AFP PHOTO / Inti OCON
Calabasas High School

Libre Nicaragua: Mike Pence, Witchcraft and #SOSNicaragua

[Para espanol, ver abajo]

Social unrest sparked in Nicaragua on April 18 and continues to this day. With the ultimate goal of removing socialist President Daniel Ortega from office, demonstrations were set off by alterations to the social security system by the Ortega administration the week of the first protests. These changes by Ortega tapped into the growing discontent with the government, protesters and analysts said.

Thousands of demonstrators protesting against the government started in the capital, Managua, and has extended among other cities and into current day. These demonstrations began when students from the universities inspired protests by picketing, which now, tens of thousands of the country’s residents are partaking in.

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Photo courtesy of AP News

According to statistics by Insight Crime, as of February, Nicaragua had retained its position as the safest country in Central America.
Insight Crime’s statistics say that in Nicaragua there was seven homicides per 100,000 residents as oppose to 10.2 in Panama, 12.1 in Costa Rica, 26.01 in Guatemala, 42.80 in Honduras, and 60 in El Salvador.

As a matter of fact, Managua had the lowest homicide rate of any city in the Americas at 5 per 100,000 inhabitants, by way of contrast of 14 in Ottawa, 18 in Washington and 116 in San Salvador.

This, unfortunately, is no longer the case. About 24 people were killed during the first week of demonstrations including civilians, protestors and police officers.

“The truth is that I don’t go out much because of the danger,” said Nicaragua resident Karla Rodríguez, 17, “but of the few times that I have managed to leave and go through the sectors where the confrontations have been ugly, there have been many burnt tires, cobblestones as barricades, and materials lying around which the students have used to defend themselves against the repression of the police.”

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Photo courtesy of AP News

Journalist Ángel Gahona was killed during his live Facebook video (the government had censored his TV station) broadcasting terror in his city and is merely one of the victims effected during this time.

“This protest isn’t only because of the reforms,” a demonstrator said. “This protest is because we are tired of abuse.”

President Ortega seemed to acknowledge that the protests had begun to seriously challenge his authority, but expressing his grievances did not settle those of the Nicaraguans.

He quickly made a televised announcement reversing the social security reforms that had triggered the protests, but citizens of Nicaragua are now aiming to rid of Ortega as president entirely.

“It was only a matter of time before the 10 years of repression, 10 years of electoral fraud, 10 years where they didn’t let us march in the streets. We’re over,” said a Nicaraguan protester. “Nicaragua exploded and took the streets and here we are demonstrating the true power of the people.”

As dangerous anti-government protests raised the death toll to more than 60, activists brought faux-trees surrounding the cities of Nicaragua to the ground. In a country where poverty is clear among most cities, metal “Trees of Life” (“Árboles de la Vida”) stood down streets of Managua and other cities costing 25 thousand dollars each and 3 million dollars a year in electricity/maintenance as they would light nightfall with LED lights. Nicaraguans are planting real trees in their place.

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Photo courtesy of Paul Wilcocks

“Many say that Rosario Murillo is related to witchcraft,” Rodríguez said, “and those trees have been questioned since they were first placed all around the country.”

“These trees are senseless and irresponsible structures that rob Nicaraguans of real trees,” said an anonymous source. “They are symbols of a corrupt, selfish, deaf, and evil government.”

The Trees of Life were a bizarre gesture by Rosario Murillo (La Chayo), the first lady, vice president and wife of President Ortega. She claims to see something mystical in them. Her Trees of Life, many Nicaraguans say, are like symbolic billboards promoting her position and mystic allegiance.

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Photo courtesy of the Los Angeles Times

Many Nicaraguans are thrilled to have these massive artificial trees removed. In fact, each time a “tree of life” is brought down, the people around it cheer, stamping and jumping on it.

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Photo courtesy of The Economist

Now that the people of Nicaragua have taken down the Trees of Life and the change in the social security system, the next descend is… Ortega.

“The people of Nicaragua deserve better than the worsening repression of Daniel Ortega’s government,” United States Vice President Mike Pence said during a Protocolary meeting at the Organization of American States (OAS) on May 14.

Pence’s acknowledgement of the treatment of the Nicaraguan people by their leader and government, finally brings awareness to the latest events of Nicaragua.

“We call on the Ortega government to allow inter-American Commission on Human Rights into Nicaragua,” Pence said, “and we join with nations around the world and demand that the Ortega government respond to the Nicaraguan people’s demands for democratic reform and hold accountable those responsible for violence.”

Many believe that the demonstrations across the biggest country of Central America is necessary, for they are trying to force the government to listen to them and earn Nicaragua’s freedom. Those of Nicaragua using their unalienable rights of speech, protest and press are facing the wrath of the government, and Pence’s representation of the United States acknowledges the cause.

 Libre Nicaragua: Mike Pence, Witchcraft and #SOSNicaragua
Photo by Isabel Ravenna

“I think one of the best things that we can do apart from praying is bringing awareness to what’s happening,” said an anonymous source. “Lord have Mercy on Nicaragua.”

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Photo by Isabel Ravenna

 

En Español

El dieciocho de abril comenzo los disturbios sociales en Nicaragua y no terminado. Comenzo con una protesta contra el gobierno cosada por la razon que con gobierno edugueron la pension de retiro y le subieron impuestos seis percento.

Miles de pensionados comenzaron las protestas y fuera la atacados por policias y la juventud sandinista. Entonces, los estudiantes en soliadidad con los pensionados marcharon en protesta.

De acuerdo a las statisticas de Insight Crime, en febrero, Nicaragua estaba reconocido como uno de los paises mas seguro en Central America.

El crimen de homicidio era mas bajo en las Americas.

Des afortunadamente ya no es asi. Mas o menos veinticuatro personas fueron asasinadas en la primera semana de protestas.

“La verdad es que no salgo mucho, por el mismo peligro,” dice Karlita Rodriguez, 17. “pero de las pocas veces que he logrado salir y paso por los sectores donde han estados los enfrentamientos es feo, muchas llantas quemadas, adoquines como barricadas, y botellas, piedras y de todo con lo que se han podido defender los estudiantes contra la represión de la policía.”

El gobierno aprohibido a los hospitales nacionales a que ayuden a las heridos.

“Esta protesta no solo es para reforma,” dice un manifestante, “Esta protesta es porque estamos cansados de tanto abuso de gobierno de Ortega.”

El Presidente Ortega seha dado cuenta que los manifestantes comenzado rebilarse contra su autoridad.
Invirtio las orden de reducir las penciones y los impuestos, pero los ciudadanos piden que de manera pacifica que renuncie de inmediato de la Presidencia de Nacional de Nicaragua a Daniel Ortega.

“Solo era cosa de tiempo para que diez años de reprecion, diez años de fraude electoral, diez años que no nos dejan marchar en las calles,” dice un ciudado. “Nicaragua exploto y salio a la calle y aqui estamos de mostrando el poder de lagente.”

Peligrosas protestas contra el gobierno resultaron en mas dieciseinta muertos. Los activistas tomaron los arboles de metal alrededor de la ciudad. Llamados “Arboles de la Vida” que costaron veinticino mil dolares cada uno y tres mil dolares de electricidad el año.

“Estos arboles son singulo de un gobierno corrupto, egoista y malvado,” dice un anonimo.

Los “Arboles de la Vida” fueron una idea de Rosario Murillo (Chayo), la primera dama, vice presidenta y esposa del Presidente Ortega. Ella dice que tienen un significado mistico. Muchos Nicaraguenzes dicen que esos arboles tienen un significado de “alianza mistica.”

“Muchos dicen que la primera dama Rosario Murillo esta relacionada con la brujería,” dice Rodriquez, ” esos árboles de la vida siempre se cuestionaron desde que los mando a ponerlos en diferentes lugares del país se dice que tiene una especie de brujería con la primera dama y pues puede ser cierto pero no estamos 100 percent seguro de eso, tambien se dice que ella se reunía con brujos en cuba por eso es tanto con que estos “árboles de la vida” sos una especie de brujería.”

Muchos Nicaraguenzes quieren que quiten esos arboles artificiales. Cada vez, que tumban uno de los arboles, la gente aplaude igritan de alegria.

Ahora que la gente ha removido los Arboles de la vida y han cambiado sistema de seguro social, el proximo en salir es… Ortega.

“La gente de Nicaragua merece algo mejor que el gobierno de Daniel Ortega,” dice el vice presidente de Estados Unidos Mike Pence.

Pence reconoce el tratamiento parte del presidente Ortega hacia el pueblo de Nicaragua.

“Nos unimos con las naciones mundiales y pedimos que el gobierno de Ortega responda a las demandas de reforma de mocratas y que castiguan a los responsables de tanta violencia,” dijo Pence.

“Yo pienso que lo mejor que podemos hacer, ademas de rezar, es hacer que todos se enteren de lo que sucede,” dice un anonimo. “Que Dios se apiade de Nicaragua.”

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Photo by Isabel Ravenna
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by Blanca Morel, Julia RIOS (Source: France 24)
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(AP Photo/Alfredo Zuniga)
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(AFP Photo/INTI OCON)

1 Comment

  • Reply #NicaraguaLibre: Mike Pence, Witchcraft and Unrest – Isabel Ravenna May 30, 2018 at 11:42 am

    […] View full story: http://highschool.latimes.com/calabasas-high-school/libre-nicaragua-mike-pence-witchcraft-and-sosnic… […]

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