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Coup d'etat

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A '''coup d'├ętat''' (literally ''"stroke of state"'') is a [[French]] term meaning to forcibly take over (or attempt to take over) the [[government]] of a [[country]] by the military of that country, generally carried out by violent or illegal means. It differs from a [[revolution]] in that it is usually carried out by a small group that proceeds to install its leader as head of government rather than being a mass uprising by the people.
Early examples of coups include the coup of 1799, in which [[Napoleon]] overthrew the Revolutionary Directory and declared himself first president of France. Coups in more recent times include the overthrow of the Provisional Government by Bolsheviks in [[Russia]] of 1917, of the socialist government of [[Chile]] 1973, the military seizures of power in [[Nigeria]] 1983, the Great [[Myanmar]] Coup of 1988, [[Gambia]] 1994, the short-lived removal of [[Mikhail Gorbachev]] from power in the [[USSR]] by hard-line [[Communist]]s in August of 1991, and the overthrow of president Ahmad Tejan Kabbah in [[Sierra Leone]] in February 1998.
The German word ''putsch'' is sometimes used to describe a coup, as in the [[Beer Hall Putsch]] of 1923.
[[categoryCategory:International Political Terms]]
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