mental reason for Marxism’s failure tonpenetrate the Quiche. It is not, as Mr.nWalsh asserts, the product of demographicsnand geography. The anti-Marxist governmentnhas failed to “modernize” thenQuiche for the same reasons.nMr. Walsh repeats the falsehood thatnSomoza of Nicaragua siphoned off U.S.naid after the earthquake that hit Managuanin 1972. Long before Somoza hadnoffered a defense by citing five separatenU.S. investigations that cleared him ofnsuch allegations (in his recent book,nNicaragua Betrayed, with Jack Cox,nWestern Islands, 1980), I had alreadynread two of the Agency for InternationalnDevelopment reports clearing Somozanof this repeated canard.nAlso, I interviewed Somoza on fivendifferent occasions between 1977 andn1979. I spent some time questioningnhim about his decision not to rebuildnthe devastated area of Managua. He toldnme in October 1977 that he had to choosenbetween inflating the currency with ancrash reconstruction program that mightnbe leveled by another quake, or buildingnfrom scratch at a slower pace in a safernpart of Managua. He chose not to inflatenthe economy and did not yield to thenpolitical pressures of his own politicalnparty, which wanted the government toncover the losses of party members whonlacked the foresight to take out insurance.nIt was as a result of this decisionnthat many businessmen in Nicaragua decidednto join the anti-Somoza campaign,nallying themselves with the MarxistnSandinistas. Furthermore, it is an outrightndistortion to say, as Mr. Walshndoes, that thousands were killed in ann”anti-Somoza revolution.” Like the historynof the Spanish conquest, and of CentralnAmerica generally, it was a lot morencomplex.nThe revolution in Nicaragua was essentiallynthe creation of two primaryngroups during the preparatory and ignitionnstage: the Marxists aided by thenChristian Democrats in Latin Americanin alliance with Castro and the Soviets;nand carried out on the ground by the radicalnliberation theologists of the CatholicnChronicles of CulturenJBkn^S’nmfT^M^^^^fc ^5n^mrTiMiiiiHiiiMjaMUfyaLnHispanic Church. The business elementncame late to the “revolution” and did sonfor two reasons. One, the family feud betweennthe Somoza and Chamorro families.n(Pedro Chamorro, owner of the Managuandaily, LaPrensa, wanted to be presidentnand thus allied himself with thenMarxists and the radical Church tonachieve such a goal, but he was assassinatednbefore he could realize his 25-yearoldndream.) Only by understanding thenhundred years of family feuds in Nicaraguanis one able to understand its realnhistory. Secondly, the anti-Somoza busi­nMr. Walsh’s Last Wordsnby Edward J. WalshnI note Mr. St. John’s points of contentionnwith my piece, and while dulynconceding a couple of them, I wondernif he understood my motive in writingnit, which was to provide a perspectivenon recent events in Central America,nand more importantly, on what may wellnhappen if pro-Marxist forces score furthernvictories. I had no intention of explicatingnthe history of the region in anynMr. Walsh is with the United StatesnIndustrial Council in Nashville, Tennessee.nnnnessmen were never sure they couldncome out on top in a revolution directednby Castro and Cuba, but when the Carternadministration made it clear it was tryingnto get rid of Somoza, they changedncamps.nThe glowing picture Mr. Walshnpaints of Costa Rica is consistent withnthe conventional wisdom that is in error.nThe fact is, the initial cancer cells werenincubated in Costa Rica, and it was thisncountry that became the sanctuary (withnthe guidance of a top-heavy Soviet Embassynstaff in San Jose since 1972) thatnled to the revolution in Nicaragua, thenbloodletting in El Salvador and terrorismnin Guatemala.nWhat concerns me about Mr. Walsh’snpiece is that it repeats the understandablenerrors of others not of his or my philosophicalnpersuasion. And while we arenbeing distracted by the events in Poland,nAfghanistan and the Persian Gulf,nMarxism—under the cloak of the CatholicnChurch—is making enormous stridesnin the soft underbelly of America: CentralnAmerica. If we do not get the factsnstraight about so vital an area, then thenfuture may be as gloomy as Mr. Walshnmakes it out to be, but for reasons thatnI fear he has not fully understood. Dngreat detail. However, on his specificnpoints: first, I don’t believe I suggestedngenocide by the Spanish; I did suggestnwarfare. If I was unclear, I amend thenpoint herewith. I did not write, as Mr.nSt. John alleges, that demographics andngeography are reasons for Marxism’snfailure to penetrate the Quiche. Mynsentence read: “To a very great extent,nGuatemala’s current bloody battle withnMarxist terrorists is affected by demographynand geography.” That admittedlynbroad statement was intended toncover several things, such as 1) thendifficulties in “modernizing” the nation,nbecause the Indians (with their tradi-n