Nicaragua’s Sham Election, Afghanistan’s Opium Economy and More

Nicaragua’s Sham Election, Afghanistan’s Opium Economy and More
A sign reading “Daniel 2021” next to a picture of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega on a public transportation bus, Managua, Nicaragua, June 22, 2021 (DPA photo via AP Images).

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On Sunday, Nicaraguan voters will go to the polls to choose the country’s next president. In reality, they do not need to wait until those votes are counted to know who the winner will be. The outcome is already a foregone conclusion: President Daniel Ortega will win reelection, with the only uncertainty being the percentage of the vote he claims. 

The reason is not hard to find. Over the past six months, Ortega has systematically arrested all the credible opposition candidates that might have presented him with an electoral challenge. Prior to that, he had already muzzled Nicaragua’s press and cracked down on civil society groups, as well as the Catholic Church, that dared to criticize his slide into dictatorship. 

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