NICARAGUA: A History of US Intervention & Resistance

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This book explores the pernicious nature of US engagement with Nicaragua from the mid-19th  century to the present in pursuit of control and domination rather than in defense of democracy as it has incessantly claimed. In turn, Nicaraguans have valiantly defended their homeland, preventing the US from ever maintaining its control for long.

Led by Daniel Ortega, the Sandinistas established democracy in Nicaragua with the country’s first free and fair elections in 1984. Once again, the US attempted to subvert democracy by organizing Somoza’s former National Guardsmen into a terrorist group known as the Contras.  Directed and funded by the CIA, the Contras would terrorize Nicaragua for nearly 10 years.

In 1990, the Sandinistas stood for early election and the war-weary voters selected Violeta Chamorro. The Sandinistas relinquished office peacefully stepped, ceding the government to Chamorro. For 17 long years, from 1990 to 2007, neo-liberal governments, beginning with Violetta Chamorro, governed Nicaragua.  Backed by the US, these governments neglected the people, leaving almost half of the country un-electrified, without decent education or health care, and in poverty. When Daniel Ortega and the Sandinistas returned to power in 2007 through elections, they immediately established free health care and education,  built infrastructure throughout the country, and began to eradicate poverty. Now, almost 100% of the country is electrified; poverty and extreme poverty have been greatly diminished; and the UN has ranked Nicaragua 5th in the world for gender equality three years in a row.

“Professor Kovalik sweeps away fake news and fake history disseminated by the mainstream media concerning Nicaragua, documenting a gruesome history of US interventionism and crimes in Nicaragua. Highlighting the achievements of the Sandinistas in the field of human rights and social justice, he refutes US caricatures and denounces CIA attempts to destabilize Nicaragua to facilitate undemocratic ‘regime change’.” ALFRED DE ZAYAS, UN Independent Expert for the promotion of an international democratic and equitable order

“Kovalik’s book, written from the perspective of someone who has been visiting the country for decades and immersing himself in the Nicaraguan reality of daily life, is a refreshing reminder that it is still possible to write truthfully about history.” MAX BLUMENTHAL, The Grayzone

“Kovalik demolishes the dominant Western narrative. He shares the hard-won gains of today’s Nicaragua, explains Daniel Ortega’s enduring popularity and powerfully defends why the Sandinistas are deserving of our continued solidarity. This book is must-read to understand Nicaragua in the 21st century and fills a stark gap in contemporary Latin American Studies. May it lead to further study in situ and less arm-chair pontificating by politicians and intellectuals.” SOFIA M. CLARK, Professor of Political Science, UNAN-Managua.

“Daniel Kovalik, international human rights attorney, who has been visiting Nicaragua since 1987, has provided a clearly written and well-documented (453 Endnotes) factual account of an honest history of Nicaragua from the 1850s to the present in less than 180 pages. By reading this account, the reader will be well versed to contradict the constant lies presented to the public by the incredibly controlled corporate and Silicon Valley news media.  Hats off to Mr. Kovalik, for setting the record straight.”   S. BRIAN WILLSON, lawyer,  author of Don’t Thank Me For My Service, resident of Nicaragua

“Kovalik’s book, written from the perspective of someone who has been visiting the country for decades and immersing himself in the Nicaraguan reality of daily life, is a refreshing reminder that it is still possible to write truthfully about history.” PATRICIO ZAMARANO, Director of the Council on Hemispheric Affairs, COHA.org

       

 

Description

This book explores the pernicious nature of US engagement with Nicaragua from the mid-19th century to the present in pursuit of control and domination rather than in defense of democracy as it has incessantly claimed. In turn, Nicaraguans have valiantly defended their homeland, preventing the US from ever maintaining its control for long.

While there were intermittent US forays into Nicaragua in the 1850s, sustained intervention in Nicaragua only began in 1911 when the US invaded Nicaragua to put a halt to a canal project connecting its Atlantic and Pacific coasts to be partnered with Japan – a project the US wanted to control for itself.

The US Marines subsequently invaded Nicaragua a number of times between 1911 and 1934 to try to maintain control over it, only to be repelled by peasant guerillas led by Augusto Cesar Sandino. The Marines left for good only after the US had set up the dictatorship of Anastasio Somoza, who then lured Sandino to Managua on the promise of a peace deal and murdered him in cold blood.

Successive generations of Somozas would rule Nicaragua with an iron hand and critical US support until finally, in 1979, the latest iteration was ousted by the Sandinistas – a movement inspired by Sandino and motivated by a unique philosophy merging Christianity and Marxism.

Led by Daniel Ortega, the Sandinistas established democracy in Nicaragua with the country’s first free and fair elections in 1984. Once again, the US attempted to subvert democracy by organizing Somoza’s former National Guardsmen into a terrorist group known as the Contras.  Directed and funded by the CIA, the Contras would terrorize Nicaragua for nearly 10 years.

In 1990, the Sandinistas stood for early election and the war-weary voters selected Violeta Chamorro. The Sandinistas relinquished office peacefully stepped, ceding the government to Chamorro.

For 17 long years, from 1990 to 2007, neo-liberal governments, beginning with Violetta Chamorro, governed Nicaragua.  Backed by the US, these governments neglected the people, leaving almost half of the country un-electrified, without decent education or health care, and in poverty.

When Daniel Ortega and the Sandinistas returned to power in 2007 through elections, they immediately established free health care and education,  built infrastructure throughout the country, and began to eradicate poverty. Now, almost 100% of the country is electrified; poverty and extreme poverty have been greatly diminished; and the UN has ranked Nicaragua 5th in the world for gender equality three years in a row.

Paradoxically, the US government and media now castigate Ortega as somehow “a new Somoza,” a claim that is swallowed by some in the US left. This book debunks this claim by putting Nicaragua’s past into historical perspective and documenting the reality of today’s Nicaragua.

 

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Author

Daniel Kovalik

Reviews

3 reviews for NICARAGUA: A History of US Intervention & Resistance

  1. SOFIA M. CLARK

    “Kovalik demolishes the dominant Western narrative. He shares the hard-won gains of today’s Nicaragua, explains Daniel Ortega’s enduring popularity and powerfully defends why the Sandinistas are deserving of our continued solidarity. This book is must-read to understand Nicaragua in the 21st century and fills a stark gap in contemporary Latin American Studies. May it lead to further study in situ and less arm-chair pontificating by politicians and intellectuals.

    Dan Kovalik demonstrates the extremism to which US presidents, since Ulysses S. Grant to the present, have been willing to go to maintain US hegemony; and how Nicaragua has consistently produced—despite quislings past and present—poets, patriots and revolutionaries ready to staunchly defend their right to sovereignty and self-determination. The Nicaraguan people know how to separate the wheat from the chaff. They have resisted and continue to triumph.”

    SOFIA M. CLARK, Professor of Political Science, UNAN-Managua.

  2. S. BRIAN WILLSON

    “Virtually every news item in print or on TV about Nicaragua, from its past to the present, demonizes Nicaragua’s uplifting public programs, and describes it ad nauseum as a repressive dictatorship. Nicaragua is a perfect example of being the object of nearly universal, orchestrated fake news and false information. In fact, the reporting is so horrible, one can substitute the exact opposite of whatever is being said about its government and democratically elected President, Daniel Ortega, and Vice-President Rosario Murillo. Repressive? Just the opposite, very free and open. Dictatorship? Operates with free and fair elections observed, far more honest than those in the United States, for example.

    Now Daniel Kovalik, international human rights attorney, who has been visiting Nicaragua since 1987, has provided a clearly written and well-documented (453 Endnotes) factual account of an honest history of Nicaragua from the 1850s to the present in less than 180 pages. By reading this account, the reader will be well versed to contradict the constant lies presented to the public by the incredibly controlled corporate and Silicon Valley news media. Hats off to Mr. Kovalik, for setting the record straight. Readers can now celebrate possessing a handy guide rebutting all the news media bullshit.” S. BRIAN WILSON, lawyer,  author of Don’t Thank Me For My Service, resident of Nicaragua

  3. PATRICIO ZAMARANO

    Dan Kovalick’s book, Nicaragua: A History of U.S. Intervention & Resistance, sheds light on how the history of U.S. interventions has shaped the destiny of the Nicaraguan people, a destiny of unyielding commitment to freedom and independence. Kovalick’s analysis shows how the current dirty war against President Daniel Ortega uses the same covert techniques and unethical practices deployed numerous times by the U.S. government during the last 150 years, from the bloodshed imposed by the Monroe Doctrine to the Contra scandal under Reagan.

    The recent imposition by the U.S. of economic sanctions and the funding of violent insurrection against the Sandinista government has done serious damage to programs aimed at decreasing poverty, maintaining food independence and providing social services for millions of Nicaraguans. In that sense, Kovalick provides an accurate portrayal of the abuses of a super power against one of the poorest nations in the Americas, still fighting until this day to defend the dignity and wellbeing of its people.

    Kovalik’s book, written from the perspective of someone who has been visiting the country for decades and immersing himself in the Nicaraguan reality of daily life, is a refreshing reminder that it is still possible to write truthfully about history.

    PATRICIO ZAMARANO, Director of the Council on Hemispheric Affairs, COHA.org

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