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Uruguay went through many socio-economic changes in the 20th century During the first decade it began to experience a series of fundamental adjustments that made Uruguay a pioneer in economic social and political reform For example the government launched a program of economic nationalism First gasoline and alcohol products while the banking industry and railroads followed However through problems stemming from lagging technology and government irresponsibility political discontent arose The Tupamaros were undoubtedly the primary evidence of the growing discontent and unhappiness of the Uruguayan people Although they were relatively few in number they gained sympathy among much of the Uruguayan population The Tupamaro slogan during its successful and most active period from 1969 to 1972 was Habr patria para todos o patria para nadie There will be a fatherland for all or a fatherland for none Unfortunately while they had good intentions it can be argued that the Tupamaros helped create the latter In order to properly understand the origins of the Tupamaro one must look at the convoluted political and economic history of Uruguay how the Switzerland of the Americas turned into a corrupt state of civil war In the early 20th century the visionary President Jos Batlle y Ordez achieved far-reaching reforms and made Uruguay the only welfare state in Latin America During his two terms as president - 1903-07 and 1911-15 - he implemented a range of free social services abolished capital punishment and sought to curb the countrys legacy of strong-arm rule Uruguay soon flourished on the back of the rural livestock sector but its failure to grow coupled with the countrys lack of natural resources meant the welfare state deteriorated increasingly over time During World War II the Uruguayan government stimulated the growth of wheat farming in response to the attempt of the Pern government in Argentina to refuse grain shipments to Uruguay in order to punish the Uruguayans for giving refuge to Perns opponents However wheat was
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