Central American country bordering Honduras
and Costa Rica
. Independent from Spain
. Was once an alternate location choice to build what is now the Panama Canal
, since Lake Nicaragua would have made part of the channel that wouldn't have to be dug.
Spent the 1980s in civil war between the left-wing Sandanistas (who took power in 1978) and the right-wing Contras, who members of the Reagan administration in the U.S. funded despite a Congressional ruling against giving any money to either side. In 1990, a democratic government was elected again.