Daniel Ortega Saavedra, President of Nicaragua

Happy Birthday to Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega Saavedra, born in La Libertad, Nicaragua, on November 11, 1945. Ortega’s father was a citizen-soldier for of Augusto Cesar Sandino, after whom the Sandinistas are named. Ortega has a lengthy career in public service, starting as a citizen-soldier leader against the US-backed Somoza dictatorship.  He was a central Latin American protagonist in the Cold War who helped lead the 1979 Nicaraguan revolution.  Under Ortega’s leadership, the Nicaraguans fought a long civil war against the Contras, a rebel group funded by the US government during the administration of President Ronald Reagan. About 50,000 Nicaraguans died during this harsh, bloody civil war. Ortega was elected President of Nicaragua in 1984 and again in 2006, and he remains in office as of this digital copy. His recent years have been marked by serious political turmoil.

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