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Isaac Rojas

Isaac Francisco Rojas Madariaga was an Argentine Admiral of the Navy and de-facto Vice President of Argentina.

Rojas was born in Buenos Aires, in 1906. He joined the Argentine Navy and had an unremarkable career until the 1946 election of Juan Peron. Rojas became close to the influential First Lady, Eva Peron, and served as her naval aide-de-camp until her death in 1952. He was then named head of the Rio Santiago Naval Academy (site of an important naval shipyard), though in August 1955, he was persuaded to take part in the coup d'etat that toppled Peron on September 19. Credited with leading the Navy dutring the rebellion, Rojas obtained Peron's resignation and exile by commandeering the ARA General Belgrano - threatening to bombard the YPF refinery in Ensenada (then the nation's largest). He was rewarded with the Vice Presidency at the Navy's insistence, and remained in the post until President Pedro Aramburu relinquished power to elected authorities in May 1958. Rojas became a staunch anti-Peronist as Vice President, though he supported Aramburu's call for Constitutional Assembly elections in 1957, overcoming objections from the largely conservative Navy.Potash, Robert.The Army and Politics in Argentina. Stanford University Press, 1996.

Following the return to democracy with the election of President Arturo Frondizi, Rojas remained a vocal supporter of military action to prevent the return of Peronism, and participated in a failed, April 1963 coup attempt against President Jose Maria Guido (who was himself appointed in Frondizi's replacement for the sake of preventing a Peronist resurgence at the polls). Following Army Chief Juan Carlos Ongania's defeat of the coup attempt, Rojas was confined to his uptown Buenos Aires apartment, after which he largely limited his contact with the public to occasional columns in conservative newspapers such as La Prensa and La Nacion. He opposed the Antarctic Treaty of 1961 and was a staunch supporter of the disastrous Falklands War, making it his dying wish that his ashes be scattered at the site of the tragic sinking of the Belgrano during the 1982 conflict. The Independent: Obituary - Admiral Isaac Rojas

Related websites

The Independent: Obituary - Admiral Isaac Rojas

Article in Spanish with a picture of Isaac Rojas

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