How could officials be caught flat-footed again?

A big question that has not been answered fully is how could Nicaraguan workers dig and dredge two canals from the Río San Juan to the Caribbean without Costa Rican officials knowing about the activity.

A quick answer is that the airspace over the disputed Isla Calero was restricted, and therefore, aircraft could not fly over and maintain watch.

That is true, and residents who fly in and out of the far northeast of the county report that aircraft have changed their approach patterns to Barra del Colorado so they would not fly over the Isla Calero. But there are problems with this explanation.

people leave. In fact, the Sandinistas were rather rude and taunted the Costa Ricans.

The civil aviation directive probably also does not apply to official aircraft sent up to monitor the island.

Well known is the fact that there are many heavily armed police officers in the area. Certainly some of them have training that would allow stealthy reconnaissance on the ground.

Costa Rica was caught flat-footed in October 2010 when Nicaraguan troops invaded the northern part of the island and set up camp.

That officials let this happen again seems incredible.
Costa Rica received the right to enter the disputed territory from the International Court of Justice where the case of the Nicaragua invasion is being litigated. Costa Rican officials were told that they could enter the area to mitigate any environmental damage. Apparently they have not done so for months while Nicaragua was digging the twin canals.

In addition, copies of the Dirección General de Aviación Civil order say that the restriction only extends to 7,000 feet, well under the operating ceiling of even the smallest light aircraft.

When young Nicaraguan Sandinistas set up a summer camp in the area, Costa Rican law enforcement and other officials were right there,
although they did not succeed in making the young

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