P. Edward Haley, the W.M. Keck Foundation Professor of International Strategic Studies, chairman of the international relations program at CMC, and director of the College's Center for Human Rights Leadership is one of the scholars featured in a two-hour documentary premiering at 10 p.m. on Sunday, May 15 on local PBS station KOCE. "The Storm that Swept Mexico" is about the history and legacy of the 1910 Mexican Revolution.
The documentary recalls the Mexican people's growing dissatisfaction with an elitist ruling regime, and the subsequent revolution that was led by two of the most intriguing and mythic figures in 20th century history: Emiliano Zapata and Pancho Villa. At stake was Mexico's ability to claim its own natural resources, establish long-term democracy, and re-define its identity. The film also explores how the Mexican revolution not only changed the course of Mexican history, transforming economic and political power within the nation, but also profoundly impacted the relationships between Mexico, the United States and the rest of the world.
Haley, who first appears about 13 minutes into the special, discusses how the United States repeatedly intervened in the Mexican Revolution, until drawn away by its involvement in World War I. "Generally, U.S. intervention failed or backfired," Haley explains, "and Mexico's revolutionaries often out-maneuvered the United States militarily and diplomatically." He says the revolution was too powerful, too convulsive, and too precious to Mexicans for them to permit outsiders to direct its course. "The Mexican Revolution also took an enormous toll in lives," Haley says. "During the decade from 1910-1921, 1 million Mexicans died in a population of 14 million, according to census figures. However," says Haley, "the census of 1921 was very suspect, and as many as 2 million may have died."
The documentary's first hour charts the struggle by former president of Mexico Francisco Madero and his followers to end the dictatorship of Porfirio D?az, and traces the emergence of rebel leaders Zapata and Pancho Villa. The second hour examines international influence on the revolution, investigating the German plan to seek Mexico's support against the United States should it enter World War I. It also explores how the Mexican Revolution fostered cultural as well as political transformation.
In addition to teaching at CMC, Haley has served on the staffs of members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. His most recent books are Strategic Foreign Assistance: Civil Society in International Security (Hoover Institution Press, 2006), and Strategies of Dominance: The Misdirections of U.S. Foreign Policy (Woodrow Wilson Center/Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006). His book, Revolution and Intervention: The Diplomacy of Taft and Wilson with Mexico, 1913-1915, won the Premio Sahagun, awarded by the Mexican National Institute of Anthropology and History.