Dámaso Berenguer
Dámaso Berenguer y Fusté, Count of Xauen (4 August 1873 – 19 May 1953) was a Spanish soldier and politician
Politics of Spain
The politics of Spain take place in the framework of a parliamentary representative democratic constitutional monarchy, whereby the Monarch is the Head of State and the President of the Government is the head of government in a multi-party system. Executive power is vested in the government...


Berenguer was born in San Juan de los Remedios, Cuba
The Republic of Cuba is an island nation in the Caribbean. The nation of Cuba consists of the main island of Cuba, the Isla de la Juventud, and several archipelagos. Havana is the largest city in Cuba and the country's capital. Santiago de Cuba is the second largest city...

, while that island nation was still a Spanish province.
He enlisted in the army in 1889, served in Cuba and Morocco
Morocco , officially the Kingdom of Morocco , is a country located in North Africa. It has a population of more than 32 million and an area of 710,850 km², and also primarily administers the disputed region of the Western Sahara...

, and was promoted to general in 1909.
In 1918, he was appointed Minister of War under Prime Minister
Prime Minister of Spain
The President of the Government of Spain , sometimes known in English as the Prime Minister of Spain, is the head of Government of Spain. The current office is established under the Constitution of 1978...

 Manuel García Prieto
Manuel García Prieto
Manuel García-Prieto, 1st Marquis of Alhucemas was a Spanish politician who was prime minister several times in his life....

From January 1919 to July 1922 he was the High Commissioner of Spanish Morocco
Spanish Morocco
The Spanish protectorate of Morocco was the area of Morocco under colonial rule by the Spanish Empire, established by the Treaty of Fez in 1912 and ending in 1956, when both France and Spain recognized Moroccan independence.-Territorial borders:...

After planning an uprising, however, he was court-martialled and discharged from the service.
He was saved, however, by 13 September 1923 coup d'état of Miguel Primo de Rivera
Miguel Primo de Rivera
Miguel Primo de Rivera y Orbaneja, 2nd Marquis of Estella, 22nd Count of Sobremonte, Knight of Calatrava was a Spanish dictator, aristocrat, and a military official who was appointed Prime Minister by the King and who for seven years was a dictator, ending the turno system of alternating...

. He was granted an amnesty and appointed military chief of the royal household.

In January 1930, following the forced resignation of the dictator Primo de Rivera, King Alfonso XIII
Alfonso XIII of Spain
Alfonso XIII was King of Spain from 1886 until 1931. His mother, Maria Christina of Austria, was appointed regent during his minority...

 ordered Berenguer to form a government and restore a degree of normality to the country. As prime minister, Berenguer repealed some of the harsher measures introduced by Primo de Rivera, earning his regime the nickname dictablanda
"Dictablanda" is a word used by political scientists to describe a dictatorship in which civil liberties are allegedly preserved rather than destroyed. The word dictablanda is a portmanteau of the Spanish words dictadura and blanda...

( the toothless dictatorship, blanda meaning soft, – as opposed to the preceding dictadura, dura the Spanish word for hard) or Parum Mentula. He also faced a number of problems – increasing demands for the abolition of the monarchy; disorganisation among the country's political parties after seven years of repression making the calling of prompt elections an impossible task; labour unrest; and at least one military uprising.

Berenguer resigned as prime minister on 14 February 1931; he was replaced by Adm. Juan Bautista Aznar-Cabañas
Juan Bautista Aznar-Cabañas
Admiral Juan Bautista Aznar-Cabañas was the Prime Minister of Spain from the resignation of Dámaso Berenguer y Fusté on to the deposition of King Alfonso XIII and the proclamation of the Spanish Second Republic on April 14, 1931.In Aznar's government, there were disagreements between absolutist...

, under whom he served as Minister of War.
Two months later, Alfonso fled the country and the Republic
Second Spanish Republic
The Second Spanish Republic was the government of Spain between April 14 1931, and its destruction by a military rebellion, led by General Francisco Franco....

 was declared, during which time Berenguer was imprisoned.
He died in Madrid
Madrid is the capital and largest city of Spain. The population of the city is roughly 3.3 million and the entire population of the Madrid metropolitan area is calculated to be 6.271 million. It is the third largest city in the European Union, after London and Berlin, and its metropolitan...

in 1953.
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