The lessons of history …

… are wholly in the eye of the beholder.

Nicaragua says it is closing OAS offices, expelling staff

The adage says that those who fail to learn from history are destined to repeat it.  It seems to me, however, that the lessons of history are wholly in the eyes of the beholder.  The people of any time and place will not all agree on what the lessons of history are.  The American Revolution was fought to free the colonists from despotism, but today despotism is exactly what many Americans hope for in the person of Donald Trump.

Nicaragua, under Daniel Ortega, has recently come through a Presidential election that Ortega won but that was widely criticized as neither free nor fair.  Among other things, Ortega had jailed all of his opponents.  Now the nation has expelled the Organization of American States, for reason that they were critical of his regime.

In the 1980s, Daniel Ortega was the darling of the American Christian left.  (Yes, believe it or not, there was such a thing.)  “Liberation theology” was de rigeur.  Any number of cheerleaders, including notably the late Robert McAfee Brown, proclaimed that Ortega and his Marxist Sandinista Revolution would bring freedom and justice to Nicaragua.  In the midst, the Soviet Union collapsed, and liberation theology somehow collapsed with it.

Daniel Ortega has become exactly the Stalinist dictator his American opponents anticipated.

I see no evidence the American left has learned anything from history.

Related:  Podcast – Rich and poor

Later developments:

07/07/22 — Nicaragua expels Mother Teresa’s nuns in latest crackdown – BBC News

08/11/22 — ‘Not even Orwell could have dreamed up a country like this’: Journalists flee Nicaragua – Los Angeles Times (

08/19/22 —  Nicaraguan police detain bishop, other priests in raid | AP News

12/12/22 — Ortega’s Brutal Catholic Crackdown – Where’s the Outrage? | RealClearPolitics

02/10/23 — Nicaraguan Catholic bishop sentenced to prison, stripped of citizenship | Reuters

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