The Triumph of a Sovereign Future

The Triumph of a Sovereign Future
Fecha de publicación: 
18 April 2023
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When reflecting on the significance of the defeat of the coup attempt in Nicaragua in 2018, it is easy to forget the regional context at that fateful moment and focus only on the terrible events in the national context. But it is also important to remember always that the ruling elites in the United States and their local allies in the region were at that time and are still constantly striving to sabotage and if possible reverse the emancipation processes of the peoples of the region that had gained strength since 2006. In 2018, corrupt right-wing governments allied with the United States dominated most of Latin America and collaborated closely, especially to help the government of President Donald Trump intensify its criminal hybrid war against Venezuela and the blockade against Cuba.

Only Bolivia, Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela kept alive in that period the vision of a sovereign regional integration promoting the interests of their countries’ majorities. The right-wing Sebastian Piñera had won the presidency in Chile. In Argentina, Mauricio Macri and his cronies were deepening the country’s economic crisis, seeking a corrupt arrangement with the International Monetary Fund to favor the financial interests of the national oligarchy. Despite their extremely low levels of popular support, Michel Temer in Brazil and Lenin Moreno in Ecuador oversaw the implementation of neoliberal policies against their peoples while their allies in the judiciary abused the criminal justice system to attack their progressive political rivals.

In Colombia, Ivan Duque acted to systematically prevent the implementation of the Peace Agreements while dozens of community leaders and former FARC combatants who had welcomed the peace were killed every month. In Peru, due to their own bitter internal political disputes, the national oligarchy exploited the judicial and legislative system to keep the country in a permanent crisis of governance. In Paraguay, the corrupt government of Horacio Cartes was coming to the end of its term. In Uruguay, the Frente Amplio government of Tabaré Vasquez was also coming to the end of its period severely damaged by lack of popular support and the forced resignation of its Vice President Raul Sendic.

All this throws into relief the events of 2018 in Nicaragua and reveals their dual aspect. In one sense, it was another attack by the empire seeking to maintain the Monroe Doctrine and its usual regional dominance and control. At the domestic level, it was one more episode in the endless class war waged by the national oligarchy insisting on wanting to maintain their privileged dominant status in relation to the dispossessed majority. In a broader sense, the 2018 coup attempt in Nicaragua represents another moment of the Western elites’ ruthless assault on the idea of the nation state, which is the main defense of the world’s peoples against the depredations of giant multinational corporations, which are the essence of globalization.

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Image: Augusto César Sandino (Licensed under the Public Domain)

Augusto César Sandino.jpg

So the failed coup attempt of 2018 in Nicaragua can be seen from different perspectives. In part, it was a popular battle against a political, social, economic and cultural retreat into the past. At the local level, a reactionary minority made an alliance with foreign powers because they lacked the political strength and popular support to win elections. Externally, the United States insisted on its imperative of regional control to intervene and force a change of government favoring its interests. What happened in 2018 repeated historical patterns in Nicaragua that have persisted from the time of William Walker, from the Knox Memo and the Chamorro-Bryan Treaty to the Espino Negro Pact, the assassination of General Sandino and the Contra war against the Sandinista Popular Revolution of the 1980s.

If 2018 was a battle against returning to the sinister past of submission to empire and to the political and economic repression of US puppet governments, it was also a battle to defend the prosperity and advances in force at that time, the result of good government by Daniel Ortega, Rosario Murillo and their sandinista ministerial team. More profoundly, it was an absolutely fundamental defense of a future of true political and economic democracy, of security, prosperity and tranquility for the population, of development and peace. Above all, it was a defense of the future national sovereignty which has been not only the basis of all the recent economic, social, cultural and spiritual victories of Nicaragua’s people, but which is also an essential element of the new multipolar or pluricentric world now under construction.

In 2018, the Nicaraguan people faced choosing between passively submitting to the lies, violence, anarchy and arrogance of the coup plotters or acting decisively to defend the sovereignty that the coup leaders and their foreign owners wanted to take away from them. On the one hand, we could see the reactionary bishops, the failed traitorous politicians, the greedy opportunistic business leaders, the corrupt management class of the bought NGO sector and the criminal thugs abusing the population in the roadblocks. On the other hand, Nicaragua’s People could see their own reflection as protagonists of the revolutionary model of the government’s National Plan for Human Development and Poverty Reduction, a plan for peace, development and justice based on the historical program of the Sandinista National Liberation Front.

Over the weeks and months from April to July 2018, mixed in with the coup attempt’s horrific abuses, odious crimes and widespread terrorism, popular feeling steadily grew rejecting the coup leaders self-evident cynicism, hypocrisy and lack of seriousness during the sessions of the national dialogue. In the end the clear choice lay between between defending the achievements of the People and their revolutionary process or submitting to a new repressive government of odious, mediocre leaders directed by their Yankee patrons. Over the last few days Comandante Daniel has summarized what happened in 2018 as follows:

“There was an attempted coup d’état here, and as usual, the historical imperialists, the Europeans, the European empires, vassals of the North American Empire, immediately joined in. But, thanks to the People’s decision, the coup was aborted and we have managed to resume the conditions that we had up until 2018, of stability, Peace, security, economic growth, progress in the fight against poverty and this has strengthened the People’s Consciousness and also strengthens the defense capacity of the Nicaraguan people.”

It is no accident that Comandante Daniel made that comment during a meeting with a delegation from the Cooperation Agency of the People’s Republic of China. The defeat of the coup attempt in Nicaragua was a key event in a regional and global context characterized by the desperate efforts of the United States and its allies to destroy any initiative that structurally favors the region’s dispossessed majorities. The US suffered another defeat with the landslide electoral victory of the Bolivian people in 2020, reversing the coup d’etat in that country following the elections in 2019.

Similarly, the Venezuelan people have repeatedly defeated the tremendous, constant US economic aggression and sabotage, just as the Cuban people have done for over 60 years. All these victories are increasingly shaping a Latin America and Caribbean based on respect and equality between sovereign nations instead of privileging the interests of the region’s national oligarchies allied to North American and European elites. That is why the victory of the Nicaraguan people over the failed coup attempt in 2018 was such a great triumph for the region’s sovereign future, so essential to consolidate Nicaragua’s development in a new world of international relations genuinely based on international relations of justice and Peace.

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