[Marxism] new canal through Central America could have devastating consequences

Dennis Brasky dmozart1756 at gmail.com
Mon Nov 24 20:54:51 MST 2014

In response to an article I posted about a new canal through Central
America, Louis described it, and I agreed, as being another example of the
rightward turn of the FSLN. Below is another viewpoint, from a longtime
activist supporter of the Nicaraguan revolution who lived there for a few

Hi Dennis,
> I'm in Nicaragua now.  Nils, a thirty-year-old friend of ours is working
> with Via Campesino to create an agroecology institute at an old ag school
> built by the Sandinistas in the 1980s.  Nils is very political, got his
> master's in pedagogy in Santiago de Cuba, and is working on a doctorate
> about radical pedagogy by doing the very hard work of helping a group of
> landless coffee workers collectivize and set up a model farm for this new
> institute.  He's one of the brightest, humblest, most grounded leftists I
> have ever met, and his girlfriend who he met in Cuba is a brilliant 24 year
> old Sandinista.  Nils cuts the Sandinistas a lot of slack and I do to after
> hearing their analysis.  They allied with the national bourgeoisie against
> neoliberalism.  They formed truces and alliances with all kinds of forces
> in order to gain power and they have no intention of ever losing an
> election again.
> Much of what they have done is a betrayal of some of their principles.
> Land reform is largely dead for the foreseeable future.  Compromises with
> the Catholic Church leave women and gays without full rights.  But it is
> undeniable that since 2007 they have begun been bringing Nicaragua back
> from neoliberal ruin which caused desperation and, among campesinos, death
> by starvation.   They are once again building roads, schools, maternal
> health centers, water systems, etc.  They are extending credit for family
> enterprise because they know they don't have the capacity to make jobs for
> everyone.  They are having a concrete effect on people's lives such that it
> is impossible to say that they are not on the side of the poor, the workers
> and farmers.  As they build this political power, and as the economy grows,
> if the geopolitical situation doesn't prevent it, they will be able to take
> these steps further and further.
> There is a new proposed family code in the Nicaraguan parliament now.  It
> strengthens laws and procedures against domestic violence and femicide of
> all kinds and gives child support rights to some children who didn't have
> them before.  Yesterday there was a march of about a thousand people here
> in Matagalpa calling on the legislators to approve it without changes.  It
> was about 85% women of all ages and the rest were young men.  Most
> contingents were from groups the government sponsors.  Clearly the
> Sandinistas are using government workers to interfere with legislative
> processes, but it was also quite clear that the participants were quite in
> favor of what they were doing and felt it was important.  There were a few
> signs that said "No to Government Violence," which was the opposition's
> wedge argument (that the government's intrusion in family affairs is a form
> of violence).  So these people (and others whose signs said "No to Mining"
> or "Take Care of the Earth" were getting to express their opinion within a
> march that was overwhelmingly in favor of the bill.
> Helen

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