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Blood on the Border : A Memoir of the Contra…
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Blood on the Border : A Memoir of the Contra War

by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz

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A fascinating memoir of a woman who was an activist for the rights of indigenous persons, and who became involved in activism in Nicaragua leading up to, and during, the contra war. I found this book to be particularly interesting, having read of the contra war but never having heard any real details of it. The author really exposes both sides of the conflict, which are of course quite nuanced. Although I had a hard time following all of the names and conventions the author mentions, the book is otherwise quite riveting. ( )
  lemontwist | Dec 28, 2009 |
Excelent memoir by Indigenous Rights Activist, Nicaragua ally, and Feminist Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz, with a focus on the predominantly indigenous North Atlantic coast of Nicaragua. ( )
  nicamerican | Feb 21, 2007 |
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To three great women:
Chockie Cottier, Dr. Mirna Cunningham,
and Maya Miller, for support and love;

To Indigenous Peoples in the struggle for self-determination;

And in memory of all the casualties of the Contra war.
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The first time I remember hearing about Somoza, Sandino, and Nicaragua was in early 1960 when I was twenty-one years old and new to San Francisco, having just moved there from Oklahoma.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0896087417, Paperback)

With Blood on the Border: A Memoir of the Contra War, Dunbar-Ortiz presents the third volume in her critically acclaimed memoir. In this long-awaited book, she vividly recounts on-the-ground memories of the contra war in Nicaragua, chronicling the US-sponsored terror inflicted on the people of Nicaragua following their 1981 election of the socialist Sandinistas, ousting Reagan darling and vicious dictator Somoza.

The war’s opening salvo was the bombing of a Nicaraguan plane in Mexico City by US-backed contras, the plane Dunbar-Ortiz would have been on were it not for a delay. This disarming closeness to the fraught history of the US/Nicaraguan relationship shapes Dunbar-Ortiz’s narrative, bringing uncomfortably present the decade-long dirty war that the Reagan administration pursued in Nicaragua against civilian and soldier alike.

As with her first two memoirs, in Blood on the Border, Dunbar-Ortiz seamlessly connects the dots not only between the personal and the political, but between recent history and our present moment. Unlike the many commentators who view the September 11, 2001, attacks as the start of the so-called “war on terror,” Dunbar-Ortiz offers firsthand testimony on battles waged much earlier. While her rich political analysis of this history bears the mark of a trained historian, she also writes from her perspective as an intrepid activist who spent months at a time throughout the 1980s in the war-torn country, especially in the remote Mosquitia region, where the indigenous Miskitu people were viciously assailed and nearly wiped out by CIA-trained contra mercenaries. She makes painfully clear the connections between what many US Americans only remember vaguely as the Iran-Contra “affair” and current US aggression in the Americas, the Middle East, and around the world. Clearly, this will be a book valuable not only for students of Latin American history, but also for anyone who is interested in better understanding the violent turmoil of our world today.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:58:45 -0400)

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