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25th Anniversary Celebration of the Sandinista Revolution

In this year of the 25th anniversary of the Nicaraguan revolution, the Nicaragua Network is compiling remembrances of people whose lives were changed by their visits to and involvement in the Sandinista experiment.

If you visited Nicaragua for the first time during the years of the revolution, please send us a few paragraphs recounting your experience and what it meant to you. Many of you lived in Nicaragua for months and even years. Some of you live there now! Maybe a few paragraphs are not enough. Please consider writing a longer piece to tell your story. We will publish these stories in the Nicaragua Monitor, put them on our web page, and possibly publish them in one of our occasional monographs. Send them to kathy@afgj.org.

These are some of the "remembrances" we have received from people telling about their first trip to Nicaragua after the revolution.

Nicaragua Network Delivers Open Letter at Historic Concert

On July 19, 1979, the Sandinistas successfully overthrew the US-supported Somoza dictatorship. Twenty five years later, crowds of people gathered to celebrate this memorable event all over Nicaragua. The Nicaragua Network took the opportunity to write an open letter which was read to those present for the festivities. You may read it below.

Open Letter from the Nicaragua Network to the Peoples of Nicaragua

On the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Triumph over the US-supported Somoza dictatorship, the Nicaragua Network (US) and its over 200 local committees send greetings of peace and friendship to the People of Nicaragua. We take pride in having worked in solidarity with you since our own founding in February 1979.

We celebrate the Sandinista Revolution, which has served as a beacon of light to the poor and oppressed of the world. The Revolution was driven by the dream of a more just society which gave preference to the poor and to the children. It was a dream of literacy for all, land for the landless, health care and education in every community, and freedom from foreign domination.

It was a dream built on the blood of Heroes and Martyrs. As we celebrate, we also honor those who died to free Nicaragua from the dictatorship, and to defend her from US government-sponsored surrogate forces. We honor those teachers, health care workers, union organizers, peasants, and the many other men, women, and children murdered as the US government and the transnational corporations once again tried to crush Nicaragua under their boot heels. As we celebrate with you, our hearts are filled with shame at the suffering that our government in the United States has inflicted on the people of Nicaragua. But we are also filled with awe at the strength of our Nicaraguan sisters and brothers, and the power of your hopes and dreams.

On recent US/British joint solidarity delegations to Nicaragua, we have felt the spirit of Sandino and of Carlos Fonseca in the many communities struggling to find ways to survive under the savage capitalism imposed by the transnational corporations with the support of the International Monetary Fund and the United States government. We, too, are struggling against these same forces to take back control of our own country as they continue to pillage Latin America, set fire to the Middle East, and trample on human rights here and abroad while destroying the very Earth itself.

As representatives of Nicaragua solidarity in the United States, the Nicaragua Network pledges to continue working to change our government's militaristic behavior and imperial policies. We pledge to fight against the Central America Free Trade Agreement and to support your fight against privatization - especially the immoral privatization of water. We pledge our continuing support for progressive forces in Nicaragua which struggle to build a just society based on sustainable development, human rights, dignity, and freedom.

Today, we are all global citizens. Today, we pledge to make Sandino's dream a reality for the entire planet. Today, we believe that Nicaragua, with its vital strategic importance and its wonderful real wealth - air-cleansing forests, vast reserves of fresh water, unparalleled biodiversity, indigenous cultures, and a people strengthened by struggle - is once again poised to help the entire world dream anew.

It was once said, "All Nicaragua is a school." It continues to be. You, the people of Nicaragua, have taught the world so much: In particular, you have taught US solidarity activists humility by offering the precious gift of your friendship despite the actions of our government. We continue to learn from you the meaning of true courage, genuine patriotism, and creative endurance against all odds.

In thanking you, then, we join you at Sandino's side to resist all intervention whether cultural, economic, or military. Together, we will build a world order which recognizes our profound interdependence and brings the fullness of life to all people.

¡Que viva Sandino!