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Template:Infobox MexicanPresident

Manuel Ávila Camacho (April 24, 1897October 13, 1955) served as the President of Mexico from 1940 to 1946.

Ávila Camacho was born in the city of Teziutlán, a small town in Puebla, to middle-class parents. His brothers Maximino Ávila Camacho and Rafael Ávila Camacho both served as governors of Puebla. Ávila did not receive a university degree, although he studied at the National Preparatory School. He joined the army in 1914 as a 2nd lieutenant and reached the status of Colonel by 1920 and, in the same year, served as the Chief of Staff of the state of Michoacán under Lázaro Cárdenas, and became his close friend. In 1929, he fought under general Cárdenas against the Escobar Rebellion and, that same year, achieved the rank of Brigade General.

After his military service, Ávila entered the public arena in 19331934 as the Official Mayor of the Secretariat of National Defense, and became Secretary of National Defense in 1937. Two years later, he was elected president of Mexico, after being appointed to represent his party.

Presidential term

During his term, Ávila Camacho faced the difficulty of World War II. After two of Mexico's ships carrying oil were destroyed by German submarines in the Gulf of Mexico, Ávila declared war against the Axis powers on May 22, 1942. 15,000 Mexican soldiers fought in the war, on a variety of fronts, including an Airborne squadron, the 201st, to fight the Japanese in the Pacific. Furthermore, starting a period of friendship with the United States, Ávila Camacho cooperated in the war effort, providing his northern neighbour with 300,000 workers under the Bracero Program to replace some of the Americans who had left to fight in the war. Mexico also resumed diplomatic relations with the United Kingdom and Russia. In 1944, Mexico signed the Charter of the United Nations and the following year became the headquarters of the Interamerican Conference about War and Peace.

Domestically, Ávila Camacho protected the working class, creating social security in 1943 and working to reduce illiteracy. He continued agricultural reform and declared a rent freeze to benefit low-income citizens. He also promoted election reform, creating new requirements that made it impossible for communists to run. He was also responsible, on January 18, 1946, for renaming what had been the Party of the Mexican Revolution (PRM) to the name it carries today, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI).

When his term ended in 1946, Ávila Camacho retired to work on his farm. He died on October 13, 1955.

References


Preceded by:
Lázaro Cárdenas
President of Mexico
1940–1946
Succeeded by:
Miguel Alemán

Template:End box

fr:Manuel Ávila Camacho es:Manuel Ávila Camacho de:Manuel Ávila Camacho

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