JFK+50: Volume 6, No. 1965RAFAEL TRUJILLO ASSASSINATED 55 YEARS AGO TODAY
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic (JFK+50) Rafael Trujillo*, known as "El Jefe" or "The Chief," was shot dead fifty-five years ago today, May 30, 1961, on Avenida George Washington here in Santo Domingo.
Seven men lay in wait along the highway where Trujillo's chauffeur-driven Chevrolet was traveling. After the Chevy was cut-off, an open gun battle ended with Trujillo's remains "sprawled...across the" road.
According to BBC News, Trujillo, who had ruled Santo Domingo since 1930, was described as "the cruelest dictator in the Americas."
The BBC states...
"Those who dared to oppose him were imprisoned, tortured and murdered."
His rule was so brutal CIA station chief, Henry Dearborn, wrote to the U.S. State Department in October 1960...
"If I were a Dominican...I would favor destroying Trujillo as being the first necessary step in the salvation of my country."
With the dictator's demise, however, President John F. Kennedy was concerned that the the Domincan Republic would be open to another Fidel Castro to take power.
*Rafael Leonidas Trujillo Molina (1891-1961) was born in San Cristobal. When the US occupied his country in 1916, RLTM joined the National Guard & trained with US Marines. He was Commander-in-Chief of the National Army of the Domincan Republic by 1927.
"I shot the cruelest dictator in the Americas," BBC News, www.bbc.com/