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Middlemarch: An Authoritative Text, Backgrounds, Reviews and Criticism (A Norton Critical Edition)
Bert G. Hornback, George Eliot
The Magic Mountain
Thomas Mann, John E. Woods
Love in the Time of Cholera
Gabriel García Márquez

Nicaragua: Revolution in the Family

Nicaragua: Revolution in the Family - Shirley Christian Philistine journalist account of the ouster of Somoza and beginnings of the Sandinista regime, published in 1985 prior to the full measure of woe regarding Iran-Contra was known. As a for instance, consider this passage, the only mention in the text of Col. North:

"Subtle word also went out from the White House encouraging supporters of Ronald Reagan to provide help in time or money. Working from a small office on the third floor of the Old Executive Office Building adjacent to the White House, an outgoing marine Corps lieutenant named Oliver L. North spoke to everything from conservative women's groups to gatherings of establishment lawyers and wealthy individuals. As a member if the National Security Council staff, he would show videotapes of the FDN at war and still photographs of the combatants that he took during his frequent visits to FDN camps. Tears often welled in his eyes as he spoke of the determination of the fighters and their suffering for lack of boots, medical transport and other things" (365).

So, yeah, it's that kind of douchey scumbaggery.

Volume is hostile to the Sandinistas, but makes a decent presentation in its first third of the movement against Somoza. Whitewashes the US, of course. Almost a gossipy level of detail on some interactions--a kind of missing the forest for the trees. Very much pro Contras. Credits every opposition report against the regime, but presents sceptically complaints about the Contras and other opposition figures. Attempts to suggest that the Contras grew spontaneously or organically--but as we now know, however: Iran-Contra. Sandinistas are not trying to build a better world, but rather "their goal was to assure themselves the means to control nearly every aspect of Nicaraguan life" (374). There is of course no evidence for this inference, other than rightwing fantasy. Has the decency to admit at least that the US mined the Nicaraguan harbors and instructed the contras to assassinate Sandinista civilian officials--but of course draws no inferences about the capitalist insurgents, former somocistas therein, or their US paymasters. Enough said: it's blinkered bullshit.