Farabundo Marti Front for National Liberation

The Farabundo Marti Front for National Liberation (FMLN) was an alliance of five leftist guerrilla groups that fought a 12-year civil war against El Salvador's military junta.

A military dictatorship had risen to power in El Salvador in 1929; in January 1932, the junta had put down a peasant rebellion led by Farabundo Marti, executing him and massacring between 10,000 and 30,000 of his followers. In the late 1960s, resistance to the regime began to coalesce, and by 1972 the middle-class, centrist Christian Democratic Party was poised to win that year's presidential election. The military regime engaged in electoral fraud and sent Jose Duarte, leader of the Christian Democrats, into exile. Following the election, many began to seek other methods of opposing the dictatorship.

The election scandal fostered the creation of many leftist political groups, some of which advocated open rebellion. As the decade ...

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