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Conservative Protestant Perceptions Of Sandinismo

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Chapter Summary

Harry Vanden regards sandinismo as a blend of Third World Marxism, Guevarist revolutionism, and a Nicaraguan national consciousness rejecting U.S. intervention in Nicaragua’s affairs as a sovereign nation. Christian perceptions of the Sandinistas as Marxist were exacerbated by Nicaragua’s close links with Cuba, which are well-attested. Conservative Protestants were convinced the Sandinistas used the educational system to promote Marxism. Under Somoza education was generally only available to those whose could afford it. However, the Sandinistas’ intention was to provide free education for the masses. This chapter highlights Sandinista rhetoric, while Cuzán reviews a wide range of literature to support his view, stating “Sandinista intellectual history thus confirms all the traits of a totalitarian ideology.” Cuzán also explores the concept of a single mass party, citing the Frente’s control of political life, its centralisation of decision-making, educational control, and intolerance of opposition.

Keywords: christian perceptions; conservative protestants; Cuzán; Harry Vanden; sandinismo; Sandinista rhetoric; Somoza education; Third World Marxism



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