Wierd History #3: Bananas

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Wierd History #3: Bananas

Silas Ou, Reporter

Bananas, high in potassium, good for your health, and something that has caused dozens of wars. Don’t believe me? Jump right in and see the Wierd History of Bananas.

1. Bananas have caused a 36-year war called the Banana Wars and a 100-hour war.

Yes, you heard it, bananas cause wars. In 1898 President threw a temper tantrum because one of his ships got sunk, so he got mad at Spain. In like 6 months Spain lost and they ceded Guam, the Philipines, Puerto Rico, and Cuba. First The U.S. put a puppet government in Cuba, then gave it independence in 1902 because Cuba was having a revolution and the U.S wanted to pick on somebody easier to attack. So in 1912 occupied Nicaragua established a puppet government and kept it as a puppet. they did the same to part of Mexico (called Veracruz) in 1914. Then they occupied Hati in 1915. They eventually let go of Nicaragua in 1933, Hati in 1934, and Veracruz Seven months later in November. But American Fruit companies like the United Fruit Company and the Standard Fruit Company You see, the locals of Honduras were tired of having to harvest bananas for free, being beaten to death, having no rights, and being unable to basically do anything. So the fruit companies called in the U.S. military and that led to the locals staging a revolt. The locals lost. But wait, did you know the U.S. did the same thing to Hati, Nicaragua, and Hawaii. ALL FOR THE BANANAS!And that today the Standard Fruit Companies IS NOW CHIQUITA BANANAS?!! That’s right the NICE LADY ON THE Cover of the Bananas is a slave laborer and a victim of American Imperialism.

2. Bananas are classified as a berry

First of all, berries are fruits.  a berry scientifically is a fleshy fruit without a stone produced from a single flower containing one ovary. That makes a banana a fruit

3. Humans share 50% of their DNA with bananas.

I suppose a banana baby isn’t that far off

4. The Bananas you eat today aren’t REAL Bananas.

This is a wild Banana. It is barely edible, extremely bitter, harder than hard bread crust, and disgusting. However, after thousands of years of human selection, they taste really good.


5. Many banana species went extinct in the 1960s because of a disease called Panama disease

Remember this.

6. Bananas don’t grow on banana trees, but banana herbs

According to the Oxford Living Dictionary Bananas grow on herbaceous plants containing no wood, as a result, it isn’t a tree.

7. Bananas partially caused the 100-hour Soccer/Football war.

The Football war was supposedly caused by when Honduras got salty because El Salvador beat them in the world cup, but the real reason the war started was bananas. You see Standard Fruit Company/Dole Bananas, owned 10% of the land in Honduras. And in Honduras, 20% of the population were Salvadorean immigrants. These immigrants were willing to work so hard for so little that they were forcing the American Banana companies out. So the Banana companies basically said the following:” Hey Honduras, if you start torturing and evicting these Salvadorean immigrants out we promise to give you some money.” So they made it legal to do whatever you wanted to do to Salvadorean immigrants or anyone related to them. Eventually, war erupted and both sides ended up becoming third world countries. And the banana companies never gave the money and continued to use nearly slave labor to make money. All this happened in 1969.

8. Bananas get their name from Arabic

When Bananas were first cultivated they were as large as a finger. The word for finger in Arabic was banan, hence the name Banana.

9. The Bananas we eat today are called Cavendish Bananas

The variety of banana best known to us today is the Cavendish, named after Englishman William Spencer Cavendish, the 6th Duke of Devonshire. It is thought the original Cavendish plants were brought from southern China in about 1826 and taken to Mauritius. From there some plants were taken to England and, several years later these plants were obtained by the Duke’s gardener, Joseph Paxton, in 1829. A missionary named John Williams took these plants to Samoa in 1838 and, from there bananas spread to Tonga and Fiji in the 1840s.


Yes, I said it there is a reason. Remember that Panama disease, and those Cavendish bananas? Yeahlet’sts start. You see back in the day, like the 1940s. People ate a species of banana called the Gros Michel banana. But then Panama disease came, and made the Gros Michel banana go EXTINCT!!!So the last banana standing was the Cavendish banana which survived, but it tasted different. Around the time banana Laffy Taffy was being invented the Gros Michel Banana was still alive. So they based the taffy of that. But now it tastes weird because we eat different bananas.

In conclusion, I hope you learned a lot from this, I tried to make this article the least boring it could be. And now you know why those Laffy Taffies taste so wierd!