Paraguayan military leader and President (1954–89). The son of a German immigrant, he fought in the Chaco War (1932–35) against Bolivia. Having risen from the ranks to become commander-in-chief of the armed forces (1951–54), he was responsible for the overthrow of President Frederico Chavez in 1954. Basically supportive of the large landowners and international commercial interests, as President he used foreign aid to develop schools, hospitals, highways, and hydro-electric power. His regime remained strongly backed by the army and was essentially totalitarian in that, while allowing for some political dissent, it was guilty of harsh and repressive methods. Stroessner died in exile in Brazil.
Subjects: Politics — History.