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`This Revolution is nothing if not original’ Observations from Nicaragua Molly Dougherty, a native of Austin who lives now in Nicaragua, sent us this report from there. Managua, Nicaragua “Would you like a chocolate Santa Claus?” That wasn’t quite what I expected from the pistol-toting, tough burly captain in an olive-green Sandinista uniform sitting behind the desk. He explained to me that at the Nicaraguan go .vernment had put limits on the commercial use of Christmas so that the spirit of Christmas would not be lost in profiting off of Jesus or Santa. So here it was early November and here I was eating chocolate Santa Clauses with the press secretary of the Sandinista Army. This revolution is nothing if not original. . . . That November trip was a quick one to get material on the literacy campaign to add to a documentary film, “Nicaragua: These Same Hands,” that I was working on. Recently I returned to Nicaragua for a longer stay. MANAGUA, Nicaragua’s capital “city,” looks like a collection of small villages, with cows grazing in fields in the “downtown” area. This is because instead of rebuilding the city after its center was leveled by an earthquake in 1972, dictator Anastasio Somoza and his cronies pocketed the money sent as aid from overseas. This has to be one of the very few countries in the world with “Pepsi-Cola” and “Diners Club” billboards intermingled with others bearing revolutionary slogans. The other day I saw “Fanta Happiness and Flavor” next to “Everyone Join the Militias!” What you The World From Texas There has been a tempest in a South Texas teapot concerning whether an El Salvadoran woman serving 90 days in a Corpus jail on illegal entry into the U.S. is a communist and formerly the mistress of the secretary-general of the communist party in El Salvador. She identified herself as Ana Estela Flores Guevara, a Baptist looking for work as a domestic to pay her tuition to theological school in the U.S. Corpus Christi Caller reporters Jay Rosser and Gardner Selby, quoting seldom-named sources \(“the military source, who refused to be identified”; a Border Patrol spokesman, “who asked to remain anonymous”; “Salvadoran embassy officials in Washington”; “a Washington source, an acknowledged expert she was believed to be “Commander Norma Guevara,” active in a front for Salvadoran communists. In a final environmental impact statement, the Air Force says tripling the number of aircraft at Bergstrom AFB outside Austin would increase the number of people under the risk of slight hearing loss from 600 to 2,000 and double the number of Austin residents who are now “highly annoyed” by the noise of the flights. Changes in flight patterns could just about cancel the increases, but there are no guarantees of the changes. A decision on the aircraft tripling is expected in August. * * * Arab investors from Kuwait and perhaps Saudi Arabia have bought, through a Bahamian intermediary, three oil refineries on the Texas coast the Uni Refining plant in Corpus and refineries in Port Neches and Winnie and the American Petrofina refinery in Port Arthur is being sold to Venezuelan and Swiss interests, the Beaumont Enterprise reported. A group including Kuwaiti investors is also buying a refinery in Hawaii. OPEC investments in the U.S. have heretofore been concentrated mostly in banking and real estate. .* * The National Bank of Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, one of the 26 banks held by Republic of Texas Corp., specializes in military accounts. By winning a Department of Defense contract .to service overseas military personnel accounts by satellite, the bank has added 30,000 new accounts and increased its assets by 45%. The San Antonio bank will service accounts at 17 U.S. military bases in England, Scotland, Iceland, and Guam, UPI reports. *. There is no apparent move from the government to stop the planned privateenterprise rocket launch in Texas. Space Services, Inc., the company planning the launch, has moved its launch date to Aug. 1 and its launch site from Matagorda Peninsula to land owned by Dallas oilman Toddie Lee Wynne on Matagorda Island, about 45 miles from Corpus Christi. A NASA official was quoted in the Dallas Times-Herald asking, “If they launch their rocket and it comes down in the middle of downtown wherever, who’s going to pay the damages?” The company has $25 million in liability insurance. An attorney for the firm argues that there are no laws now prohibiting the private launching of rockets and that’s the way it should be. THE TEXAS OBSERVER 21