Doe's forces executed President William R. Tolbert, along with dozen officials of the Tolbert's regime, who were mostly of Americo-Liberian descent. This marked the first time since Liberia's establishment as a country that it was governed by people of native African descent instead of the Americo-Liberian elite. Doe became head of state and suspended the constitution, but promised a return to civilian rule by 1985. Many people welcomed Doe's takeover as a shift favoring the majority of the population that had been excluded from power, my mother said market women would dance and sing songs praising the military government with songs like, " native woman born soldiers, soldiers killed Tolbert.
The late Liberian president William Tolbert is welcome to the white house by president Nixon.
Former American president Jimmy Carter waves to cheering crowds during his state visit to Liberia in 1979.
But Doe's government increasingly adopted an ethnic outlook, as members of his Krahn ethnic group soon dominated political and military life in Liberia. This caused a heightened level of ethnic tension leading to frequent hostilities between the politically and militarily dominant Krahns and other ethnic groups in the country.
Members of the people's redemption council led by Doe.
The execution of former government officials. April 12 1980.