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Gizzi vs. Rushdie:

One of the world?¢â??¬â??¢s most famous novelists made it clear he has not changed his favorable opinion of the former Marxist regime in Nicaragua. Questioned by John Gizzi in a Washington Post ?¢â??¬???Bookworld?¢â??¬  chatroom about his 1987 novel, The Jaguar Smile, which characterized the Sandanista regime in glowing terms, Salmon Rushdie replied: ?¢â??¬???I haven?¢â??¬â??¢t changed my mind about the Sandanistas of those days, the mid-1980?¢â??¬â??¢s, and my mind was rather more critical than you suggest.?¢â??¬ 

Gizzi countered with quotes from Rushdie about former President Daniel Ortega and his fellow Sandanistas, including the author?¢â??¬â??¢s conclusion: ?¢â??¬???They struck me as men of integrity and great pragmatism, with an astonishing lack of bitterness toward their opponents, past and present.?¢â??¬  Rushdie retorted that ?¢â??¬???it was plain to me that this was not a purely Marxist-Leninist regime. Some of the Sandanista directorate were Marxists ?¢â??¬ ¦ others were businessmen and intellectuals. It would have been easy to make Nicaragua an ally of the U.S; the decision to smash it instead was one I opposed then and still do.?¢â??¬ 

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