Prior to the 1980s Honduras was an obscure backwater, of little public or policy concern in the United States. With the advent of the Reagan administration, however, Hondurans found themselves at the center of the US-Central American imbroglio, a launching pad for the administration's contra war against the Sandinista government in Nicaragua and for counterinsurgency operations against guerrillas in El Salvador. Placing events in the context of Honduran history, the authors provide penetrating insights into the causes of revolution in Central America and the sources of stability that enabled Honduras to escape the civil strife that consumed its neighbors. At the same time, the work offers a fascinating account of Honduran domestic politics and of the personalities, motives, and maneuvers of policymakers on both sides of the U.S.-Honduras relationship—too often a tale of intrigue, violence, and corruption.
Preface -- Introduction -- The Land of the Midnight Coup -- The Strategy of Conflict -- The Backlash -- The United States and Honduras: From Crisis to Crisis -- A Journey into the Depths: Economic Crisis and Social Decay -- The United States, Honduras, and the End of the Contra War -- The Invisible Country -- How Honduras Escaped Revolutionary Violence