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The new Nicaraguan constitution: uniting participatory and representative democracy.


For the past two centuries, the United States has defined democracy as representative government. For James Madison and the Federalists who drafted the U.S. Constitution, direct participatory democracy was an evil, tantamount to mob rule. They favored representative democracy, based on large electoral districts and separation of powers, which they believed would make it difficult for the majority to enact what Madison termed "schemes of injustice," such as the renunciation of debts or violation of property rights. On the bicentennial of the Constitution's drafting, the United States government extols the virtues of a representative government and views the holding of national elections as the litmus test for democracy, at least where it approves of the results.

Revolutionary socialist governments have generally rejected this definition of democracy for two reasons. First, Lenin argued in his seminal work State and Revolution, that parliamentary democracy is fundamentally flawed in that it is based on the separation of the state structure from the masses of people themselves. His cure for this separation was the revival of "primitive" or direct democracy, where "the mass of the population will rise to taking an independent part, not only in voting and elections, but also in the every day administration of the state."1 The salient feature of this new form of government would be not representative democracy, but participatory democracy to be based on the actual involvement of the population in state affairs.

The second reason for the Marxist-Leninist rejection of the Western model of pluralistic representative democracy lies in the hostile environment faced by victorious socialist revolutions. The capitalist states have either directly intervened to overturn these revolutions as was the case in the Soviet Union and Vietnam, or used surrogate forces as in Cuba, Mozambique, and Angola. Moreover, every government in Latin America which has sought to introduce radical changes has faced military intervention of some sort inspired by the United States--Guatemala in 1954, Cuba in 1961-62, Dominican Republic in 1965, Chile in 1973, Grenada in 1983, and now Nicaragua. It is therefore not merely overreaction or paranoia that has caused communist parties to believe that an organized domestic opposition would aid international military and economic intervention.

The newly drafted Nicaraguan Constitution seeks to unify and transform these diverging views of democracy, and to develop a system of government combining social justice with this new political vision. The Sandinista Liberation Front (FSLN) has attempted over the last eight years to integrate elements of Western notions of pluralistic representative democracy with a Marxist-Leninist view of participatory democracy. Whether the Nicaraguan experiment in combining political pluralism with radical social and economic change is ultimately successful in the face of U.S. aggression remains to be seen. The mere effort, however, represents a new development in the concept of democracy in post-revolutionary society.

The Nicaraguan Revolutionary Model

The Nicaraguan attempt to combine representative and participatory democracy stems fundamentally from the FSLN's strategy for the social, economic, and political transformation of their society. The Sandinista revolution has been termed "anti-oligarchic" and not socialist.2 It is a nationalist revolution, uniting various sectors of Nicaraguan society including the anti-Somocista middle classes. The FSLN has sought to ensure that the needs and interests of workers, peasants, and the poor and marginalized strata of society are dominant in all aspects of Nicaraguan life, while at the same time preserving political, economic, and cultural space for capitalist relations. In economic life this has meant that the state has taken over the commanding heights of the economy--the financial system, foreign trade, mining, strategic industrial sectors--in order to secure economic development designed to serve popular needs. Yet at the same time the mixed economy has allowed private landowners and factory owners who utilize their land or invest in their companies to continue and develop.

Just as the mixed economy has sought to mediate aspects of capitalist development in an economic structure oriented toward the interests of the majority, the new Nicaraguan political structure seeks to combine aspects of representative Western democracy under popular hegemony. The relationship between these two key aspects of the revolutionary project is seen clearly by FSLN leadership. As Carlos Chamorro, director of the FSLN newspaper, Barricada, has noted, "If we have a mixed economy, we must have a political system that corresponds to that; we want to constitutionalize dissent and opposition."3

In a sense, the Nicaraguans have understood one of the lessons of the Soviet experience with the New Economic Policy (NEP) in the 1920s. The NEP attempted to develop a class alliance with the peasantry through voluntary compromise as opposed to coercion. The Soviet government saw the NEP as a retreat from the process of developing socialism and it was eventually replaced by Stalin's revolution from above. Bukharin, and at times Lenin, however, seemed to have had a different interpretation, viewing the NEP not as a retreat, but as a long-term mechanism for transforming society along a more voluntary and cooperative model. As various writers now recognize, the NEP, if allowed to continue, would have tended towards the development of relative cultural and political pluralism, and possibly representative democracy.4

The FSLN has been faced with several key questions in its attempt to implement political pluralism since 1979. The first was whether it is possible to reverse the assumption made by James Madison and the framers of the American Constitution--which has proven to be accurate in the United States--namely, that representative elections and separation of powers would favor rule by the elite, separate the majority of people from direct involvement in state power, and prevent radical interference with existing property and social relations. Secondly, could representative elections and separation of powers operate consistently with the need to combat U.S. aggression.

The FSLN has thus far assumed that both questions could be answered affirmatively, but only if the working class and peasantry maintained a hegemonic position in the political, economic, ideological, and cultural apparatuses of society. Politically, what this popular hegemony required was the construction of a new form of democracy that would represent the needs and interests of the poor and working population and at the same time provide a framework within which representative democracy would operate. This new democracy was to be based on two pillars: first, mass participation and particularly the development of mass organizations that would allow the population to become involved in state affairs; and second, explicit revolutionary control of the key ideological and military state apparatus, i.e., the educational system and the army. With these mechanisms functioning, Nicaraguan elections would be a reversed image of elections in capitalist countries. They would relegate the former elite to the role progressives have played in the United States, that of a tolerated opposition which would present competing ideas and at times influence government policy, without fundamentally threatening the direction of society.

(1) Popular Hegemony and Participatory Democracy

Central to the development of a new form of democracy that seeks to insure that the workers and peasants maintain hegemony in the Nicaraguan political system is the role of mass organizations and popular participation in state affairs. The FSLN believes that "democracy is not measured solely in the political sphere, and cannot be reduced only to the participation of the people in elections . . . it means participation by the people in political, economic, social, and cultural affairs. The more the people participate in such matters, the more democratic they will be . . . democracy neither begins nor ends with elections."5 Therefore, immediately after the revolution, key social and economic projects such as the National Literacy Campaign and the Popular Health Campaign were undertaken through mass mobilization, consultation, and participation. Similarly, the response to attacks by the U.S.-backed contras relied upon arming the population. The legislative branch of government, the Council of State, was reorganized in 1980 to include representatives of the mass organizations such as women's organizations, trade unions, neighborhood associations (CDS), and the Union of Farmers and Cattle Ranchers. These groups were also seen as playing a key role in important ministries, in many cases influencing or changing governmental policy. For example, when the Rural Workers Union (ATC) sought to legalize land seizures which had taken place immediately following the July 1979 triumph, and FSLN and the government were at first opposed, but later agreed to support the Union.

Both the substance of and procedures by which the new Nicaraguan Constitution was adopted reflect the FSLN view of democracy as popular participation. Article 2 states "The people exercise democracy by freely deciding on and participating in the construction of the economic, political, and social system," while Article 48 obligates the state to remove obstacles "that impede effective participation of Nicaraguans in the political, economic, and social life of the country." These general principles are further developed by providing the right of social and economic groups to organize associations of their own choosing (Art. 49); the right of citizens to participate under equal conditions in public affairs and in state management (Art. 50); the right of workers "to participate in the management of their enterprises" (Art. 81); the right of the people to arm themselves in defense of their sovereignty (Art. 93); the right of the peasantry and other productive sectors "to participate, through their own organizations, in establishing the policies of agrarian transformation" (Art. 111); the right to a "participatory" educational system that "links theory with practice and manual with intellectual labor" (Art. 117); the right to expect all officials to "answer to the people for the correct fulfillment of their functions" and to inform them of their work and official activities (Art. 131); the right to popular participation in the judiciary below the Supreme Court level (Art. 166).

The Sandinista conception of democracy as participatory and direct democracy can also be seen in the process by which the Constitution was enacted. The original draft, developed by a committee of the National Assembly, was submitted to Nicaraguan citizens in a series of town hall forums, termed cabildos abiertos.

The cabildos raised a number of important concerns, some of which were included in the second draft of the constitution. The demands of Miskito and other Indian groups in the Atlantic Coast cabildos were generally incorporated. Their languages were officially recognized alongside Spanish in their respective regions, and communal landholding rights and rights to the free use of waters and forests on their traditional lands were constitutionally protected. Despite opposition from the Conservative Party, Article 72 of the final draft incorporated a demand made in the women's cabildos that divorce be liberalized to allow a marriage's dissolution "by the will of one of the parties." New Article 50 established "absolute equality of rights, duties, and responsibilities between men and women." As many FSLN supporters requested, the second draft provided that various acts against the homeland could lead to loss of citizenship, a provision later removed by the parliamentary debate preceding the final ratification by the Assembly. While none of these and other modifications were radical, they reflect important contributions made by the participatory process. As one FSLN representative noted,

We had thought of the cabildos as a great campaign to help the people understand the constitutional issues, but now we see them differently. They have been a practical school to help the representatives learn how to legislate according to the people's interests.6

Popular hegemony requires, in addition to mass participation, affirmative, openly substantive governmental action in key state institutions such as the army and educational system. The educational system and army of any stable Western capitalist society are political; the United States educational system teaches respect for private property and for the American form of government, while the army defends the hegemony of the ruling elite abroad and, if all else fails, at home. Because of the population's acceptance of existing social relations, however, this political education is accepted by most Americans as the natural order of things, as neutral, objective, and apolitical.

The creation of new social relations in the midst of the intense class struggle occurring in revolutionary society requires abandoning the fiction of state neutrality. Thus, the new Nicaraguan educational system is politically explicit in establishing the task of creating "a set of revolutionary values . . . for the new society."7 Similarly, the political nature of, and revolutionary control over, the army in defending the gains of the revolution was made explicit.

(2) Representative, Pluralistic Democracy

While Nicaragua has incorporated elements of the Marxist-Leninist perspective on participatory democracy in its constitution and society, it has also included pluralistic representative democracy found in capitalistic countries. The strategic commitment made by the FSLN to political pluralism and elections in the course of the revolution has both deepened and been transformed as the post-revolutionary process has unfolded.

Initially, some in the FSLN held a perspective of political pluralism and elections along the model of some countries in Eastern Europe such as the GDR, Czechoslovakia, and Bulgaria. While these countries have various parties and national elections, the elections are not competitive but rather are designed to transmit a program jointly adopted under the leadership of the Communist Party. The other political parties accept the leadership of the Communist Party; their function is to help administer the state and articulate the specific needs of the class interests they represent, not to contest for basic political power.

The first draft put forward by the FSLN of the Political Parties Law contained conceptions similar to the East European model. While recognizing the right of a party to have its "own political platform" (unlike some of the East European models), the draft suggested that a party's role was merely to participate in administration and not struggle for political power.

This view was criticized by virtually all of the other political parties, which declared their goal to be the assumption of power in order to put into practice a government program according to their respective ideologies. It became clear that in order to attain the participation of the different strata of Nicaraguan society in the state, competitive and not merely cooperative parties would have to be allowed. The FSLN agreed to an amendment of the Political Parties Law to adopt the opposition viewpoint.

The agreement on the role of political parties, as well as the need to maintain international support in the face of U.S. aggression, led to the 1984 elections. According to independent observers, the electoral process was, by Latin American standards, "a model of probity and fairness."8 Seven parties ran for the Presidency and National Assembly. Americas Watch, a human rights group often critical of the Nicaraguan government, observed, "the parties that chose to participate in the 1984 national elections--from which no party was banned-- were free to be as strident as they chose in attacking the Sandinista Party and its leaders, and frequently exercised this right on television and radio time provided to them without cost to conduct this campaign."9

In addition, a proportional representation model was used to encourage the participation of various politicla parties and to ensure them some representation in the National Assembly. The opposition received approximately 33 percent of the popular vote and 36.5 percent of the seats in the National Assembly.

The organization of the state to include various strata of society is reflected in recent struggles over the Constitution. Forty-five percent of the members of the commission that drafted the Constitution were from various opposition parties, a greater percentage than their 36.5 percent in the National Assembly. There were extensive and heated discussions in the National Assembly. The various parties put forward different perspectives on the Constitution which were debated on national television and printed in the newspapers. On a number of critical issues the opposition parties' position was adopted in the Constitution. Examples include requiring legislative approval of the national budget in nonemergency periods; granting any citizen the right to judicial review over legislative or executive actions in violation of the Constitution; providing for the nonretroactivity of any law, not just penal laws; deleting the provision that would have given the President the right to appoint the Mayor of Managua. The opposition also lost some particularly heated debates, such as the debate over limiting the President to one term of office.

The Constitutional provisions reflect the reality of Nicaragua as both a "participatory and representative democratic republic." (Art. 7) Constitutionalizing the Political Parties Law, citizens have "the right to organize or affiliate with political parties with the objective of participating in, exercising, or vying for power." No one political party is declared to represent the vanguard or leadership of the revolution.

Moreover, the Constitution incorporates a number of separation-of-powers concepts. The President can veto legislation either totally or partially; the national assembly can override the veto by majority vote. While the President prepares the budget, negotiates treaties, and declares states of emergency, the legislature must ratify each of these executive acts. The National Assembly elects judges to the Supreme Court and members of the Supreme Electoral Council from slates of three candidates proposed by the President. Finally, the Supreme Court has the power to review and hold unconstitutional executive and legislative actions. Over the past eight years, there has been "friction" between the different branches of government. The legislature has rejected or modified acts proposed by the executive. The Supreme Court, three of whose seven members are from opposition parties, has declared executive actions to be unlawful, although until now it has not had the power to review legislative action.

The development of political pluralism has been an outgrowth of the FSLN's basic strategy for the reconstruction of Nicaraguan society, involving a broad multiclass effort under popular hegemony. While the particular forms such pluralism might take were influenced by the positions put forward by both the domestic middle classes and the international community, the FSLN has consistently sought to recognize pluralism in national reconstruction, so long as fidelity to majority interests, or what is termed the "logic of the majority," is maintained.

Tensions and Contradictions in Unifying Participatory and Representative Democracy

The attempt to unite various strata of Nicaraguan society in a project of revolutionary transformation involves serious tensions and dilemmas: the tension between developing a mixed economy in which land and industry are largely owned privately on the one hand and the needs of economic transformation designed to serve majority interests on the other, and the contradictions between political pluralism and participatory democracy all reflect this basic dilemma. In the political arena, these contradictions have two basic manifestations: first the opposition of the conservative parties to mass participation and an explicitly revolutionary army and educational system; second, a refusal by elements of the middle classes to accept popular hegemony and their consequent joining the counterrevolution.

One of the demands of the more conservative parties has been to decrease the role of mass organizations and mass participation in Nicaraguan life. It is precisely the promotion of the mass organizations that the opposition groups, such as the church hierarchy, view as a step toward totalitarianism. These parties were able to remove successfully any direct participation by the mass organizations in the National Assembly elected in 1984, thus ending the organizations' strong participation in the legislative branch which existed between 1980 and 1984. The FSLN responded creatively, naming in its 1984 electoral slate representatives of the mass organizations who were not FSLN members as a method for including those groups in the National Assembly.

In the constitutional process, the middle-class parties also opposed mass participation. Several of the opposition parties, such as the traditionalist Democratic Conservative Party (PCD) and the Independent Liberal Party (PLI), refused to participate in the open forums. The PCD argued that since the population had already elected representatives to draft a constitution, there was no need for further popular participation. While this opposition did not prevent the open forums, the creative proposal that came out of several of the cabildos for a permanent parliamentary chamber for popular organizations did not prevail in the voting in the National Assembly.

Similarly, the nonneutrality of the state in such key areas as the educational system and army has been the focus of intense struggle by the centrist parties. The Popular Social Christian Party early on argued for an apolitical educational system. The various opposition parties to the right of the FSLN fought for provisions designed to insure a nonpartisan army such as prohibiting political instruction and dropping the name Sandinista Popular Army.

The FSLN response to these contradictions between popular, participatory democracy and the demands of the middle-class parties has been to compromise on many issues, yet to maintain the essential basis for popular hegemony. Thus the FSLN has compromised on the nature of the educational system, agreed to clarify that the Army is a national, not FSLN Army (while keeping the name), and has agreed to deny mass organizations a direct role in the National Assembly. But it has not been willing to renounce the generally political nature of the educational system or the army, nor to stray from its basic conception of participatory democracy.

The extension of the mass organizations, the development of mass participation, revolutionary control over key institutions such as the educational system and the army, combined with the basic economic and social changes in society serve to make it extremely difficult for the middle-class parties to win national elections. They, unlike the FSLN, don't create popular organizations; they tend to oppose popular participation in society; and they haven't sought to widen their base to include women.

This leads to a second and potentially more dangerous set of contradictions. While the first involves compromising popular democracy for the sake of maintaining pluralism, the second involves the inability of many of the middle class to accept popular hegemony at all, irrespective of compromises the FSLN is prepared to make. The reaction of the United States and substantial segments of the domestic opposition has been to utilize the political space allowed to them to organize to overthrow the FSLN.

The contra war makes it inevitable that certain distortions of political pluralism, such as those occasioned by the declaration of a state of emergency, will occur. Some, but not most of the rights and procedures guaranteed by the Constitution are now suspended under the state of emergency. The war also makes it difficult if not impossible for the FSLN to tolerate those who directly act as U.S. agents inside Nicaragua. While one could argue as to whether the Sandinistas have made mistakes, or have not been flexible enough, the fundamental decision really rests with the middle classes. In opting for political pluralism the Sandinistas are taking a large risk-- they are gambling that given the proper incentives and sufficient FSLN compromise the middle classes will not opt out of the system. Yet at the same time they are aware of the riskiness of this path and take what are seen as necessary measures against those who cross the line between legitimate constitutional opposition and supporting the military counterrevolution.

In the past, socialist governments have sought to transform society and defend against foreign and domestic reaction by developing a unity that excluded an organized opposition representing the former dominant classes. Contradictions between the worker-peasant alliance and the middle classes were externalized--in large part by the opposition groups themselves. The FSLN has sought to internalize those contradictions, thus seeking the support of other strata, yet providing more openness for reactionary forces to work within the society. As the constitutional process demonstrated, the FSLN has in general sought to rely heavily on persuasion and compromise and not coercion in order to transform society. For eight years it has been able to maintain and develop this strategy--a remarkable accomplishment in the face of U.S. aggression and a regional economic crisis.

Socialism and Representative Democracy

The Nicaraguan Constitution, while not socialist, clearly enshrines the interests of the popular classes--workers, peasants, and marginalized and excluded strata so typical of third world society--as the guiding principles of the new Nicaragua. It provides that the new Nicaraguan state's purpose is "to eliminate all forms of exploitation and submission of human beings," and "to ensure that the interest and rights of the popular majority prevail." (Art. 4) To that end it guarantees not merely the civil and political rights found in the United States Bill of Rights, but also social, economic, and cultural rights not guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution. It recognized rights to education, health care, social security, equitable distribution of food, decent, comfortable and safe housing, an eight-hour workday, land reform. (Arts. 57-69, 80-84, 106-7) As even U.S. officials will sometimes admit, the FSLN has sought to implement these rights for the poor of Nicaragua. Any Nicaraguan government, to be in accord with the Constitution, will have to take whatever measures are feasible within the prevailing economic and political conditions to realize these guarantees.

In setting forth these goals and guarantees the Constitution thus commits the nation to move in the direction of socialism. The key ingredients for a transformation toward socialism are not particular forms of state ownership of property, nor particular juridical relations, nor defining Nicaragua as a socialist country, but a state apparatus which in practice and by constitutional mandate is affirmatively committed to promoting the interests of the popular majority and ensuring that they participate in all aspects of political and social life. In particular, it requires ensuring both popular power over the state apparatus and seeing to it that the economic, social, and cultural interests of the majority prevail. The inclusion of this guiding principle in the Nicaraguan Constitution implies the institutionalization of a continuing process of revolution.

The thrust of the Nicaraguan Constitution will, if not thwarted by counterrevolution, involve a whole series of changes in the relations of production and class structure, leading to further amendments and changes in the Constitution. It will also lead to a gradual shrinking of the bourgeoisie and strengthening of the popular majority. For example, as the Nicaraguans recognize, "participatory democracy, when combined with the new economic orientation of the state, will lead in time to a logical shift of managers of private capital into administrators of state enterprises, and to a more social orientation of the profits from production."10

These changes would further undercut the economic and social base of the middle-class parties to the right of the FSLN, raising the question of the future role of representative, electoral democracy. Here the FSLN's experience with representative democracy has led many to believe in its continuing usefulness to a socialist society, independent of the strategy of sustaining broad class support. In the process of implementing political pluralism, many in the FSLN have recognized the advantage of elections in legitimating and promoting open, public debate and dissent--not merely to incorporate the middle classes into the national project but also as part of their vision of the future Nicaraguan society.

As the class structure changes in Nicaragua, there still will be different political and ideological points of view. As merely one example, three of the seven parties now represented in the National Assembly, albeit small parties, consider themselves to be to the left of the FSLN and clearly do not represent the middle classes. All have views as to socialist and working-class policies different from those of the FSLN.

Providing for an organized opposition in the form of various political parties has had several effects which go beyond the strategy of merely winning middle-class support:

(1) FSLN leaders have come to view the opposition as being a "correcting force." It is seen as "healthy, because mistakes sometimes come from being isolated, from not having another point of view."11 An aspect of the 1984 elections provided a graphic example of this "correcting force": in those rural municipalities where less than 10 percent of the population had received land under the agrarian reform, the opposition fared better than they did nationally.12 This was the first hard evidence that peasants with little or no land had felt let down by the FSLN, and it helped cause a change in government policies.

(2) The toleration of autonomous and opposition parties which compete for power institutionalizes and legitimates public debate and dissent and the notion of autonomous organization, not merely among parties but in all sectors of society. For example, in discussing the Constitution, the mass organizations did so with a recognition that there were competing views of the Constitution. To publicly put forward opposing positions in the mass organizations on important national issues is legitimated by a society which permits opposition parties to publicly criticize the governing party.

(3) Probably most important is the connection between inter- and intra-party debate. The revolutionary party must publicly debate and express its view on a wide variety of proposals, requiring considerable flexibility and intra-party dialogue. For example, in Nicaragua, the multiparty debate has developed concomitantly with an FSLN view of its own structure, which has provided for considerable flexibility in the notion of democratic centralism. First, many important policy issues are not resolved by the FSLN, allowing individual members to develop their own position. Secondly, even after the FSLN takes a clear position, the practice has developed of tolerating individual members' public dissent. For example, at a conference held in New York on the Constitution, a leader of the Nicaraguan delegation and an FSLN member on the Supreme Court stated his opposition to the principle of judicial review of legislative acts. Another FSLN member who was working with the National Assembly's constitutional commission disagreed, as did the text of the draft Constitution. Several U.S. law professors were somewhat perplexed trying to understand how this could occur, until it was explained that the FSLN did not have a unified position on the question. In addition, there have been numerous cases of FSLN members publicly disagreeing with positions the party and the government had already decided on. This looser interpretation of democratic centralism--requiring public unity on the central questions of the revolution, but allowing public divergence on a host of lesser but still very important policy issues, sometimes even after a decision has been made--is intricately connected to a society that legitimizes public political criticism by maintaining opposition parties.

Liberal theory postulates that elections are the key mechanism for determining political power. The Nicaraguan experience suggests that elections between competitive parties struggling for power can be an important device for institutionalizing public dissent, both in a long transition stage and in a socialist society. The inherent contradiction between parties seeking the power to determine the direction of society, and an electoral system which legitimizes disagreements within a given social and economic framework, is always present. That contradiction can only be resolved by means of the social, political, economic, and ideological hegemony of the dominant classes, both in capitalist and in socialist societies.

1. Carlos Vilas, The Sandinista Revolution (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1986).

2. V. Lenin, State and Revolution, vol. 25, Collected Works, (Moscow, n.d.), pp. 492-93.

3. J. Nichols, "The Issue of Censorship," in Nicaragua: The Unfinished Revolution, ed. P. Rosset and J. Vandermeer (New York: Grove Press, 1986), p. 115. See also Bayardo Arce's recent interview What Is Sandinismo? published in Barricada International, 19 July 1987, p. 10.

4. Moshe Lewin, Political Undercurrents in Soviet Economic Debates (London, 1975), pp. 97-98; A.J. Polan, Lenin and the End of Politics (Los Angeles, 1984), pp. 75-76.

5. FSLN statement on the electoral process, 23 August 1980, in Central American Crisis Reader, ed. Robert Leiken and Barney Rubin, (1986), p. 227.

6. Envio, no. 62 (August 1986): 27.

7. Barricada International, 21 May 1987, p. 5. See also Vilas.

8. Americas Watch, "Human Rights in Nicaragua: Reagan, Rhetoric, and Reality," in Nicaragua: The Unfinished Revolution, p. 125.

9. LASA report, supra. See also Americas Watch report.

10. Arce interview, see note 3 above.

11. Ibid.

12. I. Luciak, "Popular Hegemony and National Unity: The Dialectic of Sandinista Agrarian Reform Policies, 1979-1986," LASA Forum 71, no. 4, p. 17.
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Author:Lobel, Jules
Publication:Monthly Review
Date:Dec 1, 1987
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