Liberia History

Liberia History

First part of the 20th century

Two events played an important role in altering the isolation that Liberia had imposed on itself. The first was the concession in 1926 of a large plantation from the Firestone company. This event was a great step towards subjugating the Liberian economy. The second occurred during World War II, when the United States began to provide technical and economic assistance that would allow Liberia to progress economically and introduce social change. According to educationvv, Liberia is a country located in Africa.

1980 coup

At midnight on December of April of 1980 a group of Krahn officers led by Master Sergeant Samuel Doe staged a coup d’etat in which they killed William R. Tolbert, Jr., who had been president for nine years. Under the name of the People’s Redemption Council, Doe and his allies gained control of the government and ended the first African republic. Doe was Liberia’s first head of state not to come from the Americo-Liberian elite.

In the early 1980s, the United States provided Liberia with more than $ 500 million to drive the Soviet Union out of the country and to secure exclusive rights to use Liberian ports and land for the United States (including permission to the CIA to use Liberian territory to spy on Libya).

Doe ruled in an authoritarian manner, expelled the newspapers, and outlawed various opposition parties. His tactic was to label these enemy parties “socialist” and thereby outlaw them under the Liberian constitution, while allowing less popular minor parties to continue to exist as harmless opposition. However, popular support was realigned with one of these smaller parties, which in turn led to them being labeled “socialists.”

1985 elections

In October 1985 Liberia held its first post-coup elections, with the clear intention of legitimizing the Doe regime. Almost all international observers agreed that the Liberian Action Party (LAP), led by Jackson Doe (unrelated to the Doe in government) had won the election by a wide margin. After a week of counting the votes, however, Doe fired the counting employees and replaced them with his Special Election Committee (SECOM), which announced that Doe’s ruling party, the National Democratic Party of Liberia, he had won with 50.9% of the votes.

In retaliation, there was a backlash on November 12 led by Thomas Quiwonkpa, whose soldiers briefly occupied the Executive Mansion and the national radio station, with broad support across the country. Three days later the Quiwonkpa coup failed. Following this failed coup, government repression intensified and Doe’s troops killed more than 2,000 civilians and imprisoned more than 100 opposition politicians, including Jackson Doe, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and BBC journalist Isaac. Bantu.

Civil wars of 1989 and 1999

At the end of [[1989 the First Liberian Civil War began and in September 1990 Doe was deposed and assassinated by the forces of the faction led by Yormie Johnson and members of the Gio tribe. As a condition for ending the conflict, Provisional President Amos Sawyer resigned in 1994, leaving power in the Council of State.

Charles G. Taylor was elected president in the 1997 elections, after leading a bloody insurrection backed by Libyan President Muammar al-Gaddafi. The Taylor regime set itself the goal of ending opposition leaders. In 1998 the government tried to assassinate child rights activist Kimmie Weeks, for a report he published on military training for children.

The autocratic and dysfunctional Taylor government led the country into a Second Civil War in 1999. It is estimated that more than 200,000 people died in the two civil wars. The conflict escalated in mid- 2003 and the fighting moved to Monrovia. As the power of the government waned, and with increasing international pressure to resign, President Charles G. Taylor accepted Nigeria’s offer of asylum, saying “God willing, I’ll be back.”

Transitional government

Following Taylor’s exile, Gyude Bryant was appointed President of the Transitional Government in late 2003. The first task of the Transitional Government was to prepare for a fair election.

With UN and ECOMOG troops guarding the peace, Liberia held peaceful elections in the fall of 2005. Twenty-three candidates ran, in which it was expected that George Weah, an internationally acclaimed footballer, UNICEF ambassador and member of the group Kru ethnic group will dominate the popular vote.

No candidate got the majority necessary to govern, so a second round was held between the two most voted, Weah and Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf.

The 8 of November of 2005 it was stated that Johnson-Sirlaf an economist at Harvard, had won the elections. Both the general elections and the second round were held in peace and order, with thousands of Liberians waiting patiently to vote. To this day, it is suspected that the elections were fraudulent, despite the great efforts made by the country.

Johnson-Sirleaf Presidency

The daughter of the first indigenous Liberian elected to a national legislature, Jahmale Carney Johnson, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf was born in rural Liberia. Widely hailed as Africa’s first elected female head of state, Johnson-Sirleaf’s victory brought international attention to Liberia. A former employee of Citibank and the World Bank, she is trying to get the country’s external debt of $ 3.5 million canceled, and is also investing in the country and participating in the reconstruction efforts of Liberia.

In addition to focusing its early efforts on restoring basic services such as water and electricity to the capital, Monrovia, Johnson-Sirleaf has set up a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to deal with crimes that occurred in the later stages of WWII. Liberian Civil. It is also working to restore Liberia’s food independence. Johnson-Sirleaf also called for Nigeria to extradite war criminal Charles Taylor.

Johnson-Sirleaf lived a large part of her life in the United States, for which she is accused of ignoring the Liberian reality from within, and of having won the elections fraudulently with the manifest support of the United States.

Extradition and trial of Charles Taylor

In March 2006, President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf sent a letter formally requesting the extradition of Charles Ghankay Taylor to bring him to justice. Although Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo confirmed that he had received this request and notified the President of the African Union, Denis Sassou-Nguesso, and the President of ECOWAS, Mamadou Tandja on March 17, 2006, Nigeria’s plans were not fully realized. clear.

Following meetings between representatives of Nigeria and Liberia to discuss the issue, Nigeria announced on March 25 that it would allow the Liberian authorities to arrest Taylor. It was feared that Taylor, a billionaire, could easily escape before being brought before the International Court of Crimes in Sierra Leone. On March 28, Taylor had disappeared from the Nigerian compound he was in.

On March 29, he was captured again by the border guard while trying to travel to Cameroon. Taylor was rushed to Liberia, from where he was airlifted to Sierra Leone, where he faced charges of crimes against humanity. According to the Trial Watch website, June 4, 2007 was the provisional date set for the trial.

Although it would finally start in January 2008, it is still open (August 2010). He is accused of having led, trained and armed Sierra Leone’s Revolutionary United Front (RUF) rebels in exchange for rough diamonds, starting a war that left 120,000 dead. He is also tried for deaths, rapes and for having used child soldiers. During the trial, the former Liberian president has declared that he never had in his possession rough diamonds, a controversial statement as the model Naomi Campbell claimed to have received three rough diamonds from two unidentified men during a dinner in which Charles was Taylor.

Liberia History