Oscar Arias Sanchez by Vicki Cox PDF

By Vicki Cox

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The other was Costa Rica’s crushing national debt. It was not impossible for Arias to resolve these issues, but it was going to take a lot of effort. The most obvious problem was the war across Costa Rica’s border. To be fair, Costa Rica had been contending with Nicaragua since the Sandinistas rebelled in 1979. Clashes between the Sandinistas and Somoza’s National Guard had often crossed into Costa Rica, despite warnings of then-president Rodrigo Carazo Odio. The border seemed like Swiss cheese, with holes anyone could pass through.

The army maintained by this government sponsored death squads that shot 12-year-olds and cut off their ears, forced peasants to dig their own graves before cutting their throats as they lay in them, attacked pregnant women, and castrated men. More than 75,000 Salvadorans would die in the death squads’ blood 36 Oscar Arias Sánchez bath. Though appalled by El Salvador’s human rights violations, the United States gave billions of dollars to the government because it was an anti-communist regime. In 1964, José Napoleón Duarte was elected mayor of the capital, San Salvador.

The key players in Nicaragua’s troubles emerged long before the Sandinistas took power in 1979. In 1912, the conservative Nicaraguan government asked for American help in settling an internal dispute. S. military occupied Nicaragua for two decades. –backed government. Sandino agreed to lay down his arms if the Americans left. A new liberal president was elected, and I 29 30 Oscar Arias Sánchez Nicaragua, shown in the map above, is about the size of New York State. Nicaragua’s history of instability affected the whole region, especially Costa Rica, its southern neighbor.

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