Saturday, August 27, 2005

Strong Support For Iraq In El Salvador

I found this AP article covering the participation by the Salvadoran army in the coalition in Iraq interesting on a couple points:


First is how proud the solider is of what he and his fellow soldiers were doing in Iraq, and his strong support of the efforts in Iraq.

"There is still so much need, so much work to do," Rivera said, adding he was glad a fresh batch of soldiers sent to replace him and others would continue the work on rebuilding bridges, roads and public buildings..........He said the other troops shared his belief that it was important to help rebuild Iraq, and they ignored international criticism that it was time for them to pull out of the country.

Just like the majority of American service men and woman who strongly support what is happening in Iraq, their Salvadoran partners feel the exact same way. However there is a political wing in Salvador that does not support the country's participation in freeing the Iraq people and rebuilding their country. That would be the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) which was a former communist guerrilla group. FMLN

The guerrilla groups took a step toward closer unity in October 1980 by forming the Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (Frente Farabundo Marti de Liberacion Nacional-Frente Democratico Revolucionario--FMLN-FDR, which constituted an umbrella entity or alliance for operational and strategic coordination among the insurgent forces and their popular fronts. The FMLN had a leadership structure (DRU), a regional military organization (five guerrilla fronts), and a political-diplomatic front (the FDR). A self-described Marxist-Leninist movement with a generally pro-Soviet and pro-Cuban orientation, the FMLN-FDR committed itself to seizing power through a two-pronged military strategy of economic sabotage and a prolonged guerrilla war of attrition based on a combination of Maoist, Vietnamese, and Guevarist principles. It sought to entrench its rural guerrilla forces while developing urban support bases in preparation for an eventual general insurrection. During the 1980-82 period, politically related violence in El Salvador increased dramatically as the former terrorist groups completed their transition to primarily guerrilla organizations.

It's not strange to me that people of a communist or socialist political leaning would opposing helping another country like Iraq enter into the sphere of democracy. Socialists and Communists want to see things move the other way. That whole cause of "advocating, Marxist-Leninist ideology based on Ernesto "Che" Guevara's foco, or insurrectional center, theory of guerrilla warfare, as well as Maoist and West European revolutionary theories". Good old Che Guevara Che ................................................

Thankfully like here in the US the majority of Salvadorians and their leadership support pro-democracy related actions. They should know how important it is to guard against the "Che" Guevara's of our day. It's encouraging to know that "Che" Guevara t-shirts and his socialist ideas are not a big draw in El Salvador. Seems that the t-shirts and love for such government only runs strong in the ultra-left wing of the democratic party here in the States, and on university campuses.

The second thing that really impressed me was the connection that the Salvadorian soldiers had with the Iraq people per this story:

"As the days wore on, you realize that the Iraqis need so much and have a strong affinity for the Salvadorans. They always greeted us with the word 'sadiqi' Salvador," which he said means "My Salvadoran friend."

"We had translators, but in the end the warmth and collaboration overcame that barrier. They were truly our friends," he said.

Seems to me that the Iraqi people probably can related strongly to another small country that in recent history had to fight off a politically based guerrilla insurgency intent on installing a government and way of life that was not what the majority of people wanted. Based on that connection I can see why the Iraqis called them 'sadiqi' Salvador or "my Salvadoran friend". Having countries like El Salvador helping is a strategic gain for sure but I think it is a huge political gain for all the right reasons............