Tag Archives: LBJ

Today In Texas History – November 10

From the Annals of LBJ –  In 1967, the President’s Ranch Trail was dedicated in Wimberley. The 90  mile route includes places in Hays, Blanco and Gillespie counties that were important in the life of Pres.  Lyndon B. Johnson.  It extends from the LBJ Ranch, located on Ranch Road 1 near Stonewall, to San Marcos. From the ranch two approaches are possible to Blanco, from which the main route extends to San Marcos: one, referred to as the north branch, proceeds from Ranch Road 1 via U.S. Highway 290 through Hye to Johnson City, then to Blanco via U.S. Highway 281; the other approach, referred to as the south branch, leads from the ranch to Stonewall and reaches Blanco by means of Albert on Ranch Road 1623. The route from Blanco to San Marcos leads via Ranch roads 165 and 2325 through Wimberley, where Ranch Road 12 leads to San Marcos.

Photo of the Western White Houston from the National Park Service.

Today in Texas History – April 28

From the Annals of Gunboat Diplomacy –  In 1965, Pres. Lyndon B. Johnson  ordered an invasion of the Dominican Republic.  LBJ sent approximately 22,000 troops in a purported effort to prevent a “communist dictatorship.” Johnson’s action resulted in massive protests in Latin America and further criticism of LBJ as a war monger in the United States.

The events leading up to the U.S. incursion began with the assassination of long-time strong man Rafael Trujillo.  Trujillo was a brutal dictator but  that mattered little because of his strong anticommunist stance.  The U.S. supported him despite horrific human rights abuses.  After his death, a reformist government led by Pres. Juan Bosch won elections in 1962.  He was quickly deposed in 1963 by the corrupt and venal Dominican military. This set off a struggle for power pitting various military and political factions against each other.  Ultimately forces supporting Bosch began attacks against the military dictatorship.  LBJ and others, in the full throes of cold-war thinking, feared another Cuba in the Caribbean and decided to invade.  They were quickly able to end the fighting and install a right-wing civilian puppet for the military.

LBJ’s stated rationale for the action (the fear of the a new communist dictatorship) was never solidly proven. He provided American reporters with lists of suspected communists; but even a quick review of the list revealed almost no real communists at work. Some of the people were deceased and many others were clearly not communists – but were merely persons legitimately opposed to the right-wing dictatorship favored by the U.S.

Photo from www.loeildelaphotographie.com