The following statement was initiated by the US-based Nicaragua Advocacy Network and has been signed by our party.
On 10 November 2022, an online White House statement announced that President Biden had invoked emergency powers on 24 October, declaring Nicaragua a continuing “unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States”.
This renews for yet another year the executive order unjustly issued by Donald Trump in November 2018. It accompanies the biggest escalation of hostility toward Nicaragua – by the United States, but also by its allied nations and the media – since the Reagan administration made similar declarations in the 1980s.
Ronald Reagan applied US sanctions and illegally funded terrorists to overthrow the Sandinista government, using money from sales of cocaine to US citizens and weapons to Iran. Nicaragua’s economy was destroyed, and its people eventually voted the Sandinistas out of power in 1990 to stop the war and the economic embargo. Conditions for most Nicaraguans, however, only got worse during the three successive US-backed governments.
So the Nicaraguan people voted the Sandinistas back into office. On President Ortega’s first day in office in January 2007, he signed an executive order restoring the people’s constitutional rights to free and universal healthcare and education, rights that had been systematically denied during the previous 17 years of neoliberal governments. Since then, Nicaragua has made tremendous social progress, and the economy has grown across social demographics.
But now the United States has returned to the hostility of the 1980s, pressuring its allies to follow suit, illegally escalating sanctions and funding violence to destabilise Nicaragua. Many news media promote the same falsehoods about Nicaragua that they used in the 1980s.
It’s time to set the record straight – to ask all our governments and media, wherever we live, to portray Nicaragua with greater accuracy and to stop interfering with its sovereignty. Nicaragua has been called “the threat of a good example”. This small country, with one of the world’s tiniest military budgets, may threaten some – but it is an inspiration to many!
Did you know that Nicaragua …
- provides universal and free healthcare throughout the country, with 24 new hospitals, 181 maternity homes, and well over 3,000 health centres and health posts?
- adopted special measures to achieve among the lowest rate of excess deaths during the pandemic in Latin America, and the highest level of Covid vaccinations in central America, as certified by the World Health Organisation?
- has universal and free education from preschool through trade school, university and professional school?
- recently held its municipal elections with an impressive 57 percent turnout of voters, with candidates from five parties – and paper ballots secured and counted by all party representatives?
- has several TV channels, numerous radio stations and well-used news websites expressing opposition viewpoints, alongside government-oriented media?
- consistently receives high ratings from international financial institutions for its transparency and execution of development projects, and for its prudent fiscal policies?
- is ranked seventh in the world for gender equality in 2022, with women in half of all government positions and 164 women’s police stations to attend to violence against women?
- is a world leader in renewable energies, with 70 percent of its energy from renewable sources?
- builds and provides thousands of good quality, low-cost homes annually?
- is a pioneer in defence of the rights of its indigenous and Afro-descendant peoples, who have communal title to a third of the national territory?
- has an ambitious national plan to fight poverty that exceeds 2030 United Nations sustainable development goals?
- actively encourages citizen participation in government at many different levels?
- sponsors and helps develop thousands of cooperative businesses and agricultural enterprises?
Nicaragua is not a threat to the United States. It deserves our recognition and support in affirming its national sovereignty.
This statement remains open for signatures. Please email the Nicaragua Advocacy Network to add your organisation’s name.