Letter from the Nicaraguan embassy
This 1987 letter from the Nicaraguan embassy to Richland County Citizens for Peace and Justice, RCCPJ, a Wisconsin solidarity organization, highlights the ways in which non-state actors can craft impactful foreign policies. As part of the Anti-Contra War movement, multiple grassroots organizations in the United States, like the RCCPJ, developed foreign policies that challenged the policies of the United States government. Municipalities in North America and Europe soon joined this movement, with hundreds of sister-city, or twinning, relationships developing with Nicaraguan towns. Much like the Anti-Contra War movement that spawned it, the Nicaragua sister-city phenomenon was truly international, with municipalities from 19 North American and European states developing ties to Nicaraguan cities. These groups sent volunteers and material aid to their Nicaraguan counterparts, while also raising awareness about the conflict in Central America. The activities of these sister-city links highlight the role of local actors in transnational politics, revealing the ways in which apparently peripheral players impacted global events. These municipalities forged independent foreign policies that, at times, challenged and subverted the actions of their respective national governments. As part of the broader Anti-Contra War movement, these linkages placed considerable pressure on those opposed to the Sandinista government and, consequently, helped further undermine U.S. intervention.
Washington, January 8, 1987
Ms. Andrea Kaiser
Richland County Citizens for Peace and Justice
Brewer County Library
325 N. Central
Richland Center, WI
Dear Ms. Kaiser:
I would like to take this opportunity to inform you that I have just recieved a proposal from DAMUR, the office that handles the sister city program in Managua, to twin Richland Center with the city of SANTA TERESA.
This city is located in the Department of Carazo, in the Region IV of Nicaragua. Its territory is 180 square miles, and has a population of 11,714 pop.
I will be writing you again, as soon as I receive from DAMUR the characterization of SANTA TERESA. Meanwhile, let me know if you agree in taking the proposal in mention.
Zelmira Garcia C.