Guatemala: United Fruit | Under the Shadow, Ep. 2

The dreams of a democratic Guatemala were dashed by a 1954 CIA coup against President Jacobo Arbenz spurred by the landed interests of the United Fruit Company.

January 9, 2024

Tiquisate, Guatemala. (Michael Fox)


Read the transcript.

In this episode, host Michael Fox looks at the outsized role of the U.S. banana corporation, United Fruit, in Central America. You literally can't talk about the history of Central America in the 20th Century without mentioning it. Fox goes in search of the legacy of the company today. He travels to the Guatemalan town of Tiquisate, which was built by the company. We dig into the past and the 1954 CIA coup, which overthrew the democratically elected president in the name of U.S. corporate interests.

We also look at the upcoming inauguration of Bernardo Arévalo—the son of the country’s first democratic president—who is set to be sworn in on January 14, 2024

Under the Shadow is a new investigative narrative podcast series that walks back in time, to tell the story of the past by visiting momentous places in the present. 

In each episode, host Michael Fox takes us to a location where something historic happened—a landmark of revolutionary struggle or foreign intervention. Today, it might look like a random street corner, a church, a mall, a monument or a museum. But every place he takes us was once the site of history-making events that shook countries, impacted lives and left deep marks on the world.

Hosted by Latin America-based journalist Michael Fox.

This podcast is produced in partnership between The Real News Network and NACLA.
Edited by Heather Gies.
Sound design by Gustavo Türck.
Theme music by Monte Perdido. Other music from Blue Dot Sessions.
Support journalist Michael Fox or Under the Shadow.

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