A president like you !

In 1990, Alberto Fujimori, a professor of agricultural engineering and mathematics became the president of Peru. He was born in Lima, but both of his parents were Japanese .  Fujimori was perceived as an outsider in a country where most of the population are descendants of indigenous people. During his first presidential campaign, Fujimori captivated the attention of the populate by convincing them that he would solve Peru main issues .Terrorism and hyper inflation. Although he was seen as foreigner for most of the populace, Fujimori’s slogan was “Un presidente como tu” ( a president like you) which was a bit confusing, since not many people could not relate to a Japanese university professor, but it was Fujimori’s  use rhetoric what really persuade 54% of the peruvian population to vote for him. This particular case is emphasize by Honing in her idea of the Foreigner founder.

When Fujimori defeated Mario Vargas Llosa in the 1990 election, he promised the peruvian people that he would solve the problem of hyper inflation without using any type of shock policy . The next day, after the presidential ceremony , Fujimori’s first act as a president was to cut the country’s expenses and to use the so called “fuji shock” measure which would reduce the level of inflation in the country. However, the country was facing another huge problem, terrorism. The Shining Path was a strong group and each year it was becoming stronger. Fujimori and his partner in crime Vladimiro Montesinos started  creating laws against this terrorist acts and began the constructions of murder groups such as “ El Grupo Colina” in order to fight any potential type of terrorist activity. However, some  congressmen were not entirely in favor of Fujimori’s laws and acts . Fujimori saw this as a threat and decided to have a self coup in which he would dissolve the congress and make him a dictator.

Fujimori explained that the reason for this self coup was “ to protect democracy from terrorism”.  While he remained as a dictatorship , Fujimori passed every anti terrorist law which pretty much emphasized that any person could be linked to the Shining Path. Many innocent people were captured by special forces of the government and were taken to jails due to suspicious terrorist acts. Fujimori believed that democracy was in danger and therefore extreme measures had to be taken . Just a Carl Schmitt said , when people are not ready for democracy , the best thing is to suspend it, and thats exactly what Fujimori did. However, due to international pressure, Fujimori was forced to restore democracy and to create a new whole constitution. People were scared to death. This foreigner president had lied about the economy and thousands of people were taken to jail and been tortured.

Five months after the coup, the leader of the Shining Path Abimael Guzman was captured . People were giving all the credit to Fujimori’s terrorist laws, however, the people who really captured Guzman were police man who didn’t have any connection to Fujimori’s laws . Now a days , Fujimori is perceived as the guy who exterminated terrorism in my country, however, people do not understand the implications of what his terrorist laws did to thousands of innocent people. Fujimori is now in prison for attempting against human rights , he lives with three of his best friends , one next to each other,Vladimiro Montesinos and Abimael Guzman . However, there is still thousands of people who support him.

There goes a good documentary about it, some is in spanish some in English

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4 Responses to A president like you !

  1. scter117 says:

    Wow that’s quite the story. The foreign founder’s most distinguishing quality is their scary and benevolent appearance. The need for a foreign founder normally come before the introduction of one. Do you think Fujimori was NEEDED? His actions did some good and some bad just as the Foreign Founder normally appears to do. However, did he need to enter in the first place? Perhaps so. The evil of terrorism may have only been dealt with with some negative ruling from the nation government. A similar contract is trying to be made in America now – Should the NSA be able to take away fundamental freedoms of privacy in order to protect us against terrorism. It seem thats the main message of the foreign founder – some bad and some good is the only way to get rid of the bad. Perhaps that’s true but the drastic level of bad normally exists in the FF stories we learned of. If the problem at hand is not of huge size then the FF is not needed if the problem can be dealt with internally. Either way, this is a very interesting story of a TRUE FF.

  2. andymaskiell says:

    This sounds remarkably what we had under the Bush administration with the passing of the Patriot Act and opening of Guantanamo Bay, though Fujimori’s actions seem like they were more severe. The situation with Bush was different in that he wasn’t a foreigner (though depending on where you live he may seem like one). With this difference in mind, I want to ask if you think Fujimori had so many supporters BECAUSE he was a foreigner or if there were some other criteria involved. Do you think this was the case? What were his criticisms of Mario Vargas Llosa? Were they aimed at his nationality as a Peruvian or did Fujimori’s position shy away from that difference?

  3. The problem that people had with Mario Vargas Llosa was his background. He was a world renown author, he had lived for many years outside the country and he was to a certain degree pretty wealthy. Fujimori, although he was an outsider, was the figure that the low economic class wanted to see take the country. He had lived in the Peru for a long time, he constantly went to the poorest parts of the country with his truck, he had immerse in the Andes culture where most of the problems were seen ….. Therefore , the majority of the population seemed more identified with this Japanese outsider than with a world class intellectual which was Mario Vargas Llosa. Fujimori main criticism towards Vargas Llosa was that, Vargas Llosa had admitted that he had smoked marijuana a couple of times in his adolescence . Fujimori thought this was a terrible thing for a candidate who wanted to eradicate drugs from the country. And besides… he thought Vargas Llosa was a porn author since his novels were full of sexual content… ( this makes me feel ashamed of the politics of my country.) Now if you ask me , do i think Fujimori was NEEDED ? my answer is a flat NO. Although most Peruvians believe terrorism was eradicated from the country due to his actions, now a days small groups of the Shining Path still operate in the Andes, the drug war he declared was a total lie…. Peru is now one the country which suffers the most from narco traffic and Fujimori himself was involve in a lot of drug trafficking .You can make a case on the economic side,yes he reduced the inflation levels of the country , but still…. the end does not justify the means

  4. njalensky says:

    This is crazy how well this fits into the foreign founder scenario. How eventually he gets to dangerous for the people and he is forced out (has to leave). Although he lied about the financial ideas he had planned, I think he was smart in doing a shock policy. If he would have done anything financially with a more gradual process, there could have been a really high probability that something could have stopped him from fixing the problem. There are people (an extremely small amount) out there that support hyper inflation because they could make tons off it. They could have swayed him to not fix the problem so they could continue to make money. For things to get better with economics, it has to get worse. The markets will reset any flaws in it. So in order to fix the problem quicker, he was smart in doing a shock policy on the inflation.

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