"His actions were insane," said Enrique Zileri, director of Caretas, the nation's most influential magazine, which was briefly closed by troops. "There was no need for his actions. This whole thing will boomerang against him. He didn't need to go this far."
The Peruvian president also censored the press, arrested the presidents of the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies and jailed 20 opposition party members.
He also managed to do to do the impossible: Resurrect the discredited political career of Alan Garcia. The former president -- now a hero -- went into hiding while his party faxed messages to the news media calling Mr. Fujimori a Nazi.
"I think one can be sympathetic to the disastrous situation in Peru," said Robert Pastor, a Latin America adviser to President Carter. "But at the same time I think the hemisphere should be unified in its condemnation of Fujimori's actions."
The Peruvian president has already shown signs of wobbling by promising to restore the democratic process in 18 months or less. He says his efforts to clean up the courts and rewrite the constitution are extremely popular.
Meanwhile, a Mexican cartoonist summed up the feelings of many Peruvians last week. He showed President Fujimori committing hara-kari.