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Guatemala

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This Francisco Goldman article in The New Yorker is a good run-down of what is going on in Guatemala. Citizens finally came together to stand up to the kleptocracy that has run the country since the end of the civil war of the 80s. Protests have brought down Otto Pérez Molina after already taking out most of his administration. This is a great moment of democratic protest in a nation where political violence has been endemic for a very long time.

But I am pretty skeptical that the nation’s political climate changes that significantly. The factors against it are so high. First, it’s not like the movement against Pérez Molina has any program except protesting the corruption of one administration. Second, the military and oligarchs who dominate the nation are not going away. Third, the culture of corruption in politics there is powerful.

Still, this is an unabashed good thing and at least there is a moment of hope in a nation that offers far too few of those.

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