Los Años de la Dictadura
In commemoration of the 20th of December, 1989, the day when the United States government bombarded parts of our hometown Panamá City and ousted the country's de facto ruler, General Manuel Noriega, the Government of Panamá recently decreed this date as a National Day of Mourning, to be commemorated yearly.
Panamá's citizens would do well not to regard this event in isolation. Preceding the U.S. invasion, Panamá went through over 21 years of military dictatorship. The dictatorship in turn was the result of years of questionable leadership and politics and a self-serving ruling elite and political class.
The way things are going today, almost 33 years later, it would seem these lessons were collectively not learned to the extent that they should have.
"Aquellos que no pueden recordar el pasado están condenados a repetirlo."
(Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.)