Congress is expected to act this week for or against President Reagan's request for $100 million in aid to the Nicaraguan Freedom Fighters (contras) .
The focus of national attention has been directed almost entirely on the legitimacy of the Freedom Fighters and their relative ability or inability, depending on one's point of view, to successfully prosecute a democratic revolution against the Marxist-Leninist regime of the Sandinistas.
The debate over this issue is a question of neither legitimacy nor viability with respect to the Freedom Fighters. Their struggle to win a national democratic referendum for the people of Nicaragua against a backdrop of Sandinista tyranny and bloodletting stands on its own merit.
Those who oppose the President's $100-million aid package ($30 million non-lethal, $70 million in discretionary military support) are trying to assure the American people that such assistance is not necessary. Opponents of the aid program suggest that the Sandinistas are simply reform-minded nationalists who are no threat to anyone.