Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

Anti-Revisionism in Nicaragua

Popular Action Movement–Marxist-Leninist


MAP–ML (the Movimiento de Acción Popular–Marxista-Leninista) was formed by workers and revolutionary militants who rejected the reformism of the pro-Soviet revisionists of the Socialist Party (PSN) in 1971. They also rejected the Castroist tactics of the isolated guerrilla band and social-democratic ideas, both of which they believed were combined in the policies of the Sandinista Front.

Before the 1979 revolution, MAP–ML had led the 1973 month-long national strike of 20,000 construction workers that defeated Somoza’s decree imposing a 60-hour work week. In 1974-75 it had formed the FO (Frente Obrero) as its revolutionary trade union center, and during the next years it established deep roots not only among construction workers, but among workers in many other industries, including at the largest sugar mill in Central America.

Then, beginning in September 1978, MAP–ML organized the MILPAS (Milicias Populares Anti-Somocistas). The MILPAS mobilized thousands of workers, peasants and barrio youth for the 1978-79 liberation war, with hundreds of them giving their lives. Apart from the FSLN, the MILPAS were the only other organized armed force of the insurrection. And in March 1979, MAP–ML launched the daily newspaper El Pueblo, which achieved a press run of some 10,000 copies in a country where the largest bourgeois newspaper only printed 50,000 copies. MAP–ML also originated its youth group and cultural groups during the 70s.

After the revolution, MAP–ML expanded its work by leading a wave of worker strikes and poor-peasant peasant land seizures, and a movement for workers control with the aim of carrying the revolution further. But MAP–ML was also met with repression. The FSLN closed down El Pueblo, seized its printing press, and jailed 150 MAP–ML and FO leaders. What’s more, the FSLN leaders demanded the MILPAS be disbanded, and in order to avoid a civil war in which the victorious people would be fighting each other, the Marxist-Leninists dissolved the MILPAS on the 25th of July, 1979.


Thereafter, as the 1980s war against the contras heated up, MAP–ML called on former MILPAS members and the broader masses to join the Sandinista Popular Army and Militias, which many did. Alongside this it criticized FSLN policies that it believed weakened the fight to defeat the contras.

“Below is a selection of materials that give an idea of MAP–ML’s struggle to deepen the revolution in the direction of proletarian socialism during the 1980s. The links are to articles it published between 1983 and 1990 that were translated and reprinted in The Workers’ Advocate, or they’re to speeches by or interviews with MAP-ML members. Although the party changed its name to the Marxist-Leninist Party of Nicaragua (MLPN) in 1985, it remained popularly known as MAP–ML. If you have additional materials from MAP–ML/MLPN or FO, and would be willing to share them, please contact EROL.”

Primary Documents

“The revolution is the only way out for the toilers” Prensa Proletaria, No. 4, June-July 1983

“Prensa Proletaria at the Fifth Congress of the UPN” Prensa Proletaria, No. 4, June-July 1983


“Defense should be given a class content” Prensa Proletaria, No. 4, June-July 1983

“FMLN orients itself towards the people’s victory” Prensa Proletaria, No. 3, February-March 1983

“El Salvador at a crossroads” Prensa Proletaria, No. 4, June-July 1983

The workers can not continue giving economic and political incentives to the bourgeoisie in the midst of aggression by imperialism

The working class and the people must possess the military arts

Contadora: The Other Face of Imperialism

On the Exclusion of MAP-ML from the State Council

Where do the various classes stand in Nicaragua today?

On the Popular Militias and the Law on Military Service Prensa Proletaria, June 1984

Reservists with a high anti-imperialist and anti-capitalist spirit Prensa Proletaria, April 1984

The Socialist International stands with imperialism and the bourgeoisie against the Nicaraguan revolution Prensa Proletaria, April 1984

Press release of the Nicaraguan Workers Front on the U.S. aggression

MAP/ML Communique on the Nicaraguan elections: For struggle against the bourgeoisie and U.S. imperialism

Plan of Struggle

Continue the struggle for the hegemony of the working class in Nicaragua

Why did MAP-ML run in the elections?


In the face of U.S. aggression Prensa Proletaria, December 1-15, 1984

Bureaucrats attack the Workers Committee Prensa Proletaria, No. 12, January 1-15, 1985

Trade union office of the Workers Front is opened in Rivas Prensa Proletaria, No. 12, January 1-15, 1985

Stand in struggle against the bourgeoisie and imperialism!, Prensa Proletaria, No. 12, January 1-15, 1985

People of Nandaime and Carazo demand arms, Prensa Proletaria, No. 12, January 1-15, 1985

At the Plastinic plant Fight against the bureaucracy!, Prensa Proletaria, No. 12, January 1-15, 1985

The Marxist-Leninists in the National Assembly, Prensa Proletaria, No. 14, March 16-31, 1985

Worker fired for running on MAP/ML ticket, Prensa Proletaria, No. 14, March 16-31, 1985

The struggle of the plywood workers, Prensa Proletaria, No. 14, March 16-31, 1985

Nicaraguan Marxist-Leninists declare: No more concessions to the big bourgeoisie!, Prensa Proletaria, No. 15, May 31, 1985

The Nicaraguan Marxist-Leninists on the solidarity of the American proletariat, Prensa Proletaria, No. 15, May 31, 1985

Six years since the Nicaraguan revolution – From a speech by Isidro Tellez, General Secretary of MAP/ML

The Nicaraguan Marxist-Leninists on the present situation

Nicaraguan Marxist-Leninists on the foreign debt: Aggression, crisis and... external debt, Prensa Proletaria, No. 16, July 16-31, 1985

Comrade Isidro Tellez addresses meetings in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco

Interview with Comrade Isidro Tellez

Against the exclusion of women from the Nicaraguan military reserves

The Nicaraguan workers demand: ’Abortion must be legalized, but that is not enough’

Strengthen the defense of the revolution!, Prensa Proletaria, No. 19, February 1986

Carter welcomed in Nicaragua: Opportunism in foreign relations Prensa Proletaria, No. 19, February 1986

Sandino and the united front with the bourgeoisie Prensa Proletaria, No. 19, February 1986

’Prensa Proletaria’: No more firings against the workers’ movement!

ENAVES garment strike in Managua

Imperialism will bite the dust of defeat!

Poor peasants expropriate landlord in Jinotega

Metal workers mobilize for their rights

A campaign to promote workers’ press

Repression against working class leader

A new alternative in union organization emerges at San Antonio Sugar Combine in Nicaragua Prensa Proletaria, May 1987

A portrait of a revolutionary fighter Prensa Proletaria, May 1987

On political pluralism in Nicaragua Prensa Proletaria, May 1987

On the new peace plans

Unpopular work rules

Experiences from combat training

The cooperatives and the workers movement

Chilo Tellez of MLP of Nicaragua on peace pact

The Nicaraguan Marxist-Leninists on the crisis of Sandinism and the Arias plan

Nicaraguan plastics workers declare for class trade unionism

Nicaraguan dockworkers strike

Prensa Proletaria Editorial

’La Prensa’ must not be allowed to play with the workers’ demands

Peasants vow not to sacrifice their land and arms for the Arias plan

Government strikebreaking at Nicaraguan sugar refinery

’Between government intransigence and right-wing manipulation’

The Nicaraguan people must have food

Cotton growers won’t pay wages

The Nicaraguan Marxist-Leninists and the elections

Joint statement by Marxist-Leninists of Nicaragua and the U.S., May 1990

Reports from U.S. Marxist-Leninist Party Delegations on Their Visits to Nicaragua

Managua in the summer of '85

What's really going on in Nicaragua?

Day by day in Nicaragua

An encounter with a Sandinista youth

MLP solidarity tour: 'Nicaraguan workers, you are not alone!'

Dialogue with workers in Chinandega

International youth camp held in Managua

MLP Nicaragua tour: Revolutionary workers arm in arm

With troops returning from battle against the CIA's contras

'Prensa Proletaria' on the MLP tour

With a peasant cooperative in Jinotega

Protest at the U.S. embassy in Managua

Workers' Front and the committees of struggle

The Marxist-Leninist delegates are political activists, not talk-shop parliamentarians

The growing crisis and the Committees of Struggle