Bolivian History 101: The Marshal Andrés de Santa Cruz and the Bolivian – Peruvian Confederation

Jose Alberto Diez de Medina writes in El Diario:

The Marshal Andrés de Santa Cruz and the Bolivian – Peruvian Confederation

2014-03-30 10.17.36 amOne of the most representative figures of the liberation wars in America is Andrés de Santa Cruz and Calahumana, son of a Spanish nobleman and a daughter of the Cacique of Huarina.

2014-03-30 10.24.23 amThe Mariscal Santa Cruz was born in Huarina, Omasuyos province, department of La Paz, on December 5, 1792, his first studies were with the Franciscan fathers in the city of La Paz, then went to the city of Cusco.

He began his military career by entering the royalist forces under General José Manuel de Goyeneche, thanks to the influence of his father, was recognized the rank of Captain, later fighting under the command of Spanish General Pezuela.

He attended the battles of La Tablada and Cerro de Pasco, where he was promoted to Colonel on December 6, l820. Realizing that the “royal” cause would succumb sooner or later, and even more, he being an American creole that was due to the independence of America, voluntarily surrendered to the Mayor Lavalle, sanmartinianas forces officer [under the command of Argentinian General San Martin], offering his services. Gral San Martin recognized his rank, assimilating him to the liberating forces.

Near the Battle of Pichincha, General Antonio José de Sucre, knowing the power of the forces of the royal army, appealed to General San Martin, who immediately decided to send sanmartinianas forces under Gen. Alvarez de Arenales. Who declined this command, then sent Colonel Andrés de Santa Cruz, who was appointed Chief of Staff, being promoted to Brigadier General by Sucre, also fought in Junín as Chief of Staff.

Closely linked to the Liberator, was entrusted with the command of 4,000 men to stop the royalist General Jerome Valdez, in their advance to Lima, the meeting was held in Zepita. Already in the military defeat of Valdez, Santa Cruz made a disastrous retreat, losing most of the equipment and troops, however being appointed as Marshal of Zepita.

After Ayacucho, and being the Republic of Peru under such deplorable condition of chaos, was named president of the same, exercising power with honesty and good performance. Appointed Minister Plenipotentiary of Bolivia in Chile, at the National Congress meeting in 1829, he was elected as President of the Republic of Bolivia.

His government first turned the country into a state with a good economic overhaul, established a good political division and, above all, he formed a new armed forces chiefs incorporating high prestige in the liberation struggle, as Burdett O’Connor, Philip Otto Braun, Colonel Santa María de la Trinidad Moran, Colonel José Ballivián.

In order to support Peru by its chairman Orbegozo, signed a treaty of cooperation, entering Peru in command of the Bolivian army, triumphing in the battles at Socabaya and Yanacocha on February 4, 1836, setting a new state, The Peru – Bolivian Confederation on October 20, 1836.

The Confederacy made susceptible by their power to neighboring republics. Chile entered the territory of the Confederation with a powerful army, being defeated in the Battle of Paucarpata, signing a non-aggression treaty.

Argentina entered the south of the Confederacy, being defeated in Iruya and Montenegro.

The Confederation at that time was one of the states most prestigious, “came the peak of its glory and prosperity, will display a strong and united in the interior, and large and respected abroad.”

Chile, breaking the non-aggression treaty signed invaded with an army prepared for the effect the territory of the Confederation and in the Battle of Yungay defeated the Confederate army, January 20, 1839.

The Mariscal Santa Cruz had no choice to gather his forces and introduce new battle, and betrayal became flesh in the Bolivian politicians, starting with his chancellor Olaneta Casimiro, only one General raised his voice: Burdett O’Connor.

The exiled Marshal, died in Versailles, France, September 25, 1856 at 73 years of age.

Bolivarian Society of Bolivia. Founded in 1936.

Published by Bolivian Thoughts

Senior managerial experience on sustainable development projects.

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