Nicaragua’s Abyss Deepens

A Nicaraguan flag waves on one of the barricades erected in Masaya. Carlos Herrera / Confidencial.

In Nicaragua it is shocking that precisely those who fought against Somoza are now the ones reviving the dictatorial dynamics.

Editorial from UCA (El Salvador)

HAVANA TIMES – The situation in Nicaragua is outrageous. And for that reason, it is necessary for those in Central America who love democracy, harmony, and social friendship not to lose sight of it. Murder, arbitrary detentions, rigged trials, taking bread from the mouths of the poor… everything is allowed to remain in power. The Ortega-Murillo duo has become an authoritarian regime that repeats the abuses against people’s dignity committed by dictators of the past.

They speak of socialism while they enrich their relatives from the state and deny basic rights to many citizens. They define Nicaragua as a Christian country while persecuting those who defend the rights of the people from their faith. They speak of great projects, including a transoceanic canal, while they strip peasants of their lands. The most important legacies of the Sandinista government are now reversed by those who used to claim to be revolutionaries and from a position of power learned to defend their benefits using manipulation and force.

The latest step taken by the Nicaraguan regime has been the annulment of the legal status of the Missionaries of Charity Sisters, dedicated exclusively to aid and assisting the poorest and most marginalized population. They run soup kitchens and homes for the elderly, AIDS patients, street children, ex-prostitutes, etc. Taking away their legal status and immediate expulsion from the country can only be explained by the official hatred towards those from civil society that work in favor of the most needed.

The Nicaraguan Government does not care about hunger, family neglect, lack of medicines and other basic services. The control of communications seeks to ensure that the only voice is that of the governmental duo. The conquest of total power is the path taken by the Ortega-Murillo regime. Not even the religious right to give bread to the hungry is allowed in this “Socialist, Christian and in Solidarity Nicaragua,” as it is hypocritically called by the ruling party. Superstition and dictatorship have joined hands to plunge the neighboring country into backwardness and lack of solidarity.

When reading the debate on the abolition of slavery in the National Constituent Assembly after the independence of Central America (in the early 19th century), it is clear that democratic and egalitarian ideals were behind the independence process. But individual, parochial, and authoritarian interests did not take long to prevail. The avarice of the economic elite, the corruption of the leadership and militarism quickly transformed the countries of the Isthmus into part of the most backward group of nations in the Americas.

Today, new violent and corrupt authoritarianisms, allied to a militarism that has never been properly deactivated, prevents progress towards sustainable human development. In Nicaragua, it is shocking that precisely those who fought against Somoza are now the ones reviving dictatorial dynamics, with even greater dogmatism and cruelty. Let us hope that the democratic forces that are still alive in Central America be sufficiently supportive and effective to stop the abuse in Nicaragua and revive the ideals of a fraternal, democratic, and just federation.

Read more from Nicaragua here on Havana Times