Army’s end to be marked in museum ceremony

Today marks the 62nd anniversary of the day that José Figueres Ferrer abolished the national army.

The country has been true to that philosophy since.

Attending a ceremony today at 10 a.m. will be President Laura Chinchilla Miranda, who is trying to turn back an invasion by Nicaragua into northern Costa Rica.

True to the philosophy, Ms. Chinchilla has declined to use force and instead is relying on international organizations to put pressure on Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega.

Figueres, of course, successfully led a revolution against the Costa Rican standing army. History said that he abolished the army while he was head of a provisional junta to prevent a coup by some of his followers. However, he has said that he began to believe the army was unnecessary even when he was a student in the United States.

The ceremony today, as is the case every year, is at the Museo Nacional on Cuesta de Mara east of the San José downtown. The museum was the regional military headquarters, and the towers still show the bullet holes from the civil war.

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