The Somoza dictatorship was a Sultanate, stated sociologist Edelberto Torres-Rivas. Somoza was the government system. Once the Sultan was deposed from his throne, the whole structure came down like a house of cards.

But Somoza wasn’t the political culture, or machismo, merely their most visible representative – a strongman whose wishes are orders and his whims the law. When he left, nine strongmen replaced him, reports Confidencial.

No one within the Sandinista ranks questioned the fact that those nine weren’t even remotely representative of the national gender balance, despite the many risks taken and losses suffered by Nicaraguan women in the war. If they did question at all, they spoke with their lips pressed tightly together out of fear, discipline and dissimulation. Nor was there anyone counseling them to suppress that slogan: “National Directorate, [give us your] orders.”

 

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