Persecution in Nicaragua: they denounce that the Ortega regime kidnapped the dissident sociologist René Vargas

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Police took the 76-year-old intellectual into custody when he was at a sister's residence in Managua. Relatives do not know his whereabouts

Persecution in Nicaragua: denounce that the Ortega regime kidnapped dissident sociologist René Vargas

File photo of Oscar René Vargas (Courtesy La Prensa )

Nicaraguan sociologist Oscar René Vargaswas arrested this Tuesday morning by agents of the Daniel Ortega regime when he was at the home of his sister Patricia in Managua, Nicaragua.

Vargas, 76 years old and author of 35 books, he was an adviser to the leadership of the Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN) in the 1960s but became critical of the Ortega regime with the civil rebellion of April 2018 that was harshly repressed by the Sandinista forces. That year he was threatened and fled into exile in Costa Rica for fear of being imprisoned.

According to the Nicaraguan media Confidential, sources close to the family denounced that Vargas was kidnapped in a strong police deployment and his current whereabouts are unknown.

Vargas had gone to visit his sister Patricia, who is in a delicate state of health. He “he” He came out from where he was hiding to visit her because of her state of health and, ten minutes after she arrived, the Police appeared. The walls were thrown down, they entered with weapons to take him away. When the police arrived, he came out serene,” explained the Confidencial source, noting that the agents did not present a court order.

Persecution in Nicaragua: they denounce that the Ortega regime kidnapped the dissident sociologist René Vargas

Oscar René Vargas in a photo from the time when, together with his brother Gustavo Adolfo, he rescued Daniel Ortega from being executed by the Somoza Guard

He rescued Daniel Ortega 55 years ago

On November 4, 1967, 55 years ago, Daniel Ortega took a nap after lunch in a house in the popular Monseñor Lezcano neighborhood of Managua, without knowing that< b> was about to be captured, and possibly executed, for an operation that the Somoza Guard was carrying out against Sandinista guerrillas in that area. He was saved “by a hair”. Vargas rescued him a few minutes before the military arrived at the house where he was hiding.

On Saturday, November 4, 1967, at approximately one o'clock the afternoon, the then 21-year-old Oscar René Vargasheard on a radio news that the Somocista guard was attacking a house in Managua where a group of Sandinista guerrillas were taking refuge. His brother, Gustavo Adolfo, was just going to the place to have lunch with one of the guerrillas who was hiding in the house. Oscar René took a vehicle belonging to his family, caught up and warned his brother of the danger. By the time they reached the sector, it was already too late. The Guard had captured alive and later executed the guerrillas Casimiro Sotelo, Roberto Amaya, Hugo Medina and Edmundo Pérez.

In those days the Guard was particularly aggressive because on the previous October 23, a Sandinista commando had executed a notorious National Guard sergeant in the street. They were looking for the murderers. One of them was Daniel Ortega Saavedra, who was hiding a few blocks away, oblivious to the fate of his guerrilla companions.

Persecution in Nicaragua: they denounce that the Ortega regime kidnapped the dissident sociologist René Vargas

Daniel Ortega, then 22 years old, is taken away by a Somocista guard at the courts after his capture on November 18, 1967

The Vargas brothers decide to go look for Ortega and another comrade before the guard, who was searching the sector house by house, reached them. “When we got to the house where Daniel Ortega and Iván Turcios were, we realized that they were resting after lunch. They did not know anything about what was happening a few blocks away, in the other house of the compañeros”, recalled Osca René Vargas from exile in a 2019 article. The two Sandinista guerrillas left the place in the cars of the Vargas brothers when they were already the Guard was on the street.

Daniel Ortega was captured shortly thereafter, on November 18, 1967. But he was not charged with the murder in which he participatedWell, as Ortega himself would declare later, the guard had already avenged the four dead of Monsignor Lezcano, to whom he attributed the murder of the sergeant, despite the fact that only one of those executed had participated.

< p class="paragraph">Vargas said he does not regret having saved the life of his persecutor 52 years later. “One cannot regret something that was his philosophy of life. Nor are we responsible for the evolution of people. At that time we shared common objectives,” said Vargas, who now thinks that Ortega is the expression of the same Somocism that they previously fought. “He could not transcend the old dominant political culture in traditional politicians. He got stuck in the vices of the past. He was transformed and became an outstanding student of Somocismo. That would explain why old Somocistas now support Ortega and vice versa. The only thing that interests him is staying in power.”

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