Inhabited by various Amerindian peoples, in the 16th century. the Nicaragua was colonized by the Spaniards. In 1811, it passed under the Mexican Empire of A. Itúrbide (1783-1824), upon whose fall it declared its independence. A period of liberal rule (up to 1844) was followed by twenty years of struggles between liberals and conservatives, which often expanded into Central American wars. In 1856 the adventurer W. Walker seized the presidency, later attempting to extend his dominion over Central America. During the subsequent period of conservative presidencies (1857-93), the pacified country progressed materially. The government of the liberal JS Zelaya, affirmed with the revolution of 1893, introduced radical reforms and fought against the growing interference of the USA, which in 1909 supported the revolutionary movement that overthrew Zelaya.
In 1911, according to localcollegeexplorer, the conservative A. Díaz was elected president, asking for the intervention of North American troops; the US occupation lasted until August 1925 and resumed from 1926 to 1933. Between 1925 and 1927 a civil war broke out again between the conservative forces of Díaz and the liberal forces of JB Sacasa. Díaz was succeeded in 1928 by the liberal JM Moncada. Under the subsequent presidency of Sacasa began the rise of the Minister of War Anastasio Somoza García, who, supported by the National Liberal Party, was president from 1937 to 1947 and from 1951 to 1956, exercising de facto dictatorship and strongly opposing governments left of Central America. Somoza, who died in an attack in 1956, was succeeded by his son Luis Somoza Bayle. The National Liberal Party, and with it the Somoza family, continued to dominate the political life of the country, first with R. Schick Gutiérrez (1963-66), then with the vice president and interior minister L. Guerrero Gutiérrez, then with the second son of Somoza Debayle, also named Anastasio, elected in 1967. In 1971 he dissolved Parliament, suspended the Constitution and assumed all powers. Somoza Debayle was re-elected in 1974 but in the meantime the opposition movement to the dictatorship was spreading, in particular with the activity of the Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional (FSLN). After the assassination of PJ Chamorro Cardenal, leader of the moderate opposition and editor of the independent newspaper La Prensa, the anti-government guerrillas turned into a general insurrection against the dictator, who left the country in 1979.
Transformed into a party, the FSLN established a revolutionary government which concentrated its efforts on the rehabilitation of the Nicaragua, exhausted by the civil war, carrying out agrarian reform, the eradication of illiteracy and a first health system, but limiting democratic freedoms. Against the government, of which in March 1981 the leader of the FSLN D. Ortega Saavedra became head, moved the destabilizing action of the contras, the guerrillas supporters of the past regime who settled in Honduras and supported by the United States. In the parliamentary and presidential elections of November 1984, the FSLN won 67% of the votes and Ortega was confirmed head of state and executive, while the United States, continuing to support the anti-Sandinist guerrillas, promoted the trade embargo with serious repercussions on conditions economic and social (foreign debt, inflation, unemployment). The subsequent political and presidential elections, in February 1990, thus saw the affirmation of the Unión Nacional Opositora (UNO) and its presidential candidate V. Barrios de Chamorro, widow of Chamorro Cardenal, while the FSLN became the main opposition force. conservative parties imposed its own presidential candidate, JA Alemán Lacayo; in 2001, the Partido Liberal Constitucionalista (PLC) won an absolute majority in the National Assembly and the victory over Ortega of its presidential candidate EJ Bolaños Geye, who promoted new free trade agreements with the USA, which accompanied the accession del Nicaragua to the CAFTA (Central American Free Trade Agreement). The 2006 elections brought D. Ortega back to the presidency, also reconfirmed in the 2011 and 2016 presidential elections, with a much more moderate program. The political crisis that opened in Venezuela and the consequent risk of reducing its financial support, energy dependence, vulnerability to natural phenomena and rampant organized crime in the following years eroded the popular consent granted to President Ortega, up to degenerate into the violent waves of protests that occurred in April 2018 following the launch of a pension reform – later withdrawn – which provided for an increase in contributions, reducing pensions by 5% at the same time, to which institutional forces opposed a brutal repression producing over 200 deaths. In the following months, the conflicts did not recover, despite attempts by the Nicaraguan Church and international bodies to open glimmers of dialogue between the government and the opposition, and the request for early elections to be held in 2019.
LAKE OF Nicaragua Central American lake (8430 km 2 ; maximum depth 70 m), 37 m above sea level in the homonymous state. Oval in shape, it has low and marshy NE coasts; on the other hand those of SO are high. The island of Ometepe, the largest of the lake, is made up of 2 volcanic cones: Concepción (1610 m) and Madeira (1394 m). The tributary is the Río Tipitapa, which flows down from Lake Managua; the Río San Juan, which flows into the Caribbean Sea, is an emissary.