Where Is Nicaragua?

Where Is Nicaragua?
Simon & Schuster

When the leftist Sandinistas overthrew the Somoza dynasty in Nicaragua, hope spread throughout Latin America that democracy, universal education, economic prosperity, and social equality would lift one small country that would become a beacon for others. Even as the Cold War itself was winding down, this was perceived as a Communist threat in the western hemisphere by the Reagan Administration. The White House secretly and illegally funded a war fought by disgruntled Nicaraguans against the Sandinistas. Davis went to Nicaragua and brought back stories of the Sandinistas and their opponents. In visits to the combat zone, then with Nicaragua’s president Ortega and his chief critic, Cardinal Obando, it became clear that the country was in a kind of armed and violent debate about what it would become. Liberation did not mean freedom of speech to the Sandinistas, and while their opponents did not want to restore the Somoza dictatorship, they did want to restore obedience to the U.S. As the story ends, a heavy persistent rain washes out roads, and both armies are bogged down in the mud. They wait for the waters to recede, and then they fight again.

Read the front page review in The New York Times, Book of the Month Club alternate selection

 

Where Is Nicaragua?

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