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Unformatted text preview: John Granese Research Paper Project Spanish 2 9/27/06 Guatemala Guatemala’s culture is a unique blend of Spanish colonial heritage, and Native American influences. The Mestizo, also known as the Ladino, is a mixed group of European and native customs. This culture is mainly centered in the urban areas of Guatemala. However, Guatemala has not lost touch with its original culture, the Mayans. Many people still speak the Mayan language, as well as participate in its religious ceremonies and also its village customs. Having the two cultures living with one another has made this country beautiful, but also dangerous. When customs and religions clash, tensions are raised, and lives are lost. This constant separation has ignited these tensions, marking the history of a beautiful but violent country. From 3 BC up until 12AD, the lower lands of the Peten and Izabal regions have been the homes of many indigenous Mayan cultures. The Spaniards launched many unsuccessful invasions which came to no avail. It wasn’t until later that they were able to use the Catholic Church as a means of invasion. September 15, 1821, was the day that Guatemala had enough. Frustrated with its inability to trade with anyone except Spain, the Guatemalan elite declared independence. Soon after, they even freed themselves from the independent state of Mexico; truly making Guatemala a country all its own. Guatemala, though now a free country, managed to stay very organized. They created the United Provinces of Central America, or better known as the Central American Federation. Through all of it, Guatemala City has remained the capital, which is still the most heavily populated city in the country. With an unstable economy, followed by the collapse of the indigo market, its greatest export, the Federation fell apart; once again making Guatemala an independent nation. Recent history in Guatemala has proved itself to be interesting. From the coalition with the CIA during the cold war, to territorial disputes still unresolved with the country of Belize, Guatemala has made a name for itself among the many nations of Central America. Americans have given aid, money, weapons, and in some cases, training, to many Guatemalan forces. The United States Army Special Forces, or Green Berets, were sent to Guatemala to mold its army into killing machines, making it the most advanced army in Central America. army in Central America....
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- Fall '07