DOES ANYONE remember Nicaragua? Where U.S.-backe rebels that former President Reagan likened to our Founding Fathers were fighting communism? "Our side" won, but the average Nicaraguan is no better off, and U.S. indifference is partly to blame.
That is what prompted President Violeta Barrios de Chamorro to come to the U.S. [last] week on her first visit since being elected in 1990 -- to remind President Bush and Congress that her country is still desperate for U.S. aid. But does anyone remember Mrs. Chamorro? She's the widow of a martyred newspaper editor whose 1978 assassination set off a popular revolution that overthrew the long Somoza dictatorship. That revolution was, in turn, commandeered by leftist ideologues known as Sandinistas. Reagan, in turn, tried to overthrow them using right-wing rebels known as contras as his surrogate fighters.
The contra war was a dirty little episode that ended only after elections were held and Chamorro surprised everyone by defeating Sandinista President Daniel Ortega.