Hugo Banzer Suárez inaugurated President of Bolivia

On August 22, 1971, Hugo Banzer Suárez took power as the President of Bolivia in a military coup.  The politician, military general and dictator was another less than illustrious graduate of the US Defense Department’s School of the Americas.  He was also trained at Fort Hood Armored Cavalry School in Texas and spent time in Washington, DC, as a military attaché. Many observers reported that Banzer’s rule was viciously oppressive, as he and his regime jailed, exiled and murdered labor leaders and leftist politicians.  More than 15,000 people were arrested, 19,000 fled Bolivia, and 200 were assassinated during his term in office. In another political incident, over 100 Bolivian citizens were massacred in 1974.

Happy Birthday to Mary Joe Fernandez

Happy Birthday to tennis star Mary Joe Fernandez, born on August 19, 1971 in the Dominican Republic.  Her family immigrated to Florida when she was an infant.  She was swinging her first tennis racket at age 3. By age 13, she won both the US Tennis Association Championship and the US Clay Court Championship.  Fernandez represented her home country in the Olympics, and won two gold medals for her country.