Week Nine

Out of the primary documents studied this week, I found Political Manifesto by Augusto Sandino extremely fascinating. From the first line, it is apparent Sandino is intensely passionate about his home country, Nicaragua, and Latin America as a whole. He explains his local heritage, role in society and his right to openly fight for what he believes his homeland deserves. Sandino begins the manifesto this way to position himself as a patriotic, dedicated individual whose connection to the land and culture proves his genuine concern for the well being of Latin America.

Sandino’s tone throughout the manifesto is very assertive. He is forthright about his opinions of those who he feels have wronged Latin America and what should be done to repair the damage that has been done. I found it interesting how he addresses both the crimes of people of the same nationality and the United States. The United States is the most obvious culprit in Sandino’s mind; however, he does not ignore the fact that there has been corruption within Latin America. He also expresses anger towards those who do not fight for what he believes Latin America needs, desperately trying to get the “cold-hearted Nicaraguans, the indifferent Central Americans, and the Indo-Hispanic race” to understand that the fight should not be with those within the borders, but with the external forces that repeatedly take advantage of their land and people.

This leads to what I consider the topic of most concern in the manifesto, the urgent need to fight against United States interference. Sandino uses the same argument that we have seen in previous chapters, that external involvement prevents Latin America from advancing as a self-reliant, strong region. It is evident he fears the United States may one day monopolize the sources of profit that Central and South American land provides. It is interesting how he proposes to solve the issue with the example of a potential canal in Nicaragua. While he does not seem to like foreign involvement, I thought it was rational for him to acknowledge their participation is still important in certain matters, as long as the home country has majority control.

Overall, I found Sandino’s manifesto successful at conveying the message that he vehemently wants Latin America to be successful on its own terms. He remains focused on his goals until the end, unwavering from his position no matter the influences that may persuade him otherwise.

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