• Belize (formerly BritishHonduras) is the onlycountry in CentralAmerica that has Englishas it’s official language.It’s bordered by Mexico,Guatemala and theCaribbean Sea.• It is the only nation witha British colonialheritage. It becameindependent from theUK September 21, 1981
Economy Belize has a small private enterprise economy that is primarily agriculture. Bananas is the country’s largest employer and sugar the chief crop. Recently, tourism and construction are gaining in greater importance. In 2006 crude oil was discovered near the town of Spanish Lookout. Electricity cost are the most expensive in the region.
Two Maya children Boys of mixed ethnicities There are currently 333, 000 people and are comprised of 34% Mestizos, 25% Kriols, 15% Spanish, 11% Maya, 6% Garinagu, 9% others. It was colonisation and slavery that affected the ethnic composition.
• Ethnic groups include,65.1% White, 10.1% African, 24.8%Mulatto, and Mestizo• 2010 population is 11.2 million• Spanish is the official language
• Havana was founded by the Spanish in 1519. It became a stopping Point between the New World and Old World. • During the 17th century Old Havana was a major shipbuilding center.• In 1555 the town would be looted andburned to the ground by a French The Cathedral of Havana builtpirate named Jacques de Sores. by Jesuits 1748-1777
• Cuba’s greatest achievement is their healthcare.• Cubas major exports are sugar, nickel, tobacco, fish, medical products, citrus, and coffee.• Imports include food, fuel, clothing, and machinery.• The Constitution describes the Communist Party of Cuba as the leading force of society and state.• Fidel Castro served as leader of Cuba from 1959-2008 and handed overhis duties to his brother Raul Castro in 2008.• In April 2011 Raul announced a plan of 300 economic reforms similar tothe Chinese economic model.
Manuel Noriega • Manuel Noriega was a military dictator of Panama from1983-1989. Once an ally to the U.S. he became one of Washington’s most vilified foes. • With its 100 bank financial center, Panama was laundering bales of drug cash through banks and also processing shipment of cocaine. Noriega was directly receiving multi-million dollar kick backs from this process. • December 20,1989 President George Bush ordered an invasion to capture Noriega. It was the largest military intervention since the Vietnam War. • January 1990, he surrendered after holing up in the Vatican Embassy unable to withstand an assault of loud rock music that Americans blasted at the mission night and day.
• Noriega was sentenced to 40 years inU.S. prison and later reduced to 17 ongood behavior.• It was reported that he had been visitedby Evangelical Christians, who claimed hehad become a born again Christian• Secretary of State Hillary Clinton signedthe surrender warrant for Noriega after ajudge in Miami lifted a stay blocking theextradition.• In April 2010 he was extradited to Franceand there he was not given the prisoner ofwar status which he had in the U.S.
• Noriega at 76 years old is flown from Miami to Paris toface trial for laundering cocaine profits through FrenchBanks and using the money to buy luxury apartments.• At trial, July 2010, he is sentenced to 7 years in jail andhis French bank accounts ($3.6 million) ordered to be seized.• October 2011, French court ordered a conditional release forhim to be extradited to Panama to be put on trial for humanRights violations.• His attorney commented he is old, sick and had a stroke aboutfour years ago and it has left him handicapped on the right side.