Puerto Rico, a Modern Colony

By Nathaly Duran

BBC Archive. Retrieved January 23, 2011.

The political movement for the independence of Puerto Rico has existed since the 19th century. Puerto Ricans have sought independence of their island from the 1800’s when they were first colonized by Spain and now from the United States since the U.S. invasion in 1898. A strong reason for their independence is that Puerto Ricans possess an identify of their own, many of them believe they are a nation, although Puerto Ricans may be considered U.S. citizens they are not Americans, they are “Boricuas” (1).

One of the two most popular and currently active pro-independence organizations in Puerto Rico is The Boricua Popular Army, also known as “Los Macheteros” According to the FBI this group is considered to be a terrorist organization, they are responsible for several bomb attacks and armed robberies. Their most infamous act was when they robbed 7 million dollars from the Wells Fargo Depot and threw some of this money from high buildings (2).

The other one is the PIP “Partido Independentista Puertorriqueño” or Puerto Rican Independence Party. This organization plays a more diplomatic and peaceful role. Throughout their active years they have achieve governmental positions and have earned international recognition, receiving support from many organizations and personalities like Mario Benedetti and Gabriel Garcia-Marquez among others (1).

Today, the Puerto Rican population is in conflict when it comes to determining the island’s future political status, the options range from remaining a commonwealth territory to statehood, to independence. In the 1998 referendum 0.1 percent of the population voted in favor of maintaining a commonwealth territory, 2.5 percent voted in favor of independence, 46 percent ruled in favor of statehood, while the other 50 percent opted out on a “none of the above” option. Up to this date the U.S. Congress has not made any changes on Puerto Rico’s condition (3).


1. Bas Garcia, Jose R. (January 5, 2007). “Puerto Rico is a Colony”. Retrieved January 22, 2011 from the Partido Independentista Puertorriqueño website: http://www.independencia.net/ingles/welcome.html

2. Knowledgerush,( n.d.). “Los Macheteros”. Retrieved January 22, 2011 from the Knowledgerush website: http://www.knowledgerush.com/kr/encyclopedia/Los_Macheteros/

3. Elections Puerto Rico, (n.d.). Results Lookup Islandwide Totals1998 Plebiscite. Retrieved January 24, 2011 from the Elections Puerto Rico website: http://electionspuertorico.org/home_en.html

4. Rubén Berríos statement on HR 2499 at US Senate hearings (Video file). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=mB-dKk_xmwM

Published in: on January 26, 2011 at 10:00 pm  Leave a Comment  

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