The Grenada Revolution Online

You say Grenayda, I say Grenahda . . .

“In the Soviet bloc, the media carefully echoed the condemnations of US actions delivered by the politicians. But even there there was a moment of high farce. The earliest editions of Soviet TV news programmes screened after the invasions showed a map of the location of Grenada. Horrified Soviet viewers were lead to believe that the US troops had invaded Spain, dropped on Andalusia and captured the city of Granada.”

According to a soldier during the time of US intervention, the troops were first told they were going to Spain. They had a map that named the Point Salines airport facility as “Point Salinas”. Eventually, many of the troops were led to believe that they would meet Cubans as the only opposition, who spoke only Spanish.

One editorial cartoon, ©1983 The Philadelphia Enquirer, during November, showed former President Reagan and Cpmgressman Tip O'Neil.

Reagan sings “You say ‘Gren-ay-da’, I say ‘Gren-ah-dah’.”
O'Neill sings “You say ‘Invada’, I say ‘Why Botha?’”
Reagan and O'Neill sing together “Gren-ay-da, Gren-ah-dah, invada,
why botha . . . Let's call the whole thing off.”

“Let's call the whole thing off” is the caption above a US flag-draped casket.

The above text from the cartoon is based on a 1937 Fred Astaire movie, "Shall We Dance." In that film is a song, "Let's Call the Whole Thing Off" with the clever lyrics by Ira Gershwin ". . . You say tomahto, I say tomaeto. . ."

Grenada Etymology

The Origin of the Island of Grenada's Name

The origin of the name Grenada is vague.

Before the Europeans arrived, the standard story is that Grenada was inhabited by the 'war-like Carib Indians who had driven the peaceful Arawak Indians' from the island. The Carib ancestors of Grenada lived during the time when the island was called Camerhogne.

In 1498 Columbus sighted the island he called Concepción. During third voyage by Columbus and crew to the then-called New World, the venture was financed by Ferdinand II and Isabella I of Spain.

According to Brizan, Grenada: Island of Conflict: “The island's third name was Mayo. Grenada was given this name in 1500 by Alonso de Hojeda, Amerigo Vespucci and the map-maker Juan de la Casa who sailed up the islands from the Dragon's Mouth to St. Kitts, mapping all the island they saw. As late as 1511 research indicates that both names - Concepción and Mayo - were used on Royal Cedulas about Grenada, but Concepción was used more frequently.”

Later, passing Spanish sailors and mapmakers may have found the island's landscape looked like the province of Andalusia in Spain. Most likely Spanish sailors renamed the island for the city of “Granada.” Again, according to Brizan, “with one exception, all Spanish maps after 1523 used the name Granada for the island.”

The French, by the 17th century, adapted “Granada” to “La Grenade” in French.

After the Treaty of Paris, when the island was given to England by France, the British followed suit, changing “Grenade” and dropping the “La” to “Grenada” (pronounced Gre-nay-da).

Background information from Official Site of the Grenada Board of Tourism and,

Description and history of the City of Granada in Spain

“Granada is the capital of the province with the same name, situated in the eastern part of the region of Andalusia. The city's name may have been derive either from the Spanish granada, ‘pomegranate,’ . . . or from its Moorish name, Karnattah (Gharnatah), possible meaning ‘hill of strangers’. As the seat of the Moorish kingdom of Granada, the city was the final stronghold of the Moors in Spain, falling to the Roman Catholic monarchs Ferdinand II and Isabella I in January 1493.”

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