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JimD
04-23-2018, 11:54 AM
https://www.mintpressnews.com/is-nicaragua-next-in-line-for-nato-style-regime-change/240901/


E
vents in Nicaragua over the past week are clearly modeled on the kind of U.S.-led, NATO-driven regime change that succeeded in Libya, Ivory Coast and Ukraine, but has so far failed in Thailand, Syria and Venezuela. At a national level, the protests have been led by the private sector business classes defending their rate of profit against socialist policies in defense of low-income workers and people on pensions.

David G
04-23-2018, 12:03 PM
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confessions_of_an_Economic_Hit_Man

Flying Orca
04-23-2018, 12:06 PM
https://www.mintpressnews.com/is-nicaragua-next-in-line-for-nato-style-regime-change/240901/

I'm not sure the coffee crop provides adequate incentive.

JimD
04-23-2018, 12:19 PM
Somewhat like Cuba, Nicaragua's popular resistance to Washington is embedding in the culture and they continue to pay the price for that degree of independence.

Puttputt
04-23-2018, 12:28 PM
Ortega just backed off the pension reform plan. Sometimes, protest does work.

JimD
04-23-2018, 12:42 PM
Ortega just backed off the pension reform plan. Sometimes, protest does work.Great. Now the poorest people in one of the poorest countries on the planet can be even poorer.

Keith Wilson
04-23-2018, 01:17 PM
I would definitely be skeptical about that article, although he does have a decent command of the facts. Nicaragua, for some reason, attracts hyperbole among journalists, foreign and domestic, left, right and center, to a surprising degree. Sandinista supporters have an unfortunate, if understandable, tendency toward paranoia , the last paragraph being an example.


The pattern so far is similar to events in Libya, Ivory Coast, Syria, Ukraine, Thailand and Venezuela. In these countries, extreme right-wing political minorities conspired with foreign elites – mainly in the United States and Europe – to overthrow the national status quo and take power. In Nicaragua, the small, minority right-wing political opposition have openly sought financial and political support in the United States and Europe explicitly to undermine and destabilize Nicaragua’s Sandinista government. The obvious model they are working from is Venezuela. The next couple of weeks will tell if Nicaragua is going to suffer yet another U.S. intervention with all that implies for the country’s people and the region. Oh really? The Trump administration couldn't find its ass with both hands, a map, and a GPS, most of them have never even heard of Nicaragua, and they're completely preoccupied with other things. Some things are not a US plot.

webishop14
04-23-2018, 02:06 PM
Interesting: the conservatives, when in power, robbed the INSS; now that they are out of power, they want to eviscerate the social security system. Sounds like the GOP here and their machinations regarding the national debt and what they'd like to call "entitlements."

Jim Bow
04-23-2018, 02:22 PM
If you get a chance, watch Conan Obrien's trip to Haiti. He made it in response to Trump's "$^ithole" comment. When he set up for some on the street interviews, he was confronted with some very angry people who did not trust any American media or, frankly, any American.
Here's a sample of what the show turned out to be

https://youtu.be/hn4mxYDmWgo

Osborne Russell
04-23-2018, 02:49 PM
Oh really? The Trump administration couldn't find its ass with both hands, a map, and a GPS, most of them have never even heard of Nicaragua, and they're completely preoccupied with other things. Some things are not a US plot.

Right wingers and kleptocrats form a network which carries on without the President, or despite him if need be. Actually, the less official Washington knowledge, let alone involvement, the better. Think of Oliver North and Reagan.

Indeed, it's likely not a US plot in the sense that it furthers the interest of the American nation. That would require a level of competence not present. Still, the major player by a wide margin is the USA, as in, the conglomeration of American interests involved in Nicaragua, or anywhere, which have a refuge and a base of support in the American government.

Won't do to say, it's not the US, it's the United Fruit Company.

Keith Wilson
04-23-2018, 03:01 PM
And I repeat - some things are not a US plot, and plots involving United Fruit Company are 50 years out of date. Both the left and right have a tendency to give the US credit or blame for many more more things in Latin America than we have any significant influence over. Ever Latin American country is full of people with ideas and plans and sometimes the ability to carry them out, and the vast majority of the are not US puppets.

Foreign influence certainly exists, but I'd bet this is 90% a dispute between Nicaraguans.

David G
04-23-2018, 03:07 PM
Right wingers and kleptocrats form a network which carries on without the President, or despite him if need be. Actually, the less official Washington knowledge, let alone involvement, the better. Think of Oliver North and Reagan.

Indeed, it's likely not a US plot in the sense that it furthers the interest of the American nation. That would require a level of competence not present. Still, the major player by a wide margin is the USA, as in, the conglomeration of American interests involved in Nicaragua, or anywhere, which have a refuge and a base of support in the American government.

Won't do to say, it's not the US, it's the United Fruit Company.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confessions_of_an_Economic_Hit_Man

Just so, O.R.

peb
04-23-2018, 03:36 PM
I would definitely be skeptical about that article, although he does have a decent command of the facts. Nicaragua, for some reason, attracts hyperbole among journalists, foreign and domestic, left, right and center, to a surprising degree. Sandinista supporters have an unfortunate, if understandable, tendency toward paranoia , the last paragraph being an example.

Oh really? The Trump administration couldn't find its ass with both hands, a map, and a GPS, most of them have never even heard of Nicaragua, and they're completely preoccupied with other things. Some things are not a US plot.You are correct Keith, the article's premise is absurd and it plays very loose with the facts to somewhat support the premise.

Here is a NY Times article that is likely more accurate:

https://www.google.com/amp/s/mobile.nytimes.com/2018/04/22/world/americas/nicaragua-ortega-protests.amp.html

Will post more info tomorrow

Osborne Russell
04-23-2018, 03:55 PM
In the book, Perkins repeatedly denies the existence of a "conspiracy".

I was initially recruited while I was in business school back in the late sixties by the National Security Agency, the nation’s largest and least understood spy organization; but ultimately I worked for private corporations. The first real economic hit man was back in the early 1950s, Kermit Roosevelt, Jr., the grandson of Teddy, who overthrew the government of Iran, a democratically elected government, Mossadegh’s government who was Time‘s magazine person of the year; and he was so successful at doing this without any bloodshed—well, there was a little bloodshed, but no military intervention, just spending millions of dollars and replaced Mossadegh with the Shah of Iran. At that point, we understood that this idea of economic hit man was an extremely good one. We didn’t have to worry about the threat of war with Russia when we did it this way. The problem with that was that Roosevelt was a C.I.A. agent. He was a government employee. Had he been caught, we would have been in a lot of trouble. It would have been very embarrassing. So, at that point, the decision was made to use organizations like the C.I.A. and the N.S.A. to recruit potential economic hit men like me and then send us to work for private consulting companies, engineering firms, construction companies, so that if we were caught, there would be no connection with the government.


— November 4, 2004 interview

"Conspiracy" is inaccurate only in the sense that this isn't a one-off assault on the establishment. It is the establishment.


Economic hit men (EHMs) are highly paid professionals who cheat countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars. They funnel money from the World Bank, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and other foreign "aid" organizations into the coffers of huge corporations and the pockets of a few wealthy families who control the planet's natural resources. Their tools included fraudulent financial reports, rigged elections, payoffs, extortion, sex, and murder. They play a game as old as empire, but one that has taken on new and terrifying dimensions during this time of globalization.

Yep. But that was then, before organized narcotics. You, the official leader of the forces of democracy, come to an understanding with Mr. Big. Order is achieved, profits flow. A great deal of the work, and hence of the exposure, is privatized, as it were. School Of The Americas, ha. You might as well talk about Mount Vernon.

peb
04-23-2018, 04:34 PM
Interesting: the conservatives, when in power, robbed the INSS; now that they are out of power, they want to eviscerate the social security system. Sounds like the GOP here and their machinations regarding the national debt and what they'd like to call "entitlements."You do realize it was Ortega's government that planned to cut social security benefits and raise the taxes?

JimD
04-23-2018, 05:36 PM
I would definitely be skeptical about that article, although he does have a decent command of the facts. Nicaragua, for some reason, attracts hyperbole among journalists, foreign and domestic, left, right and center, to a surprising degree. Sandinista supporters have an unfortunate, if understandable, tendency toward paranoia , the last paragraph being an example.

.I agree. I posted that article because it was the first one I came across. Another thing Cuba and Nicaragua seem to have in common is the reporting. Agendas on both ends of the ideological spectrum tend to forgo objectivity in favour of whatever axe they may be respectively grinding.

Osborne Russell
04-23-2018, 10:59 PM
You do realize it was Ortega's government that planned to cut social security benefits and raise the taxes?

You don't suppose they did it under pressure? In Central America? Really?

Osborne Russell
04-23-2018, 11:11 PM
Interesting: the conservatives, when in power, robbed the INSS; now that they are out of power, they want to eviscerate the social security system. Sounds like the GOP here and their machinations regarding the national debt and what they'd like to call "entitlements."

1. Establishment wouldn't cut loose with the dough. Government's options: nationalize industries or raise taxes.


The government announced the proposed reforms following the suspension of talks by Nicaragua’s private sector business organization, Cosep.

2. Establishment turns to right wing goon squads and disinformation.


While the private business sector organization Cosep has called for peaceful demonstrations, extremists from the right-wing Citizens for Liberty and Sandinista Renewal Movement political organizations have led the violent protests. They have made effective use of social networks, spreading false information and inflammatory accusations so as to confuse and mislead people – especially young people – who know little or nothing about the Social Security reforms, which have turned into a mere pretext for violent protests aimed at destabilizing a government which enjoys overwhelming electoral support.

Keith Wilson
04-23-2018, 11:13 PM
I'd be very skeptical about that particular website's interpretation of events.

What is the 'establishment' in Nicaragua? The descendants of the Sandinista Revolutionaries? The business community? The old family-based oligarchy? The semi-fascist heirs of Enrique Bermudez and the Contras?

Keith Wilson
04-24-2018, 07:29 AM
Once again: Reporting on Latin America, whatever its political viewpoint, characteristically gives far too much weight to foreign influences, and proportionately ignores things local folks might want or do. Except in exceptional circumstances, the vast majority of what happens in Nicaragua is done by Nicaraguans for their own reasons. Not to say that that foreign influence doesn't exist; it certainly does, (the US occupied Nicaragua in 1912 for a while, and again from 1927-33) but particularly at present, it's not nearly as great as portrayed. I'm not sure why this is, but if I were Latin American, I'd find it highly offensive.

David G
04-24-2018, 09:01 AM
Once again: Reporting on Latin America, whatever its political viewpoint, characteristically gives far too much weight to foreign influences, and proportionately ignores things local folks might want or do. Except in exceptional circumstances, the vast majority of what happens in Nicaragua is done by Nicaraguans for their own reasons. Not to say that that foreign influence doesn't exist; it certainly does, (the US occupied Nicaragua in 1912 for a while, and again from 1927-33) but particularly at present, it's not nearly as great as portrayed. I'm not sure why this is, but if I were Latin American, I'd find it highly offensive.

Keith - have you read John Perkin's book? Rust... and greed... never sleep, and they are less obvious and heavy-handed than when the term 'banana republic' was coined.

peb
04-24-2018, 09:51 AM
You don't suppose they did it under pressure? In Central America? Really?
My gosh, you guys are both misinformed and simply imagining thinks. No, he did not. Since Ortega took power in Nicaragua in 2007, he has followed a "Chinese" approach. Taking a completely different tack that his previous government, he formed a coalition with business interests. It was a "I will consolidate power, get rich, and you will support me because I will let you get rich" approach. As report on NPR was saying just this morning, the business interests were willing to look the other way while he destroyed the democracy a piece at a time because of this. He has managed to eliminate all political opposition in the national assembly, the courts, the military, and the press. Certainly the economy has grown (although to be fair it was on a good trajectory for several years prior top him taking power). A large part of the economic success has been joining forces with Cuba to systematically raid Venezuela of its wealth. Admittedly, Nicaragua has taken probably less than 10-20% compared to Cuba (by my back of the napkin calculations), but still very substantial. At the peak, 32% of Nicaragua's government revenue came directly from Venezuela, an estimated $730 million dollars in 2012. So Ortega was able to increase social programs, keep the economy rolling and not do too much to taxes. But guess what, Venezuela can no longer afford to help. So Ortega is scrambling, has been for a couple of years. This is the pressure he fills.

All the while, the US has been quite friendly, Nicaragua has been pro-foreign investment, and has turned a blind eye towards the democratic deterioration in the country. Ortega has been pro-Gaddafi in Lybia, pro-Assad in Syria, and backed other foreign tyrants. He has also been a major supporter of the FARC terrorists/drug cartel in Columbia. He has followed the Cuban model of making sure military and security leaders are not only powerful, but rich. His family owns 3 out of the 9 broadcasting networks, his family controls the fourth. 4 others are controlled by Mexican Remigio Ángel González, and are parrots of government policy.

As this thread illustrates, he gets a pass from the left, especially in the US, for all of this (even his anti-abortion laws) simply because 30 years ago used to be aligned with the Soviet Union and was opposed by the US government.

He is well positioned to maintain power through greater draconian measures. He may lose his alliance with business leaders, but he has successfully built a power infrastructure that will likely last quite a while.

David G
04-24-2018, 10:07 AM
My gosh, you guys are both misinformed and simply imagining thinks. No, he did not. Since Ortega took power in Nicaragua in 2007, he has followed a "Chinese" approach. Taking a completely different tack that his previous government, he formed a coalition with business interests. It was a "I will consolidate power, get rich, and you will support me because I will let you get rich" approach. As report on NPR was saying just this morning, the business interests were willing to look the other way while he destroyed the democracy a piece at a time because of this. He has managed to eliminate all political opposition in the national assembly, the courts, the military, and the press. Certainly the economy has grown (although to be fair it was on a good trajectory for several years prior top him taking power). A large part of the economic success has been joining forces with Cuba to systematically raid Venezuela of its wealth. Admittedly, Nicaragua has taken probably less than 10-20% compared to Cuba (by my back of the napkin calculations), but still very substantial. At the peak, 32% of Nicaragua's government revenue came directly from Venezuela, an estimated $730 million dollars in 2012. So Ortega was able to increase social programs, keep the economy rolling and not do too much to taxes. But guess what, Venezuela can no longer afford to help. So Ortega is scrambling, has been for a couple of years. This is the pressure he fills.

All the while, the US has been quite friendly, Nicaragua has been pro-foreign investment, and has turned a blind eye towards the democratic deterioration in the country. Ortega has been pro-Gaddafi in Lybia, pro-Assad in Syria, and backed other foreign tyrants. He has also been a major supporter of the FARC terrorists/drug cartel in Columbia. He has followed the Cuban model of making sure military and security leaders are not only powerful, but rich. His family owns 3 out of the 9 broadcasting networks, his family controls the fourth. 4 others are controlled by Mexican Remigio Ángel González, and are parrots of government policy.

As this thread illustrates, he gets a pass from the left, especially in the US, for all of this (even his anti-abortion laws) simply because 30 years ago used to be aligned with the Soviet Union and was opposed by the US government.

He is well positioned to maintain power through greater draconian measures. He may lose his alliance with business leaders, but he has successfully built a power infrastructure that will likely last quite a while.

Here's another who needs to read 'Confessions of an Economic Hitman'.

I'm a bit of a lefty, and you haven't seen me giving Ortega a pass. Instead, you've seen me pointing out the machinations behind the news, and the tribalism.

Keith Wilson
04-24-2018, 11:26 AM
Y'know David, I really think 'Confessions of an Economic Hitman' isn't all that relevant here, although it certainly is in some cases. Nicaragua's troubles are mainly self-inflicted; they got by on Venezuelan oil money for a while and now can't. Ortega used it to buy tranquility, and then the money ran out. Peb and I disagree about some things, but he usually gets Latin American stuff very nearly right. The point about family connections is very well taken; this has been the pattern in Nicaragua for a very long time. The same family names keep showing up over and over again in positions of power, although sometimes on opposite sides. Chamorros are always involved.

David G
04-24-2018, 11:47 AM
Y'know David, I really think 'Confessions of an Economic Hitman' isn't all that relevant here, although it certainly is in some cases. Nicaragua's troubles are mainly self-inflicted; they got by on Venezuelan oil money for a while and now can't. Ortega used it to buy tranquility, and then the money ran out. Peb and I disagree about some things, but he usually gets Latin American stuff very nearly right. The point about family connections is very well taken; this has been the pattern in Nicaragua for a very long time. The same family names keep showing up over and over again in positions of power, although sometimes on opposite sides. Chamorros are always involved.

Y'all probably have the details more in hand than I. I just keep hearing some all-too-familiar chords playing. My suspicion is that looking a bit deeper would reveal variations of the same patterns in play.

Osborne Russell
04-24-2018, 01:09 PM
I'd be very skeptical about that particular website's interpretation of events.

What is the 'establishment' in Nicaragua? The descendants of the Sandinista Revolutionaries? The business community? The old family-based oligarchy? The semi-fascist heirs of Enrique Bermudez and the Contras?

That's the old guard. They, along with the rest of the world, are quickly becoming the tools of the global klepto class. Dirty money is becoming woven into the fabric of the international economy. The role of national governments is be coming to the facilitation of this interweaving, and the protection of it.

A guy and his pals want to get in on it. They need some scratch. They squeeze it out of the Nicaraguan state, where they work, or buy guys that do. They offshore it where it can't be found, much less taxed. First step toward playing with the big boys.

There is an ocean of dirty money in the world. Drugs, bribes, contraband, and loot. Clean money that gets mixed in becomes dirty, so you have to launder it all.

Meanwhile, on the streets of Nicaragua, there's no money for the government to spend on things because as much of it as possible has been stolen.

Money comes to Nicaragua to be cleaned. Let's say, from trading sanctioned items in and out of Libya, Iraq, Iran, North Korea. Food and medicine in, oil out. Arms, in the case of North Korea. Black market profits on huge amounts, and the associated bribes. Not bloody likely any of that gets put on the tax return.

In Nicaragua, build something, buy something, doesn't matter. A hotel. A partnership with a global resource extraction and refining conglomerate headquartered in Bermuda in the form of a desk in an empty room with a telephone on it. The phone is answered in a Bermudan law firm.

Whatever deal you cook up, pay as much for it as you can. Then, your new interests conform to those of the local establishment. Indeed the old establishment is very keen to join the new one. It's where the real money is, you snooze, you lose. Property is safe, order is maintained and everything's cool if you don't get too greedy.

If any of this is not to your liking you can complain to US Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross, if he's not too busy lining up contracts to bring Russian gas and oil to the west and provide certain services needed by certain Russians burdened by US sanctions.

Osborne Russell
04-24-2018, 01:14 PM
My gosh, you guys are both misinformed and simply imagining thinks. No, he did not.

You say that and then convincingly demonstrate that he did.


As this thread illustrates, he gets a pass from the left, especially in the US, for all of this (even his anti-abortion laws) simply because 30 years ago used to be aligned with the Soviet Union and was opposed by the US government.

If you consider this to be the material question, apart from the fact that you have no evidence for it, and merely imagine it, it's you who's stuck thirty years back.

peb
04-24-2018, 02:56 PM
You say that and then convincingly demonstrate that he did.

The only pressure he is under is self-made. He as aided and abetted in bleeding Venezuela dry, and now he has to decide what to do. The pressure you were talking about was from "the conglomeration of American interests involved in Nicaragua". That had nothing to do with his decision to reduce social security benefits.




If you consider this to be the material question, apart from the fact that you have no evidence for it, and merely imagine it, it's you who's stuck thirty years back.
I have no evidence for people on this thread giving Ortega a pass? Ok, lets examine the evidence:


Somewhat like Cuba, Nicaragua's popular resistance to Washington is embedding in the culture and they continue to pay the price for that degree of independence.

So, its not Ortega that is the problem, its paying a price for popular resistence to the Washington: that's a pass from the left.


Interesting: the conservatives, when in power, robbed the INSS; now that they are out of power, they want to eviscerate the social security system
Oh, its not Ortega, its the conservatives who are out of power. That's a pass for Ortega.


Still, the major player by a wide margin is the USA, as in, the conglomeration of American interests involved in Nicaragua, or anywhere, which have a refuge and a base of support in the American government
Ok, another pass to Ortega, lets blame the conglomeration of American interests.


You don't suppose they did it under pressure?
Oh, Ortega only cut social security because he was pressured to do it. Pass from the left.



Meanwhile, on the streets of Nicaragua, there's no money for the government to spend on things because as much of it as possible has been stolen.
Ok, poor Ortega, he has no money because it has been stolen. No mention of the fact that the money he had previously had he effectively stole from Venezuela. That's a pass.

So there is plenty of evidence for giving Ortega a pass on this thread from the left. So perhaps you mean that I have no evidence of the motive I specified. And there I admit to jumping a couple of steps forward in my reasoning, but I feel it is quite justified. First of all, as the posts on this thread show, the default position is defending Ortega. There is NO, absolutely NO mention of the many bad things the man has done (besides my own posts). So I can only assume one of two possibilities: complete ignorance about the situation in Nicaragua or you guys don't care about those things. Either way, it means you defend him for a reason. That reason has to be: he stood up to the big bad Americans back in the 80s and aligned himself with the Soviets.

I will note one more thought. Trump has spoken out against the free press, has spoken out against an independent judiciary, has spoken as if he wants the presidency to be all powerful. He is rightly condemned for these statements. Ortega has not just spoken about all of these things: he has implemented them. Yet Trump is a new fascism. Ortega? gets a pass.

Osborne Russell
04-24-2018, 03:51 PM
The only pressure he is under is self-made. He as aided and abetted in bleeding Venezuela dry, and now he has to decide what to do. The pressure you were talking about was from "the conglomeration of American interests involved in Nicaragua". That had nothing to do with his decision to reduce social security benefits.


He has to show that he can impose fiscal disclipline.


Ok, poor Ortega, he has no money because it has been stolen. No mention of the fact that the money he had previously had he effectively stole from Venezuela. That's a pass.

I don't know how he would have stolen it from Venezuela but I'd say there's a high probability it was him and/or his pals that stole it from Nicaragua.

He gets no pass from me. Thirty years is a long time to be tempted. That was then, this is now, type deal.

peb
04-24-2018, 06:15 PM
He rode the coatails of Castro, who was gradually, but systematically turning Venezuela into a puppet state, and using Chavez/Maduro government's to send the billing of dollars worth of free oil. That's how he did it.

Direct "aid" from Venezuela to Nicaragua was 730 milling dollars in 2012 alone.

Keith Wilson
04-24-2018, 07:26 PM
Guys, this is really not very complicated. Nicaragua for a while got a lot of oil money from Venezuela, because the Chavez/Maduro government was interested in helping like-minded countries in Latin America, and they had money. Now the Nicas aren't getting as much money, and that causes a lot of problems. No need to bring in the baleful influence of el coloso del norte or economic hit men. Their allowance got cut off because of Venezuela's internal problems.


. . . Castro, who was gradually, but systematically turning Venezuela into a puppet state . . .This I will take exception to once again. One country can turn another into a puppet state when there's a huge difference in power, either military or economic. The US turned Nicaragua into a puppet state in the 1920s by sending in the marines. Consider the Soviet Union and eastern Europe after WWII, Japan and Manchukuo in the '30s, or Korea after 1910. Consider the US and several small countries in Latin America in the heyday of United Fruit. Those were puppet states. The relationship of Cuba to Venezuela is nothing of the kind. What power does Cuba have over Venezuela? Passionate communist rhetoric? Really good cigars? Now, they no doubt have some influence, but nothing even approaching the kind of power needed to create a 'puppet state'. If anything, it could have gone the other way as long as the oil money held out.

peb
04-24-2018, 07:54 PM
Wrote that just for you Keith, I knew it would get an argument out if you. But, no need to rehash it now, or rather, I don't have time. Have a good evening my friend.

Keith Wilson
04-24-2018, 08:06 PM
Indeed; you too. The snow's almost melted!!

Gerarddm
04-24-2018, 08:13 PM
When Ortega and his wife showed up for the annual UN General Assembly meeting during his first term and she was sporting mega-expensive sunglasses and shopping Fifth Avenue with an American Express card, I knew he was full of it. ' Revolutionary ', hah.

Osborne Russell
04-24-2018, 08:35 PM
Dirty money rushes in. Some of it under some degree of American control, as in controlled by Americans, not as in a deliberate policy of the US. Not the official US that is, but the deep kleptocrat state e.g. Wilbur Ross. They are at the levers, who cares about ideology? Meanwhile, in Nicaragua, it's in the interest of the local mafia to have good relations with the KSA (Kleptocratic State Of America). Meaning, take care of the labor troubles.

Osborne Russell
04-24-2018, 08:36 PM
When Ortega and his wife showed up for the annual UN General Assembly meeting during his first term and she was sporting mega-expensive sunglasses and shopping Fifth Avenue with an American Express card, I knew he was full of it. ' Revolutionary ', hah.

Meet the new boss!

JimD
04-24-2018, 09:23 PM
And Michelle Obama once wore a $12,000 dress. Negates her husband and everything he supposedly stood for? Now as for Rosario Murillo, she's quite the snappy dresser


https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/jcIFCgrvBlRcZrn8zt_yvw--/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjtzbT0xO3c9ODAwO2g9NjAwO2lsPX BsYW5l/http://media.zenfs.com/en_us/News/afp.com/Part-MVD-Mvd6523397-1-1-0.jpg

David G
04-24-2018, 09:32 PM
Guys, this is really not very complicated. Nicaragua for a while got a lot of oil money from Venezuela, because the Chavez/Maduro government was interested in helping like-minded countries in Latin America, and they had money. Now the Nicas aren't getting as much money, and that causes a lot of problems. No need to bring in the baleful influence of el coloso del norte or economic hit men. Their allowance got cut off because of Venezuela's internal problems.

This I will take exception to once again. One country can turn another into a puppet state when there's a huge difference in power, either military or economic. The US turned Nicaragua into a puppet state in the 1920s by sending in the marines. Consider the Soviet Union and eastern Europe after WWII, Japan and Manchukuo in the '30s, or Korea after 1910. Consider the US and several small countries in Latin America in the heyday of United Fruit. Those were puppet states. The relationship of Cuba to Venezuela is nothing of the kind. What power does Cuba have over Venezuela? Passionate communist rhetoric? Really good cigars? Now, they no doubt have some influence, but nothing even approaching the kind of power needed to create a 'puppet state'. If anything, it could have gone the other way as long as the oil money held out.

Perhaps you are right. However - the players... the 'hitmen' types... have all gotten more sophisticated, and less obvious. And they seem to be playing a longer game where needed. So I'll shut up about that aspect of the puzzle for now. But let me suggest to peb that he read the book, if he hasn't. And to Keith that he wait a year or two and re-read it with Nicaragua in mind.

JimD
04-24-2018, 09:51 PM
I haven't followed events in Nicaragua closely for many years but I was very interested during the 80s, the years of the contra war and the Reagan presidency and traveled there twice. On the ground one begins to realize just how poor and weak a country like that is and how easily it can be destabilized and it's government corrupted by a country with the money and power of the USA. In 1979 the total population was not much over 3 million and it's only twice that now. Roughly 6 million men, women, and children in one of the poorest nations in the hemisphere. Reagan was obsessed with preventing a successful social democracy from taking root and I don't think it's too much of a stretch to argue that the extent to which Nicaragua has failed in that regard is as much a result of America's response from the 1980s and onward to the present as it is due to Ortega and his Sandinista Party.

Osborne Russell
04-26-2018, 01:43 PM
The poor turn to the Communists as their only champion. The one time the Church stepped up, the Church got slaughtered. I speak of Archbishop Romero of El Salvador and the dozens of priests and nuns, not the thousands of ordinary Catholics, who may or may not have been targeted on account of their religion; it scarcely matters, they were targeted anyway.

America sees the turn to the Communists and trains the death squads.

Gerarddm
04-26-2018, 03:32 PM
And Michelle Obama once wore a $12,000 dress. Negates her husband and everything he supposedly stood for? Now as for Rosario Murillo, she's quite the snappy dresser

Please. First off, did she shop it herself? Did it really cost $12K? Smells like baloney to me, she was famous for wearing stuff from J. Crew.

At any rate. Obama didn't putatively brand himself as a revolutionary one step removed from being a peon. Ortega is a hypocrite, and a failure.