Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts - History



First Advisor

Dr. Aaron Moulton

Second Advisor

Dr. Scott Sosebee

Third Advisor

Dr. Philip Catton

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Kenneth Collier


The purpose of this thesis is to examine the support of Congressman Charles Wilson, D-TX, for the Nicaraguan government of Anastasio Somoza Debayle from March 1977 to July 1979. A narrative of Wilson's actions and motivations it relies heavily on his congressional papers for primary sources. This work argues that Wilson was motivated by his personal anti-Communist beliefs to challenge the perceived biased application of the Carter Administration's human rights policy against the Somoza regime. He saw the administration's abandonment of Nicaragua, a traditional Cold War ally after four decades of loyal support, as directly contributing to the rise of a Communist regime following Somoza’s fall. It also explores the role of Congress in influencing American foreign policy. Furthermore, it proves that Wilson was a committed anti-Communist with an interest in foreign policy before his adventures in the mountains of Afghanistan during the 1980s for which he has become famous

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



Tell us how this article helped you.


To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.