The Caribbean Islands are one of the earth’s best kept secrets. They are numerous islands in a relatively small area, with most of them being popular tourist spots and having excellent services. There are many countries in this area worth mentioning such as the Dominican Republic, Cayman Islands and the British Virgin Islands. You'll find Caribbean politics very fascinating.
Unbeknownst to many, these islands are not just simple countries that attempt to attract tourists, they have a deep history that dates back as far as Christopher Columbus and for the most part have some kind of political independence.
The Caribbean islands were discovered by Christopher Columbus in the 1490’s, however, many of the countries were not able to be inhabited due to the Native population forcing them out. It was not until the 17th century that most of the discovered Caribbean islands were allowed to be colonized by British and French explorers who helped shape Caribbean politics.
French and British Influence on Caribbean Politics
The British and French often fought over several of the countries, one of them being Grenada, but for the most part the United Kingdom emerged victorious. Following World War II, Britain was nearly bankrupt and started unloading many of its responsibilities in the Caribbean Sea. For many of these countries, Great Britain gave them independence, however, they were still considered an overseas territory of the British Empire which means that the Queen still remained the head of state.
Any country that is considered an overseas British territory is appointed a Governor that acts on behalf of the Queen, since the Queen is unable to reside in the Caribbean due to her obligations in Great Britain. The Governor holds ultimate authority, however, the Prime Minister holds the power in government.
For most of these countries there is a three tiered system of government that consists of the executive power, legislative power and the judiciary. The executive power is the Queen, Governor and Prime Minister. The legislature is made up of a Cabinet and Senate. The judiciary is the common court system with a Supreme court, but in some circumstances countries that are an overseas British territory can appeal to London’s high court, the Privy Council or commonly referred to as the JCPC.
Socialism in Caribbean Politics
Not all countries in this area are under British control, many are completely independent, and sometimes not even having the same political structure. Cuba is a great example of a country in the Caribbean region, yet they are not democratic at all, they are a Communist, Socialist country that operates completely independent and without trouble from British or French overseas territories.
Although the Caribbean islands are mostly known for their weather and beautiful oceans, they are, in fact, significant in the building of modern civilization. Some people find it hard to believe that a bunch of small islands located near the Atlantic Ocean can serve more than just being a vacation destination, but the truth is they have served for much more than that.
Some countries in the Caribbean served as great additions in World War II due to their oceanic roots which made for great naval bases and ship ports. To this day, the shipping industry still remains a high source of revenue for the Caribbean, and if it was not for their role in helping the Allies win World War II, they may not have been afforded this luxury. The Caribbean islands truly are one of the most magnificent places on earth.
With perfect temperatures and year round warmth, it is hard to find a place that is any more relaxing. Although vacations in the Caribbean can cost thousands of dollars, this is an experience that is well worth it!