE
e-mail: redaccion[@]elnacional.com.do

Ciudad del Vaticano, (EFE).- El papa Francisco ha nombrado nuevo arzobispo metropolitano de Santo Domingo a Francisco Ozoria Acosta, en sustitución del cardenal Nicolás de Jesús López Rodríguez, cuya renuncia ha aceptado, informó hoy el Vaticano.

El pontífice argentino aceptó la renuncia del cardenal López Rodríguez en aplicación del artículo 401/1 del código canónico que la prevé al haber cumplido los setenta y cinco años de edad.

Ozoria Acosta, que procede de la diócesis de San Pedro de Macorís, nació el 10 de octubre de 1951 en Nagua, diócesis de San Francisco de Macorís, en la República Dominicana. Realizó estudios elementales en las escuelas Payita y Mercedes Bello de Nagua; posteriormente estudió en el Seminario San Pío X de Licey al Medio en Santiago de los Caballeros.

Estudió filosofía en la Universidad Madre y Maestra de la archidiócesis de Santiago de los Caballeros y teología en el Pontificio Seminario Santo Tomás de Aquino de la misma archidiócesis.

Fue ordenado presbítero el 2 de septiembre de 1978 en la diócesis de San Francisco de Macorís; tras su ordenación presbiterial recibió los siguientes encargos- director de la ópera diocesana para las vocaciones sacerdotales en la diócesis de San Francisco de Macorís y vicerrector y formador del Seminario menor de la diócesis de La Vega (1978-1981).

Posteriormente fue vicario episcopal para la pastoral y párroco de María Madre de la Iglesia (1981-1988) luego párroco durante nueve meses de San José la Bomba de Cenoví, de San Juan Bautista de Pimentel (13 meses) y de Santa Ana de San Francisco de Macoris (2 años).

En 1988 fue enviado a Roma para estudiar en la Pontificia Universidad Lateranense, donde se licenció en 1990 en teología pastoral.

De regreso en la República Dominicana fue formador y profesor de teología pastoral en el Pontificio Seminario Santo Tomás de Aquino de la archidiócesis de Santo Domingo (1990-1992). Fue párroco de la parroquia de la Santísima Trinidad de Nagua y de la de San Francisco de Asís de El Factor (1992-1997), y también de la de Santiago Apóstol de Arroyo al Medio.

El 1 de febrero de 1997 fue nombrado primer obispo de la nueva diócesis de San Pedro de Macorís; en la Conferencia Episcopal Dominicana fue presidente de la Comisión Nacional para Laicos, de la Comisión Nacional de Pastoral de la Movilidad Humana, de la Comisión Episcopal de Pastoral Haitiana y para los Trabajadores de la Salud.

Además de este nombramiento el papa aceptó la renuncia como auxiliar de la archidiócesis de Santo Domingo de monseñor Amancio Escapa Aparicio, obispo titular de Cene, según los artículos del código canónico referidos a quienes cumplen los 75 años.

Danilo Medina: OEA debe pedir perdón a República Dominicana por legitimar invasión de 1965

Published on Jun 13, 2016

El presidente Danilo Medina demandó hoy a la Organización de Estados Americanos (OEA) pedir perdón al pueblo dominicano por haber legitimado la invasión a la República Dominicana en el año 1965.

El jefe de Estado dominicano afirmó que esta invasión abortó el proceso democrático que se había iniciado con la elección como presidente del profesor Juan Bosch, impidiendo así el retorno al orden constitucional, legítimamente establecido en el 1963.

Mas en: http://presidencia.gob.do/noticias/da…


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