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Blood of Brothers
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About the Author

Stephen Kinzer is cultural correspondent for The New York Times. Merilee S. Grindle is Edward S. Mason Professor of International Development at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, and Director of the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies.

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By the former New York Times Managua bureau chief, this is a well-written, information-rich survey of modern Nicaragua. Kinzer describes how Cesar Sandino's 1927-33 anti-U.S. campaign shaped the country's political development and inspired the overthrow of the Somoza regime in 1979. He analyzes the Reagan administration's ``secret war'' against the Sandinistas, and the deception that the contras existed only to interdict arms shipments to El Salvador. Kinzer relates many personal stories of his interaction with Nicaraguans, and he includes the exciting tale of his on-the-spot discovery of a U.S.-supplied contra camp in Honduras--a front-page scoop. He traces the confrontation between the Catholic church and the junta, the peace initiative by Costa Rica's Oscar Arias, the negotiated settlement that more or less ended the conflict and the surprising electoral victory of Violeta Chamorro over Daniel Ortega in 1990. Kinzer concludes that the Sandinistas grossly underestimated the moral power of the Catholic bishops, that they lost significant support by mistreating the Miskito Indians, and that they mistakenly believed they could build a prosperous Nicaragua ``without deferring to the principle of free enterprise.'' Photos. (Apr.)

By the former New York Times Managua bureau chief, this is a well-written, information-rich survey of modern Nicaragua.
An example of public journalism at its best, his book will stand as the definitive study of Nicaragua in the turbulent 80s.
By the former "New York Times" Managua bureau chief, this is a well-written, information-rich survey of modern Nicaragua.
Because he spent as much time in the streets and villages as he did in embassies and restaurants, Kinzer was able to understand and report the many levels of reality generally hidden behind fogs of ideology, public statements and political rhetoric..."Blood of Brothers" is a must-read for anyone who hopes to understand the continuing need for a more enlightened U.S. foreign policy in Central America.--Bill Kovach, Curator, Neiman Foundation At Harvard University
A comprehensive and enthralling account of how the Sandinistas triumphed in the destruction of 'an old and unjust order, ' but failed to make over Nicaragua in their own austere and militant image. Stephen Kinzer, an eyewitness to it all, does justice to both triumph and failure in this even-handed and readable book.--Tom Wicker

Kinzer served in Central America first in the 1970s as a freelance journalist and later as a New York Times bureau chief in Managua (1983-89). An eyewitness to events, he interviewed members of the Somoza, Sandinista, and contra hierarchies. As a result, he provides a highly objective and balanced assessment of events that led to the fall of the Somoza government in 1979. Kinzer avoids ideological bias, but he does note that the Sandinistas came to power because ``those most likely to shed blood are the most likely to triumph.'' Yet despite their many shortcomings, he concludes ``the Sandinistas at least provided a basis upon which a genuine democracy could be built.'' An example of public affairs journalism at its best, his book will stand as the definitive study of Nicaragua in the turbulent 1980s. It belongs in every public and school library.-- J.A. Rhodes, Luther Coll., Decorah, Ia.

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