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Republic of Cuba

República de Cuba  (Spanish)
Five horizontal stripes: three blue and two white. A red equilateral triangle at the left of the flag, partly covering the stripes, with a white five pointed star in the centre of the triangle. A shield in front of a fasces crowned by the Phrygian Cap, all supported by an oak branch and a laurel wreath
Flag Coat of arms
Motto: “¡Patria o Muerte, Venceremos!” (Spanish)
“Homeland or Death, we will overcome!”[1]
Anthem: La Bayamesa
Bayamo Song [2]

Political map of the Caribbean region with Cuba in red. An inset shows a world map with the main map's edges outlined.
and largest city
23°8′N 82°23′W
Official languages Spanish
Ethnic groups(2012)
Demonym Cuban
Government Marxist–Leninist single-party state
 – President Raúl Castro
 – First Vice President Miguel Díaz-Canel[3]
 – First Secretary of Communist Party Raúl Castro
 – President of the
National Assembly
Esteban Lazo Hernández
Legislature National Assembly
Independence from Spain and the United States
 – Ten Years’ War 1868 – 1878
 – Republic declared May 20, 1902
 – Cuban Revolution January 1, 1959
 – Total 109,884 km2 (106th)
42,426 sq mi
 – Water (%) negligible[4]
 – 2012 census 11,167,325[5]
 – Density 102/km2 (106th)
264.0/sq mi
GDP (PPP) 2012 estimate
 – Total $121 billion[6] (66th)
 – Per capita $10,200 (2010 est.) (92nd)
GDP (nominal) 2012 estimate
 – Total $71.017 billion[7] (65th)
 – Per capita $6,301 (91st)
Gini (2000) negative increase 38.0[8]
HDI (2013) Increase 0.780[9]
high · 59th


Time zone CST (UTC−5)
 – Summer (DST) CDT (UTC−4)
Drives on the right
Calling code +53
ISO 3166 code CU
Internet TLD .cu
a. From 1993 to 2004, the United States dollar was used alongside the peso until the dollar was replaced by the convertible peso.
Cuba, officially the Republic of Cuba (Listeni/ˈkjuːbə/SpanishRepública de Cubapronounced: [reˈpuβlika ðe ˈkuβa] ( )), is an island country in the Caribbean. The nation of Cuba comprises the main island of Cuba, the Isla de la Juventud, and several archipelagosHavana is the capital of Cuba and its largest city. The second largest city is Santiago de Cuba.[10][11][12] To the north of Cuba lies the United States (145 km or 90 mi away) and the Bahamas are to the northeast, Mexico is to the west (210 km or 130 mi away), the Cayman Islands andJamaica are to the south, and Haiti and the Dominican Republic are to the southeast.
The island of Cuba was inhabited by numerous Mesoamerican tribes prior to its invasion by Italian explorer Christopher Columbus in 1492, who claimed it for the Kingdom of Spain. Cuba remained a colony of Spain until the Spanish–American War of 1898, after which it was briefly administered by the United States until gaining nominal independence in 1902. The fragile republic endured increasingly radical politics and social strife, and despite efforts to strengthen its democratic system, Cuba came under the dictatorship of former presidentFulgencio Batista in 1952.[13][14][15] Growing unrest and instability led to Batista’s ousting in January 1959 by the July 26 movement, which afterwards established a new socialist administration under the leadership of Fidel Castro. Since 1965, the country has been governed as asingle-party state by the Communist Party.
Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean, and with over 11 million inhabitants, is the second-most populous after Hispaniola, albeit with a much lower population density than most nations in the region. A multiethnic country, its peopleculture, and customs derive from diverse origins, including the aboriginal Taíno and Ciboney peoples, the long period of Spanish colonialism, the introduction of African slaves, a close relationship with the Soviet Union during the Cold War, and close proximity to the United States.
Cuba ranks high in metrics of health and education, with a high Human Development Index of 0.780 as of 2013. According to data it presents to the United Nations, Cuba was the only nation in the world in 2006 that met the World Wide Fund for Nature‘s definition of sustainable development, with an ecological footprint of less than 1.8 hectares per capita, 1.5 hectares, and a Human Development Index of over 0.855.[16][17]


The name Cuba comes from the Taíno language. The exact meaning of the name is unclear but it may be translated either as where fertile land is abundant (cubao),[18] or great place (coabana).[19] Authors who believe that Christopher Columbus was Portuguese state that Cubawas named by Columbus for the town of Cuba in the district of Beja in Portugal.[20][21]



Sketch of a Taíno woman, also known as the Arawak by the Spanish.
Cuba was inhabited by American Indian people known as the Taíno, also called Arawak by the Spanish, and Guanajatabey and Ciboney people before the arrival of the Spanish. The ancestors of these Native Americans migrated from the mainland of North, Central and South America several centuries earlier.[22] The native Taínos called the island Caobana.[23] The Taíno were farmers while the Ciboney were farmers as well as fishers and hunter-gatherers.

Spanish colonization and rule (1492-1898)

After first landing on an island then called GuanahaniBahamas on October 12, 1492,[24] La Pinta, La Niña and the Santa Maria, the first three European ships under the command of Christopher Columbus, landed on Cuba’s northeastern coast near what is now Bariay, Holguin province on October 28, 1492.[25] He claimed the island for the new Kingdom of Spain[26] and named Isla Juana after Juan, Prince of Asturias.[27]
In 1511, the first Spanish settlement was founded by Diego Velázquez de Cuéllar at Baracoa. Other towns soon followed including the future capital of San Cristobal de la Habana which was founded in 1515. The native Taínos were working under the encomienda system,[28] which resembled a feudal system in Medieval Europe.[29] Within a century the indigenous people were virtually wiped out due to multiple factors, including Eurasian infectious diseases aggravated in large part by a lack of natural resistance as well as privation stemming from repressive colonial subjugation.[30] In 1529, a measles outbreak in Cuba killed two-thirds of the natives who had previously survived smallpox.[31][32]
On September 1, 1548, Dr. Gonzalo Perez de Angulo was appointed governor of Cuba. He arrived in Santiago, Cuba on November 4, 1549 and immediately declared the liberty of all natives.[33] He became Cuba’s first permanent governor who resided in Havana instead of Santiago, and he built Havana’s first church made of masonry.[34] After the French took Havana in 1555, the governor’s son, Francisco de Angulo, went to Mexico.[35]
The population in 1817 was 630,980, of which 291,021 were white, 115,691 free men (mixed-race), and 224,268 black slaves.[36] In the 1820s, when the rest of Spain’s empire in Latin America rebelled and formed independent states, Cuba remained loyal.
Slaves in Cuba unloading ice from Maine, c. 1832.
A series of slave rebellions and revolts took place during the ‘sugar boom’ under Spanish colonizing with the 1812 Aponte Slave Rebellion in Cuba against the Atlantic Slave Trade.[37] Independence from Spain was the motive for a rebellion in 1868 led by Carlos Manuel de Céspedes. De Céspedes, a sugar planter, freed his slaves to fight with him for a free Cuba. On 27 December 1868, he issued a decree condemning slavery in theory but accepting it in practice and declaring free any slaves whose masters present them for military service.[38] The 1868 rebellion resulted in a prolonged conflict known as the Ten Years’ War. Two thousand Cuban Chinese joined the rebels. There is a monument in Havana that honours the Cuban Chinese who fell in the war.[39]
The United States declined to recognize the new Cuban government, although many European and Latin American nations did so.[40] In 1878, the Pact of Zanjón ended the conflict, with Spain promising greater autonomy to Cuba. In 1879–1880, Cuban patriot Calixto García attempted to start another war known as the Little War but received little support.[41] Abolition of slavery in Cuba began the final third of the 19th century, and was completed in the 1880s.[42][43]
Carlos Manuel de Céspedes is known as Father of the Homelandin Cuba, having declared the nation’s independence from Spain in 1868.
An exiled dissident named José Martí founded the Cuban Revolutionary Party in New York in 1892. The aim of the party was to achieve Cuban independence from Spain.[44] In January 1895 Martí traveled to Montecristi and Santo Domingo to join the efforts of Máximo Gómez.[44] Martí recorded his political views in the Manifesto of Montecristi.[45] Fighting against the Spanish army began in Cuba on 24 February 1895, but Martí was unable to reach Cuba until 11 April 1895.[44] Martí was killed in the battle of Dos Rios on 19 May 1895.[44] His death immortalized him as Cuba’s national hero.[45]
Around 200,000 Spanish troops outnumbered the much smaller rebel army which relied mostly on guerrilla and sabotage tactics. The Spaniards began a campaign of suppression. General Valeriano Weyler, military governor of Cuba, herded the rural population into what he called reconcentrados, described by international observers as “fortified towns”. These are often considered the prototype for 20th-century concentration camps.[46] Between 200,000 and 400,000 Cuban civilians died from starvation and disease in the camps, numbers verified by the Red Cross and United States Senator and former Secretary of War Redfield Proctor. American and European protests against Spanish conduct on the island followed.[47]
The U.S. battleship Maine was sent to protect U.S. interests, but she exploded suddenly and sank quickly, killing nearly three quarters of her crew. The cause and responsibility for her sinking remained unclear after a board of inquiry, but popular opinion in the U.S., fueled by an active press, concluded that the Spanish were to blame and demanded action.[48] Spain and the United States declared war on each other in late April.
Over the decades, four US presidents—PolkBuchananGrant, and McKinley—tried to buy the island from Spain.[49]

Independence (1902-1959)

Raising the Cuban flag on the Governor General’s Palace at noon on May 20, 1902.
After the Spanish-American War, Spain and the United States signed the Treaty of Paris (1898), by which Spain ceded Puerto Rico, the Philippines, and Guam to the United States for the sum of $20 million.[50] Cuba gained formal independence from the U.S. on May 20, 1902, as the Republic of Cuba.[51] Under Cuba’s new constitution, the U.S. retained the right to intervene in Cuban affairs and to supervise its finances and foreign relations. Under the Platt Amendment, the U.S. leased the Guantánamo Bay naval base from Cuba.
Following disputed elections in 1906, the first president, Tomás Estrada Palma, faced an armed revolt by independence war veterans who defeated the meager government forces.[52] The U.S. intervened by occupying Cuba and named Charles Edward Magoon as Governor for three years. Cuban historians have attributed Magoon’s governorship as having introduced political and social corruption.[53] In 1908, self-government was restored when José Miguel Gómez was elected President, but the U.S. continued intervening in Cuban affairs. In 1912, the Partido Independiente de Color attempted to establish a separate black republic in Oriente Province,[54] but was suppressed by General Monteagudo with considerable bloodshed.
In 1924, Gerardo Machado was elected president.[55] During his administration, tourism increased markedly, and American-owned hotels and restaurants were built to accommodate the influx of tourists.[55] The tourist boom led to increases in gambling and prostitution.[55] The Wall Street Crash of 1929 led to precipitous drops in the price of sugar, political unrest, and repression.[56] Protesting students, known as the Generation of 1930, turned to violence in opposition to the increasingly unpopular Machado.[56] A general strike (in which the Communist Party sided with Machado),[57] uprisings among sugar workers, and an army revolt forced Machado into exile in August 1933. He was replaced by Carlos Manuel de Céspedes y Quesada.[56]
The Pentarchy of 1933Fulgencio Batista, who controlled the armed forces, appears at far right.
In September 1933, the Sergeants’ Revolt, led by Sergeant Fulgencio Batista, overthrew Cespedes.[58] A five-member executive committee (the Pentarchy of 1933) was chosen to head a provisional government.[59] Ramon Grau San Martin was then appointed as provisional president.[59] Grau resigned in 1934, leaving the way clear for Batista, who dominated Cuban politics for the next 25 years, at first through a series of puppet-presidents.[58] The period from 1933 to 1937 was a time of “virtually unremitting social and political warfare”.[60]
new constitution was adopted in 1940, which engineered radical progressive ideas, including the right to labour and health care.[61] Batista was elected president in the same year, holding the post until 1944.[62] He is so far the only non-white Cuban to win the nation’s highest political office.[14][63][64] His government carried out major social reforms. Several members of the Communist Party held office under his administration.[65] Cuban armed forces were not greatly involved in combat during World War II, although president Batista suggested a joint U.S.-Latin American assault on Francoist Spain in order to overthrow its authoritarian regime.[66]
Batista adhered to the 1940 constitution’s strictures preventing his re-election.[67] Ramon Grau San Martin was the winner of the next election, in 1944.[62] Grau further corroded the base of the already teetering legitimacy of the Cuban political system, in particular by undermining the deeply flawed, though not entirely ineffectual, Congress and Supreme Court.[68] Carlos Prío Socarrás, a protege of Graud, became president in 1948.[62] The two terms of the Auténtico Party saw an influx of investment fueled a boom which raised living standards for all segments of society and created a prosperous middle class in most urban areas.[69]
After running unsuccessfully for the presidency in 1952, Batista staged a coup.[70] He outlawed the Cuban Communist Party in 1952.[71] Cuba had Latin America’s highest per capita consumption rates of meat, vegetables, cereals, automobiles, telephones and radios, though about one third of the population was considered poor and enjoyed relatively little of this consumption.[72]
In 1958, Cuba was a relatively well-advanced country by Latin American standards, and in some cases by world standards.[73] On the other hand, Cuba was affected by perhaps the largest labor union privileges in Latin America, including bans on dismissals and mechanization. They were obtained in large measure “at the cost of the unemployed and the peasants”, leading to disparities.[74] Between 1933 and 1958, Cuba extended economic regulations enormously, causing economic problems.[14][15] Unemployment became a problem as graduates entering the workforce could not find jobs.[14] The middle class, which was comparable to that of the United States, became increasingly dissatisfied with unemployment and political persecution. The labor unions supported Batista until the very end.[14][63] Batista stayed in power until he was forced into exile in December 1958.[70]

Revolution and Communist party rule (1959-present)

Main article: Cuban Revolution
Che Guevara and Fidel Castro, photographed by Alberto Korda in 1961.
In the 1950s, various organizations, including some advocating armed uprising, competed for the public’s support in bringing about political change.[75] In 1956, Fidel Castro and about 80 other rebels aboard the Granma yacht launched a failed attempt to start a rebellion against the government.[75]It was not until 1958 that the July 26th Movement emerged as the leading revolutionary group.[75]
By late 1958, the rebels broke out of the Sierra Maestra and launched a general popular insurrection. After the fighters captured Santa Clara, Batista fled from Havana on 1 January 1959 to exile in Portugal. Fidel Castro’s forces entered the capital on 8 January 1959. The liberal Manuel Urrutia Lleóbecame the provisional president.[76]
From 1959 to 1966 Cuban insurgents fought a six-year rebellion in the Escambray Mountains against the Castro government. The insurgency was eventually crushed by the government’s use of vastly superior numbers. The rebellion lasted longer and involved more soldiers than the Cuban Revolution.[77][78] The U.S. State Department has estimated that 3,200 people were executed from 1959 to 1962.[79] Other estimates for the total number of political executions range from 4,000 to 33,000.[80][81][82]
The revolution was initially received positively in the United States, where it was seen as part of a movement to bring democracy to Latin America.[83] Castro’s legalization of the Communist party and the public trials and executions of hundreds of Batista’s supporters caused a deterioration in the relationship between the two countries.[83] The promulgation of the Agrarian Reform Law, expropriating farmlands of over 1,000 acres, further worsened relations.[83] In February 1960, Castro signed a commercial agreement with Soviet Vice-Premier Anastas Mikoyan.[83] In March 1960, Eisenhower gave his approval to a CIA plan to arm and train a group of Cuban refugees to overthrow the Castro regime.[84]
The invasion (known as the Bay of Pigs Invasion) took place on April 14, 1961.[85] About 1,400 Cuban exiles disembarked at the Bay of Pigs, but failed in their attempt to overthrow Castro.[85] In January 1962, Cuba was suspended from the Organization of American States (OAS), and later the same year the OAS started to impose sanctions against Cuba of similar nature to the US sanctions.[86] The tense confrontation known as the Cuban Missile Crisis occurred in October, 1962. By 1963, Cuba was moving towards a full-fledged Communist system modeled on the USSR.[87]
Fidel Castro and members of the East German Politburo in 1972.
During the 1970s, Fidel Castro dispatched tens of thousands of troops in support of Soviet-supported wars in Africa, particularly the MPLA in Angola and Mengistu Haile Mariam in Ethiopia.[88]
The standard of living in 1970s was “extremely spartan” and discontent was rife.[89] Fidel Castro admitted the failures of economic policies in a 1970 speech.[89]
In 1975 the OAS lifted its sanctions against Cuba, with the approval of 16 member states, including the U.S. The U.S., however, maintained its own sanctions.[86]
Castro’s rule was severely tested in the aftermath of the Soviet collapse in 1991 (known in Cuba as the Special Period), when the country faced a severe economic downturn following the withdrawal of former Soviet subsidies worth $4 billion to $6 billion annually, resulting in effects such as food and fuel shortages.[90][91] The government did not accept American donations of food, medicines, and cash until 1993.[90] On 5 August 1994, state security dispersed protesters in a spontaneous protest in Havana.[92]
Cuba has found a new source of aid and support in the People’s Republic of China, and new allies in Hugo Chávez, former President of Venezuela and Evo MoralesPresident of Bolivia, both major oil and gas exporters. In 2003, the government arrested and imprisoned a large number of civil activists, a period known as the “Black Spring”.[93][94]
In February 2008, Fidel Castro announced his resignation as President of Cuba,[95] and on 24 February his brother, Raúl Castro, was elected as the new President.[96] In his acceptance speech, Raúl promised that some of the restrictions that limit Cubans’ daily lives would be removed.[97] In March 2009, Raúl Castro removed some of Fidel Castro’s officials.[98]
On 3 June 2009, the Organization of American States adopted a resolution to end the 47-year ban on Cuban membership of the group.[99] The resolution stated, however, that full membership would be delayed until Cuba was “in conformity with the practices, purposes, and principles of the OAS.”[86] Cuban leaders have repeatedly announced they are not interested in rejoining the OAS, and Fidel Castro restated this after the OAS resolution had been announced.[100]

Government and politics

Main article: Politics of Cuba
Sign promoting the 2008 parliamentary election.
The Republic of Cuba is one of the world’s remaining socialist states with Communist governments. The Constitution of 1976, which defined Cuba as a socialist republic, was replaced by the Constitution of 1992, which is “guided by the ideas of José Martí and the political and social ideas of MarxEngels and Lenin.”[101] The constitution describes the Communist Party of Cuba as the “leading force of society and of the state”.[101]
The First Secretary of the Communist Party is concurrently President of the Council of State (President of Cuba) and President of the Council of Ministers (sometimes referred to as Premier of Cuba).[102] Members of both councils are elected by the National Assembly of People’s Power.[101] The President of Cuba, who is also elected by the Assembly, serves for five years and there is no limit to the number of terms of office.[101]
The headquarters of the Communist Party.
The People’s Supreme Court serves as Cuba’s highest judicial branch of government. It is also the court of last resort for all appeals against the decisions of provincial courts.
Cuba’s national legislature, the National Assembly of People’s Power (Asamblea Nacional de Poder Popular), is the supreme organ of power; 609 members serve five-year terms.[101] The assembly meets twice a year; between sessions legislative power is held by the 31 member Council of Ministers. Candidates for the Assembly are approved by public referendum. All Cuban citizens over 16 who have not been convicted of a criminal offense can vote. Article 131 of the Constitution states that voting shall be “through free, equal and secret vote”.[101]
Article 136 states: “In order for deputies or delegates to be considered elected they must get more than half the number of valid votes cast in the electoral districts”.[101] Votes are cast by secret ballot and counted in public view. Nominees are chosen at local gatherings from multiple candidates before gaining approval from election committees. In the subsequent election, there is only one candidate for each seat, who must gain a majority to be elected.[citation needed]
No political party is permitted to nominate candidates or campaign on the island, including the Communist Party.[103] The Communist Party of Cuba has held six party congress meetings since 1975. In 2011, the party stated that there were 800,000 members, and representatives generally constitute at least half of the Councils of state and the National Assembly. The remaining positions are filled by candidates nominally without party affiliation. Other political parties campaign and raise finances internationally, while activity within Cuba by opposition groups is minimal.
The country’s first ever transsexual municipal delegate was elected in the province of Villa Clara in early 2013. Jose Agustin Hernandez, who goes by the name “Adela”, is a resident of the town of Caibarien and works as a nurse electrocardiogram specialist. In Cuba, delegates are not professional politicians and, therefore, do not receive a government salary.[104] While very young, Adela was imprisoned for her sexual identity after her father pressed charges against her, but in a January 2014 interview states:
… nothing was able to make me renounce my ideals, neither the mistreatment, nor the insults nor the blows changed my feelings towards the revolution. I can’t continue to hold a grudge for the suffering I endured. Every country makes mistakes and Cuba made them in the way it treated us, but it has had the courage to acknowledge this.[104]

Administrative divisions

The country is subdivided into 15 provinces and one special municipality (Isla de la Juventud). These were formerly part of six larger historical provinces: Pinar del Río, Habana, Matanzas, Las Villas, Camagüey and Oriente. The present subdivisions closely resemble those of the Spanish military provinces during the Cuban Wars of Independence, when the most troublesome areas were subdivided. The provinces are divided into municipalities.
Provinces of Cuba
  1. Pinar del Río
  2. Artemisa
  3. Havana
  4. Mayabeque
  5. Matanzas
  6. Cienfuegos
  7. Villa Clara
  8. Sancti Spíritus
  1. Ciego de Ávila
  2. Camagüey
  3. Las Tunas
  4. Granma
  5. Holguín
  6. Santiago de Cuba
  7. Guantánamo
  8. Isla de la Juventud

Human rights

Ladies in White demonstration in Havana(April 2012)
The Cuban government has been accused of numerous human rights abuses including torture, arbitrary imprisonment, unfair trials, and extrajudicial executions (also known as “El Paredón“).[105][106] The Human Rights Watch alleges the government “represses nearly all forms of political dissent” and that “Cubans are systematically denied basic rights to free expression, association, assembly, privacy, movement, and due process of law”.[107]
The European Union in 2003 accused the Cuban government of “continuing flagrant violation of human rights and fundamental freedoms”.[108] The United States continues an embargo against Cuba “so long as it continues to refuse to move toward democratization and greater respect for human rights”.[109]
Cuba had the second-highest number of imprisoned journalists of any nation in 2008 (the People’s Republic of China had the highest) according to various sources, including the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), an international NGO, and Human Rights Watch.[110][111] As a result of ownership restrictions, computer ownership rates are among the world’s lowest.[112] The right to use the Internet is granted only to selected locations and they may be monitored.[112][113]
Cuban dissidents who commit crimes face arrest and imprisonment. In the 1990s, Human Rights Watch reported that Cuba’s extensive prison system, one of the largest in Latin America, consists of some 40 maximum-security prisons, 30 minimum-security prisons, and over 200 work camps.[114] According to Human Rights Watch, political prisoners, along with the rest of Cuba’s prison population, are confined to jails with substandard and unhealthy conditions.[114]
Citizens cannot leave or return to Cuba without first obtaining official permission in addition to their passport and the visa requirements of their destination.[107] The membership of Cuba in the United Nations Human Rights Council has received criticism.[115]

Foreign relations

Propaganda sign in front of the United States Interests Section in Havana.
Cuba under Castro was a major contributor to anti-imperialist wars in Africa, Central America and Asia.
Cuban support for Algeria in 1961–5 achieved significant success.[116] Cuba sent tens of thousands of troops to Angola during the Angolan Civil War, where they fought against apartheid South Africa.[117] Other countries that featured Cuban involvement include Ethiopia,[118][119]Guinea,[120] Guinea-Bissau,[121] Mozambique,[122] and Yemen.[123]
Cuba is the only minor developing country to have projected influence on the world stage that is characteristic of a major global power.[124][125] Lesser known actions include the 1959 missions to the Dominican Republic.[126] The expedition failed, but a prominent monument to its members was erected in their memory in Santo Domingo by the Dominican government, and they feature prominently at the country’s Memorial Museum of the Resistance.[127]
Cuba is a founding member of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas.[128] At the end of 2012, tens of thousands of Cuban medical personnel worked abroad,[129] with as many as 30,000 doctors in Venezuela alone via the two countries’ oil-for-doctors programme.[130]
In 1996, the United States, then under President Bill Clinton, brought in the Cuban Liberty and Democratic Solidarity Act, better known as the Helms–Burton Act.[131]
In 2008, the EU and Cuba agreed to resume full relations and cooperation activities.[132] United States President Barack Obama stated on April 17, 2009, in Trinidad and Tobago that “the United States seeks a new beginning with Cuba”,[133] and reversed the Bush Administration‘s prohibition on travel and remittances by Cuban-Americans from the United States to Cuba.[134]

Crime and law enforcement

A police car in Holguín.
All law enforcement agencies are maintained under Cuba’s Ministry of the Interior which is supervised by the Revolutionary Armed Forces. In Cuba, citizens can receive police assistance by dialing “106” on their telephones.[135] The police force, which is referred to as “Policía Nacional Revolucionaria” or PNR is then expected to provide help. The Cuban government also has an agency called the Intelligence Directorate that conducts intelligence operations and maintains close ties with the Russian Federal Security Service.


As of 2009, Cuba spends about $91.8 million on its armed forces.[136] In 1985, Cuba devoted more than 10% of its GDP to military expenditures.[137] In response to American aggression, such as the Bay of Pigs Invasion, Cuba built up one of the largest armed forces in Latin America, second only to that of Brazil.[138]
From 1975 until the late 1980s, Soviet military assistance enabled Cuba to upgrade its military capabilities. After the loss of Soviet subsidies, Cuba scaled down the numbers of military personnel, from 235,000 in 1994 to about 60,000 in 2003.[139]
In February 2013, Raul Castro, current Cuban President, announced his resignation for 2018, that will end his current 5 year term, and hope to implement permanent term limits for future Cuban Presidents, including age limits.


Cuban export composition, 2009.
The Cuban state adheres to socialist principles in organizing its largely state-controlled planned economy. Most of the means of production are owned and run by the government and most of the labor force is employed by the state. Recent years have seen a trend toward more private sector employment. By 2006, public sector employment was 78% and private sector 22%, compared to 91.8% to 8.2% in 1981.[140] Any firm wishing to hire a Cuban must pay the Cuban government, which in turn will pay the employee in Cuban pesos.[141] The average monthly wage as of July 2013 is 466 Cuban pesos, which are worth about US$19.[142]
Cuba has a dual currency system, whereby most wages and prices are set in Cuban pesos (CUP), while the tourist economy operates with Convertible pesos (CUC), set at par with the US dollar.[142] Every Cuban household has a ration book (known as libreta) entitling it to a monthly supply of food and other staples, which are provided at nominal cost.[143]
Cigar production in Santiago de Cuba.
Before the collapse of the Soviet Union, Cuba depended on Moscow for substantial aid and sheltered markets for its exports. The removal of these subsidies (for example the oil[144][145]) sent the Cuban economy into a rapid depression known in Cuba as the Special Period. Cuba took limited free market-oriented measures to alleviate severe shortages of food, consumer goods, and services. These steps included allowing some self-employment in certain retail and light manufacturing sectors, the legalization of the use of the US dollar in business, and the encouragement of tourism. Cuba has developed a unique urban farm system (the organopónicos) to compensate for the end of food imports from the Soviet Union.
The leadership of Cuba has called for reforms in the country’s agricultural system. In 2008, Raúl Castro began enacting agrarian reforms to boost food production, as at that time 80% of food was imported. The reforms enacted are aimed at expanding land usage and increasing efficiency.[146] Venezuela supplies Cuba with an estimated 110,000 barrels (17,000 m3) a day of oil in exchange for money and the services of some 44,000 Cubans, most of them medical personnel, in Venezuela.[147] Estimates place Venezuelan assistance at over 20% of the Cuban GDP for 2008–2010, similar to the aid flows from the Soviet Union in 1985–1988.[148]
In 2005 Cuba had exports of $2.4 billion, ranking 114 of 226 world countries, and imports of $6.9 billion, ranking 87 of 226 countries.[149] Its major export partners are China 27.5%, Canada 26.9%, Netherlands 11.1%, Spain 4.7% (2007).[6] Cuba’s major exports are sugar, nickel, tobacco, fish, medical products, citrus, and coffee;[6] imports include food, fuel, clothing, and machinery. Cuba presently holds debt in an amount estimated to be $13 billion,[150] approximately 38% of GDP.[151] According to the Heritage Foundation, Cuba is dependent on credit accounts that rotate from country to country.[152] Cuba’s prior 35% supply of the world’s export market for sugar has declined to 10% due to a variety of factors, including a global sugar commodity price drop that made Cuba less competitive on world markets.[153]
In 2010, Cubans were allowed to build their own houses. According to Raul Castro, they will be able to improve their houses with this new permission, but the government will not endorse these new houses or improvements.[154]
On August 2, 2011, The New York Times reported Cuba as reaffirming their intent to legalize “buying and selling” of private property before the year ends. According to experts, the private sale of property could “transform Cuba more than any of the economic reforms announced by President Raúl Castro’s government”.[155] It will cut more than one million state jobs, including party bureaucrats who resist the changes.[156]
In August 2012, a specialist of the “Cubaenergia Company” announced the opening of Cuba’s first Solar Power Plant. As a member of the Cubasolar Group, there was also a mention of 10 additional plants in 2013.[157]
In October 2013, as part of Raul Castro’s latest reforms, Cuba announced an end to the dual currency system.[158]


Cuba’s most important mineral resource is nickel with 21% of total exports in 2011.[159] The output of Cuba’s nickel mines that year was 71,000 tons, approaching 4% of world production.[160] As of 2013, its reserves are estimated at 5.5 million tons, or over 7% of the world total.[160] Sherritt International of Canada operates a large nickel mining facility in Moa. Cuba is also a major producer of refined cobalt, a by-product of nickel mining operations.[161]
Oil exploration in 2005 by the US Geological Survey revealed that the North Cuba Basin could produce approximately 4.6 billion barrels (730,000,000 m3) to 9.3 billion barrels (1.48×109 m3) of oil. In 2006, Cuba started to test-drill these locations for possible exploitation.[162]


Main article: Tourism in Cuba
Varadero beach.
Tourism was initially restricted to enclave resorts where tourists would be segregated from Cuban society, referred to as “enclave tourism” and “tourism apartheid”.[163] Contacts between foreign visitors and ordinary Cubans were de facto illegal between 1992 and 1997.[164] The rapid growth of tourism during the Special Period had widespread social and economic repercussions in Cuba, and led to speculation about the emergence of a two-tier economy.[165]
Cuba has tripled its market share of Caribbean tourism in the last decade; as a result of significant investment in tourism infrastructure, this growth rate is predicted to continue.[166] 1.9 million tourists visited Cuba in 2003, predominantly from Canada and the European Union, generating revenue of $2.1 billion.[167] Cuba recorded 2,688,000 international tourists in 2011, the third-highest figure in the Caribbean (behind the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico).[168]
The Medical tourism sector caters to thousands of European, Latin American, Canadian, and American consumers every year. Allegations of widespread sex tourism are downplayed by the Cuban Justice minister.[169] According to a Government of Canada travel advice website, “Cuba is actively working to prevent child sex tourism, and a number of tourists, including Canadians, have been convicted of offences related to the corruption of minors aged 16 and under. Prison sentences range from 7 to 25 years.”[170]


Main article: Geography of Cuba
A general map of Cuba.
Cuba is an archipelago of islands located in the northern Caribbean Sea at the confluence with the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. It lies between latitudes 19° and 24°N, and longitudes 74° and 85°W. The United States lies 90 miles across the Straits of Florida to the north and northwest (to the closest tip of Key West, Florida), and the Bahamas to the north. Mexico lies 217 kilometers or 135 miles across the Yucatán Channel to the west (to the closest tip of Cabo Catoche in the State of Quintana Roo)
Haiti is to the east, Jamaica and the Cayman Islands to the south. Cuba is the principal island, surrounded by four smaller groups of islands: the Colorados Archipelago on the northwestern coast, the Sabana-Camagüey Archipelago on the north-central Atlantic coast, the Jardines de la Reina on the south-central coast and the Canarreos Archipelago on the southwestern coast.
The main island named Cuba is 1,250 km (780 mi) long, constituting most of the nation’s land area (104,556 km2 (40,369 sq mi)) and is the largest island in the Caribbean and 17th-largest island in the world by land area. The main island consists mostly of flat to rolling plains apart from the Sierra Maestra mountains in the southeast, whose highest point is Pico Turquino (1,974 m (6,476 ft)).
The second-largest island is Isla de la Juventud (Isle of Youth) in the Canarreos archipelago, with an area of 2,200 km2 (849 sq mi). Cuba has an official area (land area) of 109,884 km2 (42,426 sq mi). Its area is 110,860 km2 (42,803 sq mi) including coastal and territorial waters.


Main article: Climate of Cuba
With most of the island south of the Tropic of Cancer, the local climate is tropical, moderated by northeasterly trade winds that blow year-round. The temperature is also shaped by the Caribbean current, which brings in warm water from the equator. This makes the climate of Cuba warmer than Hong Kong, which is at around the same latitude as Cuba, but has a subtropical climate instead of a tropical climate. In general (with local variations), there is a drier season from November to April, and a rainier season from May to October. The average temperature is 21 °C (69.8 °F) in January and 27 °C (80.6 °F) in July. The warm temperatures of the Caribbean Sea and the fact that Cuba sits across the entrance to the Gulf of Mexico combine to make the country prone to frequent hurricanes. These are most common in September and October.


Cuba signed the Rio Convention on Biological Diversity on 12 June 1992, and became a party to the convention on 8 March 1994.[171] It has subsequently produced a National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan, with one revision which was received by the convention on 24 January 2008.[172]
The revision comprises an action plan with time limits for each item, and an indication of the governmental body responsible for delivery. There is, however, virtually no information in that document about biodiversity itself. The country’s fourth national report to the CBD, however, contains a detailed breakdown of the numbers of species of each kingdom of life recorded from Cuba, the main groups being: animals (17,801 species), bacteria (270 species), chromista (707 species), fungi, including lichen-forming species (5844 species), plants (9107 species) and protozoa (1440 species).[173]
As elsewhere in the world, vertebrate animals and flowering plants are well documented. The numbers recorded from Cuba for those groups are therefore likely to be close to the numbers which actually occur in Cuba. For most if not all of the other groups, however, the true numbers of species occurring in Cuba are likely to exceed, often considerably, the numbers of those recorded so far.


Main article: Demographics of Cuba
Racial and Ethnic Composition in Cuba (2012 Census)[174][175]
White 64.1%
Black 9.3%
Mulatto/Mestizo 26.6%
Asian 0.0%
Students of the Escuela Lenin.
According to the official census of 2010, Cuba’s population was 11,241,161, comprising 5,628,996 men and 5,612,165 women.[176] Its birth rate (9.88 births per thousand population in 2006)[177] is one of the lowest in the Western Hemisphere. Although the country has grown by around 4 million people since 1961, the rate of increase had simultaneously began to fall during that period, and the population began to decline in 2006, with a fertility rate of 1.43 children per woman.[178]
Indeed, this drop in fertility is among the largest in the Western Hemisphere,[179] and is attributed largely to unrestricted access to legal abortion: Cuba’s abortion rate was 58.6 per 1000 pregnancies in 1996, compared to an average of 35 in the Caribbean, 27 in Latin America overall, and 48 in Europe. Similarly, the use of contraceptives is also widespread, estimated at 79 percent of the female population (in the upper third of countries in the Western Hemisphere).[180]

Ethnoracial groups

Cuba’s population is multiethnic, reflecting its complex colonial origins. Intermarriage between diverse groups is widespread, and subsequently there is a discrepancy regarding the country’s racial composition: whereas the Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies at the University of Miami determined that 62 percent of Cubans are black,[181] the 2002 Cuban census found that a similar proportion of the population, 65.05 percent, was white.
Young boys in school uniform with soccer ball, Pinar del Río, December 2006.
In fact, the Minority Rights Group International determined that “An objective assessment of the situation of Afro-Cubans remains problematic due to scant records and a paucity of systematic studies both pre- and post-revolution. Estimates of the percentage of people of African descent in the Cuban population vary enormously, ranging from 33.9 per cent to 62 per cent”.[182]
Asians make up about one percent of the population, and are largely of Chinese ancestry, followed by FilipinosKoreans and Vietnamese. Many are descendants of farm laborers brought to the island by Spanish and American contractors during the 19th and early 20th century.[citation needed] Afro-Cubans are descended primarily from the Yoruba people,[citation needed] as well as several thousand North African refugees, most notably the Sahrawi Arabs of Western Sahara.[183]

Immigration and emigration

Immigration and emigration have played a prominent part in Cuba’s demographic profile. Between the 18th and early 20th century, large waves of CanarianCatalanAndalusianGalician, and other Spanish people immigrated to Cuba. Between 1899 and 1930 alone, close to a million Spaniards entered the country, though many would eventually return to Spain.[184] Other prominent immigrant groups included French,[185] PortugueseItalianRussianDutchGreekBritish, and Irish, as well as small number of descendants of U.S. citizens who arrived in Cuba in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Post-revolution Cuba has been characterized by significant levels of emigration, which has led to a large and influential diaspora community. During the three decades since January 1959, more than one million Cubans of all social classes — constituting 10 percent of the total population —emigrated to the United States, a proportion that matches the extent of emigration to the U.S. from the Caribbean as a whole during that period.[186][187][188][189][190] Other common destinations include Spain, the United Kingdom, Canada, Mexico, and Sweden, among others. Those who left the country typically did so by sea, in small boats and fragile rafts. Between 30,000 and 80,000 Cubans are estimated to have died trying to flee Cuba.[81] On 9 September 1994, the U.S. and Cuban governments agreed that the U.S. would grant at least 20,000 visas annually in exchange for Cuba’s pledge to prevent further unlawful departures on boats.[191]


Main article: Religion in Cuba
In 2010, the religious affiliation of the country was estimated by the Pew Forum to be 59.2 percent Christian (mostly Roman Catholic), 23.0 percent unaffiliated, 17.4 percent folk religion (such as santería), and the remaining 0.4 percent consisting of other religions.[192]
Cuba is officially a secular state. Religious freedom increased through the 1980s,[193] with the government amending the constitution in 1992 to drop the state’s characterization as atheistic.[194]
Roman Catholicism is the largest religion, with its origins rooted in Spanish colonization. Despite less than half of the population identifying as Catholics in 2006, it nonetheless remains the dominant faith.[152]
The religious landscape of Cuba is also strongly defined by syncretisms of various kinds. Christianity is often practiced in tandem with Santería, a mixture of Catholicism and mostly African faiths, which include a number of cults. La Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre (the Virgin of Cobre) is the Catholic patroness of Cuba, and a symbol of Cuban culture. In Santería, she has been syncretized with the goddess Oshun.
Cuba also hosts small communities of Jews (500 in 2012), Muslims, and members of the Bahá’í Faith.[195]


The official language of Cuba is Spanish and the vast majority of Cubans speak it. Spanish as spoken in Cuba is known as Cuban Spanish and is a form of Caribbean SpanishLucumi, a dialect of the West African language Yoruba, is also used as a liturgical language by practitioners of Santería,[196] and so only as a second language.[197] Haitian Creole is the second largest language in Cuba, and is spoken by Haitian immigrants and their descendants.[198] Other languages spoken by immigrants include Galician and Corsican.[199]

Largest cities


Main articles: Culture of Cuba and Sport in Cuba
Cuban culture is influenced by its melting pot of cultures, primarily those of Spain and Africa. After the 1959 revolution, the government started a national literacy campaign, offered free education to all and established rigorous sports, ballet and music programs.[200]
Due to historical associations with the United States, many Cubans participate in sports which are popular in North America, rather than sports traditionally promoted in other Spanish-speaking nations. Baseball is by far the most popular; other sports and pastimes include basketball,volleyballcricket, and athletics. Cuba is a dominant force in amateur boxing, consistently achieving high medal tallies in major international competitions. Cuba also provides a national team that competes in the Olympic Games.[201]
Internet in Cuba has some of the lowest penetration rates in the Western hemisphere, and all content is subject to review by the Department of Revolutionary Orientation.[202] ETECSA operates 118 cybercafes in the country.[202] The government of Cuba provides an online encyclopedia website called EcuRed that operates in a “wiki” format.[203] Internet access is limited.[204] The sale of computer equipment is strictly regulated. Internet access is controlled, and e-mail is closely monitored.[112]


Main article: Music of Cuba
A local musical house, Casa de la Trova in Santiago de Cuba
Cuban music is very rich and is the most commonly known expression of culture. The central form of this music is Son, which has been the basis of many other musical styles like salsarumba and mambo and an upbeat derivation of the rumba, the cha-cha-cha. Rumba music originated in early Afro-Cuban culture.[205] The Tres was also invented in Cuba, but other traditional Cuban instruments are of African origin, Taíno origin, or both, such as the maracasgüiromarimba and various wooden drums including the mayohuacan.
Popular Cuban music of all styles has been enjoyed and praised widely across the world. Cuban classical music, which includes music with strong African and European influences, and features symphonic works as well as music for soloists, has received international acclaim thanks to composers like Ernesto Lecuona. Havana was the heart of the rap scene in Cuba when it began in the 1990s.
During that time, reggaetón was growing in popularity. In 2011, the Cuban state denounced reggaeton as degenerate, directed reduced “low-profile” airplay of the genre (but did not ban it entirely) and banned the megahit Chupi Chupi by Osmani García, characterizing its description of sex as “the sort which a prostitute would carry out”.[206] In December 2012, the Cuban government officially banned sexually explicit reggaeton songs and music videos from radio and television.[207][208] Dance in Cuba has taken a major boost over the 1990s.


Main article: Cuban cuisine
A traditional meal of ropa vieja (shredded flank steak in a tomato sauce base), black beans, yellow rice, plantains and fried yuca with beer
Cuban cuisine is a fusion of Spanish and Caribbean cuisines. Cuban recipes share spices and techniques with Spanish cooking, with some Caribbean influence in spice and flavor. Food rationing, which has been the norm in Cuba for the last four decades, restricts the common availability of these dishes.[209] The traditional Cuban meal is not served in courses; all food items are served at the same time.
The typical meal could consist of plantains, black beans and rice, ropa vieja (shredded beef), Cuban bread, pork with onions, and tropical fruits. Black beans and rice, referred to as Moros y Cristianos (or moros for short), and plantains are staples of the Cuban diet. Many of the meat dishes are cooked slowly with light sauces. Garlic, cumin, oregano, and bay leaves are the dominant spices.


Main article: Cuban literature
Cuban literature began to find its voice in the early 19th century. Dominant themes of independence and freedom were exemplified by José Martí, who led the Modernist movement in Cuban literature. Writers such as Nicolás Guillén and Jose Z. Tallet focused on literature as social protest. The poetry and novels of Dulce María Loynaz and José Lezama Lima have been influential. Romanticist Miguel Barnet, who wrote Everyone Dreamed of Cuba, reflects a more melancholy Cuba.[210]
Writers such as Reinaldo ArenasGuillermo Cabrera Infante, and more recently Daína ChavianoPedro Juan GutiérrezZoé ValdésGuillermo Rosales and Leonardo Padura have earned international recognition in the post-revolutionary era, though many of these writers have felt compelled to continue their work in exile due to ideological control of media by the Cuban authorities.


Main article: Education in Cuba
A small school, in a village east of Santiago de Cuba.
The University of Havana was founded in 1728 and there are a number of other well-established colleges and universities. In 1957, just before Castro came to power, the literacy rate was fourth in the region at almost 80% according to the United Nations, higher than in Spain.[73][211]Castro created an entirely state-operated system and banned private institutions. School attendance is compulsory from ages six to the end of basic secondary education (normally at age 15), and all students, regardless of age or gender, wear school uniforms with the color denoting grade level. Primary education lasts for six years, secondary education is divided into basic and pre-university education.[212] Cuba’s literacy rate of 99.8 percent[6][213] is the tenth-highest globally, due largely to the provision of free education at every level.[214]
Higher education is provided by universities, higher institutes, higher pedagogical institutes, and higher polytechnic institutes. The Cuban Ministry of Higher Education operates a scheme of distance education which provides regular afternoon and evening courses in rural areas for agricultural workers. Education has a strong political and ideological emphasis, and students progressing to higher education are expected to have a commitment to the goals of Cuba.[212] Cuba has provided state subsidized education to a limited number of foreign nationals at the Latin American School of Medicine.[215][216]
According to the Webometrics Ranking of World Universities, the top-ranking universities in the country are Universidad de la Habana (1544th worldwide), Instituto Superior Politécnico José Antonio Echeverría (2603rd) and the Universidad Central Marta Abreu de la Villas (2947th).[217]


Main article: Healthcare in Cuba
An old Sarra Pharmacy, Havana.
As a result of its universal health care system,[218] its life expectancy at birth is 78 years.[6] The quality of public healthcare offered to citizens is regarded as the “greatest triumph” of Cuba’s socialist system.[219] Historically, Cuba has ranked high in numbers of medical personnel and has made significant contributions to world health since the 19th century.[73] Today, Cuba has universal health care and although shortages of medical supplies persist, there is no shortage of medical personnel.[220] Primary care is available throughout the island and infant and maternal mortality rates compare favorably with those in developed nations.[220]
Post-Revolution Cuba initially experienced an overall worsening in terms of disease and infant mortality rates in the 1960s when half its 6,000 doctors left the country.[221] Recovery occurred by the 1980s,[63] and the country’s healthcare has been widely praised.[222] The Communist government asserted that universal health care was to become a priority of state planning and progress was made in rural areas.[223] Like the rest of the Cuban economy, Cuban medical care suffered from severe material shortages following the end of Soviet subsidies in 1991, followed by a tightening of the U.S. embargo in 1992.[224]
Challenges include low pay of doctors (only $15 a month[225]), poor facilities, poor provision of equipment, and frequent absence of essential drugs.[226] Cuba has the highest doctor-to-population ratio in the world and has sent thousands of doctors to more than 40 countries around the world.[227]
According to the UN, the life expectancy in Cuba is 78.3 years (76.2 for males and 80.4 for females). This ranks Cuba 37th in the world and 3rd in the Americas, behind only Canada and Chile, and just ahead of the United States. Infant mortality in Cuba declined from 32 infant deaths per 1,000 live births in 1957, to 10 in 1990–95.[228] Infant mortality in 2000–2005 was 6.1 per 1,000 live births. Its infant mortality rate is 5.13.[6][213]
In Cuba, there is a need to import certain pharmaceutical drugs. Therefore, the Quimefa Pharmaceutical Business Group was developed under The Ministry of Basic Industry (MINBAS) called, “FARMACUBA.” This group also handles the exporting of pharmaceuticals, and provide technical information for the production of these drugs.[229]

See also


  1. Jump up^ “Cuban Peso Bills”. Central Bank of Cuba. Retrieved 2009-09-07.
  2. Jump up^ “National symbols”. Government of Cuba. Retrieved 2009-09-07.
  3. Jump up^ “Cuba’s Raul Castro to retire in five years”. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  4. Jump up^ “Anuario Estadístico de Cuba 2010”. Oficina Nacional de Estadísticas. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  5. Jump up^ “3.1 Población residente por sexo, tasa anual de crecimiento y relación de masculinidad”Anuario Estadístico de Cuba. Oficina Nacional de Estadísticas. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  6. Jump up to:a b c d e f “Cuba”The World Factbook. CIA. Retrieved 2009-04-06.
  7. Jump up^ [1]
  8. Jump up^ “Cuba grapples with growing inequality”Reuters. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  9. Jump up^ “Human development statistical annex”. United Nations Development Programme. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  10. Jump up^ “Cuba profile: Facts”. BBC News. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  11. Jump up^ Thomas 1998, p. ?.
  12. Jump up^ Thomas 1997, p. ?.
  13. Jump up^ “Remarks of Senator John F. Kennedy at Democratic Dinner, Cincinnati, Ohio”. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum – 1960-10-06. Retrieved 2010-11-07.
  14. Jump up to:a b c d e Horowitz 1988, p. 662
  15. Jump up to:a b Thomas 1998, p. 1173.
  16. Jump up^ “Living Planet Report 2006”World Wide Fund for NatureZoological Society of London,Global Footprint Network. 24 October 2006. p. 19. Retrieved 18 August 2012.
  17. Jump up^ World failing on sustainable development
  18. Jump up^ The Dictionary of the Taino Language (plate 8) Alfred Carrada
  19. Jump up^ Dictionary – Taino indigenous peoples of the Caribbean Dictionary —
  20. Jump up^ Augusto Mascarenhas Barreto: O Português. Cristóvão Colombo Agente Secreto do Rei Dom João II. Ed. Referendo, Lissabon 1988. English: The Portuguese Columbus: secret agent of King John II, Palgrave Macmillan,ISBN 0-333-56315-8
  21. Jump up^ da Silva, Manuel L. and Silvia Jorge da Silva. (2008).Christopher Columbus was Portuguese, Express Printing, Fall River, MA. 396pp. ISBN 978-1-60702-824-6.
  22. Jump up^ Ramón Dacal Moure, Manuel Rivero de la Calle (1996). Art and archaeology of pre-Columbian Cuba. University of Pittsburgh Press. p. 22. ISBN 0-8229-3955-X.
  23. Jump up^ “Taino Name for the Islands”. Retrieved 2010-11-07.
  24. Jump up^ Ted Henken (2008). Cuba: a global studies handbook. ABC-CLIO. p. 30ISBN 978-1-85109-984-9.(gives the landing date in Cuba as October 27)
  25. Jump up^ Cuba Oficina Del Censo (2009). Cuba: Population, History and Resources 1907. BiblioBazaar, LLC. p. 28ISBN 978-1-110-28818-2.(gives the landing date in Cuba as October 28)
  26. Jump up^ Gott 2004, p. 13
  27. Jump up^ Andrea, Alfred J.; Overfield, James H. (2005). “Letter by Christopher Columbus concerning recently discovered islands”. The Human Record 1. Houghton Mifflin Company. p. 8. ISBN 0-618-37040-4.
  28. Jump up^ “Encomienda or Slavery? The Spanish Crown’s Choice of Labor Organization in Sixteenth-Century Spanish America” (PDF). Latin American Studies. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  29. Jump up^ McAlister 1984, p. 164
  30. Jump up^ Diamond, Jared M. (1998). Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies. New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Co. ISBN 0-393-03891-2.
  31. Jump up^ Byrne, Joseph Patrick (2008). Encyclopedia of Pestilence, Pandemics, and Plagues: A-M. ABC-CLIO. p. 413. ISBN 0-313-34102-8.
  32. Jump up^ J. N. Hays (2005). “Epidemics and pandemics: their impacts on human history“. p.82. ISBN 1-85109-658-2
  33. Jump up^ Wright 1916, p. 183.
  34. Jump up^ Wright 1916, p. 229.
  35. Jump up^ Wright 1916, p. 246.
  36. Jump up^ Scheina 2003, p. 352.
  37. Jump up^ Childs, Matt D. (2006). The 1813 Aponte Rebellion in Cuba and the struggle against Atlantic Slavery. The University of North Carolina Press. p. 320 pages. ISBN 0-8078-5772-6.
  38. Jump up^ Chomsky, Carr & Smorkaloff 2004, pp. 115–7.
  39. Jump up^ Westad 2012, pp. 227–8
  40. Jump up^ “Historia de las Guerras de Liberación de Cuba”.
  41. Jump up^ “The Little War (La Guerra Chiquita)”.
  42. Jump up^ Scott 2000, p. 3
  43. Jump up^ Chomsky, Carr & Smorkaloff 2004, pp. 37–8.
  44. Jump up to:a b c d Stanley Sandler, ed. (2002). Ground warfare: an international encyclopedia. Part 25, Volume 1. ABC-CLIO. p. 549. ISBN 1-57607-344-0. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  45. Jump up to:a b David Arias (2005). Spanish-americans: Lives And Faces. Victoria, BC, Canada: Trafford Publishing. p. 171. ISBN 1-4120-4717-X. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  46. Jump up^ Robert K. Home (1997). Of Planting and Planning: The Making of British Colonial Cities. Chapman and Hall. p. 195.ISBN 0-419-20230-7. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  47. Jump up^ The Spanish-American War“Cuban Reconcentration Policy and its Effects”. Retrieved 2007-01-29.
  48. Jump up^ Morison, Samuel Loring; Morison, Samuel Eliot; Polmar, Norman (2003). The American Battleship. St. Paul, Minn.: MBI Publishing Company. p. 18. ISBN 0-7603-0989-2. Retrieved 2009-09-15.
  49. Jump up^ Falk 1988, p. 64.
  50. Jump up^ “Treaty of Peace Between the United States and Spain”The Avalon Project. Yale Law School. December 10, 1898.
  51. Jump up^ Louis A. Pérez (1998). Cuba Between Empires: 1878–1902. University of Pittsburgh Pre. p. xv. ISBN 978-0-8229-7197-9. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  52. Jump up^ Diaz-Briquets, Sergio; Jorge F Pérez-López (2006).Corruption in Cuba: Castro and Beyond. Austin: University of Texas Press. p. 63. ISBN 0-292-71321-5. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  53. Jump up^ Thomas 1998, pp. 283–7.
  54. Jump up^ Benjamin Beede, ed. (1994). The War of 1898, and U.S. interventions, 1898–1934: an encyclopedia. New York: Garland. p. 134. ISBN 0-8240-5624-8. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  55. Jump up to:a b c Terry K Sanderlin, Ed D (2012-04-24). The Last American Rebel in Cuba. AuthorHouse. p. 7. ISBN 978-1-4685-9430-0. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  56. Jump up to:a b c Wilber Albert Chaffee; Gary Prevost (1992). Cuba: A Different America. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 4.ISBN 978-0-8476-7694-1. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  57. Jump up^ Argote-Freyre, Frank (2006). Fulgencio Batista 1. New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press. p. 50. ISBN 0-8135-3701-0.
  58. Jump up to:a b Jones, Melanie (2001). Jacqueline West, ed. South America, Central America and the Caribbean 2002. Routledge. p. 303. ISBN 978-1-85743-121-6. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  59. Jump up to:a b Jaime Suchlicki (2002). Cuba: From Columbus to Castro and Beyond. Potomac Books, Inc. p. 95.ISBN 978-1-57488-436-4. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  60. Jump up^ Domínguez 1978, p. 76
  61. Jump up^ Domínguez 1978, p. ?.
  62. Jump up to:a b c Frank R. Villafana (2011-12-31). Expansionism: Its Effects on Cuba’s Independence. Transaction Publishers. p. 201. ISBN 978-1-4128-4656-1. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  63. Jump up to:a b c Bethell, Leslie (1993). Cuba. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-43682-3.
  64. Jump up^ Sweig 2004, p. 4
  65. Jump up^ Sweig 2004, p. ?.
  66. Jump up^ “Batista’s Boot”TIME. 18 January 1943. Retrieved 20 April 2013.
  67. Jump up^ Domínguez 1978, p. 101
  68. Jump up^ Domínguez 1978, pp. 110–1
  69. Jump up^ Alvarez 2004.
  70. Jump up to:a b Maureen Ihrie; Salvador Oropesa (2011-10-31). World Literature in Spanish: An Encyclopedia: An Encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO. p. 262.ISBN 978-0-313-08083-8. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  71. Jump up^ Sweig 2004, p. 6
  72. Jump up^ Paul H. Lewis (2006). Authoritarian Regimes in Latin America. Oxford, UK: Rowman & Littlefield. p. 186. ISBN 0-7425-3739-0. Retrieved 2009-09-14.
  73. Jump up to:a b c Smith & Llorens 1998.
  74. Jump up^ Baklanoff 1998.
  75. Jump up to:a b c Aviva Chomsky (2010-11-23). A History of the Cuban Revolution. John Wiley & Sons. pp. 37–38. ISBN 978-1-4443-2956-8. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  76. Jump up^ Falk 1988, p. 67.
  77. Jump up^ Ros (2006) pp. 159–201.
  78. Jump up^ “Anti-Cuba Bandits: terrorism in past tense”.
  79. Jump up^ “Background Note: Cuba”. 2012-06-21. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  80. Jump up^ “Cuba or the Pursuit of Freedom Hugh Thomas”. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  81. Jump up to:a b R.J. Rummel. “Power Kills”. University of Hawaii. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  82. Jump up^ Black Book of Communism. p. 664.
  83. Jump up to:a b c d Stephen G. Rabe (1988). Eisenhower and Latin America: The Foreign Policy of Anticommunism. UNC Press Books. pp. 123–125. ISBN 978-0-8078-4204-1. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  84. Jump up^ “This Day in History — 7/9/1960”. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  85. Jump up to:a b Richard A. Crooker (2005). Cuba. Infobase Publishing. pp. 43–44.ISBN 978-1-4381-0497-3. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  86. Jump up to:a b c “Case Studies in Sanctions and Terrorism: Case 60-3, US v. Cuba”. Peterson Institute for International Economics. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  87. Jump up^ Faria, Miguel A. Cuba in Revolution – Escape From a Lost Paradise, 2002, Hacienda Publishing, Inc., Macon, Georgia, pp. 163–228
  88. Jump up^ Domínguez 1989, p. ?.
  89. Jump up to:a b Bethell, Leslie. The Cambridge History of Latin AmericaISBN 0-521-62327-8.
  90. Jump up to:a b “Health consequences of Cuba’s Special Period”CMAJ : Canadian Medical Association (Canadian Medical Association Journal) 179 (3): 257. 2008.doi:10.1503/cmaj.1080068PMC 2474886.PMID 18663207.
  91. Jump up^ “Cuba’s Food & Agriculture Situation Report”.
  92. Jump up^ Carl Gershman and Orlando Gutierrez. “Can Cuba Change?”Journal of Democracy January 2009 20 (1).
  93. Jump up^ Carlos Lauria, Monica Campbell, and María Salazar (March 18, 2008). “Cuba’s Long Black Spring”. The Committee to Protect Journalists.
  94. Jump up^ “Cuba – No surrender by independent journalists, five years on from “black spring””. Reporters Without Borders. March 2008.
  95. Jump up^ “Castro resigns as Cuban president: official media”. Agence France-Presse. 2008-02-19. Retrieved 2008-02-19.
  96. Jump up^ “Raul Castro named Cuban president”. BBC News. 2008-02-24. Retrieved 2008-02-24.
  97. Jump up^ “Byte by byte”. The Economist. 2008-03-19. Retrieved 2008-04-04.
  98. Jump up^ “Raúl Castro replaces top Cuban officials”The Guardian (London). 2 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-09-15.
  99. Jump up^ “China View 2009-06-04: OAS plenary votes to end Cuba’s exclusion”. 2009-06-04. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  100. Jump up^ “China View 2009-06-04: Cuba’s Fidel Castro calls OAS a “U.S. Trojan horse””. 2009-06-04. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  101. Jump up to:a b c d e f g “The Constitution of the Republic of Cuba, 1976 (as Amended to 2002)”. National Assembly of People’s Power. Retrieved 18 August 2012.
    For discussion of the 1992 amendments, see Domínguez 2003.
  102. Jump up^ “Country profile: Cuba”. BBC News. 20 August 2009. Retrieved 2009-09-07.
  103. Jump up^ Cuba: Elections and Events 1991–2001 Latin American Election Statistics Home
  104. Jump up to:a b Fernando Ravsberg (8 January 2014). “Cuba’s First Transsexual Politician”Havana Times. Retrieved 9 January 2014.
  105. Jump up^ “Information about human rights in Cuba” (in español). Comision Interamericana de Derechos Humanos. April 7, 1967. Retrieved 2006-07-09.
  106. Jump up^ Bureau of Public Affairs (25 March 2010). “Cuba”United States Department of State. Retrieved 1 April 2011.
  107. Jump up to:a b “Cuba”. Human Rights Watch. 2006.
  108. Jump up^ “EU-Cuba relations”. European Communities. 2003-09-04. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  109. Jump up^ “Cuban Democracy Act”. U.S. Department of State. 1992. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  110. Jump up^ “CPJ’s 2008 prison census: Online and in jail”. Committee to Protect Journalists.
  111. Jump up^ Human Rights Watch (2008). World Report 2008: Events of 2007Seven Stories Press. p. 207. ISBN 978-1-58322-774-9.
  112. Jump up to:a b c “Internet in Cuba”.Reporters Without Borders.
  113. Jump up^ “Going online in Cuba: Internet under surveillance”. Reporters Without Borders. 2006.
  114. Jump up to:a b “Cuba’s Repressive Machinery – V. General Prison Conditions”. Human Rights Watch. Retrieved 2013-03-29.
  115. Jump up^ Hoge, Warren (3 February 2006). “Human Rights Council is now on UN agenda” Retrieved 15 April 2013.
  116. Jump up^ Gleijeses 1996, pp. 159, 161: “Cuba’s relationship with Algeria in 1961–5 … clashes with the image of Cuban foreign policy—cynical ploys of a [Soviet] client state—that prevails not only in the United States but also in many European capitals. … The aid Cuba gave Algeria in 1961–2 had nothing to do with the East-West conflict. Its roots predate Castro’s victory in 1959 and lie in the Cubans’ widespread identification with the struggle of the Algerian people.”
  117. Jump up^ Gleijeses 2010, p. 327: “The dispatch of 36,000 Cuban soldiers to Angola between November 1975 and April 1976 stunned the world; … by 1988, there were 55,000 Cuban soldiers in Angola.”
  118. Jump up^ Gleijeses 2002, p. 392: “After Angola, Cuba’s largest military intervention was in Ethiopia, where in 1978 16,000 Cuban troops helped repulse the invading Somali army.”
  119. Jump up^ Tareke 2009, pp. 62–3. Tareke refers here to the training given to 10 members of the Eritrean Liberation Frontin 1968 during the Eritrean struggle for independence.
  120. Jump up^ Gleijeses 1997, p. 50: “On 14–16 October 1960, [Guinean president Ahmed Sékou] Touré went to Havana. It was the first visit of an African chief of state to Cuba. The following year Cuba’s foreign aid programme to Third World governments began when fifteen students from Guinea arrived in Havana to attend the university or technical institutes.”
  121. Jump up^ Gleijeses 1997, p. 45: “Joining the rebellion in 1966, and remaining through the war’s end in 1974, this was the longest Cuban intervention in Africa before the despatch of troops to Angola in November 1975. It was also the most successful. As the Guinean paper Nõ Pintcha declared, ‘The Cubans’ solidarity was decisive for our struggle'”.
  122. Jump up^ Gleijeses 2002, p. 227. The Cuban contribution to the independence of Mozambique was not very important.
  123. Jump up^ Ramazani 1975, p. 91.
  124. Jump up^ Domínguez 1989, p. 6: “Cuba is a small country, but it has the foreign policy of a big power.”
  125. Jump up^ Feinsilver 1989, p. 2: “Cuba has projected disproportionately greater power and influence through military might … through economic largesse … as a mediator in regional conflicts, and as a forceful and persuasive advocate of Third World interests in international forums. Cuba’s scientific achievements, while limited, are also being shared with other Third World countries, thereby furthering Cuban influence and prestige abroad.”
  126. Jump up^ “AP 1950 Invasion Wiped Out Says Trujillo”. Waterloo, Iowa: Waterloo Daily Courier. 1959-06-24. p. 7.
  127. Jump up^ “Resistencia 1916–1966”. Retrieved 24 April 2013.
  128. Jump up^ Hirst, Joel D. (2 December 2010). “The Bolivarian Alliance of the Americas” Retrieved 24 April 2013.
  129. Jump up^ Millman, Joel (15 January 2011). “New Prize in Cold War: Cuban Doctors” Retrieved 24 April 2013.
  130. Jump up^ Arsenault, Chris (31 December 2012). “Cuban doctors prescribe hope in Venezuela” Retrieved 24 April 2013.
    As the article discusses, the oil-for-doctors programme has not been welcomed uncritically in Venezuela. The initial impetus for Cuban doctors’ going to Venezuela was a Chavez-government welfare project called Misión Barrio Adentro (Albornoz 2006).
  131. Roy’s study was described as “systematic and fair” by Jorge Domínguez—see Domínguez, Jorge I. (2001). “Reviews:Cuba, the United States, and the Helms-Burton Doctrine: International Reactions by Joaquín Roy”. Journal of Latin American Studies 33 (4): 888–890. JSTOR 3653779.
  132. Jump up^ “Joint declarations concerning areas and modalities provisionally identified for cooperation”. European Commission. 2008-11-26. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  133. Jump up^ “Obama Says U.S., Cuba Taking Critical Steps Toward a New Day”. Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. 2009-04-21. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  134. Jump up^ “U.S. Administration Announcement on U.S. Policy Toward Cuba”. Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. 2009-04-13. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  135. Jump up^ “Emergency Phone Numbers”. Retrieved 2013-06-10.
  136. Jump up^ “The SIPRI Military Expenditure Database”. Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  137. Jump up^ Williams, John Hoyt (1988-08-01). “Cuba: Havana’s Military Machine”The Atlantic. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  138. Jump up^ “Cuban armed forces and the Soviet military presence”.
  139. Jump up^ Cuban army called key in any post-Castro scenario Anthony Boadle Reuters 2006
  140. Jump up^ “Social Policy at the crossroads” (PDF). Retrieved 2009-02-05.
  141. Jump up^ “Cuba’s repressive machinery: Summary and recommendations”. Human Rights Watch. 1999.
  142. Jump up to:a b “Cuba’s economy: Money starts to talk”. The Economist. 20 July 2013. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  143. Jump up^ “Inequality: The deal’s off”. The Economist. 2012-03-24. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  144. Jump up^ “The power of community”. 2011-06-19. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  145. Jump up^ “The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil Documentary”. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  146. Jump up^ “Cuban leader looks to boost food production”. CNN. 17 April 2008. Retrieved 2009-09-14.
  147. Jump up^ “Venezuela’s Maduro pledges continued alliance with Cuba”Reuters. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  148. Jump up^ “Cuba Ill-Prepared for Venezuelan Shock”. Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy. Retrieved 23 July 2013.
  149. Jump up^ “Rank Order Exports”The World Factbook. CIA. June 29, 2006. Retrieved 2006-07-09.
  150. Jump up^ Calzon, Frank (13 March 2005). “Cuba makes poor trade partner for Louisiana”. Center for a Free Cuba. Retrieved 2009-09-07.
  151. Jump up^ “Rank Order – GDP (purchasing power parity)”. CIA Fact Book. Retrieved 2006-07-09.
  152. Jump up to:a b David Einhorn (31 March 2006). “Catholic church in Cuba strives to re-establish the faith”. National Catholic Reporter. Retrieved 2009-09-07.
  153. Jump up^ “Cuba’s Sugar Industry and the Impact of Hurricane Michele”. International Agricultural Trade Report. 6 December 2001. Retrieved 2006-07-09.
  154. Jump up^ “Gobierno de Castro otorga a cubanos permiso para construir viviendas “por esfuerzo propio” en”. Retrieved 2010-11-07.
  155. Jump up^ Cave, Damien (2011-08-02). “Cuba Prepares for Private Property”The New York Times.
  156. Jump up^ “Cuba National Assembly approves economic reforms”.BBC News. August 2, 2011.
  157. Jump up^ “Cuba to Open Solar Power Plant – Cuba’s Havana”. 2012-08-09. Retrieved 2013-06-10.
  158. Jump up^ “Cuba to scrap two-currency system in latest reform”.BBC News. 22 October 2013. Retrieved 24 October 2013.
  159. Jump up^ “World Competitiveness Map”International Trade Center. Retrieved 2013-11-09.
  160. Jump up to:a b “Nickel”United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2013-11-09.
  161. Jump up^ Ivette E. Torres (1997). “The Mineral Industry of Cuba”. U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  162. Jump up^ Wayne S. Smith (1 November 2006). “After 46 years of failure, we must change course on Cuba”The Guardian (London). Retrieved 2009-09-06.
  163. Jump up^ Espino 2000.
  164. Jump up^ Corbett 2002, p. 33.
  165. Jump up^ Facio, Elisa; Maura Toro-Morn, and Anne R. Roschelle (Spring 2004). “Tourism in Cuba During the Special Period”Transnational Law & Contemporary Problems(University of Iowa College of Law) 14: 119.
  166. Jump up^ Crespo & Negrón Díaz 1997.
  167. Jump up^ “Background Note: Cuba”. U.S. Department of State. December 2005. Retrieved 2006-07-09.
  168. Jump up^ “UNWTO Tourism Highlights, 2013 Edition”. Tourism Trends and Marketing Strategies UNWTO. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  169. Jump up^ Tamayo, Juan O. (16 October 2013). “Cuba’s Justice Minister says the government fights prostitution”Miami Herald. Retrieved 2 January 2014.
  170. Jump up^ “Travel Advice and Advisories for Cuba: Sex tourism”. Government of Canada. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
  171. Jump up^ “List of Parties”. Retrieved 8 December 2012.
  172. Jump up^ “Plan de Acción Nacional 2006/2010 sobre la Diversidad Biológica. República de Cuba”. Retrieved 9 December 2012.
  173. Jump up^ “IV Informe Nacional al Convento sobre la Diversidad Biológica. República de Cuba. 2009”. Retrieved 9 December 2012.
  174. Jump up^ 2012 Cuban Census
  175. Jump up^
  176. Jump up^ “ANUARIO DEMOGRAFICO DE CUBA 2010”. Oficina Nacional de Estadisticas.
  177. Jump up^ “Population, birth rate falling in Cuba: Official”. The Peninsula On-line. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  178. Jump up^ “Population Decrease Must be Reverted”. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  179. Jump up^ “United Nations World Fertility Patterns 1997”. United Nations. 1997. Retrieved 2006-07-09.
  180. Jump up^ Stanley K. Henshaw, Susheela Singh and Taylor Haas.“The Incidence of Abortion Worldwide”.International Family Planning Perspectives, 1999, 25(Supplement):S30 – S38. Retrieved May 11, 2006.
  181. Jump up^ “A barrier for Cuba’s blacks”. Miami Herald.
  182. Jump up^ “World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples – Cuba: Afro-Cubans”.
  183. Jump up^ “Sahrawi children inhumanely treated in Cuba, former Cuban official”. 31 March 2006. Archived from the original on 2006-11-25. Retrieved 2006-07-09. (archived from the original on 2006-11-25)
  184. Jump up^ “La inmigración entre 1902 y 1920”. Retrieved 2010-11-07.
  185. Jump up^ “Etat des propriétés rurales appartenant à des Français dans l’île de Cuba”. Cuban Genealogy Center. 2007-07-10. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  186. Jump up^ “Cuban immigration – North American Immigration”. Retrieved 2013-06-10.
  187. Jump up^ Pedraza 2007, p. ?.
  188. Jump up^ Falk 1988, p. 74: “[A] tenth of the entire Caribbean population has . . . [emigrated to the U.S.] over the past 30 years”.
  189. Jump up^ “US Census Press Releases”. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  190. Jump up^ Pedraza 2007, p. 5
  191. Jump up^ “CUBA: U.S. Response to the 1994 Cuban Migration Crisis”. U.S. General Accounting Office. September 1995. Retrieved 2009-09-14.
  192. Jump up^ “Religious Composition by Country”Global Religious Landscape. Pew Forum. Retrieved 9 July 2013.
  193. Jump up^ Smith 1996, p. 105: “The expansion of religious liberty began more than a decade ago, for example, and Cuban citizens, by and large, are free to practice their faiths without fear of persecution.”
  194. Jump up^ Domínguez 2003, p. 4.
  195. Jump up^ “Government officials visit Baha’i center”. Baha’ June 13, 2005.
  196. Jump up^ George Brandon (1997-03-01). Santeria from Africa to the New World. Indiana University Press. p. 56. ISBN 978-0-253-21114-9.
  197. Jump up^ “Lucumi: A Language of Cuba (Ethnologue)”. Retrieved 10 March 2010.
  198. Jump up^ “Cuban Creole choir brings solace to Haiti’s children”BBC News. Retrieved 10 March 2010.
  199. Jump up^ “Languages of Cuba”. Retrieved 31 October 2010.
  200. Jump up^ “For Cuba, a Harsh Self-Assessment”. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  201. Jump up^ “Cuba | Comité Olímpico Cubano | National Olympic Committee”. Retrieved 2013-06-10.
  202. Jump up to:a b “Cuba’s New Internet Service is Also No Bed of Roses”. MIT Technology Review. Retrieved 19 July 2013.
  203. Jump up^ “EcuRed – EcuRed” (in (Spanish)). Retrieved 2013-06-10.
  204. Jump up^ Resolución 120 del 2007 del Ministro del MIC la cual está vigente desde el ·0 de Septiembre de 2007
  205. Jump up^ Moore, Robin (1997). Nationalizing Blackness: Afrocubanismo and Artistic Revolution in Havana, 1920–1940. University of Pittsburgh Press. ISBN 0-8229-5645-4.
  206. Jump up^ Victor Kaonga, Malawi (2011-12-07). “Cuba: Reggaeton Hit ‘Chupi Chupi’ Denounced by Authorities”. Global Voices. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  207. Jump up^ Scott Shetler (2012-12-07). “Cuban Government to Censor Reggaeton For Being “Sexually Explict””. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  208. Jump up^ “Cuban Government Censors Reggaeton and “Sexually Explicit” Songs”. ABC News. 2012-12-06. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  209. Jump up^ Alvarez 2001.
  210. Jump up^ Costa Rica – Journey into the Tropical Garden of Eden, Tobias Hauser.
  211. Jump up^ “Still Stuck on Castro – How the press handled a tyrant’s farewell”.
  212. Jump up to:a b “The Cuban Education System: Lessons and Dilemmas. Human Development Network Education. World Bank” (PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-07.
  213. Jump up to:a b “unstats | Millennium Indicators”. 2010-06-23. Retrieved 2010-11-07.
  214. Jump up^ “Latin lessons: What can we Learn from the World’s most Ambitious Literacy Campaign?”. The Independent. 2010-11-07. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  215. Jump up^ “Students graduate from Cuban school – Americas –”. MSNBC. 2007-07-25. Retrieved 2010-11-07.
  216. Jump up^ “Cuba-trained US doctors graduate”BBC News. 25 July 2007. Retrieved 2009-09-07.
  217. Jump up^ “Cuba”. Ranking Web of Universities. Retrieved 26 February 2013.
  218. Jump up^ Harvard Public Health Review/Summer 2002 The Cuban Paradox
  219. Jump up^ Foreign Affairs, July/August 2010.
  220. Jump up to:a b Whiteford & Branch 2008, p. 2.
  221. Jump up^ Cuba: A Different America, By Wilber A. Chaffee, Gary Prevost, Rowland and Littlefield, 1992, p. 106
  222. Jump up^ Feinsilver 1989, pp. 4–5: “Its success has been acclaimed by Dr. Halfdan Mahler, the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), and Dr. Carlysle Guerra de Macedo, Director-General of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), as well as by medical professionals from the United States and other capitalist countries who have observed the Cuban health system in action. Despite U.S. hostility toward Cuba, a U.S. government document stated in 1982 that the ‘Cuban Revolution has managed social achievements, especially in education and health care, that are highly respected in the Third World … , [including] a national health care program that is superior in the Third World and rivals that of numerous developed countries.'”
  223. Jump up^ Lundy, Karen Saucier. Community Health Nursing: Caring for the Public’s Health. Jones and Bartlett: 2005, p. 377.
  224. Jump up^ Whiteford, Linda M.; Manderson, Lenore, eds. (2000).Global Health Policy, Local Realities: The Fallacy of the Level Playing Field. Boulder, Col.: Lynne Rienner Publishers. p. 69. ISBN 1-55587-874-1. Retrieved 2009-09-14.
  225. Jump up^ Jacob Laksin. “Castro’s Doctors Plot”.
  226. Jump up^ The Committee Office, House of Commons (2001-03-28).“Cuban Health Care Systems and its implications for the NHS Plan”. Select Committee on Health. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  227. Jump up^ Mignonne Breier; Angelique Wildschut; Education, Science and Skills Development Research Programme (2007).Doctors in a Divided Society: The Profession and Education of Medical Practitioners in South Africa. HSRC Press. pp. 16, 81. ISBN 978-0-7969-2153-6.
  228. Jump up^ “World population Prospects: The 2006 Revision: Highlights” (PDF). United Nations. Retrieved 2013-07-19.
  229. Jump up^ “Centro de Promoción del Comercio Exterior y la Inversión Extranjera de Cuba – CEPEC”. Retrieved 2013-06-10.


Albornoz, Sara Carrillo de (2006). “On a mission: how Cuba uses its doctors abroad”. BMJ 333: 464. JSTOR 40700096.
Alvarez, José (2001). “Rationed Products and Something Else: Food Availability and Distribution in 2000”Cuba in Transition, Volume 11. Silver Spring, MD: ASCE. pp. 305–322. ISBN 0-9649082-0-4. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
Alvarez, José (2004). Cuban Agriculture Before 1959: The Social Situation. Gainsville, FL: Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Florida. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
Baklanoff, Eric N. (1998). “Cuba on the Eve of the Socialist Transition: A Reassessment of the Backwardness-Stagnation Thesis”Cuba in Transition, Volume 8. Silver Spring, MD: ASCE. pp. 260–272. ISBN 0-9649082-7-1. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
Chomsky, Aviva; Carr, Barry; Smorkaloff, Pamela Maria, eds. (2004). The Cuba Reader: History, Culture, Politics. Durham, NC: Duke University PressISBN 978-0-8223-3197-1.
Corbett, Ben (2002). This Is Cuba: An Outlaw Culture SurvivesWestview PressISBN 978-0-8133-3826-2.
Crespo, Nicolás; Negrón Díaz, Santos (1997). “Cuban Tourism in 2007: Economic Impact”Cuba in Transition, Volume 7. Silver Spring, MD: ASCE. pp. 150–161. ISBN 0-9649082-6-3. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
Domínguez, Jorge I. (1978). Cuba: Order and Revolution. Cambridge, MA: Belknap PressISBN 978-0-674-17925-7.
——— (1989). To Make a World Safe for Revolution: Cuba’s Foreign Policy. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University PressISBN 978-0-674-89325-2.
——— (2003). A Constitution for Cuba’s Political Transition: The Utility of Retaining (and Amending) the 1992 Constitution. Coral Gables, FL: Institute for Cuban and Cuban-American Studies, University of MiamiISBN 978-1-932385-04-5. Retrieved 19 August 2012.
Espino, María Dolores (2000). “Cuban Tourism During the Special Period”Cuba in Transition, Volume 10. Silver Spring, MD: ASCEISBN 0-9649082-8-X. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
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Feinsilver, Julie M. (1989). “Cuba as a ‘World Medical Power’: The Politics of Symbolism”. Latin American Research Review 24 (2): 1–34. JSTOR 2503679.
Gebru Tareke (2009). The Ethiopian Revolution: War in the Horn of Africa. New Haven, CT: Yale University PressISBN 978-0-300-14163-4.
Gleijeses, Piero (1994). “‘Flee! The White Giants are Coming!’: The United States, the Mercenaries, and the Congo, 1964–1965”Diplomatic History 18 (2): 207–237.
——— (1996). “Cuba’s First Venture in Africa: Algeria, 1961–1965”. Journal of Latin American Studies 28 (1): 159–195. JSTOR 157991.
——— (1997). “The First Ambassadors: Cuba’s Contribution to Guinea-Bissau’s War of Independence”. Journal of Latin American Studies 29 (1): 45–88.JSTOR 158071.
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——— (2010). “Cuba and the Cold War, 1959–1980”. In Melvyn P. Leffler & Odd Arne Westad, eds., The Cambridge History of the Cold War, Volume II: Crises and Détente. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 327–348. ISBN 978-0-521-83720-0.
——— (2013). Visions of Freedom: Havana, Washington, Pretoria, and the Struggle for Southern Africa, 1976–1991. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina PressISBN 978-1-4696-0968-3.
Gott, Richard (2004). Cuba: A New History. New Haven, CT: Yale University PressISBN 978-0-300-10411-0.
Horowitz, Irving Louis (1988). Cuban Communism. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Books. ISBN 0-88738-672-5.
Luxenberg, Alan H. (1988). “Did Eisenhower Push Castro into the Arms of the Soviets?”. Journal of Interamerican Studies and World Affairs 30 (1): 37–71.JSTOR 165789.
Kolko, Gabriel (1994). Century of War: Politics, Conflicts, and Society since 1914. New York, NY: The New PressISBN 978-1-56584-191-8.
McAlister, Lyle N. (1984). Spain and Portugal in the New World, 1492–1700. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota PressISBN 978-0-8166-1216-1.
Pedraza, Silvia (2007). Political Disaffection in Cuba’s Revolution and Exodus. New York, NY: Cambridge University PressISBN 978-0-521-86787-0.
Pérez-López, Jorge F. (1996). “Cuban Military Expenditures: Concepts, Data and Burden Measures”Cuba in Transition, Volume 6. Washington, DC: ASCE. pp. 124–144. ISBN 0-9649082-5-5. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
Ramazani, Rouhollah K. (1975). The Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz. Alphen aan den Rijn: Sijthoff & Noordhoff. ISBN 90-286-0069-8.
Roberg, Jeffrey L.; Kuttruff, Alyson (2007). “Cuba: Ideological Success or Ideological Failure?”. Human Rights Quarterly 29 (3): 779–795. JSTOR 20072822.
Roy, Joaquín (2000). Cuba, the United States, and the Helms-Burton Doctrine: International Reactions. Gainsville, FL: University of Florida PressISBN 978-0-8130-1760-0.
Scheina, Robert L. (2003). Latin America’s Wars, Volume I: The Age of the Caudillo, 1791–1899. Dulles, VA: Brassey’s. ISBN 978-1-57488-449-4.
Scott, Rebecca J. (2000) [1985]. Slave Emancipation in Cuba: The Transition to Free Labor, 1860–1899. Pittsburgh, PA: University of Pittsburgh PressISBN 978-0-8229-5735-5.
Smith, Wayne S. (1996). “Cuba’s Long Reform”. Foreign Affairs 75 (2): 99–112. JSTOR 20047491.
Smith, Kirby; Llorens, Hugo (1998). “Renaisssance and Decay: A Comparison of Socioeconomic Indicators in Pre-Castro and Current-Day Cuba”Cuba in Transition, Volume 8. Silver Spring, MD: ASCE. pp. 247–259. ISBN 0-9649082-7-1. Retrieved 25 March 2013.
Sweig, Julia E. (2004) [2002]. Inside the Cuban Revolution: Fidel Castro and the Urban Underground (New ed.). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University PressISBN 978-0-674-01612-5.
Thomas, Hugh (1997). The Slave Trade: The Story of the Atlantic Slave Trade, 1440–1870. New York, NY: Simon & SchusterISBN 978-0-684-81063-8.
——— (1998) [1971]. Cuba; or, The Pursuit of Freedom (updated ed.). Cambridge, MA: Da Capo PressISBN 978-0-306-80827-2.
Westad, Odd Arne (2012). Restless Empire: China and the World Since 1750. London: The Bodley HeadISBN 978-1-84792-197-0.
Whiteford, Linda M.; Branch, Laurence G. (2008). Primary Health Care in Cuba: The Other Revolution. Lanham, MD: Rowman & LittlefieldISBN 978-0-7425-5994-3.
Wright, Irene Aloha (1916). The Early History of Cuba, 1492–1586. New York, NY:The Macmillan Company.

External links

Federalist Papers

Federalist Papers

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Title page of the first collection of theFederalist Papers (1788)
The Federalist Papers are a series of 85 articles and essays written by Alexander HamiltonJames Madison, and John Jay promoting the ratification of the United States Constitution. Seventy-seven were published serially in The Independent Journal and The New York Packet between October of 1787 and August 1788. A compilation of these and eight others, called The Federalist; or, The New Constitution, was published in two volumes in 1788 by J. and A. McLean.[1] The series’ correct title is The Federalist; the title The Federalist Papers did not emerge until the twentieth century.
Though the authors of The Federalist Papers foremost wished to influence the vote in favor of ratifying the Constitution, in Federalist No 1 they explicitly set that debate in broader political terms:
It has been frequently remarked, that it seems to have been reserved to the people of this country, by their conduct and example, to decide the important question, whether societies of men are really capable or not, of establishing good government from reflection and choice, or whether they are forever destined to depend, for their political constitutions, on accident and force.[2]
According to historian Richard B. Morris, they are an “incomparable exposition of the Constitution, a classic in political science unsurpassed in both breadth and depth by the product of any later American writer.”[3]
At the time of publication the authorship of the articles was a closely guarded secret, though astute observers discerned the identities of Hamilton, Madison, and Jay. Following Hamilton’s death in 1804, a list that he had drafted claiming fully two-thirds of the papers for himself became public, including some that seemed more likely the work of Madison (No. 49-58, 62, and 63). The scholarly detective work of Douglass Adair in 1944 postulated the following assignments of authorship, corroborated in 1964 by a computer analysis of the text:
  • Alexander Hamilton (51 articles: No. 1, 6–9, 11–13, 15–17, 21–36, 59–61, and 65–85)
  • James Madison (26 articles: No. 10, 14, 37–58 and 62–63)
  • John Jay (5 articles: No. 2–5 and 64).
  • No. 18–20 were the result of a collaboration between Madison and Hamilton.[1]
The authors used the pseudonym “Publius”, in honor of Roman consul Publius Valerius Publicola.[4] While some historians credit Thomas Jefferson‘s influence, it is Madison who often now receives greater acknowledgement as the father of the Constitution—despite his repeated rejection of this honor during his lifetime.[5] Madison became a leading member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Virginia (1789–1797), Secretary of State (1801–1809), and ultimately the fourth President of the United States.[6] Hamilton, who had been a leading advocate of national constitutional reform throughout the 1780s and represented New York at the Constitutional Convention, in 1789 became the first Secretary of the Treasury, a post he held until his resignation in 1795. John Jay, who had been secretary for foreign affairs under the Articles of Confederationfrom 1784 through their expiration in 1789, became the first Chief Justice of the United States in 1789, stepping down in 1795 to accept election as governor of New York, a post he held for two terms, retiring in 1801.
There are many highlights among the essays of The FederalistFederalist No. 10, in which Madison discusses the means of preventing rule by majority faction and advocates a large, commercial republic, is generally regarded as the most important of the 85 articles from a philosophical perspective; it is complemented by Federalist No. 14, in which Madison takes the measure of the United States, declares it appropriate for an extended republic, and concludes with a memorable defense of the constitutional and political creativity of the Federal Convention.[7] In Federalist No. 84, Hamilton makes the case that there is no need to amend the Constitution by adding a Bill of Rights, insisting that the various provisions in the proposed Constitution protecting liberty amount to a “bill of rights”. Federalist No. 78, also written by Hamilton, lays the groundwork for the doctrine of judicial review by federal courts of federal legislation or executive acts. Federalist No. 70 presents Hamilton’s case for a one-man chief executive. In Federalist No. 39, Madison presents the clearest exposition of what has come to be called “Federalism“. In Federalist No. 51, Madison distills arguments for checks and balances in an essay oft quoted for its justification of government as “the greatest of all reflections on human nature.”



Alexander Hamilton, author of the majority of the Federalist Papers
The Federal Convention sent the proposed Constitution to the Confederation Congress, which in turn submitted it to the states for ratification at the end of September 1787. On 27 September 1787, “Cato” first appeared in the New York press criticising the proposition, “Brutus” followed on 18 October 1787.[8] These and other articles and public letters critical of the new Constitution would eventually become known as the “Anti-Federalist Papers“. In response, Hamilton decided to launch a measured defense and extensive explanation of the proposed Constitution to the people of the state of New York. He wrote in Federalist No. 1 that the series would “endeavor to give a satisfactory answer to all the objections which shall have made their appearance, that may seem to have any claim to your attention.”[9]
Hamilton recruited collaborators for the project. He enlisted John Jay, who after four strong essays (Federalist Nos. 234, and 5), fell ill and contributed only one more essay, Federalist No. 64, to the series. He also distilled his case into a pamphlet in the spring of 1788, An Address to the People of the State of New-York; Hamilton cited it approvingly in Federalist No. 85. James Madison, present in New York as a Virginia delegate to the Confederation Congress, was recruited by Hamilton and Jay, and became Hamilton’s major collaborator. Gouverneur Morris and William Duer were also apparently considered; Morris turned down the invitation, and Hamilton rejected three essays written by Duer.[10] Duer later wrote in support of the three Federalist authors under the name “Philo-Publius”, or “Friend of Publius”.
Hamilton chose “Publius” as the pseudonym under which the series would be written. While many other pieces representing both sides of the constitutional debate were written under Roman names, Albert Furtwangler contends that “‘Publius’ was a cut above ‘Caesar‘ or ‘Brutus‘ or even ‘Cato.’ Publius Valerius was not a late defender of the republic but one of its founders. His more famous name, Publicola, meant ‘friend of the people.'”[4] It was not the first time Hamilton had used this pseudonym: in 1778, he had applied it to three letters attacking fellow FederalistSamuel Chase. Chase’s patriotism was questioned when Hamilton revealed that Chase had taken advantage of knowledge gained in Congress to try to dominate the flour market.


An advertisement for The Federalist, 1787, using the pseudonym “Philo-Publius”
The Federalist Papers appeared in three New York newspapers: the Independent Journal, the New-York Packet, and the Daily Advertiser, beginning on October 27, 1787. Between them, Hamilton, Madison and Jay kept up a rapid pace, with at times three or four new essays by Publius appearing in the papers in a week. Garry Wills observes that the pace of production “overwhelmed” any possible response: “Who, given ample time could have answered such a battery of arguments? And no time was given.”[11] Hamilton also encouraged the reprinting of the essay in newspapers outside New York state, and indeed they were published in several other states where the ratification debate was taking place. However, they were only irregularly published outside New York, and in other parts of the country they were often overshadowed by local writers.[12]
The high demand for the essays led to their publication in a more permanent form. On January 1, 1788, the New York publishing firm J. & A. McLean announced that they would publish the first thirty-six essays as a bound volume; that volume was released on March 2 and was titled The Federalist. New essays continued to appear in the newspapers; Federalist No. 77 was the last number to appear first in that form, on April 2. A second bound volume containing the last forty-nine essays was released on May 28. The remaining eight papers were later published in the newspapers as well.[13]
A number of later publications are worth noting. A 1792 French edition ended the collective anonymity of Publius, announcing that the work had been written by “MM Hamilton, Maddisson E Gay”, citizens of the State of New York. In 1802, George Hopkins published an American edition that similarly named the authors. Hopkins wished as well that “the name of the writer should be prefixed to each number,” but at this point Hamilton insisted that this was not to be, and the division of the essays among the three authors remained a secret.[14]
James Madison, Hamilton’s major collaborator, later President of the United States and “Father of the Constitution”
The first publication to divide the papers in such a way was an 1810 edition that used a list left by Hamilton to associate the authors with their numbers; this edition appeared as two volumes of the compiled “Works of Hamilton”. In 1818, Jacob Gideon published a new edition with a new listing of authors, based on a list provided by Madison. The difference between Hamilton’s list and Madison’s formed the basis for a dispute over the authorship of a dozen of the essays.[15]
Both Hopkins’s and Gideon’s editions incorporated significant edits to the text of the papers themselves, generally with the approval of the authors. In 1863, Henry Dawson published an edition containing the original text of the papers, see The Federalist (Dawson), arguing that they should be preserved as they were written in that particular historical moment, not as edited by the authors years later.[16]
Modern scholars generally use the text prepared by Jacob E. Cooke for his 1961 edition of The Federalist; this edition used the newspaper texts for essay numbers 1–76 and the McLean edition for essay numbers 77–85.[17]

Disputed essays

The authorship of seventy-three of the Federalist essays is fairly certain. Twelve of these essays are disputed over by some scholars, though the modern consensus is that Madison wrote essays Nos. 49–58, with Nos. 18–20 being products of a collaboration between him and Hamilton; No. 64 was by John Jay. Some newer evidence suggests James Madison as the author. The first open designation of which essay belonged to whom was provided by Hamilton, who in the days before his ultimately fatal gun duel with Aaron Burr provided his lawyer with a list detailing the author of each number. This list credited Hamilton with a full sixty-three of the essays (three of those being jointly written with Madison), almost three quarters of the whole, and was used as the basis for an 1810 printing that was the first to make specific attribution for the essays.[18]
John Jay, author of five of the Federalist Papers, later became the first Chief Justice of the United States
Madison did not immediately dispute Hamilton’s list, but provided his own list for the 1818 Gideon edition of The Federalist. Madison claimed twenty-nine numbers for himself, and he suggested that the difference between the two lists was “owing doubtless to the hurry in which [Hamilton’s] memorandum was made out.” A known error in Hamilton’s list—Hamilton incorrectly ascribed No. 54 to John Jay, when in fact Jay wrote No. 64—has provided some evidence for Madison’s suggestion.[19]
Statistical analysis has been undertaken on several occasions to try to decide the authorship question based on word frequencies and writing styles. Nearly all of the statistical studies show that the disputed papers were written by Madison.[20][21]

Influence on the ratification debates

The Federalist was written to support the ratification of the Constitution, specifically in New York. Whether they succeeded in this mission is questionable. Separate ratification proceedings took place in each state, and the essays were not reliably reprinted outside of New York; furthermore, by the time the series was well underway, a number of important states had already ratified it, for instance Pennsylvania on December 12. New York held out until July 26; certainly The Federalist was more important there than anywhere else, but Furtwangler argues that it “could hardly rival other major forces in the ratification contests”—specifically, these forces included the personal influence of well-known Federalists, for instance Hamilton and Jay, and Anti-Federalists, including Governor George Clinton.[22] Further, by the time New York came to a vote, ten states had already ratified the Constitution and it had thus already passed — only nine states had to ratify it for the new government to be established among them; the ratification by Virginia, the tenth state, placed pressure on New York to ratify. In light of that, Furtwangler observes, “New York’s refusal would make that state an odd outsider.”[23]
Only 19 Federalists were elected to New York’s ratification convention, compared to the Anti-Federalists’ 46 delegates. While New York did indeed ratify the Constitution on July 26, the lack of public support for pro-Constitution Federalists has led historian John Kaminski to suggest that the impact of the The Federalist on New York citizens was “negligible”.[24]
As for Virginia, which only ratified the Constitution at its convention on June 25, Hamilton writes in a letter to Madison that the collected edition of The Federalist had been sent to Virginia; Furtwangler presumes that it was to act as a “debater’s handbook for the convention there,” though he claims that this indirect influence would be a “dubious distinction.”[25] Probably of greater importance to the Virginia debate, in any case, were George Washington’s support for the proposed Constitution and the presence of Madison and Edmund Randolph, the governor, at the convention arguing for ratification.
Another purpose that The Federalist was supposed to serve was as a debater’s handbook during the ratification controversy, and indeed advocates for the Constitution in the conventions in New York and Virginia used the essays for precisely that purpose.

Structure and content

In Federalist No. 1, Hamilton listed six topics to be covered in the subsequent articles:
  1. “The utility of the UNION to your political prosperity” – covered in No. 2 through No. 14
  2. “The insufficiency of the present Confederation to preserve that Union”—covered in No. 15 through No. 22
  3. “The necessity of a government at least equally energetic with the one proposed to the attainment of this object”—covered in No. 23 through No. 36
  4. “The conformity of the proposed constitution to the true principles of republican government”—covered in No. 37 through No. 84
  5. “Its analogy to your own state constitution”—covered in No. 85
  6. “The additional security which its adoption will afford to the preservation of that species of government, to liberty and to prosperity”—covered in No. 85.[26]
Furtwangler notes that as the series grew, this plan was somewhat changed. The fourth topic expanded into detailed coverage of the individual articles of the Constitution and the institutions it mandated, while the two last topics were merely touched on in the last essay.
The papers can be broken down by author as well as by topic. At the start of the series, all three authors were contributing; the first twenty papers are broken down as eleven by Hamilton, five by Madison and four by Jay. The rest of the series, however, is dominated by three long segments by a single writer: No. 21 through No. 36 by Hamilton, No. 37 through 58 by Madison, written while Hamilton was in Albany, and No. 65 through the end by Hamilton, published after Madison had left for Virginia.[27]

Opposition to the Bill of Rights

The Federalist Papers (specifically Federalist No. 84) are notable for their opposition to what later became the United States Bill of Rights. The idea of adding a Bill of Rights to the Constitution was originally controversial because the Constitution, as written, did not specifically enumerate or protect the rights of the people, rather it listed the powers of the government and left all that remained to the states and the people. Alexander Hamilton, the author of Federalist No. 84, feared that such an enumeration, once written down explicitly, would later be interpreted as a list of the only rights that people had.
However, Hamilton’s opposition to a Bill of Rights was far from universal. Robert Yates, writing under the pseudonym Brutus, articulated this view point in the so-called Anti-Federalist No. 84, asserting that a government unrestrained by such a bill could easily devolve into tyranny. Other supporters of the Bill, such as Thomas Jefferson, argued that a list of rights would not and should not be interpreted as exhaustive; i.e., that these rights were examples of important rights that people had, but that people had other rights as well. People in this school of thought were confident that the judiciary would interpret these rights in an expansive fashion.[citation needed] The matter was further clarified by the Ninth Amendment.

Modern approaches and interpretations

Judicial use

Federal judges, when interpreting the Constitution, frequently use the Federalist Papers as a contemporary account of the intentions of the framers and ratifiers.[28] They have been applied on issues ranging from the power of the federal government in foreign affairs (in Hines v. Davidowitz) to the validity of ex post facto laws (in the 1798 decision Calder v. Bull, apparently the first decision to mention The Federalist).[29] By 2000, The Federalist had been quoted 291 times in Supreme Court decisions.[30]
The amount of deference that should be given to the Federalist Papers in constitutional interpretation has always been somewhat controversial. As early as 1819, Chief Justice John Marshall noted in the famous case McCulloch v. Maryland, that “the opinions expressed by the authors of that work have been justly supposed to be entitled to great respect in expounding the Constitution. No tribute can be paid to them which exceeds their merit; but in applying their opinions to the cases which may arise in the progress of our government, a right to judge of their correctness must be retained.”[31] Madison believed The Federalist Papers were the ideas of the Founders and not just mere expressions. In a letter to Thomas Ritchie in 1821, he stated that “the legitimate meaning of the Instrument must be derived from the text itself; or if a key is to be sought elsewhere, it must be not in the opinions or intentions of the Body which planned & proposed the Constitution, but in the sense attached to it by the people in their respective State Conventions where it recd. all the authority which it possesses.” [32][33]

Complete list

The colors used to highlight the rows correspond to the author of the paper.
# Date Title Author
1 October 27, 1787 General Introduction Alexander Hamilton
2 October 31, 1787 Concerning Dangers from Foreign Force and Influence John Jay
3 November 3, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning Dangers from Foreign Force and Influence John Jay
4 November 7, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning Dangers from Foreign Force and Influence John Jay
5 November 10, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning Dangers from Foreign Force and Influence John Jay
6 November 14, 1787 Concerning Dangers from Dissensions Between the States Alexander Hamilton
7 November 15, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning Dangers from Dissensions Between the States Alexander Hamilton
8 November 20, 1787 The Consequences of Hostilities Between the States Alexander Hamilton
9 November 21, 1787 The Union as a Safeguard Against Domestic Faction and Insurrection Alexander Hamilton
10 November 22, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: The Union as a Safeguard Against Domestic Faction and Insurrection James Madison
11 November 24, 1787 The Utility of the Union in Respect to Commercial Relations and a Navy Alexander Hamilton
12 November 27, 1787 The Utility of the Union In Respect to Revenue Alexander Hamilton
13 November 28, 1787 Advantage of the Union in Respect to Economy in Government Alexander Hamilton
14 November 30, 1787 Objections to the Proposed Constitution From Extent of Territory Answered James Madison
15 December 1, 1787 The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union Alexander Hamilton
16 December 4, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union Alexander Hamilton
17 December 5, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union Alexander Hamilton
18 December 7, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union James Madison[34]
19 December 8, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union James Madison[34]
20 December 11, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: The Insufficiency of the Present Confederation to Preserve the Union James Madison[34]
21 December 12, 1787 Other Defects of the Present Confederation Alexander Hamilton
22 December 14, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: Other Defects of the Present Confederation Alexander Hamilton
23 December 18, 1787 The Necessity of a Government as Energetic as the One Proposed to the Preservation of the Union Alexander Hamilton
24 December 19, 1787 The Powers Necessary to the Common Defense Further Considered Alexander Hamilton
25 December 21, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: The Powers Necessary to the Common Defense Further Considered Alexander Hamilton
26 December 22, 1787 The Idea of Restraining the Legislative Authority in Regard to the Common Defense Considered Alexander Hamilton
27 December 25, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: The Idea of Restraining the Legislative Authority in Regard to the Common Defense Considered Alexander Hamilton
28 December 26, 1787 The Same Subject Continued: The Idea of Restraining the Legislative Authority in Regard to the Common Defense Considered Alexander Hamilton
29 January 9, 1788 Concerning the Militia Alexander Hamilton
30 December 28, 1787 Concerning the General Power of Taxation Alexander Hamilton
31 January 1, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning the General Power of Taxation Alexander Hamilton
32 January 2, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning the General Power of Taxation Alexander Hamilton
33 January 2, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning the General Power of Taxation Alexander Hamilton
34 January 5, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning the General Power of Taxation Alexander Hamilton
35 January 5, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning the General Power of Taxation Alexander Hamilton
36 January 8, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning the General Power of Taxation Alexander Hamilton
37 January 11, 1788 Concerning the Difficulties of the Convention in Devising a Proper Form of Government James Madison
38 January 12, 1788 The Same Subject Continued, and the Incoherence of the Objections to the New Plan Exposed James Madison
39 January 18, 1788 The Conformity of the Plan to Republican Principles James Madison
40 January 18, 1788 The Powers of the Convention to Form a Mixed Government Examined and Sustained James Madison
41 January 19, 1788 General View of the Powers Conferred by the Constitution James Madison
42 January 22, 1788 The Powers Conferred by the Constitution Further Considered James Madison
43 January 23, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: The Powers Conferred by the Constitution Further Considered James Madison
44 January 25, 1788 Restrictions on the Authority of the Several States James Madison
45 January 26, 1788 The Alleged Danger From the Powers of the Union to the State Governments Considered James Madison
46 January 29, 1788 The Influence of the State and Federal Governments Compared James Madison
47 January 30, 1788 The Particular Structure of the New Government and the Distribution of Power Among Its Different Parts James Madison
48 February 1, 1788 These Departments Should Not Be So Far Separated as to Have No Constitutional Control Over Each Other James Madison
49 February 2, 1788 Method of Guarding Against the Encroachments of Any One Department of Government James Madison[35]
50 February 5, 1788 Periodic Appeals to the People Considered James Madison[35]
51 February 6, 1788 The Structure of the Government Must Furnish the Proper Checks and Balances Between the Different Departments James Madison[35]
52 February 8, 1788 The House of Representatives James Madison[35]
53 February 9, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: The House of Representatives James Madison[35]
54 February 12, 1788 The Apportionment of Members Among the States James Madison[35]
55 February 13, 1788 The Total Number of the House of Representatives James Madison[35]
56 February 16, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: The Total Number of the House of Representatives James Madison[35]
57 February 19, 1788 The Alleged Tendency of the New Plan to Elevate the Few at the Expense of the Many James Madison[35]
58 February 20, 1788 Objection That The Number of Members Will Not Be Augmented as the Progress of Population Demands Considered James Madison[35]
59 February 22, 1788 Concerning the Power of Congress to Regulate the Election of Members Alexander Hamilton
60 February 23, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning the Power of Congress to Regulate the Election of Members Alexander Hamilton
61 February 26, 1788 The Same Subject Continued: Concerning the Power of Congress to Regulate the Election of Members Alexander Hamilton
62 February 27, 1788 The Senate James Madison[35]
63 March 1, 1788 The Senate Continued James Madison[35]
64 March 5, 1788 The Powers of the Senate John Jay
65 March 7, 1788 The Powers of the Senate Continued Alexander Hamilton
66 March 8, 1788 Objections to the Power of the Senate To Set as a Court for Impeachments Further Considered Alexander Hamilton
67 March 11, 1788 The Executive Department Alexander Hamilton
68 March 12, 1788 The Mode of Electing the President Alexander Hamilton
69 March 14, 1788 The Real Character of the Executive Alexander Hamilton
70 March 15, 1788 The Executive Department Further Considered Alexander Hamilton
71 March 18, 1788 The Duration in Office of the Executive Alexander Hamilton
72 March 19, 1788 The Same Subject Continued, and Re-Eligibility of the Executive Considered Alexander Hamilton
73 March 21, 1788 The Provision For The Support of the Executive, and the Veto Power Alexander Hamilton
74 March 25, 1788 The Command of the Military and Naval Forces, and the Pardoning Power of the Executive Alexander Hamilton
75 March 26, 1788 The Treaty Making Power of the Executive Alexander Hamilton
76 April 1, 1788 The Appointing Power of the Executive Alexander Hamilton
77 April 2, 1788 The Appointing Power Continued and Other Powers of the Executive Considered Alexander Hamilton
78 May 28, 1788 (book)
June 14, 1788 (newspaper)
The Judiciary Department Alexander Hamilton
79 May 28, 1788 (book)
June 18, 1788 (newspaper)
The Judiciary Continued Alexander Hamilton
80 June 21, 1788 The Powers of the Judiciary Alexander Hamilton
81 June 25, 1788 and
June 28, 1788
The Judiciary Continued, and the Distribution of the Judicial Authority Alexander Hamilton
82 July 2, 1788 The Judiciary Continued Alexander Hamilton
83 July 5, 1788,
July 9, 1788 and
July 12, 1788
The Judiciary Continued in Relation to Trial by Jury Alexander Hamilton
84 July 16, 1788,
July 26, 1788 and
August 9, 1788
Certain General and Miscellaneous Objections to the Constitution Considered and Answered Alexander Hamilton
85 August 13, 1788 and
August 16, 1788
Concluding Remarks Alexander Hamilton

See also


  1. Jump up to:a b Jackson, Kenneth T. The Encyclopedia of New York City: The New York Historical Society; Yale University Press; 1995. p. 194.
  2. Jump up^ The Federalist Papers. Toronto: Bantam Books. 1982.
  3. Jump up^ Richard B. Morris, The Forging of the Union: 1781-1789 (1987) p. 309
  4. Jump up to:a b Furtwangler, 51.
  5. Jump up^ Lance Banning, “James Madison: Federalist,” note 1, [1].
  6. Jump up^ See, e.g. Ralph Ketcham, James Madison. New York: Macmillan, 1971; reprint ed., Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1998. See also Irving N. Brant, James Madison: Father of the Constitution, 1787–1800. Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1950.
  7. Jump up^ Wills, x.
  8. Jump up^ Furtwangler, 48-49.
  9. Jump up^ Gunn, Giles B. (1994). Early American Writing. Penguin Classics. p. 540. ISBN 0-14-039087-1.
  10. Jump up^ Furtwangler, 51-56.
  11. Jump up^ Wills, xii.
  12. Jump up^ Furtwangler, 20.
  13. Jump up^ The Federalist timeline at
  14. Jump up^ Adair, 40-41.
  15. Jump up^ Adair, 44-46.
  16. Jump up^ Henry Cabot Lodge, ed. (1902). The Federalist, a Commentary on the Constitution of the United States. Putnam. pp. xxxviii–xliii. Retrieved 2009-02-16.
  17. Jump up^ Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison (Jacob E. Cooke, ed., The Federalist (Middletown, CT: Wesleyan University Press, 1961 and later reprintings).ISBN 978-0-8195-6077-3.
  18. Jump up^ Adair, 46-48.
  19. Jump up^ Adair, 48.
  20. Jump up^ Mosteller and Wallace.
  21. Jump up^ Fung, Glenn, The disputed federalist papers: SVM feature selection via concave minimization, New York City, ACM Press, 2003. (9 pg pdf file)
  22. Jump up^ Furtwangler, 21.
  23. Jump up^ Furtwangler, 22.
  24. Jump up^ Coenen, Dan. “Fifteen Curious Facts about The Federalist Papers”. Media Commons. Retrieved 5 December 2012.
  25. Jump up^ Furtwangler, 23.
  26. Jump up^ This scheme of division is adapted from Charles K. Kesler’s introduction to The Federalist Papers (New York: Signet Classic, 1999) pp. 15-17. A similar division is indicated by Furtwangler, 57-58.
  27. Jump up^ Wills, 274.
  28. Jump up^ Lupu, Ira C.; “The Most-Cited Federalist Papers”. Constitutional Commentary (1998) pp 403+; using Supreme Court citations, the five most cited were Federalist No. 42 (Madison) (33 decisions), Federalist No. 78 (Hamilton) (30 decisions), Federalist No. 81 (Hamilton) (27 decisions), Federalist No. 51 (Madison) (26 decisions),Federalist No. 32 (Hamilton) (25 decisions).
  29. Jump up^ See, among others, a very early exploration of the judicial use of The Federalist in Charles W. Pierson, “The Federalist in the Supreme Court”, The Yale Law Journal, Vol. 33, No. 7. (May, 1924), pp. 728-735.
  30. Jump up^ Chernow, Ron. “Alexander Hamilton”. Penguin Books, 2004. (p. 260)
  31. Jump up^ Arthur, John (1995). Words That Bind: Judicial Review and the Grounds of Modern Constitutional Theory. Westview Press. p. 41. ISBN 0-8133-2349-5.
  32. Jump up^ Madison to Thomas Ritchie, September 15, 1821. Quoted in Furtwangler, 36.
  33. Jump up^ Max Farrand, ed. (1911). The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787. Yale University Press.
  34. Jump up to:a b c Nos. 18, 19, 20 are frequently indicated as being jointly written by Hamilton and Madison. However, Adair concurs with previous historians that these are Madison’s writing alone: “Madison had certainly written all of the essays himself, including in revised form only a small amount of pertinent information submitted by Hamilton from his rather sketchy research on the same subject.” Adair, 63.
  35. Jump up to:a b c d e f g h i j k l One of twelve “disputed papers” to which both Madison and Hamilton laid claim. Modern scholarly consensus leans towards Madison as the author of all twelve, and he is so credited in this table. See Federalist Papers: Disputed essays. See Adair, 93: “The disputed numbers of The Federalist claimed by both Hamilton and Madison are Numbers 49 through 58 and Numbers 62 and 63.


  • Adair, Douglass. Fame and the Founding Fathers. Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 1974. A collection of essays; that used here is “The Disputed Federalist Papers”.
  • Frederick Mosteller and David L. Wallace. Inference and Disputed Authorship: The Federalist. Addison-Wesley, Reading, Mass., 1964.
  • Furtwangler, Albert. The Authority of Publius: A Reading of the Federalist Papers. Ithaca, New York: Cornell University Press, 1984.
  • Wills, Gary. Explaining America: The Federalist, Garden City, NJ: 1981.

Further reading

  • Meyerson, Michael I. Liberty’s Blueprint: How Madison and Hamilton Wrote the Federalist Papers, Defined the Constitution, and Made Democracy Safe for the World, New York: Basic Books, 2008.
  • Dietze, Gottfried. The Federalist: A Classic on Federalism and Free Government, Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins Press, 1960.
  • Epstein, David F. The Political Theory of the Federalist, Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1984.
  • Gray, Leslie, and Wynell Burroughs. “Teaching With Documents: Ratification of the Constitution”, Social Education, 51 (1987): 322-324.
  • Kesler, Charles R. Saving the Revolution: The Federalist Papers and the American Founding, New York: 1987.
  • Patrick, John J., and Clair W. Keller. Lessons on the Federalist Papers: Supplements to High School Courses in American History, Government and Civics, Bloomington, IN: Organization of American Historians in association with ERIC/ChESS, 1987. ED 280 764.
  • Schechter, Stephen L. Teaching about American Federal Democracy, Philadelphia: Center for the Study of Federalism at Temple University, 1984. ED 248 161.
  • Scott, Kyle. The Federalist Papers: A Reader’s Guide (New York: Bloomsbury Press, 2013) 202 pp.
  • Sunstein, Cass R. The Enlarged Republic—Then and Now, New York Review of Books, (March 26, 2009): Volume LVI, Number 5, 45.
  • Webster, Mary E. The Federalist Papers: In Modern Language Indexed for Today’s Political Issues. Bellevue, WA.: Merril Press, 1999.
  • White, Morton. Philosophy, The Federalist, and the Constitution, New York: 1987.
  • Zebra Edition. The Federalist Papers: (Or, How Government is Supposed to Work)Edited for ReadabilityOakesdale, WA: Lucky Zebra Press, 2007.

External links

The Great Recession

Great Recession

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Great Recession[1][2][3][4] (also referred to as the Lesser Depression,[5] the Long Recession,[6] or the global recession of 2009[7][8]) was a global economic decline that began in December 2007 and took a particularly sharp downward turn in September 2008. The initial phase of the economic crisis started with a financialliquidity crisis, dated to have started on 9 August 2007, at the interbank lending market when central banks had to step in with liquidity lending to the banking market. This was a response to a situation where BNP Paribas temporarily had to block money withdrawals from three hedge funds – citing a “complete evaporation of liquidity”.[9] The bursting of the U.S. housing bubble,[10] where the median price for real estate home sales in US started to decline after its peak in July 2006,[11] caused the values of securities tied to U.S. real estate pricing to plummet, damaging financial institutions globally and creating an interbank credit crisis.[12][13] The first sign of an interbank credit crisis arrived in March 2007, when the United States’ subprime mortgage industry collapsed due to higher-than-expected home foreclosure rates, with more than 25 subprime lenders declaring bankruptcy, announcing significant losses, or putting themselves up for sale.[14]
The Great Recession began as a national recession in United States in December 2007, but only met the IMF criteria for being a global recession, requiring a decline in annual real World GDP per‑capita (Purchasing Power Parity weighted), in the single calendar year 2009.[15][16] Despite the fact that quarterly data are being utilized asrecession definition criteria by all G20 members, representing 85% of the World GDP,[17] IMF has decided -because of the absence of a complete data set- not to declare/measure global recessions according to quarterly GDP data. The seasonally adjusted PPP‑weighted real GDP for the G20‑zone, however is a good indicator for the World GDP, and it was measured to have suffered a direct quarter on quarter decline during the three quarters from Q3‑2008 until Q1‑2009, which more accurately mark when the recession took place at the global level.[18] The exact start and end-point for the recession at the national level, however greatly varied from country to country, and some countries did not experience any recession at all.
Many countries in Europe had a second recession, starting on average about three years after the first one. Some (Germany, Switzerland, Sweden) did not have a second recession. Most countries outside Europe did not have a second recession.
The recession affected the entire world economy, with greater detriment to some countries than others, but overall to a degree which made it the worst global recession since World War II.[15][16] It was a major global recession characterised by various systemic imbalances, and was sparked by the outbreak of the U.S. subprime mortgage crisis and financial crisis of 2007–08. The economic side effects of the European sovereign debt crisis,[19] austerity, high levels of household debt, trade imbalances, high unemployment, and limited prospects for global growth in 2014,[20][21] continue to provide obstacles for many countries to achieve a full recovery from the recession.[22][23][24]


According to the U.S. National Bureau of Economic Research (the official arbiter of U.S. recessions) the US recession began in the United States in December 2007 and ended in June 2009, and thus spanned over 18 months.[25][26] US mortgage-backed securities, which had risks that were hard to assess, were marketed around the world. A more broad based credit boom fed a global speculative bubble in real estate and equities, which served to reinforce the risky lending practices.[27][28]
The bad financial situation was made more difficult by a sharp increase in oil and food prices. The emergence of sub-prime loan losses in 2007 began the crisis and exposed other risky loans and over-inflated asset prices. With loan losses mounting and the fall of Lehman Brothers on 15 September 2008, a major panic broke out on the inter-bank loan market. As share and housing prices declined, many large and well established investment and commercial banks in the United States and Europe suffered huge losses and even faced bankruptcy, resulting in massive public financial assistance.
If adhering to the European definition for existence of a global recession, this will appear when the World’s seasonally adjusted real GDP contract quarter on quarter, through two consecutive quarters.[citation needed] By applying this definition on data from the 52 countries publishing these quarterly figures and representing 90% of the World GDP, it can be concluded the global recession began in Q3-2008 and ended in Q1-2009, and thus lasted for three consecutive quarters.[citation needed]
The global recession resulted in a sharp drop in international trade, rising unemployment and slumping commodity prices.[29] Several economists predicted that recovery might not appear until 2011 and that the recession would be the worst since the Great Depression of the 1930s.[30][31] Paul Krugman, who won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics, once commented on this as seemingly the beginning of “a second Great Depression.”[32] The conditions leading up to the crisis, characterised by an exorbitant rise in asset prices and associated boom in economic demand, are considered a result of the extended period of easily available credit[33]and inadequate regulation and oversight.[34]
The recession has renewed interest in Keynesian economic ideas on how to combat recessionary conditions. Fiscal and monetary policies have been significantly eased to stem the recession and financial risks. Economists advise that the stimulus should be withdrawn as soon as the economies recover enough to “chart a path to sustainable growth”.[35][36][37]
According to a study of 54 countries, there has been an increase in suicide deaths as a result of the recession. The study cites that there were an estimated 5,000 additional deaths resulting from suicide in the year 2009 alone.[38]
World map showing real GDP growth rates for 2009. (Countries in brown were in recession.)


The great asset bubble:[39] * Central banks’ gold reserves – $0.845 tn. * M0 (paper money) – – $3.9 tn. * traditional (fractional reserve) banking assets – $39 tn. * shadow banking assets – $62 tn. * other assets – $290 tn. * Bail-out money (early 2009) – $1.9 tn.
Further information: Financial crisis of 2007–08


The immediate or proximate cause of the crisis in 2008 was the failure or risk of failure at major financial institutions globally, starting with the rescue of investment bank Bear Stearns in March 2008 and the failure of Lehman Brothers in September 2008. Many of these institutions had invested heavily in risky securities that lost much or all of their value when U.S. and European housing bubbles began to deflate during the 2007-2009 period. Further, many institutions had become dependent on short-term (overnight) funding markets subject to disruption.[40][41]
The origin of these housing bubbles involved two major factors: 1) low interest rates in the U.S. and Europe following the 2000-2001 U.S. recession; and 2) significant growth in savings available from developing nations due to ongoing trade imbalances.[42] These factors drove a large increase in demand for high-yield investments. Large investment banks connected the housing markets to this large supply of savings via innovative new securities, fueling housing bubbles in the U.S. and Europe.[43]
Many institutions lowered credit standards to continue feeding the global demand for mortgage securities, generating huge profits while passing the risk to investors. However, while the bubbles developed, household debt levels rose sharply after the year 2000 globally. Households became dependent on being able to refinance their mortgages. Further, U.S. households often had adjustable rate mortgages, which had lower initial interest rates and payments that later rose. When global credit markets essentially stopped funding mortgage-related investments in the 2007-2008 period, U.S. homeowners were no longer able to refinance and defaulted in record numbers, leading to the collapse of securities backed by these mortgages that now pervaded the system.[43][44]
The failure rates of subprime mortgages were the first symptom of a credit boom turned to bust and of a real estate shock. But large default rates on subprime mortgages cannot account for the severity of the crisis. Rather, low-quality mortgages acted as an accelerant to the fire that spread through the entire financial system. The latter had become fragile as a result of several factors that are unique to this crisis: the transfer of assets from the balance sheets of banks to the markets, the creation of complex and opaque assets, the failure of ratings agencies to properly assess the risk of such assets, and the application of fair value accounting. To these novel factors, one must add the now standard failure of regulators and supervisors in spotting and correcting the emerging weaknesses.[45]

Panel reports

The majority report of the U.S. Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, supported by six Democrat appointees, reported its findings in January 2011. It concluded that “the crisis was avoidable and was caused by: Widespread failures in financial regulation, including the Federal Reserve’s failure to stem the tide of toxic mortgages; Dramatic breakdowns in corporate governance including too many financial firms acting recklessly and taking on too much risk; An explosive mix of excessive borrowing and risk by households and Wall Street that put the financial system on a collision course with crisis; Key policy makers ill prepared for the crisis, lacking a full understanding of the financial system they oversaw; and systemic breaches in accountability and ethics at all levels.“[40]
There were two Republican dissenting reports. One of them, signed by three Republican appointees, concluded that there were multiple causes, of which government affordable housing policies was one. In his separate dissent to the majority and minority opinions of the FCIC, Commissioner Peter J. Wallison of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) primarily blamed U.S. housing policy, including the actions of Fannie & Freddie, for the crisis. He wrote: “When the bubble began to deflate in mid-2007, the low quality and high risk loans engendered by government policies failed in unprecedented numbers. The effect of these defaults was exacerbated by the fact that few if any investors—including housing market analysts—understood at the time that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac had been acquiring large numbers of subprime and other high risk loans in order to meet HUD’s affordable housing goals.” His dissent relied heavily on the research of fellow AEI member Edward Pinto, the former Chief Credit Officer of Fannie Mae. Pinto estimated that by early 2008 there were 27 million higher-risk, “non-traditional” mortgages (defined as subprime and Alt-A) outstanding valued at $4.6 trillion. Of these, Fannie & Freddie held or guaranteed 12 million mortgages valued at $1.8 trillion. Government entities held or guaranteed 19.2 million or $2.7 trillion of such mortgages total.[46]
An even larger estimate of GSE substandard loans was produced in late 2011, when the Securities and Exchange Commission filed fraud charges against 6 former GSE executives. Significantly, the SEC alleged (and still maintains) that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac reported as subprime and substandard less than 10 percent of their actual subprime and substandard loans.[47] In other words, the substandard loans held in the GSE portfolios may have been 10 times greater than originally reported. According to Wallison, that would make the SEC’s estimate of GSE substandard loans higher than Edward Pinto’s estimate.[48]
In its “Declaration of the Summit on Financial Markets and the World Economy,” dated 15 November 2008, leaders of the Group of 20 cited the following causes:
During a period of strong global growth, growing capital flows, and prolonged stability earlier this decade, market participants sought higher yields without an adequate appreciation of the risks and failed to exercise proper due diligence. At the same time, weak underwriting standards, unsound risk management practices, increasingly complex and opaque financial products, and consequent excessive leverage combined to create vulnerabilities in the system. Policy-makers, regulators and supervisors, in some advanced countries, did not adequately appreciate and address the risks building up in financial markets, keep pace with financial innovation, or take into account the systemic ramifications of domestic regulatory actions.[49]

Trade imbalances and debt bubbles

The Economist wrote in July 2012 that the inflow of investment dollars required to fund the U.S. trade deficit was a major cause of the housing bubble and financial crisis: “The trade deficit, less than 1% of GDP in the early 1990s, hit 6% in 2006. That deficit was financed by inflows of foreign savings, in particular from East Asia and the Middle East. Much of that money went into dodgy mortgages to buy overvalued houses, and the financial crisis was the result.”[50]
In May 2008, NPR explained in their Peabody Award winning program “The Giant Pool of Money” that a vast inflow of savings from developing nations flowed into the mortgage market, driving the U.S. housing bubble. This pool of fixed income savings increased from around $35 trillion in 2000 to about $70 trillion by 2008. NPR explained this money came from various sources, “[b]ut the main headline is that all sorts of poor countries became kind of rich, making things like TVs and selling us oil. China, India, Abu Dhabi, Saudi Arabia made a lot of money and banked it.”[51]
Describing the crisis in Europe, Paul Krugman wrote in February 2012 that: “What we’re basically looking at, then, is a balance of payments problem, in which capital flooded south after the creation of the euro, leading to overvaluation in southern Europe.”[52]

Monetary policy

Another narrative about the origin has been focused on the respective parts played by the public monetary policy (in the US notably) and by the practices of private financial institutions. In the U.S., mortgage funding was unusually decentralised, opaque, and competitive, and it is believed that competition between lenders for revenue and market share contributed to declining underwriting standards and risky lending.[13]
While Greenspan’s role as Chairman of the Federal Reserve has been widely discussed (the main point of controversy remains the lowering of the Federal funds rate to 1% for more than a year which, according to Austrian theorists, allowed huge amounts of “easy” credit-based money to be injected into the financial system and thus create an unsustainable economic boom),[53] there is also the argument that Greenspan’s actions in the years 2002–2004 were actually motivated by the need to take the U.S. economy out of the early 2000s recession caused by the bursting of the dot-com bubble—although by doing so he did not help avert the crisis, but only postpone it.[54][55]

High private debt levels

US Household debt relative to disposable income and GDP.
Another narrative focuses on high levels of private debt in the US economy. USA household debt as a percentage of annual disposable personal income was 127% at the end of 2007, versus 77% in 1990.[56][57] Faced with increasing mortgage payments as their adjustable rate mortgage payments increased, households began to default in record numbers, rendering mortgage-backed securities worthless. High private debt levels also impact growth by making recessions deeper and the following recovery weaker.[58][59] Robert Reich claims the amount of debt in the US economy can be traced to economic inequality, assuming that middle-class wages remained stagnant while wealth concentrated at the top, and households “pull equity from their homes and overload on debt to maintain living standards.”[60]
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) reported in April 2012: “Household debt soared in the years leading up to the Great Recession. In advanced economies, during the five years preceding 2007, the ratio of household debt to income rose by an average of 39 percentage points, to 138 percent. In Denmark, Iceland, Ireland, the Netherlands, and Norway, debt peaked at more than 200 percent of household income. A surge in household debt to historic highs also occurred in emerging economies such as Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, and Lithuania. The concurrent boom in both house prices and the stock market meant that household debt relative to assets held broadly stable, which masked households’ growing exposure to a sharp fall in asset prices. When house prices declined, ushering in the global financial crisis, many households saw their wealth shrink relative to their debt, and, with less income and more unemployment, found it harder to meet mortgage payments. By the end of 2011, real house prices had fallen from their peak by about 41% in Ireland, 29% in Iceland, 23% in Spain and the United States, and 21% in Denmark. Household defaults, underwater mortgages (where the loan balance exceeds the house value), foreclosures, and fire sales are now endemic to a number of economies. Household deleveraging by paying off debts or defaulting on them has begun in some countries. It has been most pronounced in the United States, where about two-thirds of the debt reduction reflects defaults.”[61][62]

Pre-recession economic imbalances

The onset of the economic crisis took most people by surprise. A 2009 paper identifies twelve economists and commentators who, between 2000 and 2006, predicted a recession based on the collapse of the then-booming housing market in the United States:[63] Dean Baker,Wynne GodleyFred HarrisonMichael HudsonEric JanszenSteve KeenJakob Brøchner Madsen, Jens Kjaer Sørensen, Kurt RichebächerNouriel RoubiniPeter Schiff, and Robert Shiller.[63]

Housing bubbles

Housing price appreciation in selected countries, 2002-2008
Further information: Real estate bubble
By 2007, real estate bubbles were still under way in many parts of the world,[64] especially in the United States,[13] FranceUnited KingdomItalySpainThe NetherlandsAustraliaUnited Arab EmiratesNew ZealandIrelandPoland,[65] South AfricaIsraelGreeceBulgaria,Croatia,[66] NorwaySingaporeSouth KoreaSwedenFinlandArgentina,[67] Baltic statesIndiaRomaniaUkraine, and China.[68] U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said in mid-2005 that “at a minimum, there’s a little ‘froth’ [in the U.S. housing market]…it’s hard not to see that there are a lot of local bubbles”.[69]
The Economist magazine, writing at the same time, went further, saying “the worldwide rise in house prices is the biggest bubble in history”.[70] Real estate bubbles are (by definition of the word “bubble”) followed by a price decrease (also known as a housing price crash) that can result in many owners holding negative equity (a mortgage debt higher than the current value of the property).

Increases in uncertainty

Increases in uncertainty can depress hiring, investment, or consumption. The 2007-14 recession represents the most striking episode of heightened uncertainty since 1960.[71][72]

Ineffective or inappropriate regulation

Regulations encouraging lax lending standards

Several analysts, such as Peter Wallison and Edward Pinto of the American Enterprise Institute, have asserted that private lenders were encouraged to relax lending standards by government affordable housing policies.[73][74] They cite The Housing and Community Development Act of 1992, which initially required that 30 percent or more of Fannie’s and Freddie’s loan purchases be related to affordable housing. The legislation gave HUD the power to set future requirements, and eventually (under the Bush Administration) a 56 percent minimum was established.[75] To fulfil the requirements, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac established programs to purchase $5 trillion in affordable housing loans,[76] and encouraged lenders to relax underwriting standards to produce those loans.[75]
These critics also cite, as inappropriate regulation, “The National Homeownership Strategy: Partners in the American Dream (“Strategy”), which was compiled in 1995 by Henry Cisneros, President Clinton’s HUD Secretary. In 2001, the independent research company, Graham Fisher & Company, stated: “While the underlying initiatives of the [Strategy] were broad in content, the main theme … was the relaxation of credit standards.”[77]
The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) is also identified as one of the causes of the recession, by some critics. They contend that lenders relaxed lending standards in an effort to meet CRA commitments, and they note that publicly announced CRA loan commitments were massive, totaling $4.5 trillion in the years between 1994 and 2007.[78]
However, the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission (FCIC) concluded that Fannie & Freddie “were not a primary cause” of the crisis and that CRA was not a factor in the crisis.[40] Further, since housing bubbles appeared in multiple countries in Europe as well, the FCIC Republican minority dissenting report also concluded that U.S. housing policies were not a robust explanation for a wider global housing bubble.[40]


Author Michael Lewis wrote that a type of derivative called a credit default swap (CDS) enabled speculators to stack bets on the same mortgage securities. This is analogous to allowing many persons to buy insurance on the same house. Speculators that bought CDS protection were betting that significant mortgage security defaults would occur, while the sellers (such as AIG) bet they would not. An unlimited amount could be wagered on the same housing-related securities, provided buyers and sellers of the CDS could be found.[79] When massive defaults occurred on underlying mortgage securities, companies like AIG that were selling CDS were unable to perform their side of the obligation and defaulted; U.S. taxpayers paid over $100 billion to global financial institutions to honor AIG obligations, generating considerable outrage.[80]
Derivatives such as CDS were unregulated or barely regulated. Several sources have noted the failure of the US government to supervise or even require transparency of the financial instruments known as derivatives.[81][82][83] A 2008 investigative article in the Washington Post found that leading government officials at the time (Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan, Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin, and SEC Chairman Arthur Levitt) vehemently opposed any regulation of derivatives. In 1998 Brooksley E. Born, head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, put forth a policy paper asking for feedback from regulators, lobbyists, legislators on the question of whether derivatives should be reported, sold through a central facility, or whether capital requirements should be required of their buyers. Greenspan, Rubin, and Levitt pressured her to withdraw the paper and Greenspan persuaded Congress to pass a resolution preventing CFTC from regulating derivatives for another six months — when Born’s term of office would expire.[82] Ultimately, it was the collapse of a specific kind of derivative, the mortgage-backed security, that triggered the economic crisis of 2008.[83]

Shadow banking system

Securitisation markets were impaired during the crisis.
Paul Krugman wrote in 2009 that the run on the shadow banking system as the “core of what happened” to cause the crisis. “As the shadow banking system expanded to rival or even surpass conventional banking in importance, politicians and government officials should have realised that they were re-creating the kind of financial vulnerability that made the Great Depression possible – and they should have responded by extending regulations and the financial safety net to cover these new institutions. Influential figures should have proclaimed a simple rule: anything that does what a bank does, anything that has to be rescued in crises the way banks are, should be regulated like a bank.” He referred to this lack of controls as “malign neglect.”[84][85]
During 2008, three of the largest U.S. investment banks either went bankrupt (Lehman Brothers) or were sold at fire sale prices to other banks (Bear Stearns and Merrill Lynch). The investment banks were not subject to the more stringent regulations applied to depository banks. These failures augmented the instability in the global financial system. The remaining two investment banks, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, potentially facing failure, opted to become commercial banks, thereby subjecting themselves to more stringent regulation but receiving access to credit via the Federal Reserve.[86][87] Further, American International Group (AIG) had insured mortgage-backed and other securities but was not required to maintain sufficient reserves to pay its obligations when debtors defaulted on these securities. AIG was contractually required to post additional collateral with many creditors and counter-parties, touching off controversy when over $100 billion of U.S. taxpayer money was paid out to major global financial institutions on behalf of AIG. While this money was legally owed to the banks by AIG (under agreements made via credit default swaps purchased from AIG by the institutions), a number of Congressmen and media members expressed outrage that taxpayer money was used to bail out banks.[80]
Economist Gary Gorton wrote in May 2009: “Unlike the historical banking panics of the 19th and early 20th centuries, the current banking panic is a wholesale panic, not a retail panic. In the earlier episodes, depositors ran to their banks and demanded cash in exchange for their checking accounts. Unable to meet those demands, the banking system became insolvent. The current panic involved financial firms “running” on other financial firms by not renewing sale and repurchase agreements (repo) or increasing the repo margin (“haircut”), forcing massive deleveraging, and resulting in the banking system being insolvent.”[88]
The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission reported in January 2011: “In the early part of the 20th century, we erected a series of protections – the Federal Reserve as a lender of last resort, federal deposit insurance, ample regulations – to provide a bulwark against the panics that had regularly plagued America’s banking system in the 20th century. Yet, over the past 30-plus years, we permitted the growth of a shadow banking system – opaque and laden with short term debt – that rivaled the size of the traditional banking system. Key components of the market – for example, the multitrillion-dollar repo lending market, off-balance-sheet entities, and the use of over-the-counter derivatives – were hidden from view, without the protections we had constructed to prevent financial meltdowns. We had a 21st-century financial system with 19th-century safeguards.”[40]



There are two senses of the word “recession“: a less precise sense, referring broadly to “a period of reduced economic activity”,[89] and the academic sense used most often in economics, which is defined operationally, referring specifically to the contraction phase of a business cycle, with two or more consecutive quarters of negative GDP growth. If one analyzes the event using the economics-academic definition of the word, the recession ended in the United States in June or July 2009.[90][91] However, in the broader, lay sense of the word, many people use the term to refer to the ongoing hardship (in the same way that the term “Great Depression” is also popularly used).[92][93][94][95][96][97]

Effect on the U.S.

Sectoral financial balances in U.S. economy 1990–2012. By definition, the three balances must net to zero. Since 2009, the U.S. capital surplus and private sector surplus have driven a government budget deficit.
U.S. Changes in Employment for Selected Time Periods
In the U.S., persistent high unemployment remains as of December 2012, along with low consumer confidence, the continuing decline in home values and increase in foreclosures and personal bankruptcies, an increasing federal debtinflation, and rising petroleum and food prices. In fact, a 2011 poll found that more than half of all Americans think the U.S. is still in recession or even depression, although economic data show a historically modest recovery.[98] This could be because both private and public levels of debt are at historic highs in the U.S. and in many other countries. A number of economists believe that excessive debt plays a role in causing bank crises and sovereign default.[99][100][101][102]
  • Real gross domestic product (GDP) began contracting in the third quarter of 2008 and did not return to growth until Q1 2010.[103] CBO estimated in February 2013 that real U.S. GDP remained 5.5% below its potential level, or about $850 billion. CBO projected that GDP would not return to its potential level until 2017.[104]
  • The unemployment rate rose from 5% in 2008 pre-crisis to 10% by late 2009, then steadily declined to 7.6% by March 2013.[105] The number of unemployed rose from approximately 7 million in 2008 pre-crisis to 15 million by 2009, then declined to 12 million by early 2013.[106]
  • Residential private investment (mainly housing) fell from its 2006 pre-crisis peak of $800 billion, to $400 billion by mid-2009 and has remained depressed at that level. Non-residential investment (mainly business purchases of capital equipment) peaked at $1,700 billion in 2008 pre-crisis and fell to $1,300 billion in 2010, but by early 2013 had nearly recovered to this peak.[107]
  • Housing prices fell approximately 30% on average from their mid-2006 peak to mid-2009 and remained at approximately that level as of March 2013.[108]
  • Stock market prices, as measured by the S&P 500 index, fell 57% from their October 2007 peak of 1,565 to a trough of 676 in March 2009. Stock prices began a steady climb thereafter and returned to record levels by April 2013.[109]
  • The net worth of U.S. households and non-profit organisations fell from a peak of approximately $67 trillion in 2007 to a trough of $52 trillion in 2009, a decline of $15 trillion or 22%. It began to recover thereafter and was $66 trillion by Q3 2012.[110]
  • U.S. total national debt rose from 66% GDP in 2008 pre-crisis to over 103% by the end of 2012.[111] Martin Wolf and Paul Krugman argued that the rise in private savings and decline in investment fueled a large private sector surplus, which drove sizeable budget deficits.[112][113]
  • For the majority, income levels have dropped substantially with the median male worker making $32,137 in 2010, and an inflation-adjusted income of $32,844 in 1968.[114] The recession of 2007–2009 is considered to be the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.[115] and the subsequent economic recovery one of the weakest. The weak economic performance since 2000 has seen the percentage of working age adults actually employed drop from 64% to 58% (a number last seen in 1984), with most of that drop occurring since 2007.[116]
  • Approximately 5.4 million people have been added to federal disability rolls as discouraged workers give up looking for work and take advantage of the federal program.[117]
  • The United States has seen an increasing concentration of wealth to the detriment of the middle class and the poor with the younger generations being especially affected. The middle class dropped from 61% of the population in 1971 to 51% in 2011 as the upper class increased its take of the national income from 29% in 1970 to 46% in 2010. The share for the middle class dropped to 45%, down from 62% while total income for the poor dropped to 9% from 10%. Since the number of poor increased during this period the smaller piece of the pie (down to 9% from 10%) is spread over a greater portion of the population.[118] The portion of national wealth owned by the middle class and poor has also dropped as their portion of the national income has dropped, making it more difficult to accumulate wealth. The younger generation, which would be just starting their wealth accumulation, has been the most hard hit. Those under 35 are 68% less wealthy than they were in 1984, while those over 55 are 10% wealthier.[119] Much of this concentration has happened since the start of the Great Recession. In 2009, the wealthiest 20% of households controlled 87.2% of all wealth, up from 85.0% in 2007. The top 1% controlled 35.6% of all wealth, up from 34.6% in 2007.[120] The share of the bottom 80% fell from 15% to 12.8%, dropping 15%.
  • Inflation-adjusted median household income in the United States peaked in 1999 at $53,252 (at the peak of the Internet stock bubble), dropped to $51,174 in 2004, went up to 52,823 in 2007 (at the peak of the housing bubble), and has since trended downward to $49,445 in 2010. The last time median household income was at this level was in 1996 at $49,112, indicating that the recession of the early 2000s and the 2008–2012 global recession wiped out all middle class income gains for the last 15 years.[121] This income drop has caused a dramatic[citation needed] rise in people living under the poverty level and has hit suburbia particularly hard. Between 2000 and 2010, the number of suburban households below the poverty line increased by 53 percent, compared to a 23 percent increase in poor households in urban areas.[122]

Effects on Europe

Further information: European sovereign-debt crisis and Austerity
Public Debt to GDP Ratio for Selected European Countries – 2008 to 2011. Source Data: Eurostat
Relationship between fiscal tightening (austerity) in Eurozone countries with their GDP growth rate, 2008–2012[123]
The crisis in Europe generally progressed from banking system crises to sovereign debt crises, as many countries elected to bailout their banking systems using taxpayer money.[citation needed] Greece was different in that it faced large public debts rather than problems within its banking system. Several countries received bailout packages from the “troika” (European Commission, European Central Bank, International Monetary Fund), which also implemented a series of emergency measures.
Many European countries which embarked on austerity programs, reducing their budget deficits relative to GDP from 2010 to 2011. For example, according to the CIA World Factbook Greece improved its budget deficit from 10.4% GDP in 2010 to 9.6% in 2011. Iceland, Italy, Ireland, Portugal, France, and Spain also improved their budget deficits from 2010 to 2011 relative to GDP.[124][125]
However, with the exception of Germany, each of these countries had public-debt-to-GDP ratios that increased (i.e., worsened) from 2010 to 2011, as indicated in the chart at right. Greece’s public-debt-to-GDP ratio increased from 143% in 2010 to 165% in 2011.[124] This indicates that despite improving budget deficits, GDP growth was not sufficient to support a decline (improvement) in the debt-to-GDP ratio for these countries during this period. Eurostat reported that the debt to GDP ratio for the 17 Euro area countries together was 70.1% in 2008, 79.9% in 2009, 85.3% in 2010, and 87.2% in 2011.[125][126]
According to the CIA World Factbook, from 2010 to 2011, the unemployment rates in Spain, Greece, Italy, Ireland, Portugal, and the UK increased. France had no significant changes, while in Germany and Iceland the unemployment rate declined.[124] Eurostat reported that Eurozone unemployment reached record levels in September 2012 at 11.6%, up from 10.3% the prior year. Unemployment varied significantly by country.[127]
Economist Martin Wolf analysed the relationship between cumulative GDP growth from 2008-2012 and total reduction in budget deficits due to austerity policies (see chart at right) in several European countries during April 2012. He concluded that: “In all, there is no evidence here that large fiscal contractions [budget deficit reductions] bring benefits to confidence and growth that offset the direct effects of the contractions. They bring exactly what one would expect: small contractions bring recessions and big contractions bring depressions.” Changes in budget balances (deficits or surpluses) explained approximately 53% of the change in GDP, according to the equation derived from the IMF data used in his analysis.[123]
Economist Paul Krugman analysed the relationship between GDP and reduction in budget deficits for several European countries in April 2012 and concluded that austerity was slowing growth, similar to Martin Wolf. He also wrote: “… this also implies that 1 euro of austerity yields only about 0.4 euros of reduced deficit, even in the short run. No wonder, then, that the whole austerity enterprise is spiraling into disaster.”[128]

Countries that avoided recession

Poland is the only member of the European Union to have avoided a decline in GDP, meaning that in 2009 Poland has created the most GDP growth in the EU. As of December 2009 the Polish economy had not entered recession nor even contracted, while its IMF 2010 GDP growth forecast of 1.9 per cent is expected to be upgraded.[129][130][131]
Analysts have identified several causes: Extremely low levels of bank lending and a relatively very small mortgage market; the relatively recent dismantling of EU trade barriers and the resulting surge in demand for Polish goods since 2004; the receipt of direct EU funding since 2004; lack of over-dependence on a single export sector; a tradition of government fiscal responsibility; a relatively large internal market; the free-floating Polish zloty; low labour costs attracting continued foreign direct investment; economic difficulties at the start of the decade which prompted austerity measures in advance of the world crisis.[citation needed]
While ChinaIndia, and Iran have experienced slowing growth, they have not entered recession.
South Korea narrowly avoided technical recession in the first quarter of 2009.[132] The International Energy Agency stated in mid September that South Korea could be the only large OECD country to avoid recession for the whole of 2009.[133] It was the only developed economy to expand in the first half of 2009.
Australia avoided a technical recession after experiencing only one quarter of negative growth in the fourth quarter of 2008, with GDP returning to positive in the first quarter of 2009.[134][135]
The financial crisis did not affect developing countries to a great extent. Experts see several reasons: Africa was not affected because it is not integrated in the world market. Latin America and Asia seemed better prepared, since they experienced crisis before. In Latin America for example banking laws and regulations are very stringent. Bruno Wenn of the German DEG even suggests that Western countries could learn from these countries when it comes to regulations of financial markets.[136]

Timeline of effects

The table below summarizes all national recessions appearing during the years 2006-2013, according to the European recession definition, saying that a recession occurred whenever seasonally adjusted real GDP contracts quarter on quarter, through minimum two consecutive quarters. Only 11 out of the 71 listed countries with quarterly GDP data (Poland, Slovakia, Moldova, India, China, South Korea, Indonesia, Australia, Uruguay, Colombia and Bolivia), escaped to experience a recession in 2006‑2013.
The few recessions appearing early in 2006-07 are commonly never associated to be part of the Great Recession, which is illustrated by the fact that only 2 out of 71 countries (Iceland and Jamaica) were hit by a recession in Q4-2007. At the beginning of the Great Recession in Q1-2008 only a total of 6 countries were hit (Iceland, Sweden, Finland, Ireland, Portugal and New Zealand). The number of countries suffering a recession then grew to 25 in Q2‑2008, 39 in Q3‑2008 and 53 in Q4‑2008. At the steepest part of the Great Recession in Q1‑2009, a total of 59 out of 71 countries were simultaneously in recession. Then it gradually clanged off with these number of countries in recession: 37 in Q2‑2009, 13 in Q3‑2009, 11 in Q4‑2009, and only 7 in Q1‑2010 (Greece, Croatia, Romania, Iceland, Jamaica, Venezuela and Belize). The recession data for the overall G20-zone (representing 85% of all GWP), depict that the Great Recession existed as a global recession throughout Q3‑2008 until Q1‑2009.
Subsequent follow-up recessions in 2010‑2013 were confined to Belize, El Salvador, Paraguay, Jamaica, Japan, Taiwan, New Zealand and 24 out of 50 European countries (including Greece). As of October 2013, only eight out of the 71 countries with available quarterly data (Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Ukraine, Belize and El Salvador), were still in ongoing recessions.[18][137] The many follow-up recessions hitting the European countries, are commonly referred to as being direct repercussions of the European sovereign‑debt crisis.
Country[a] Recession period(s) during 2006‑2013[18][137]
(measured by quarter-on-quarter changes of seasonally adjusted real GDP,
as per the latest revised Q3-2013 data from 10 January 2014)
Albania Q1-2007 until Q2-2007 (6 months)[138]
Q3-2009 until Q4-2009 (6 months)[138]
Q4-2011 until Q1-2012 (6 months)[138]
Argentina Q4-2008 until Q2-2009 (9 months)
Australia No
Austria Q2-2008 until Q2-2009 (15 months)
Q3-2011 until Q4-2011 (6 months)
Belgium Q3-2008 until Q1-2009 (9 months)
Q2-2012 until Q1-2013 (12 months)
Belize Q1-2006 until Q2-2006 (6 months)[139]
Q1-2007 until Q3-2007 (9 months)[139]
Q4-2008 until Q1-2009 (6 months)[139]
Q4-2009 until Q1-2010 (6 months)[139]
Q1-2011 until Q2-2011 (6 months)[139]
Q2-2013 until Ongoing (6 months)[139]
Bolivia No[140][c]
Brazil Q4-2008 until Q1-2009 (6 months)
Bulgaria Q1-2009 until Q2-2009 (6 months)
Canada Q4-2008 until Q2-2009 (9 months)
Chile Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)
China No
Colombia No[141][142]
Costa Rica Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)[143]
Croatia Q3-2008 until Q2-2010 (24 months)
Q3-2011 until Q4-2012 (18 months)
Q2-2013 until Ongoing (6 months)
Cyprus Q1-2009 until Q4-2009 (12 months)
Q3-2011 until Ongoing (27 months)
Czech Republic Q4-2008 until Q2-2009 (9 months)
Q4-2011 until Q1-2013 (18 months)
Denmark Q3-2008 until Q2-2009 (12 months)
Q3-2011 until Q4-2011 (6 months)
Q4-2012 until Q1-2013 (6 months)
Ecuador Q4-2006 until Q1-2007 (6 months)[144]
Q1-2009 until Q3-2009 (9 months)[145][146]
El Salvador Q3-2008 until Q2-2009 (12 months)[147][d]
Q2-2013 until Ongoing (6 months)[147][d]
Estonia Q3-2008 until Q3-2009 (15 months)
Q1-2013 until Q2-2013 (6 months)
EU (28 member states) Q2-2008 until Q2-2009 (15 months)
Q4-2011 until Q2-2012 (9 months)
Q4-2012 until Q1-2013 (6 months)
Eurozone (17 member states) Q2-2008 until Q2-2009 (15 months)
Q4-2011 until Q1-2013 (18 months)
Finland Q1-2008 until Q2-2009 (18 months)
Q2-2012 until Q1-2013 (12 months)
France Q2-2008 until Q2-2009 (15 months)
Q4-2012 until Q1-2013 (6 months)
G20 (43 member states, PPP-weighted GDP)[e] Q3-2008 until Q1-2009 (9 months)
Germany Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)
Greece Q3-2008 until Ongoing (63 months)[149]
(not qoq-data, but quarters compared with same quarter of last year)[b]
Hong Kong Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)[150]
Hungary Q1-2007 until Q2-2007 (6 months)
Q2-2008 until Q3-2009 (18 months)
Q2-2011 until Q3-2011 (6 months)
Q1-2012 until Q4-2012 (12 months)
Iceland Q4-2007 until Q2-2008 (9 months)
Q4-2008 until Q1-2009 (6 months)
Q3-2009 until Q2-2010 (12 months)
India No
Indonesia No
Ireland Q2-2007 until Q3-2007 (6 months)
Q1-2008 until Q4-2009 (24 months)
Israel Q4-2008 until Q1-2009 (6 months)
Italy Q2-2008 until Q2-2009 (15 months)
Q3-2011 until Ongoing (27 months)
Jamaica Q3-2007 until Q4-2007 (6 months)[151]
Q3-2008 until Q1-2009 (9 months)[151]
Q4-2009 until Q2-2010 (9 months)[151]
Q4-2011 until Q1-2012 (6 months)[151]
Q4-2012 until Q1-2013 (6 months)[151]
Japan Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)
Q4-2010 until Q2-2011 (9 months)
Q2-2012 until Q3-2012 (6 months)
Kazakhstan Q3-2008 until Q1-2009 (9 months)[152][f]
Latvia Q2-2008 until Q3-2009 (18 months)
Lithuania Q3-2008 until Q2-2009 (12 months)
Luxembourg Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)
Macedonia Q1-2009 until Q3-2009 (9 months)[153]
Q1-2012 until Q2-2012 (6 months)[153]
(not qoq-data, but quarters compared with same quarter of last year)[b]
Malaysia Q3-2008 until Q1-2009 (9 months)[154][155]
Malta Q4-2008 until Q1-2009 (6 months)
Mexico Q3-2008 until Q2-2009 (12 months)
Moldova No[156][g]
Netherlands Q2-2008 until Q2-2009 (15 months)
Q2-2011 until Q1-2012 (12 months)
Q3-2012 until Q2-2013 (12 months)
New Zealand Q1-2008 until Q2-2009 (18 months)
Q3-2010 until Q4-2010 (6 months)
Norway Q1-2009 until Q2-2009 (6 months)
Q2-2010 until Q3-2010 (6 months)
Q1-2011 until Q2-2011 (6 months)
OECD (34 member states, PPP-weighted GDP) Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)
Paraguay Q3-2008 until Q1-2009 (9 months)[157]
Q2-2011 until Q3-2011 (6 months)[157]
Peru Q4-2008 until Q2-2009 (9 months)[158]
Philippines Q4-2008 until Q1-2009 (6 months)[159][160]
Poland No
Portugal Q2-2007 until Q3-2007 (6 months)
Q1-2008 until Q1-2009 (15 months)
Q4-2010 until Q1-2013 (30 months)
Romania Q4-2008 until Q2-2009 (9 months)
Q4-2009 until Q1-2010 (6 months)
Q4-2011 until Q1-2012 (6 months)
Russia Q3-2008 until Q2-2009 (12 months)
Serbia Q2-2008 until Q2-2009 (15 months)[161]
Q2-2011 until Q1-2012 (12 months)[161]
Q3-2012 until Q4-2012 (6 months)[161]
Singapore Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)[162][163][164][165][166]
Slovakia No
Slovenia Q3-2008 until Q2-2009 (12 months)
Q3-2011 until Ongoing (27 months)
South Africa Q4-2008 until Q2-2009 (9 months)
South Korea No
Spain Q2-2008 until Q4-2009 (21 months)
Q2-2011 until Q2-2013 (27 months)
Sweden Q1-2008 until Q1-2009 (15 months)
Switzerland Q4-2008 until Q2-2009 (9 months)
Taiwan Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)[167]
Q3-2011 until Q4-2011 (6 months)[167]
Thailand Q4-2008 until Q1-2009 (6 months)[168]
Turkey Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)
Ukraine Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (12 months)[169]
Q3-2012 until Q4-2012 (6 months)[169][170]
Q2-2013 until Ongoing (6 months)[171][172]
United Kingdom Q2-2008 until Q3-2009 (18 months)[173]
Q4-2011 until Q2-2012 (9 months)[173]
United States Q3-2008 until Q2-2009 (12 months)
Uruguay No[174]
Venezuela Q1-2009 until Q1-2010 (15 months)[175]
  1. Jump up^ 105 out of the 206 sovereign countries in the World, did not publish any quarterly GDP data for the 2006‑2013 period. The following 21 countries were also excluded from the table, due to only publishing unadjusted quarterly real GDP figures with no seasonal adjustment: ArmeniaAzerbaijanBelarusBruneiDominican RepublicEgypt,GeorgiaGuatemalaIranJordanMacaoMontenegroMoroccoNicaraguaNigeriaPalestineQatarRwandaSri LankaTrinidad and TobagoVietnam.
  2. Jump up to:a b c Only seasonally adjusted qoq-data can be used to accurately determine recession periods. When quarterly change is calculated by comparing quarters with the same quarter of last year, this results only in an aggregated -often delayed- indication, because of being a product of all quarterly changes taking place since the same quarter last year. Currently there is no seasonal adjusted qoq-data available for Greece and Macedonia, which is why the table display the recession intervals for these two countries only based upon the alternative indicative data format.
  3. Jump up^ Bolivia had as of January 2014 only published seasonally adjusted real GDP data until Q1-2010, with the statistics office still to publish data for 2010-13.[140]
  4. Jump up to:a b According to the methodology note for the quarterly GDP of El Salvador, this data series include seasonally adjustments.[148]
  5. Jump up^ The G20-zone represents 85% of all GWP, and comprise 19 member states (incl. UK, France, Germany and Italy) along with the EU Commission as the 20th member, who represents the remaining 24 EU member states in the forum.[17]
  6. Jump up^ Kazakhstan had as of January 2014 only published seasonally adjusted real GDP data until Q4-2009, with the statistics office still to publish data for 2010-13.[152]
  7. Jump up^ Moldova had as of January 2014 only published seasonally adjusted real GDP data until Q4-2010, with the statistics office still to publish data for 2011-13.[156]

Country specific details about recession timelines

Iceland fell into an economic depression in 2008 following the collapse of its banking system (see 2008–2011 Icelandic financial crisis). By mid-2012 Iceland is regarded as one of Europe’s recovery success stories largely as a result of a currency devaluation that has effectively reduced wages by 50%–making exports more competitive.[176]
The following countries had a recession already starting in the first quarter of 2008: Latvia,[177] Ireland,[178] New Zealand,[179] and Sweden.[18]
The following countries/territories had a recession starting in the second quarter of 2008: Japan,[180] Hong Kong,[181] Singapore,[182] Italy,[183] Turkey,[18] Germany,[184] United Kingdom,[18] the Eurozone,[185] the European Union,[18] and OECD.[18]
The following countries/territories had a recession starting in the third quarter of 2008: United States,[18] Spain,[186] and Taiwan.[187]
The following countries/territories had a recession starting in the fourth quarter of 2008: Switzerland.[188]
South Korea “miraculously” avoided recession with GDP returning positive at a 0.1% expansion in the first quarter of 2009.[189]
Of the seven largest economies in the world by GDP, only China avoided a recession in 2008. In the year to the third quarter of 2008 China grew by 9%. Until recently Chinese officials considered 8% GDP growth to be required simply to create enough jobs for rural people moving to urban centres.[190] This figure may more accurately be considered to be 5–7% now that the main growth in working population is receding.[citation needed]
Ukraine went into technical depression in January 2009 with a nominal annualised GDP growth of −20%, when comparing on a monthly basis with the GDP level in January 2008.[191] Overall the Ukrainian real GDP fell 14.8% when comparing the entire part of 2009 with 2008.[192] When measured quarter-on-quarter by changes of seasonally adjusted real GDP, Ukraine was more precisely in recession/depression throughout the four quarters from Q2-2008 until Q1-2009 (with respective qoq-changes of: -0.1%, -0.5%, -9.3%, -10.3%), and the two quarters from Q3-2012 until Q4-2012 (with respective qoq-changes of: -1.5% and -0.8%).[169]
Japan was in recovery in the middle of the decade 2000s but slipped back into recession and deflation in 2008.[193] The recession in Japan intensified in the fourth quarter of 2008 with a nominal annualized GDP growth of −12.7% (being equal to the seasonally adjusted real GDP having a quarter-on-quarter change of -3.2%),[194]and deepened further in the first quarter of 2009 with a nominal annualised GDP growth of −15.2% (being equal to the seasonally adjusted real GDP having a quarter-on-quarter change of -4.0%).[195]

Political instability related to the economic crisis

On February 26, 2009, an Economic Intelligence Briefing was added to the daily intelligence briefings prepared for the President of the United States. This addition reflects the assessment of U.S. intelligence agencies that the global financial crisis presents a serious threat to international stability.[196]
Business Week stated in March 2009 that global political instability is rising fast due to the global financial crisis and is creating new challenges that need managing.[197] The Associated Press reported in March 2009 that: United States “Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair has said the economic weakness could lead to political instability in many developing nations.”[198] Even some developed countries are seeing political instability.[199] NPR reports that David Gordon, a former intelligence officer who now leads research at the Eurasia Group, said: “Many, if not most, of the big countries out there have room to accommodate economic downturns without having large-scale political instability if we’re in a recession of normal length. If you’re in a much longer-run downturn, then all bets are off.”[200]
Globally, mass protest movements have arisen in many countries as a response to the economic crisis. Additionally, in some countries, riots and even open revolts have occurred in relation to the economic crisis.
In January 2009 the government leaders of Iceland were forced to call elections two years early after the people of Iceland staged mass protests and clashed with the police due to the government’s handling of the economy.[199] Hundreds of thousands protested in France against President Sarkozy’s economic policies.[201]Prompted by the financial crisis in Latvia, the opposition and trade unions there organised a rally against the cabinet of premier Ivars Godmanis. The rally gathered some 10–20 thousand people. In the evening the rally turned into a Riot. The crowd moved to the building of the parliament and attempted to force their way into it, but were repelled by the state’s police. In late February many Greeks took part in a massive general strike because of the economic situation and they shut down schools, airports, and many other services in Greece.[202] Police and protesters clashed in Lithuania where people protesting the economic conditions were shot with rubber bullets.[203] Communists and others rallied in Moscow to protest the Russian government’s economic plans.[204]
In addition to various levels of unrest in Europe, Asian countries have also seen various degrees of protest.[205] Protests have also occurred in China as demands from the west for exports have been dramatically reduced and unemployment has increased. Beyond these initial protests, the protest movement has grown and continued in 2011. In late 2011, the Occupy Wall Street protest took place in the United States, spawning several offshoots that came to be known as the Occupy movement.
In 2012 the economic difficulties in Spain have caused support for secession movements to increase. In Catalonia support for the secession movement exceeded 50%, up from 25% in 2010. On September 11, a pro-independence march, which in the past has never drawn more than 50,000 people, pulled in a crowd estimated by city police at 1.5 million.[206]

Policy responses

The financial phase of the crisis led to emergency interventions in many national financial systems. As the crisis developed into genuine recession in many major economies, economic stimulus meant to revive economic growth became the most common policy tool. After having implemented rescue plans for the banking system, major developed and emerging countries announced plans to relieve their economies. In particular, economic stimulus plans were announced in China, the United States, and the European Union.[207] Bailouts of failing or threatened businesses were carried out or discussed in the USA, the EU, and India.[208] In the final quarter of 2008, the financial crisis saw the G-20 group of major economies assume a new significance as a focus of economic and financial crisis management.

United States policy responses

Federal Reserve Holdings of Treasury and Mortgage-Backed Securities
The Federal Reserve, Treasury, and Securities and Exchange Commission took several steps on September 19 to intervene in the crisis. To stop the potential run on money market mutual funds, the Treasury also announced on September 19 a new $50 billion program to insure the investments, similar to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) program.[209][210] Part of the announcements included temporary exceptions to section 23A and 23B (Regulation W), allowing financial groups to more easily share funds within their group. The exceptions would expire on January 30, 2009, unless extended by the Federal Reserve Board.[211] The Securities and Exchange Commission announced termination of short-selling of 799 financial stocks, as well as action against naked short selling, as part of its reaction to the mortgage crisis.[212] In May 2013 as the stock market was hitting record highs and the housing and employment markets were improving slightly[213] the prospect of the Federal Reserve beginning to decrease its economic stimulus activities began to enter the projections of investment analysts and affected global markets.[214]

Asia-Pacific policy responses

On September 15, 2008, China cut its interest rate for the first time since 2002. Indonesia reduced its overnight repo rate, at which commercial banks can borrow overnight funds from the central bank, by two percentage points to 10.25 percent. The Reserve Bank of Australia injected nearly $1.5 billion into the banking system, nearly three times as much as the market’s estimated requirement. The Reserve Bank of India added almost $1.32 billion, through a refinance operation, its biggest in at least a month.[215]
On November 9, 2008, the Chinese economic stimulus program is a RMB¥ 4 trillion ($586 billion) stimulus package announced by the central government of the People’s Republic of China in its biggest move to stop the global financial crisis from hitting the world’s second largest economy. A statement on the government’s website said the State Council had approved a plan to invest 4 trillion yuan ($586 billion) in infrastructure and social welfare by the end of 2010. The stimulus package will be invested in key areas such as housing, rural infrastructure, transportation, health and education, environment, industry, disaster rebuilding, income-building, tax cuts, and finance.
China’s export driven economy is starting to feel the impact of the economic slowdown in the United States and Europe, and the government has already cut key interest rates three times in less than two months in a bid to spur economic expansion. On November 28, 2008, theMinistry of Finance of the People’s Republic of China and the State Administration of Taxation jointly announced a rise in export tax rebate rates on some labour-intensive goods. These additional tax rebates will take place on December 1, 2008.[216]
The stimulus package was welcomed by world leaders and analysts as larger than expected and a sign that by boosting its own economy, China is helping to stabilise the global economy. News of the announcement of the stimulus package sent markets up across the world. However, Marc Faber claimed that he thought China was still in recession on January 16.
In Taiwan, the central bank on September 16, 2008, said it would cut its required reserve ratios for the first time in eight years. The central bank added $3.59 billion into the foreign-currency interbank market the same day. Bank of Japan pumped $29.3 billion into the financial system on September 17, 2008, and the Reserve Bank of Australia added $3.45 billion the same day.[217]
In developing and emerging economies, responses to the global crisis mainly consisted in low-rates monetary policy (Asia and the Middle East mainly) coupled with the depreciation of the currency against the dollar. There were also stimulus plans in some Asian countries, in the Middle East and in Argentina. In Asia, plans generally amounted to 1 to 3% of GDP, with the notable exception of China, which announced a plan accounting for 16% of GDP (6% of GDP per year).

European policy responses

Until September 2008, European policy measures were limited to a small number of countries (Spain and Italy). In both countries, the measures were dedicated to households (tax rebates) reform of the taxation system to support specific sectors such as housing. The European Commission proposed a €200 billion stimulus planto be implemented at the European level by the countries. At the beginning of 2009, the UK and Spain completed their initial plans, while Germany announced a new plan.
On September 29, 2008, the Belgian, Luxembourg and Dutch authorities partially nationalised Fortis. The German government bailed out Hypo Real Estate.
On 8 October 2008 the British Government announced a bank rescue package of around £500 billion[218] ($850 billion at the time). The plan comprises three parts. The first £200 billion would be made in regard to the banks in liquidity stack. The second part will consist of the state government increasing the capital market within the banks. Along with this, £50 billion will be made available if the banks needed it, finally the government will write away any eligible lending between the British banks with a limit to £250 billion.
In early December German Finance Minister Peer Steinbrück indicated a lack of belief in a “Great Rescue Plan” and reluctance to spend more money addressing the crisis.[219] In March 2009, The European Union Presidency confirmed that the EU was at the time strongly resisting the US pressure to increase European budget deficits.[220]

Global responses

Responses by the UK and United States in proportion to their GDPs.
Most political responses to the economic and financial crisis has been taken, as seen above, by individual nations. Some coordination took place at the European level, but the need to cooperate at the global level has led leaders to activate the G-20 major economies entity. A first summit dedicated to the crisis took place, at the Heads of state level in November 2008 (2008 G-20 Washington summit).
The G-20 countries met in a summit held on November 2008 in Washington to address the economic crisis. Apart from proposals on international financial regulation, they pledged to take measures to support their economy and to coordinate them, and refused any resort to protectionism.
Another G-20 summit was held in London on April 2009. Finance ministers and central banks leaders of the G-20 met in Horsham, England, on March to prepare the summit, and pledged to restore global growth as soon as possible. They decided to coordinate their actions and to stimulate demand and employment. They also pledged to fight against all forms of protectionism and to maintain trade and foreign investments.
They also committed to maintain the supply of credit by providing more liquidity and recapitalising the banking system, and to implement rapidly the stimulus plans. As for central bankers, they pledged to maintain low-rates policies as long as necessary. Finally, the leaders decided to help emerging and developing countries, through a strengthening of the IMF.

Policy recommendations

IMF recommendation

The IMF stated in September 2010 that the financial crisis would not end without a major decrease in unemployment as hundreds of millions of people were unemployed worldwide. The IMF urged governments to expand social safety nets and to generate job creation even as they are under pressure to cut spending. Governments should also invest in skills training for the unemployed and even governments of countries like Greece with major debt risk should first focus on long-term economic recovery by creating jobs.[221]

Raising interest rates

The Bank of Israel was the first to raise interest rates after the global recession began.[222] It increased rates in August 2009.[222]
On October 6, 2009, Australia became the first G20 country to raise its main interest rate, with the Reserve Bank of Australia moving rates up from 3.00% to 3.25%.[223]
The Norges Bank of Norway and the Reserve Bank of India raised interest rates in March 2010.[224]

Comparisons with the Great Depression

On April 17, 2009, the then head of the IMF Dominique Strauss-Kahn said that there was a chance that certain countries may not implement the proper policies to avoid feedback mechanisms that could eventually turn the recession into a depression. “The free-fall in the global economy may be starting to abate, with a recovery emerging in 2010, but this depends crucially on the right policies being adopted today.” The IMF pointed out that unlike the Great Depression, this recession was synchronised by global integration of markets. Such synchronized recessions were explained to last longer than typical economic downturns and have slower recoveries.[225]
Olivier Blanchard, IMF Chief Economist, stated that the percentage of workers laid off for long stints has been rising with each downturn for decades but the figures have surged this time. “Long-term unemployment is alarmingly high: in the United States, half the unemployed have been out of work for over six months, something we have not seen since the Great Depression.” The IMF also stated that a link between rising inequality within Western economies and deflating demand may exist. The last time that the wealth gap reached such skewed extremes was in 1928–1929.[226]
Concerning unemployment, during the 1980–1982 recession, unemployment peaked at nearly 11% (10.8%) in November 1982 and remained above 10% from September 1982 through June 1983. Unemployment remained over 8% through January 1984 before dipping lower. By contrast, unemployment peaked at 10% in October 2009 for one month, before declining to below 10% after that, although remaining high at above 8% through April 2012. Unemployment numbers at the beginning of both recessions were at similar levels, around 6% in early-1980 and around 5% in early 2008.
In regards to inflation, the 1980–1982 recession inflation rate peaked at 14.76% in March 1980 and remained over 10% through October 1981, before dropping in early to mid-1982. By comparison, inflation during the 2008–2009 recession was practically non-existent, with a peak of nearly 5.6% inflation in July 2008 before dropping to .09% by December 2008. Deflation occurred in 2009, specifically between March–October, “troughing” at negative (-) 2.10% in July 2009 before going positive to 2.72% in December 2009. Inflation remains low, standing at 2.65% as of March 2012.
In a related debilitating category, the Prime Lending Rate (PLR) stood at 20% in early-1980 in order to combat high inflation. The PLR fluctuated somewhat but hit 20% again in late-1980, again in early-1981, and yet again in late-1981, remaining at around 15% through mid-1982 before dropping below 10% by the end of 1982. By contrast, during the 2008–2009 recession the PLR has remained flat at around 1% since late in 2008, practically speaking during the entire period.
Although the banking industry and housing sector were hit hard in the 1980–1982 recession, the housing sector was hit harder in the 2008–2009 recession due to the housing bubble bursting in 2006–2007. This is the only category that is clearly worse in the 2008–2009 recession from a U.S. perspective.


Risk of relapse into recession

As recovery stalled and stagnation set in, several observers warned of the possibility of a second recession. United States observers often cite the recession of 1937–1938 as a model.[227]
In his article “On the Possibilities to Forecast the Current Crisis and its Second Wave” (with Askar Akaev and Andrey Korotayev) in the Russian academic journal “Ekonomicheskaya politika” (December 2010. Issue 6. pp. 39–46 [228]) the Rector of the Moscow State University Viktor Sadovnichiy published “a forecast of the second wave of the crisis, which suggested that it might start in July — August, 2011“.[229] A September 14, 2011 Reuters Poll indicated that economists thought the probability of another recession was at 31%, up from 25% the month before.[230] Since the US economy has not fully recovered from the last recession, any resumption would be considerably more painful.[231]
In the United States, jobs paying between $14 and $21 per hour made up about 60% those lost during the recession, but such mid-wage jobs have comprised only about 27% of jobs gained during the recovery through mid-2012. In contrast, lower-paying jobs constituted about 58% of the jobs regained.[232]

See also


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  113. Jump up^ “according to Table P-5 of the Census report of (Lack of) Income, the median male is now worse on a gross, inflation adjusted basis, than he was in… 1968! While back then, the median income of male workers was $32,844, it has since declined to $32,137 as of 2010.”. Retrieved 2013-04-22.
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  140. Jump up^ “Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at 2005 Constant Prices by Area of Economic Activity – Seasonally Adjusted. Quarterly Since 2000: Quarterly Percentage Change” (XLS). Banco de la República, Colombia. 19 September 2013.
  141. Jump up^ “GDP by branch of activity: By branches of economic activity at constant prices for 2005 deseasonalized series / 2000-I a 2013-III” (XLS). Departamento Administrativo Nacional de Estadística (DANE). 19 December 2013.
  142. Jump up^ “Gross Domestic Product (1991-2013, at 1991 constant prices): Original Series, Trend Cycle and Seasonally Adjusted Series”. Banco Central de Costa Rica. 7 January 2014.
  143. Jump up^ “Cuentas Nacionales Trimestrales del Ecuador No.65 (Enero 2009)” (PDF).Cuadro No 1: Oferta – Utilizacion de bienes y servicios, variacion trimestral, tasas de t/t-1, dolares constantes de 2000, P.I.B. (in Spanish). Banco Central del Ecuador. 27 January 2009.
  144. Jump up^ “Estadisticas Macroecomicas – Presentacion Coyuntural (Diciembre 2012)” (PDF).PRODUCTO INTERNO BRUTO, PIB, (Precios constantes de 2007, datos desestacionalizados, Tasas de variación, Variación t/t-1) (in Spanish). Banco Central del Ecuador. 1 February 2013.
  145. Jump up^ “Estadisticas Macroecomicas – Presentacion Coyuntural (Diciembre 2013)” (PDF).PRODUCTO INTERNO BRUTO – PIB, Precios constantes de 2007, Tasas de variación, Variación t/t-1 (in Spanish). Banco Central del Ecuador. 13 December 2013.
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  152. Jump up to:a b “Table: Gross Domestic Product by production approach, by NKD Rev.1, by quarters (volume indices, compared to the corresponding period of the previous year, %)”MAK Stat Database. State Statistical Office of the Republic of Macedonia. 13 December 2013.
  153. Jump up^ “Gross Domestic Product 2013 second quarter, seasonal adjustment” (PDF). Table 1B: Seasonally Adjusted GDP at constant 2005 prices – Percentage Change from Preceding Quarter. Department of Statistics, Malaysia. 22 August 2013.
  154. Jump up^ “Quarterly Gross Domestic Product 2013 third quarter”(PDF). Chart 3 and Table 6B: Seasonally Adjusted GDP at constant 2005 prices – Percentage Change from Preceding Quarter. Department of Statistics, Malaysia. 15 November 2013.
  155. Jump up to:a b “Databank table: Seasonally adjustments of Gross Domestic Product and of main elements of use, average prices of 2000, 1995-2010”. National Bureau Of Statistics of the Rublic Of Moldova. 31 May 2011.
  156. Jump up to:a b “CUENTAS NACIONALES DE PARAGUAY – TERCER TRIMESTRE 2013” (PDF). Anexo: Tasas de variacion – PIB desestacionalizado (t/t-1) (in Spanish). Banco Central del Paraguay. 20 December 2013.
  157. Jump up^ “Informe Técnico – PBI Trimestral Nº 04 Noviembre 2013: Comportamiento de la Economía Peruana en el Tercer Trimestre de 2013” (PDF). Anexo Nº 4: SERIE DESESTACIONALIZADA POR TIPO DE GASTO, 2002_I – 2013_III (Variación porcentual trimestral del Índice de Volumen Físico respecto al trimestre anterior, Valores a precios constantes de 1994) (in Spanish). Instituto Nacional de Estadística e Informática (INEI). 22 November 2013.
  158. Jump up^ “3rd Quarter 2013 National Accounts of the Philippines (multiple files packed as a rar file)” (RAR). 3Q2013_SANA_PUB.XLS (page 3): Summary Table 1 – SEASONALLY ADJUSTED NATIONAL ACCOUNTS SERIES at Constant 2000 Prices: Quarter to quarter in million Pesos (First Quarter 1998 to Third Quarter 2013). National Statistical Coordination Board. 28 November 2013.
  159. Jump up^ “The seasonally adjusted national accounts of the Philippines (Third Quarter 2013): SEASONALLY ADJUSTED NATIONAL ACCOUNTS SERIES at Constant 2000 Prices: Quarter to quarter growth rates (First Quarter 1998 to Third Quarter 2013)”. National Statistical Coordination Board. 28 November 2013.
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  161. Jump up^ SingStat Time Series (access to database require payment subscription)
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  163. Jump up^ “Statistical Tables from Economic Survey of Singapore (Fourth Quarter 2010): GDP by Industry at 2005 prices, Seasonally Adjusted” (PDF). Statistics Singapore. 17 February 2011.
  164. Jump up^ “Statistical Tables from Economic Survey of Singapore (Third Quarter 2013): GDP by Industry at 2005 prices, Seasonally Adjusted” (PDF). Statistics Singapore. 21 November 2013.
  165. Jump up^ “SingStat Table Builder: National Accounts: M013362 – Gross Domestic Product At 2005 Market Prices, By Industry, Quarterly, (SA) (Period on Period)”. Statistics Singapore. 21 November 2013.
  166. Jump up to:a b “Macro database: GDP by Expenditures – Seasonally Adjusted (Quarterly, at 2006 prices, 1981-2013)”. National Statistics – Republic of China (Taiwan). 29 November 2013.
  167. Jump up^ “Gross Domestic Product 1993 until Q3/2013: Table 6.1 – Gross National Product and GDP at 1988 Prices (Seasonally Adjusted) q-o-q Growth Rate” (XLS). Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board (Thailand). 18 November 2013.
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  169. Jump up^ “ЕКСПРЕС-ВИПУСК: ВАЛОВИЙ ВНУТРІШНІЙ ПРОДУКТ УКРАЇНИ ЗА 1 КВАРТАЛ 2013 РОКУ – ВАЛОВИЙ ВНУТРІШНІЙ ПРОДУКТ ВИРОБНИЧИМ МЕТОДОМ (RAPID RELEASE: GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT OF UKRAINE Q1 2013 – Gross domestic product production methods)”(Zip PDF) (in Ukrainian). State Statistics Service Of Ukraine. 10 June 2013.
  170. Jump up^ “ЕКСПРЕС-ВИПУСК: ВАЛОВИЙ ВНУТРІШНІЙ ПРОДУКТ УКРАЇНИ ЗА 2 КВАРТАЛ 2013 РОКУ – ВАЛОВИЙ ВНУТРІШНІЙ ПРОДУКТ ВИРОБНИЧИМ МЕТОДОМ (RAPID RELEASE: GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT OF UKRAINE Q2 2013 – Gross domestic product production methods)”(Zip PDF) (in Ukrainian). State Statistics Service Of Ukraine. 10 September 2013.
  171. Jump up^ “ЕКСПРЕС-ВИПУСК: ВАЛОВИЙ ВНУТРІШНІЙ ПРОДУКТ УКРАЇНИ ЗА 3 КВАРТАЛ 2013 РОКУ – ВАЛОВИЙ ВНУТРІШНІЙ ПРОДУКТ ВИРОБНИЧИМ МЕТОДОМ (RAPID RELEASE: GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT OF UKRAINE Q3 2013 – Gross domestic product production methods)”(Zip PDF) (in Ukrainian). State Statistics Service Of Ukraine. 10 December 2013.
  172. Jump up to:a b “Quarterly National Accounts – National accounts aggregates (ABMI Gross Domestic Product: chained volume measures: Seasonally adjusted £m, constant prices)”. Office for National Statistics. 20 December 2013.
  173. Jump up^ “Informe Trimestral de Cuentas Nacionales: Julio – Setiembre 2013”(PDF) (in Spanish). Banco Central del Uruguay. 13 December 2013.
  174. Jump up^ “AGREGADOS_MACROECONÓMICOS: PIB Desestacionalizado. Base 1997 (Trimestral)” (XLS) (in Spanish). 9 December 2013.
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  176. Jump up^ “Latvia”Oxford Economic Country Briefings( September 26, 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-04.
  177. Jump up^ Evans-Pritchard, Ambrose (2008-09-25). “Ireland leads eurozone into recession”. London: Telegraph. Retrieved 2009-01-04.
  178. Jump up^ “New Zealand falls into recession”. BBC News. 2008-09-26. Retrieved 2009-01-04.
  179. Jump up^ “HIGHLIGHTS: Crisis sends Japan into first recession in 7 years”. TOKYO: Reuters. 2008-11-17. Retrieved 2009-01-04.
  180. Jump up^ “HK shares may fall; exporters may drop”. HONG KONG: Reuters. 2008-11-16. Retrieved 2009-01-04.
  181. Jump up^ Dunkley, Jamie (10 October 2008). “Singapore slides into recession”. London: Telegraph. Retrieved 2009-01-04.
  182. Jump up^ “OECD area GDP down 0.1% in the third quarter of 2008”. OECD. 2008-11-20. Retrieved 2009-04-10.
  183. Jump up^ Fitzgibbons, Patrick (2008-11-14). “TOPWRAP 10-Germany, China, US feel pain of global downturn”. NEW YORK: Reuters. Retrieved 2009-01-04.
  184. Jump up^ Strupczewski, Jan (2008-11-14). “Euro zone in recession, December rate cut expected”. BRUSSELS: Retrieved 2009-01-04.
  185. Jump up^ “Spain’s economy enters recession”. BBC News. 2009-01-28. Retrieved 2009-04-10.
  186. Jump up^ “Taiwan in recession as economy contracts record 8.36 pct”. TAIPEI (AFP). 18 February 2009. Retrieved 10 April 2009.
  187. Jump up^ “SECO – Gross Domestic Product in Q2 2009”. 2009-11-25. Retrieved 2010-01-21.
  188. Jump up^ By In-Soo Nam (2009-04-24). “South Korea Economy Avoids Recession, Grows 0.1% –”. Retrieved 2010-01-21.
  189. Jump up^ “Reflating the dragon”. Beijing: The Economist. November 13, 2008. Retrieved 2009-01-04.
  190. Jump up^ “National Bank estimate: Ukraine GDP down 20 percent in January”. Kyiv Post. 2009-02-17. Retrieved 2009-04-10.
  191. Jump up^
  192. Jump up^
  193. Jump up^ Alford, Peter (2009-02-16). “Japan headed for longest, deepest post-war recession”. The Australian. Retrieved 2009-04-10.
  194. Jump up^ 8:16 p.m. ET (2009-05-19). “Japanese GDP falls at biggest rate since 1955 – World business-”. MSNBC. Retrieved 2010-01-21.
  195. Jump up^ “CIA Adds Economy To Threat UpdatesWhite House Given First Daily Briefing” article by Joby Warrick, Washington Post Staff Writer, Thursday, February 26, 2009
  196. Jump up^ Business Week article “Economic Woes Raising Global Political Risk” by Jack Ewing published March 10, 2009
  197. Jump up^ The Associated Press article “Experts: Financial crisis threatens US security” by STEPHEN MANNING published March 11, 2009
  198. Jump up to:a b “Europe | Iceland protest ends in clashes”. BBC News. 2008-11-23. Retrieved 2012-05-15.
  199. Jump up^ NPR article “Economic Crisis Poses Threat To Global Stability” by Tom Gjelten
  200. Jump up^ Dobbs, David. “The New York Times – Breaking News, World News & Multimedia”. International Herald Tribune. Retrieved 2013-04-22.
  201. Jump up^ Maltezou, Renee (2009-02-25). “Greeks shut airports, services to protest economy”. Reuters. Retrieved 2012-05-15.
  202. Jump up^ Megan K. Stack (2009-01-17). “Protests spread in Europe amid economic crisis”Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2012-05-15.
  203. Jump up^ Dobbs, David. “The New York Times – Breaking News, World News & Multimedia”International Herald Tribune. Retrieved 2013-04-22.
  204. Jump up^ Ian Traynor, Europe editor (2009-01-31). “Governments across Europe tremble as effects of global recession prompt angry people to take to the streets”The Guardian (London). Retrieved 2012-05-15.
  205. Jump up^ Abend, Lisa (11 September 2012). “Barcelona Warns Madrid: Pay Up, or Catalonia Leaves Spain”TIME (“A pro-independence march, which in the past has never drawn more than 50,000 people, pulled in a crowd estimated by city police at 1.5 million.” and “As late as 2010, a poll conducted by Catalonia’s Center for Opinion Studies found that only 25.2% of the population favored independence.”). Retrieved 16 September 2012.
  206. Jump up^ “EU Proposes €200 Billion Stimulus Plan”Businessweek. 2008-11-26. Retrieved 2010-01-21.
  207. Jump up^ Bailout Binge
  208. Jump up^ Gullapalli, Diya and Anand, Shefali. “Bailout of Money Funds Seems to Stanch Outflow”Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2008.
  209. Jump up^ Bull, Alister. “Fed says to make loans to aid money market funds”, Reuters, September 19, 2008.
  210. Jump up^ (Press Release) FRB: Board Approves Two Interim Final RulesFederal Reserve Bank, September 19, 2008.
  211. Jump up^ Boak, Joshua (Chicago Tribune). “SEC temporarily suspends short selling”San Jose Mercury News, September 19, 2008.
  212. Jump up^ “Housing and Jobs Data Suggest Steady Growth”The New York Times. Associated Press. May 23, 2013. Retrieved May 24, 2013.
  213. Jump up^ Nathaniel Popper (May 23, 2013). “Fed Fears Shake Global Markets but Fade on Wall St.”The New York Times. Retrieved May 24, 2013.
  214. Jump up^ “Asian central banks spend billions to prevent crash”International Herald Tribune. 2008-09-16. Retrieved 2008-09-21.
  215. Jump up^ “Chinese pharmaceutical exporters to benefit from latest tax rebates increases”Asia Manufacturing Pharma. 2008-12-01. Retrieved 2008-12-01.
  216. Jump up^ “Germany Rescues Hypo Real Estate”Deutsche Welle. 2008-10-06.
  217. Jump up^ “Gordon Brown should say ‘sorry'”. London: 2009-03-09. Retrieved 2009-03-09.
  218. Jump up^ “It Doesn’t Exist!”. 2008-12-06. Retrieved 2008-12-15.
  219. Jump up^ Waterfield, Bruno (2009-03-25). “EU resists deficits”. London: Retrieved 2010-01-21.
  220. Jump up^
  221. Jump up to:a b “Israel rate cut suggests more emerging market cuts – Emerging Markets Report”. MarketWatch. Retrieved 2012-05-15.
  222. Jump up^ “Australia raises interest rates”. BBC News. 2009-10-06. Retrieved 2010-01-21.
  223. Jump up^ “India’s Central Bank Raises Interest Rates”The New York Times. 2010-03-19.
  224. Jump up^ Evans, Ambrose (2009-04-16). “IMF warns over parallels to Great Depression”. London: Retrieved 2010-01-21.
  225. Jump up^ Financial Crisis. “IMF fears ‘social explosion’ from world jobs crisis”. Telegraph. Retrieved 2013-08-17.
  226. Jump up^ Paul Krugman (January 3, 2010). “That 1937 Feeling” (Op-ed). The New York Times. Retrieved June 6, 2012.
  227. Jump up^ “Клиодинамика – Successful Forecast Of The Second Wave Of The World Financial Economic Crisis”. Retrieved 2012-05-15.
  228. Jump up^ Askar AkaevViktor Sadovnichiy, and Andrey KorotayevOn the Possibilities to Forecast the Current Crisis and its Second Wave. “Ekonomicheskaya politika”. December 2010. Issue 6. Pages 39–46.; see also Askar AkaevViktor Sadovnichiy, and Andrey Korotayev. Huge rise in gold and oil prices as a precursor of a global financial and economic crisis. Doklady Mathematics. 2011. Volume 83, Number 2, 243–246.doi:10.1134/S1064562411020372
  229. Jump up^ “Reuters Poll: Economists Warn of Second Recession”MoneynewsNewsmax Media. 14 September 2011.
  230. Jump up^ “It would be disastrous if we entered into a recession at this stage, given that we haven’t yet made up for the last recession,” said Conrad DeQuadros, senior economist at RDQ Economics.
  231. Jump up^ “Low wage jobs are dominating the U.S. recovery”Washington Post, August 31, 2012

Further reading

External links

Ukraine-Russia Leaks

On Feb. 22, volunteer divers found nearly 200 folders of documents at a lake at the residence of former president of Ukraine. They had been thrown in the lake to destroy them as people were escaping the compound.
A group of journalists and activists has undertaken to rescue, systematize and investigate the enormous wealth of information about the former owners of the residence.
The recovered documents are being published on this website to make them available to journalists and citizens around the world.
The investigations based on these documents will also be published here and in Ukrainian media.

My Enron Hauntings

Its extremely difficult to fully verbalize my feelings about Enron. I became personally involved with the Corporation; soon before the scandal and bankruptcy. My time there was limited, but what I experienced amassed a lifetime of emotion & wisdom. A young, hopeful corporate warrior soon became a jaded, depressed person. Ignorance is Bliss. This is the first time I’m attempting to catalog my experience & understandings of this company. I believe in 2014 this continues to be a historical lesson that has not been fully grasped by the US. Even so, it continues to have a reverberation within our fragile economy & political theater. It shines a light on the vulnerable underbelly of the United States sociopolitical economic system. As it became an emotional fulcrum in my life, it continues to be a historical fulcrum for Amerika. Enron will not go away. Enron must be understood and talked about. It is too important to become a historical footnote. From this perspective, of anecdotes and analysis, I begin this journey of self-revelation. This post is extremely important to me and I hope you find it relevant and life changing.

In 2001, I was a young upstart wannabe corporate warrior. I was a Senior at NYU Stern School of Business. I was studying Finance; along with a co-major in International Business & minor in Politics. Politically motivated from my time as a US House Page in 1996-1997, I was attempting to understand and navigate real economic motivations. I was an academic analyst soon to be in the eye of a historical economic hurricane! Today I find these insights gained as irreplaceable. As such, I cannot keep it to myself any longer. I must share whatever wisdom I have. In doing so, I find myself starting with the application for my Senior Summer Internship. I found investment banking and finance extremely boring. I found it, however, academically important to understand the machinations of the world realpolitik. With this understanding I gravitated to the upstart 6th largest Corporation in the United States. Enron.
I was lucky to achieve a Summer Analyst position on the 6th floor of the Headquarters of the 6th largest Corporation in the United States. I was to support Enron Energy Services – Energy Portfolio Management – Fast Track Group. This was a test group, not fully realized into operational success. It was a test group meant to play out political and economic objectives for Enron Executives. I vaguely understood this at the time. My Manager was named Craig Sutter. My mentor was Celia Delahuesay (I’m sorry for the spelling nowadays). Much of this can be cross referenced via the FERC lists that can be accessed online. My name pops up. Of this I was to provide general support of the Origination group. The Fast Track Group at its core was a Sales force. The goal was to sell to Companies with an energy spend of $10-$30 million. They were to build contracts that would provide stable, fixed rates of gas & electricity. Enron would then find ways to absorb the costs and profit on the wholesale end. This concept is very important as it eventually had catastrophic results for the State of California under Governor Gray Davis. On my part, I was to smooth out the numbers on the contracts and ensure that energy spends were “smooth” enough to provide a basis to sell the fixed contracts. Of this, Originators were to grow a business out of nothing. It was a new exciting frontier; one that has been largely lost in the aftermath. It also was a piece of the puzzle’s totality in understanding the vast machinations of this Corporation.
Enron Energy Services was one of many departments pushing the envelope of new economic environments. Enron Broadband, Enron Energy Services, Enron Wind, etc were truly attempting to build viable business models. Of this though, the economic situations became manipulated. If you can sell a growth rate, you can sell a stock price: essentially setting up a probable pump & dump scenario. Growth rates pushed the economic envelope in the late 90’s early 2000’s. It was how Investment Bankers were justifying wild stock prices for all these internet stocks. With this bubble, trickle-down exuberance allowed companies like Enron manipulate the regulatory & economic macro-environment.
I started my Summer Internship not fully grasping the scope and breadth Enron had in 2001. It was after more education, study, & personal revelation that I began to realize the multifaceted realities this Company brought about. First and foremost, $ENE Stock Price must be addressed. It was when things slipped that the house of cards fell. A stock price is derived via a basic Financial formula. Dividends divided by the market cap rate minus growth rate. Dividends are cut and dry. Market Cap is “verified” by Accounting Firms such as Enron’s Arthur Anderson. Growth Rate is a hypothetical of what future growth may hold.
Of this, Cash Dividends were not utilized. This was due to the cash being diverted to fund Enron Operations & Projects. Enron had the largest natural gas pipeline in the United States at the time. This was a Cash Cow that allowed the funding of its Commodity Market operations + energy generation operations. Enron also had the largest Online Commodity marketplace at the time. Not only are commodities not regulated well, but ENE spent big bucks in Washington to ensure that Lawmakers would not get involved. Enron essentially got paid for running the marketplace, while being an active participant in its Wholesale Energy Sales. This was then supported via Projects like Enron Energy Services that were to sell energy contracts. On this note we must remember that Enron also maintained monopolistic power to many US region’s electricity transportation. Market Capitalization was underscored by the Natural Gas Pipeline and Enron Trading operations. While there was very real cash, the Market Capitalization as publicly recorded was being manipulated. Arthur Anderson was involved in the corruption and falsification of accounting data. When the house of cards fell, so did they. This in turn brought about economic recessionary pressures that were mounting from the tech bubble burst. The Growth Rate was sold to investors via Investment Banking Analysts. They utilized the falsified accounting data to pump up wild growth rates; ensuring high stock valuations. Projects such as Enron Energy Services, Enron Broadband, & Enron Wind were unproven business models. Of this they sold the dream that it would grow exponentially; justifying an analyst’s growth rate.
When Jeff Skilling said he was resigning, 30 feet from me, he said it was for family reasons. It was sudden to me. He explained that it was for family reasons and YES he was selling stock. What wasn’t said was that Ken Lay was selling stock as well. Though this is public information at the Corporate level legally, nobody seemed to put 2 and 2 together that they were jumping ship with loads of cash. Ken Lay came in as CEO to save the day. He gave the employees stock options to calm them down. As we see in hindsight, this was absolutely worthless. Of the stock, Employees were mandated to retain high levels of $ENE in their 401k portfolios. When the house of cards fell, many good people lost a life savings for retirement. At every step of the way, rules and regulations were manipulated to tailor information in the favor of high stock prices. As long as Capital Investments were coming in, the ponzi scheme could continue. Once the stock slipped, the jig was up.
As an NYU Student, at the 6th largest corporation in the country, I was cocky to say the least. I was sure of my knowledge and sure of my abilities. This mattered not as I did not receive an offer of employment from Enron. I was devistated. What I later understood is that only a handful of people were offered jobs to continue the rouse, while inquisitive people were pushed out quickly. I was well liked by all but my Manager of Fast Track Group. I had a rocky start and learned quickly that Corporate politics is always involved in operational affairs. At one point, I loudly proclaimed that “I’m smarter than half these yahoos working on this floor!” Absolutely stupid by a 21 year old to say when a Career was desired. Live and learn. Vindication soon came when everything came out. During my time in Enron Energy Services, I overheard contract analysts discussing the nature of their business. They would sell at the highest possible rates regardless of reality. The State of California learned this the hard way. Enron bled the transmission lines to California, making the anemic electricity go up into enormous costs on the spot market. California was desperate to show that they were able to maintain control, even though this was a contrived crisis. Enron got their way and came in to save the day! They then sold long-term Fixed Contracts at high rates; given justification via the spot market. Governor Davis accepted this Fixed contract with little respect for analytically minded criticism.
I’m left with many what if’s. I’m hurt to this day by the Summer of 2001 at Enron. I hope this post sheds light on Enron’s affairs as I saw them at the time. I am no expert; but then again the experts brought about this crisis. Nobody asked where the peripheral players recieved their ethics and education. Nobody seemed to care about the poor lazzes-faire regulatory environment in the US. Nobody today seems to remember the monopolistic machinations Enron involved themselves in. I believe the lessons learned from 2001 had ripples in understanding the Great Recession of 2008. 2001 Economic Crisis laid they foundation of vulnerabilities for the Great Recession. Essentially the bubble tactics utilized in the Tech Bubble & Enron then was diverted into Mortgage Backed Securities. Lehman was the result. Fast forward to today and we see huge merger proposals from the likes of Comcast & Time Warner. These regional monopolies have every incentive to manipulate the markets as seen fit to profit over the well-being of society. Above and beyond this, the internet backbone that they would control could siphon Freedoms away from Net Neutrality and Net Freedom. The forces of inequality via imperfect information is always a problem. My Enron Hauntings have helped me to understand a Progressive Regulatory Environment is key to a stable, advanced Economy.

Iran-Contra Affair

Iran–Contra affair

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Iran–Contra affair
Reagan meets with aides on Iran-Contra.jpg

Reagan meets with (left to right) Secretary of DefenseCaspar Weinberger, Secretary of State George Shultz, Attorney General Ed Meese, and Chief of Staff Don Regan in the Oval Office
Date August 20, 1985 – March 4, 1987
Also known as Iran–Contra
Participants Ronald ReaganRobert McFarlaneCaspar WeinbergerHezbollahContrasOliver North,Manucher GhorbanifarJohn Poindexter,Manuel Antonio Noriega
The Iran–Contra affair (Persian: ایران-کنترا‎, Spanishcaso Irán-Contra), also referred to as Irangate,[1] Contragate[citation needed] or the Iran–Contra scandal, was a political scandal in the United States that came to light in November 1986. During the Reagan administration, senior administration officials secretly facilitated the sale of arms to Iran, the subject of an arms embargo.[2] Some U.S. officials also hoped that the arms sales would secure the release of several hostages and allow U.S. intelligence agencies to fund the NicaraguanContras. Under the Boland Amendment, further funding of the Contras by the government had been prohibited by Congress.
The scandal began as an operation to free the seven American hostages being held in Lebanon by a group with Iranian ties connected to the Army of the Guardians of the Islamic Revolution. It was planned that Israel would ship weapons to Iran, and then the United States would resupply Israel and receive the Israeli payment. The Iranian recipients promised to do everything in their power to achieve the release of the U.S. hostages. The plan deteriorated into an arms-for-hostages scheme, in which members of the executive branch sold weapons to Iran in exchange for the release of the American hostages.[3][4] Large modifications to the plan were devised by Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North of the National Security Council in late 1985, in which a portion of the proceeds from the weapon sales was diverted to fund anti-Sandinista and anti-communist rebels, or Contras, in Nicaragua.[5][6]
While President Ronald Reagan was a supporter of the Contra cause,[7] the evidence is disputed as to whether he authorized the diversion of the money raised by the Iranian arms sales to the Contras.[3][4][8] Handwritten notes taken by Defense Secretary Caspar Weinbergeron December 7, 1985, indicate that Reagan was aware of potential hostage transfers with Iran, as well as the sale of Hawk and TOW missiles to “moderate elements” within that country.[9] Weinberger wrote that Reagan said “he could answer to charges of illegality but couldn’t answer to the charge that ‘big strong President Reagan passed up a chance to free the hostages'”.[9] After the weapon sales were revealed in November 1986, Reagan appeared on national television and stated that the weapons transfers had indeed occurred, but that the United States did not trade arms for hostages.[10] The investigation was impeded when large volumes of documents relating to the scandal were destroyed or withheld from investigators by Reagan administration officials.[11] On March 4, 1987, Reagan returned to the airwaves in a nationally televised address, taking full responsibility for any actions that he was unaware of, and admitting that “what began as a strategic opening to Iran deteriorated, in its implementation, into trading arms for hostages”.[12]
Several investigations ensued, including those by the U.S. Congress and the three-person, Reagan-appointed Tower Commission. Neither found any evidence that President Reagan himself knew of the extent of the multiple programs.[3][4][8] Ultimately the sale of weapons to Iran was not deemed a criminal offense but charges were brought against five individuals for their support of the Contras. Those charges, however, were later dropped because the administration refused to declassify certain documents. The indicted conspirators faced various lesser charges instead. In the end, fourteen administration officials were indicted, including then-Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger. Eleven convictions resulted, some of which were vacated on appeal.[13] The rest of those indicted or convicted were all pardoned in the final days of the presidency of George H. W. Bush, who had been vice-president at the time of the affair.[14]


Contra militants based in Honduras waged a guerrilla war to topple the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN) revolutionary government of Nicaragua. Direct U.S. funding of the Contras insurgency was made illegal through the Boland Amendment,[8] the name given to three U.S. legislative amendments between 1982 and 1984 aimed at limiting U.S. government assistance to the Contra’s militants. Funding ran out for the Contras by July 1984 and in October a total ban was placed in effect. In violation of the Boland Amendment, senior officials of the Reagan administration continued to secretly arm and train the Contras and provide arms to Iran, an operation they called “the Enterprise”.[15]
Ironically, military aid to the Contras was reinstated with Congressional consent in October 1986, a month before the scandal broke.[16]

Arms sales to Iran

Michael Ledeen, a consultant of National Security Adviser Robert McFarlane, requested assistance from Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres for help in the sale of arms to Iran.[17][18] Having been designated a State Sponsor of Terrorism since January 1984,[19] Iran was in the midst of the Iran–Iraq War and could find few Western nations willing to supply it with weapons.[20] The idea behind the plan was for Israel to ship weapons through an intermediary (identified as Manucher Ghorbanifar)[3] to the Islamic republic as a way of aiding a supposedly moderate, politically influential faction within the regime of the Ayatollah Khomeini who were believed to be seeking a rapprochement with the United States; after the transaction, the United States would reimburse Israel with the same weapons, while receiving monetary benefits.[21] The Israeli government required that the sale of arms meet high level approval from the United States government, and when McFarlane convinced them that the U.S. government approved the sale, Israel obliged by agreeing to sell the arms.[17]
In 1985 President Reagan entered Bethesda Naval Hospital for colon cancer surgery. While the President was recovering in the hospital, McFarlane met with him and told him that representatives from Israel had contacted the National Security Agency to pass on confidential information from what Reagan later described as the “moderate” Iranian faction opposed to the Ayatollah’s hardline anti-American policies.[21] According to Reagan, these Iranians sought to establish a quiet relationship with the United States, before establishing formal relationships upon the death of the aging Ayatollah.[21] In Reagan’s account, McFarlane told Reagan that the Iranians, to demonstrate their seriousness, offered to persuade the Hezbollah terrorists to release the seven U.S. hostages.[22] McFarlane met with the Israeli intermediaries;[23] Reagan claims that he allowed this because he believed that establishing relations with a strategically located country, and preventing the Soviet Unionfrom doing the same, was a beneficial move.[21] Although Reagan claims that the arms sales were to a “moderate” faction of Iranians, the Walsh Iran/Contra Report states that the arms sales were “to Iran” itself,[24] which was under the control of the Ayatollah.
Following the Israeli–U.S. meeting, Israel requested permission from the United States to sell a small number of TOW antitank missiles (tube-launched, optically tracked, and wire-guided) to Iran, claiming that this would aid the “moderate” Iranian fraction,[22] by demonstrating that the group actually had high-level connections to the U.S. government.[22] Reagan initially rejected the plan, until Israel sent information to the United States showing that the “moderate” Iranians were opposed to terrorism and had fought against it.[25] Now having a reason to trust the “moderates”, Reagan approved the transaction, which was meant to be between Israel and the “moderates” in Iran, with the United States reimbursing Israel.[22] In his 1990 autobiography An American Life, Reagan claimed that he was deeply committed to securing the release of the hostages; it was this compassion that supposedly motivated his support for the arms initiatives.[3] The president requested that the “moderate” Iranians do everything in their capability to free the hostages held by Hezbollah.[26]
A BGM-71 TOW anti-tank guided missile
The following arms were supplied to Iran:[27][28]
  • August 20, 1985 – 96 TOW anti-tank missiles
  • September 14, 1985 – 408 more TOWs
  • November 24, 1985 – 18 Hawk anti-aircraft missiles
  • February 17, 1986 – 500 TOWs
  • February 27, 1986 – 500 TOWs
  • May 24, 1986 – 508 TOWs, 240 Hawk spare parts
  • August 4, 1986 – More Hawk spares
  • October 28, 1986 – 500 TOWs

First arms sale

On August 30, 1985, Israel sent 100 American-made BGM-71 TOW antitank missiles to Iran through an arms dealer named Manucher Ghorbanifar. Subsequently, on September 14, 1985, 408 more TOW missiles were delivered. On September 15, 1985, following the second delivery, Reverend Benjamin Weir was released by his captors, the Islamic Jihad Organization.[29]

Modifications in plans

Robert McFarlane resigned on December 4, 1985,[30][31] citing that he wanted to spend more time with his family.[32] He was replaced by Admiral John Poindexter.[33]
Two days later, Reagan met with his advisors at the White House, where a new plan was introduced. This one called for a slight change in the arms transactions: instead of the weapons going to the “moderate” Iranian group, they would go to “moderate” Iranian army leaders.[34] As the weapons were delivered from Israel by air, the hostages held by Hezbollah would be released.[34] Israel would continue to be reimbursed by the United States for the weapons. Though staunchly opposed by Secretary of State George Shultz and Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, the plan was authorized by Reagan, who stated that, “We were not trading arms for hostages, nor were we negotiating with terrorists”.[35] Now retired National Security Advisor McFarlane flew to London to meet with Israelis and Ghorbanifar in an attempt to persuade the Iranian to use his influence to release the hostages before any arms transactions occurred; this plan was rejected by Ghorbanifar.[34]
On the day of McFarlane’s resignation, Oliver North, a military aide to the United States National Security Council (NSC), proposed a new plan for selling arms to Iran, which included two major adjustments: instead of selling arms through Israel, the sale was to be direct, and a portion of the proceeds would go to Contras, or Nicaraguan paramilitary fighters waging guerrilla warfare against the democratically-elected Sandinista government, at a markup. North proposed a $15 million markup, while contracted arms broker Ghorbanifar added a 41% markup of his own.[36] Other members of the NSC were in favor of North’s plan; with large support, Poindexter authorized it without notifying President Reagan, and it went into effect.[37] At first, the Iranians refused to buy the arms at the inflated price because of the excessive markup imposed by North and Ghorbanifar. They eventually relented, and in February 1986, 1,000 TOW missiles were shipped to the country.[37] From May to November 1986, there were additional shipments of miscellaneous weapons and parts.[37]
Both the sale of weapons to Iran, and the funding of the Contras, attempted to circumvent not only stated administration policy, but also the Boland Amendment.[8] Administration officials argued that regardless of the Congress restricting the funds for the Contras, or any affair, the President (or in this case the administration) could carry on by seeking alternative means of funding such as private entities and foreign governments.[38] Funding from one foreign country, Brunei, was botched when North’s secretary, Fawn Hall, transposed the numbers of North’s Swiss bank account number. A Swiss businessman, suddenly $10 million richer, alerted the authorities of the mistake. The money was eventually returned to the Sultan of Brunei, with interest.[39]
On January 7, 1986, John Poindexter proposed to the president a modification of the approved plan: instead of negotiating with the “moderate” Iranian political group, the United States would negotiate with “moderate” members of the Iranian government.[40] Poindexter told Reagan that Ghorbanifar had important connections within the Iranian government, so with the hope of the release of the hostages, Reagan approved this plan as well.[40] Throughout February 1986, weapons were shipped directly to Iran by the United States (as part of Oliver North’s plan, without the knowledge of President Reagan) and none of the hostages were released. Retired National Security Advisor McFarlane conducted another international voyage, this one to Tehran; bringing with him a gift of a bible having a handwritten inscription by Ronald Reagan;[41][42] and, according to some, a cake baked in the shape of a key.[41] He met directly with the “moderate” Iranian political group that sought to establish U.S.-Iranian relations in an attempt to free the four remaining hostages.[43] This meeting also failed. The members requested concessions such as Israel’s withdrawal from the Golan Heights, which the United States rejected.[43]

Subsequent dealings

In late July 1986, Hezbollah released another hostage, Father Lawrence Martin Jenco, former head of Catholic Relief Services in Lebanon. Following this, William Casey, head of the CIA, requested that the United States authorize sending a shipment of small missile parts to Iranian military forces as a way of expressing gratitude.[44] Casey also justified this request by stating that the contact in the Iranian government might otherwise lose face, or be executed, and hostages killed. Reagan authorized the shipment to ensure that those potential events would not occur.[44]
In September and October 1986 three more Americans—Frank ReedJoseph Cicippio, and Edward Tracy—were abducted in Lebanon by a separate terrorist group. The reasons for their abduction are unknown, although it is speculated that they were kidnapped to replace the freed Americans.[45] One more original hostage, David Jacobsen, was later released. The captors promised to release the remaining two, but the release never happened.[46]

Discovery and scandal

North‘s mugshot, after his arrest
After a leak by Iranian Mehdi Hashemi, the Lebanese magazine Ash-Shiraa exposed the arrangement on November 3, 1986.[47] This was the first public reporting of the weapons-for-hostages deal. The operation was discovered only after an airlift of guns (Corporate Air Services HPF821) was downed over Nicaragua. Eugene Hasenfus, who was captured by Nicaraguan authorities, initially alleged in a press conference on Nicaraguan soil that two of his coworkers, Max Gomez and Ramon Medina, worked for the Central Intelligence Agency.[48] He later said he did not know whether they did or not.[49] The Iranian government confirmed the Ash-Shiraa story, and ten days after the story was first published, President Reagan appeared on national television from the Oval Office on November 13, stating:
“My purpose was… to send a signal that the United States was prepared to replace the animosity between [the U.S. and Iran] with a new relationship… At the same time we undertook this initiative, we made clear that Iran must oppose all forms of international terrorism as a condition of progress in our relationship. The most significant step which Iran could take, we indicated, would be to use its influence in Lebanon to secure the release of all hostages held there.”[10]
The scandal was compounded when Oliver North destroyed or hid pertinent documents between November 21 and November 25, 1986. During North’s trial in 1989, his secretary, Fawn Hall, testified extensively about helping North alter, shred, and remove official United States National Security Council (NSC) documents from the White House. According to the New York Times, enough documents were put into a government shredder to jam it.[36] North’s explanation for destroying some documents was to protect the lives of individuals involved in Iran and Contraoperations.[36] It was not until years after the trial that North’s notebooks were made public, and only after the National Security Archive and Public Citizen sued the Office of the Independent Counsel under the Freedom of Information Act.[36]
During the trial North testified that on November 21, 22, or 24, he witnessed Poindexter destroy what may have been the only signed copy of a presidential covert-action finding that sought to authorize CIA participation in the November 1985 Hawk missile shipment to Iran.[36] U.S. Attorney General Edwin Meese admitted on November 25 that profits from weapons sales to Iran were made available to assist the Contra rebels in Nicaragua. On the same day, John Poindexter resigned, and Oliver North was fired by President Reagan.[50] Poindexter was replaced by Frank Carluccion December 2, 1986.[51]
In his expose Veil: The Secret Wars of the CIA 1981–1987, journalist Bob Woodward chronicles the role of the CIA in facilitating the transfer of funds from the Iran arms sales to the Nicaraguan Contras spearheaded by Oliver North.[52] Then Director of the CIA, William J. Casey, admitted to Woodward in February 1987 that he was aware of the diversion of funds to the contras confirming a number of encounters documented by Woodward.[53] The controversial admission occurred while Casey was hospitalized for a stroke, and, according to his wife, was unable to communicate. On May 6, 1987, William Casey died the day after Congress began its public hearings on Iran–Contra.

Tower Commission

Main article: Tower Commission
On November 25, 1986, President Reagan announced the creation of a Special Review Board to look into the matter; the following day, he appointed former Senator John Tower, former Secretary of State Edmund Muskie, and former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft to serve as members. This Presidential Commissiontook effect on December 1 and became known as the Tower Commission. The main objectives of the commission were to inquire into “the circumstances surrounding the Iran-Contra matter, other case studies that might reveal strengths and weaknesses in the operation of the National Security Council system under stress, and the manner in which that system has served eight different presidents since its inception in 1947″.[3] The Tower Commission was the first presidential commission to review and evaluate the National Security Council.
President Reagan (center) receives the Tower Commission Report in the White House Cabinet Room; John Tower is at left and Edmund Muskie is at right, 1987.
President Reagan appeared before the Tower Commission on December 2, 1986, to answer questions regarding his involvement in the affair. When asked about his role in authorizing the arms deals, he first stated that he had; later, he appeared to contradict himself by stating that he had no recollection of doing so.[54] In his 1990 autobiography, An American Life, Reagan acknowledges authorizing the shipments to Israel.[55]
The report published by the Tower Commission was delivered to the president on February 26, 1987. The Commission had interviewed 80 witnesses to the scheme,[3] including Reagan, and two of the arms trade middlemen: Manucher Ghorbanifar and Adnan Khashoggi.[54] The 200-page report was the most comprehensive of any released,[54] criticizing the actions of Oliver North, John Poindexter, Caspar Weinberger, and others. It determined that President Reagan did not have knowledge of the extent of the program, especially about the diversion of funds to the Contras,[3] although it argued that the president ought to have had better control of the National Security Council staff.[3] The report heavily criticized Reagan for not properly supervising his subordinates or being aware of their actions.[3] A major result of the Tower Commission was the consensus that Reagan should have listened to his National Security Advisor more, thereby placing more power in the hands of that chair.[3]

Congressional Committees Investigating The Iran-Contra Affair

The Democratic-controlled United States Congress issued its own report on November 18, 1987, stating that “If the president did not know what his national security advisers were doing, he should have”.[4] The congressional report wrote that the president bore “ultimate responsibility” for wrongdoing by his aides, and his administration exhibited “secrecy, deception and disdain for the law”.[56] It also read that “the central remaining question is the role of the President in the Iran–Contra affair. On this critical point, the shredding of documents by Poindexter, North and others, and the death of Casey, leave the record incomplete”.[8]


Reagan expressed regret regarding the situation during a nationally televised address from the Oval Office on March 4, 1987, and two other speeches;[57] Reagan had not spoken to the American people directly for three months amidst the scandal.[58] President Reagan told the American people the reason why he did not update them on the scandal:
“The reason I haven’t spoken to you before now is this: You deserve the truth. And as frustrating as the waiting has been, I felt it was improper to come to you with sketchy reports, or possibly even erroneous statements, which would then have to be corrected, creating even more doubt and confusion. There’s been enough of that.”[58]
He then took full responsibility for the acts committed:
“First, let me say I take full responsibility for my own actions and for those of my administration. As angry as I may be about activities undertaken without my knowledge, I am still accountable for those activities. As disappointed as I may be in some who served me, I’m still the one who must answer to the American people for this behavior.”[58]
Finally, the president stated that his previous assertions that the U.S. did not trade arms for hostages were incorrect:
“A few months ago I told the American people I did not trade arms for hostages. My heart and my best intentions still tell me that’s true, but the facts and the evidence tell me it is not. As the Tower board reported, what began as a strategic opening to Iran deteriorated, in its implementation, into trading arms for hostages. This runs counter to my own beliefs, to administration policy, and to the original strategy we had in mind.”[58]
To this day Reagan’s role in the transactions is not definitively known; it is unclear exactly what Reagan knew and when, and whether the arms sales were motivated by his desire to save the U.S. hostages. Oliver North wrote that “Ronald Reagan knew of and approved a great deal of what went on with both the Iranian initiative and private efforts on behalf of the contras and he received regular, detailed briefings on both…I have no doubt that he was told about the use of residuals for the Contras, and that he approved it. Enthusiastically.”[59] Handwritten notes by Defense Secretary Weinberger indicate that the President was aware of potential hostages transfers with Iran, as well as the sale of Hawk and TOW missiles to what he was told were “moderate elements” within Iran.[9] Notes taken on December 7, 1985, by Weinberger record that Reagan said that “he could answer charges of illegality but he couldn’t answer charge [sic] that ‘big strong President Reagan passed up a chance to free hostages'”.[9] The Republican-written “Report of the Congressional Committees Investigating the Iran-Contra Affair” concluded, that
There is some question and dispute about precisely the level at which he chose to follow the operation details. There is no doubt, however, … [that] the President set the US policy towards Nicaragua, with few if any ambiguities, and then left subordinates more or less free to implement it.[60]
Domestically, the scandal precipitated a drop in President Reagan’s popularity as his approval ratings saw “the largest single drop for any U.S. president in history”, from 67% to 46% in November 1986, according to a New York Times/CBS News poll.[61] The “Teflon President“, as Reagan was nicknamed by critics,[62] survived the scandal, however, and by January 1989 a Gallup poll was “recording a 64% approval rating”, the highest ever recorded for a departing President at that time.[63]
Internationally the damage was more severe. Magnus Ranstorp wrote, “U.S. willingness to engage in concessions with Iran and the Hezbollah not only signaled to its adversaries that hostage-taking was an extremely useful instrument in extracting political and financial concessions for the West but also undermined any credibility of U.S. criticism of other states’ deviation from the principles of no-negotiation and no concession to terrorists and their demands”.[64]
In Iran Mehdi Hashemi, the leaker of the scandal, was executed in 1987, allegedly for activities unrelated to the scandal. Though Hashemi made a full video confession to numerous serious charges, some observers find the coincidence of his leak and the subsequent prosecution highly suspicious.[65]


  • Caspar WeinbergerSecretary of Defense, was indicted on two counts of perjury and one count of obstruction of justice on June 16, 1992. [1] Weinberger received a pardon from George H. W. Bush on December 24, 1992, before he was tried.[66]
  • William Casey, Head of the CIA. Thought to have conceived the plan, was stricken ill hours before he would testify. Reporter Bob Woodward reported Casey knew of and approved the plan.[67]
  • Robert C. McFarlane, National Security Adviser, convicted of withholding evidence, but after a plea bargain was given only two years of probation. Later pardoned by President George H. W. Bush.[68]
  • Elliott Abrams, Assistant Secretary of State, convicted of withholding evidence, but after a plea bargain was given only two years probation. Later pardoned by President George H. W. Bush.[69]
  • Alan D. Fiers, Chief of the CIA’s Central American Task Force, convicted of withholding evidence and sentenced to one year probation. Later pardoned by President George H. W. Bush.
  • Clair George, Chief of Covert Ops-CIA, convicted on two charges of perjury, but pardoned by President George H. W. Bush before sentencing.[70]
  • Oliver North, member of the National Security Council convicted of accepting an illegal gratuity, obstruction of a congressional inquiry, and destruction of documents, but the ruling was overturned since he had been granted immunity.[71]
  • Fawn Hall, Oliver North’s secretary, was given immunity from prosecution on charges of conspiracy and destroying documents in exchange for her testimony.[72]
  • Jonathan Scott Royster, Liaison to Oliver North, was given immunity from prosecution on charges of conspiracy and destroying documents in exchange for his testimony.[73]
  • National Security Advisor John Poindexter was convicted of five counts of conspiracy, obstruction of justice, perjury, defrauding the government, and the alteration and destruction of evidence. The Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling that overturned these convictions.[74]
  • Duane Clarridge. An ex-CIA senior official, he was indicted in November 1991 on seven counts of perjury and false statements relating to a November 1985 shipment to Iran. Pardoned before trial by President George H. W. Bush.[75][76]
  • Richard V. Secord. Ex-major general in the Air Force who organized the Iran arms sales and Contra aid. He pleaded guilty in November 1989 to making false statements to Congress and was sentenced to two years of probation.[77][78]
  • Albert Hakim. A businessman, he pleaded guilty in November 1989 to supplementing the salary of North by buying a $13,800 fence for North with money from “the Enterprise”, which was a set of foreign companies Hakim used in Iran-Contra. In addition, Swiss company Lake Resources Inc., used for storing money from arms sales to Iran to give to the Contras, plead guilty to stealing government property.[79] Hakim was given two years of probation and a $5,000 fine, while Lake Resources Inc. was ordered to dissolve.[77][80]
Oliver North and John Poindexter were indicted on multiple charges on March 16, 1988.[81] North, indicted on 16 counts, was found guilty by a jury of three felony counts. The convictions were vacated on appeal on the grounds that North’s Fifth Amendment rights may have been violated by the indirect use of his testimony to Congress which had been given under a grant of immunity. In 1990 Poindexter was convicted on several felony counts of conspiracy, lying to Congress, obstruction of justice, and altering and destroying documents pertinent to the investigation. His convictions were also overturned on appeal on similar grounds. Arthur L. Limanserved as chief counsel for the Senate during the Iran–Contra Scandal.[82]
The Independent CounselLawrence E. Walsh, chose not to re-try North or Poindexter.[83] In total, several dozen people were investigated by Walsh’s office.[84]
During his election campaign in 1988, Vice President Bush denied any knowledge of the Iran–Contra affair by saying he was “out of the loop”. Though his diaries included that he was “one of the few people that know fully the details”, he repeatedly refused to discuss the incident and won the election.[85] However, a book published in 2008 by Israeli journalist and terrorism expert Ronen Bergman asserts that Bush was personally and secretly briefed on the affair by Amiram Nir, counter-terrorism adviser to the then Israeli Prime Minister, when Bush was on a visit to Israel. “Nir could have incriminated the incoming President. The fact that Nir was killed in a mysterious chartered airplane crash in Mexico in December 1988 has given rise to numerous conspiracy theories“, writes Bergman.[86] On December 24, 1992, nearing the end of his term in office after being defeated by Bill Clinton the previous month, Bush pardoned six administration officials, namely Elliott AbramsDuane ClarridgeAlan FiersClair GeorgeRobert McFarlane, and Caspar Weinberger.[87]
In Poindexter’s hometown of Odon, Indiana, a street was renamed to John Poindexter Street. Bill Breeden, a former minister, stole the street’s sign in protest of the Iran–Contra affair. He claimed that he was holding it for a ransom of $30 million, in reference to the amount of money given to Iran to transfer to the Contras. He was later arrested and confined to prison, making him, as satirically noted by Howard Zinn, “the only person to be imprisoned as a result of the Iran–Contra Scandal”.[88]

Reports and documents

The 100th Congress formed a joint committee (Congressional Committees Investigating The Iran-Contra Affair) and held hearings in mid-1987. Transcripts were published as: Iran-Contra Investigation: Joint Hearings Before the Senate Select Committee on Secret Military Assistance to Iran and the Nicaraguan Opposition and the House Select Committee to Invesitgate Covert Arms Transactions with Iran (U.S. GPO 1987-88). A closed Executive Session heard classified testimony from North and Poindexter; this transcript was published in a redacted format.[89] The joint committee’s final report was Report of the Congressional Committees Investigating the Iran-Contra Affair With Supplemental, Minority, and Additional Views (U.S. GPO November 17, 1987).[90] The records of the committee are at the National Archives, but many are still non-public.[91]
Testimony was also heard before the House Foreign Affairs CommitteeHouse Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and can be found in the Congressional Record for those bodies. The Senate Intelligence Committee produced two reports: Preliminary Inquiry into the Sale of Arms to Iran and Possible Diversion of Funds to the Nicaraguan Resistance (February 2, 1987) and Were Relevant Documents Withheld from the Congressional Committees Investigating the Iran-Contra Affair? (June 1989).[92]
The Tower Commission Report was published as the Report of the President’s Special Review Board. U.S. GPO February 26, 1987. It was also published as The Tower Commission Report, Bantam Books, 1987, ISBN 0-553-26968-2 [93]
The Office of Independent Counsel/Walsh investigation produced four interim reports to Congress. Its final report was published as the Final Report of the Independent Counsel for Iran/Contra Matters.[94] Walsh’s records are available at the National Archives.[95]

See also


  1. Jump up^ Sharpe, Kenneth E. (1987). “The Real Cause of Irangate”. Foreign Policy(Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive, LLC) 68: 19–41. JSTOR 1148729.
  2. Jump up^ The Iran-Contra Affair 20 Years On. The National Security Archive (George Washington University), 2006-11-24
  3. Jump up to:a b c d e f g h i j k “Tower commission report excerpts”The Tower Commission Report. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  4. Jump up to:a b c d “Reagan’s mixed White House legacy”. BBC. June 6, 2004. Retrieved 2008-04-22.
  5. Jump up^ Hart, Robert (June 2, 2004). “NYT’s apologies miss the point”. The Consortium for Independent Journalism, Inc. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  6. Jump up^ Gyeorgos C. Hatonn (1993). Chaparral Serendipity. Phoenix Source Distributors, Inc. p. 218ISBN 9781569350003.
  7. Jump up^ Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 542
  8. Jump up to:a b c d e “The Iran-Contra Report”. The American Presidency Project. Retrieved 2008-05-17.
  9. Jump up to:a b c d
  10. Jump up to:a b Reagan, Ronald (November 13, 1986). “Address to the Nation on the Iran Arms and Contra Aid Controversy”. Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  11. Jump up^ “Excerpts From the Iran-Contra Report: A Secret Foreign Policy”New York Times. 1994. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  12. Jump up^ Reagan, Ronald (1987-03-04). “Address to the Nation on the Iran Arms and Contra Aid Controversy”. Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  13. Jump up^ Dwyer, Paula. “Pointing a Finger at Reagan”Business Week. Retrieved 2008-04-22.
  14. Jump up^ “Pardons and Commutations Granted by President George H. W. Bush”. United States Department of Justice. Retrieved 2008-04-22.
  15. Jump up^ “Secord Is Guilty Of One Charge In Contra Affair”New York Times. November 9, 1989. Retrieved July 19, 2011.
  16. Jump up^ ORTEGA, FAULTING REAGAN, WARNS OF COMING WAR New York Times 19 October 1986
  17. Jump up to:a b “The Iran-Contra Scandal”. The American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  18. Jump up^ “Understanding the Iran-Contra Affairs”.
  19. Jump up^
  20. Jump up^ “Military history of the Iran–Iraq War, 1980-1988”. 2005. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  21. Jump up to:a b c d Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 504
  22. Jump up to:a b c d Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 505
  23. Jump up^ Walsh Iran / Contra Report – Chapter 24 The Investigation of State Department Officials: Shultz, Hill and Platt Retrieved on 2008-06-07
  24. Jump up^ Walsh Iran/Contra Report, Part I: The Underlying Facts.
  25. Jump up^ Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 506
  26. Jump up^ Butterfield, Fox (November 27, 1988). “Arms for Hostages — Plain and Simple”The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-04-22.
  27. Jump up^
  28. Jump up^ “Iran-Contra Report; Arms, Hostages and Contras: How a Secret Foreign Policy Unraveled” March 16, 1984. Retrieved on 2008-06-07
  29. Jump up^ “Excerpts from the Tower Commission’s Report”, January 26, 1987.
  30. Jump up^ “Letter Accepting the Resignation of Robert C. McFarlane as Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs”. Retrieved 2012-12-04.
  31. Jump up^ “United States v. Robert C. McFarlane”. Independent Council for Iran/Contra Matters. 1993. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  32. Jump up^ Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 509
  33. Jump up^ “Understanding the Iran-Contra Affairs”.
  34. Jump up to:a b c Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 510
  35. Jump up^ Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 512
  36. Jump up to:a b c d e Walsh, Lawrence (August 4, 1993). “Vol. I: Investigations and prosecutions”Final report of the independent counsel for Iran/Contra matters. Independent Council for Iran/Contra Matters. Retrieved 2009-05-15.
  37. Jump up to:a b c Avery, Steve (2005). “Irangate: Iran-Contra affair, 1985-1992”. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  38. Jump up^ Fisher, Louis (October 1989). “How Tightly Can Congress Draw the Purse Strings?”. American Journal of International Law 83 (4): 758–766.doi:10.2307/2203364.JSTOR 2203364.
  39. Jump up^ “Iran Contra Hearings; Brunei Regains $10 Million”. New York Times. 1987-07-22. Retrieved 2008-03-28.
  40. Jump up to:a b Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 516
  41. Jump up to:a b Gwertzman, Bernard (January 11, 1987). “MCFARLANE TOOK CAKE AND BIBLE TO TEHERAN, EX-C.I.A. MAN SAYS”New York Times.
  42. Jump up^ “Calls President Courageous but Weak : Iranian Exhibits Bible Signed by Reagan”Los Angeles Times. January 28, 1987.
  43. Jump up to:a b Reagan, Ronald (1990), pp. 520-521
  44. Jump up to:a b Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 523
  45. Jump up^ Ranstorp, Magnus, Hizb’allah in Lebanon: The Politics of the Western Hostage Crisis, New York, St. Martins Press, 1997 pp. 98-99
  46. Jump up^ Reagan, Ronald (1990), pp. 526-527
  47. Jump up^ Cave, George. “Why Secret 1986 U.S.-Iran “Arms for Hostages” Negotiations Failed”. Washington Report on Middle Eastern Affairs. Retrieved 2007-01-09.
  48. Jump up^ “IN SUMMARY; Nicaragua Downs Plane and Survivor Implicates C.I.A”New York Times. 1986-10-12. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  49. Jump up^ “Hasenfus Tempers Comments on CIA”The New York Times. 1986-11-03. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  50. Jump up^ “White House Shake-Up: A Task is Handed to State Dept.; Poindexter and North Have Limited Options”.New York Times. 1986-11-26. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  51. Jump up^ “Timeline of Ronald Reagan’s life”. PBS. 2000. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  52. Jump up^ Woodward, Bob (1987). VEIL: The Secret Wars of the CIA 1981-1987. New York: Simon and Schuster.
  53. Jump up^ Woodward, Bob (1987). VEIL: The Secret Wars of the CIA 1981-1987. New York: Simon and Schuster. p. 580.
  54. Jump up to:a b c Church, George J (1987-03-02). “Tower of Judgement”Time. Retrieved 2008-04-22.
  55. Jump up^ Reagan, Ronald (1990), p. 501
  56. Jump up^ Blumenthal, Sidney (June 9, 2005). “Nixon’s Empire Strikes Back”The Guardian (London). Retrieved 2008-06-06.
  57. Jump up^ “Iran-Contra Multimedia”.
  58. Jump up to:a b c d “Speech about Iran Contra”. PBS. March 4, 1987. Retrieved 2008-04-23.
  59. Jump up^ Johnston, David (1991-10-20). “North Says Reagan Knew of Iran Deal”The New York Times.
  60. Jump up^ Report of the Congressional Committees Investigating the Iran-Contra Affair, with supplemental minority and additional views, H. Doc 100-433, S. Doc 100-216, 00th Congress, 1st sess., November 13, 1987, 501
  61. Jump up^ Mayer, Jane and Doyle McManusLandslide: The Unmaking of The President, 1984-1988. Houghton Mifflin, (1988) p.292 and 437
  62. Jump up^ “Teflon president not a compliment”The Washington Post(The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel). June 7, 2004. Retrieved 2008-06-10.
  63. Jump up^ Sussman, Dalia (2001-08-06). “Improving With Age: Reagan Approval Grows Better in Retrospect”. ABC. Retrieved 2007-04-08.
  64. Jump up^ Ranstorp, Magnus, Hizb’allah in Lebanon: The Politics of the Western Hostage Crisis, New York, St. Martins Press, 1997 p.203
  65. Jump up^ Abrahamian, Tortured Confessions, University of California, (1999), pp 162-166
  66. Jump up^
  67. Jump up^ “Did A Dead Man Tell No Tales?” by Richard Zoglin,Time, October 12, 1987
  68. Jump up^ ^ Pichirallo, Joe (March 12, 1988). “McFarlane Enters Guilty Plea Arising From Iran-Contra Affair; Former Reagan Adviser Withheld Information From Congress”. Washington Post.
  69. Jump up^ Walsh, Lawrence E.(August 4, 1993). “Final Report of the Independent Counsel For Iran/Contra Matters Vol. I: Investigations and Prosecutions”. Summary of Prosecutions. U.S. Court of Appeal for the District of Columbia.
  70. Jump up^ “Walsh Iran / Contra Report – Chapter 17 United States v. Clair E. George”. Retrieved 2010-08-31.
  71. Jump up^ http://www.nytimes, July 21, 1988, “Civil Liberties Union Asks Court to Quash Iran-Conta Indictment” by Philip Shanon
  72. Jump up^ Hall, North Trial Testimony, 3/22/89, pp. 5311–16, and 3/23/89, pp. 5373–80, 5385–87; Chapter 5 Fawn Hall 147
  73. Jump up^ royster, North Trial Testimony, 3/22/89, pp. 5311-17, and 3/23/89 pp. 5373-80, 5386-86; Chapter 6 Scott Royster 148
  74. Jump up^ Linda Greenhouse (8 December 1992). “Supreme Court Roundup:…”The New York Times. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
  75. Jump up^ David Johnston (27 November 1991). “Ex-C.I.A. Official Charged on Iran Arms”The New York Times. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  76. Jump up^ “Iran-Contra Pardons”Bangor Daily News (Bangor, Maine). Associated Press. 24 December 1992. p. 2 accessdate=14 January 2011.
  77. Jump up to:a b “The Iran-Contra Defendants”The Milwaukee Journal (Milwaukee, Wisconsin). Journal wire services. 17 September 1991. p. A6. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  78. Jump up^ David Johnston (9 November 1989). “Secord is Guilty Of One Charge in Contra Affair”The New York Times. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  79. Jump up^ Pete Yost (22 November 1989). “Hakim, one company plead guilty to Iran-Contra counts”The Modesto Bee(Modesto, CA). Associated Press. p. A-4. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  80. Jump up^ Martin, Douglas (May 1, 2003). “Albert Hakim, Figure in Iran-Contra Affair, Dies at 66”New York Times. Retrieved December 28, 2009.
  81. Jump up^ Shenon, Philip (1988-03-17). “North, Poindexter and 2 Others Indicted on Iran-Contra Fraud and Theft Charges”New York Times. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  82. Jump up^ Haberman, Clyde (July 18, 1997). “Arthur L. Liman, a Masterly Lawyer, Dies at 64”New York Times. Retrieved 2008-06-06.
  83. Jump up^ Johnston, David (December 25, 1992). “Bush Pardons 6 in Iran Affair, Aborting a Weinberger Trial; Prosecutor Assails ‘Cover-Up'”The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-06-06.
  84. Jump up^
  85. Jump up^
  86. Jump up^ Bergman, The secret war with Iran, published Simon and Schuster NY 2008, this edition 2011, page 112
  87. Jump up^ Bush, George H. W. (December 24, 1992). “Proclamation 6518 – Grant of Executive Clemency”. The American Presidency Project. Retrieved 2008-04-23.
  88. Jump up^ Zinn, Howard (2003), pp. 587-588
  89. Jump up^ Report of the Congressional Committees… p 15
  90. Jump up^ Several appendices of the report are available online, from
  91. Jump up^ Iran-Contra joint committee documents, at the National Archives.
  92. Jump up^ The two Senate Intelligence Committee reports are online:, 100th congress and101st congress
  93. Jump up^ Excepts of the Tower Report are online at UC Santa Barbara
  94. Jump up^ Portions of the OIC report are online at:
  95. Jump up^ National Archives, Records of Independent Counsels, Lawrence Walsh


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