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Sendero Luminoso

April 15, 2011
Peru's political system has been ailing for decades. Corruption, violence and deep economic inequalities have left it weakened. Now, the first round of voting in the presidential race, which took place Sunday, threatens to leave the country in critical condition. From a field of five candidates, two emerged as front-runners likely to move on to a runoff election June 5. Both appear wanting in experience, and concerns about their commitment to democracy prompted Peruvian writer and Nobel Prize winner Mario Vargas Llosa to say the decision will be like "choosing between AIDS and terminal cancer.
Twelve years ago, guerrillas from the Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement burst onto the scene--and into my office. In their first actions, Tupac guerrillas already displayed the theatrical flair and penchant for violence that have now been amplified into one of the most audacious operations ever in Peru's turbulent political history. Tupac had its public debut in September 1984, firing about 60 machine gun rounds at the U.S.
July 16, 1986
Peru, battered by economic recession and bloodied by shadowy guerrillas, desperately needed the vigor and hope offered by its young new president, Alan Garcia. But Garcia's political honeymoon has come to an abrupt, violent end. Peru's capital, Lima, was host city last month to the first Socialist International meeting ever held outside Europe.
October 6, 1986 | WILLIAM D. MONTALBANO, Times Staff Writer
It is eight years since anyone on the right side of the law saw moon-faced Abimael Guzman, but all Peru seeks him now. The terror that Guzman has unleashed weighs like the Andes Mountains on a troubled nation that does not understand it and cannot control it. Once Guzman was a radical but well-mannered professor at an obscure provincial university. Now he calls himself "Gonzalo," president of the Republic of New Democracy.
February 24, 2010 | By Reed Johnson
Outside of South America, the War of the Pacific (1879-84) is largely remembered today as a nasty but minor dispute, pitting Chile against Bolivia and Peru in a fight over mineral-rich territory and maritime access. But for the countries involved, the war remains a political and psychological open wound that continues to fester. "It's sort of a scar in our national history," says Guillermo Calderón, 39, a Chilean native whose play "Diciembre" (December) opens a run of four performances Wednesday night at REDCAT in downtown Los Angeles.
December 27, 1987 | MONTE HAYES, Associated Press Writer
The lush green hills that look down on this raw frontier town in Peru's highland jungle conceal columns of Shining Path guerrillas on the prowl for profits from cocaine trafficking. Since the beginning of the year, the rebels of the Maoist guerrilla movement have entered into a deadly alliance with drug dealers, both the peasants involved in the illegal trade and the police say.
July 18, 1992 | From Associated Press
A powerful car bomb, blamed on leftist rebels, tore apart a fashionable residential neighborhood, killing at least 18 people, injuring 140 and ripping the facades off 10-story buildings. The blast late Thursday was the most gruesome episode in the current wave of rebel violence in the Lima area. No one claimed responsibility, but police suspected the Maoist rebel group Sendero Luminoso (Shining Path).
Shooting candidates and setting off bombs, Sendero Luminoso guerrillas have carried out a bloody campaign aimed at disrupting municipal elections today and showing that the Maoist group is still fearsomely effective. A powerful car bomb exploded Thursday outside the Peruvian headquarters of IBM, injuring several people, and terrorists assassinated a candidate for mayor of the important Lima district of Villa El Salvador. A dozen other mayoral candidates have been killed since late December.
September 6, 1989 | From Associated Press
Five hooded Sendero Luminoso (Shining Path) guerrillas took a high school teacher from his classroom Tuesday and shot him to death nearby, police said.
June 16, 1989 | From Reuters
Janet Talavera, acting editor of El Diario, a newspaper that openly supports Maoist Sendero Luminoso (Shining Path) rebels, has been arrested, Peruvian police said Thursday.
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