National elections are almost two years away in El Salvador, and yet the political parties are already readying their troops for battle. In fact, president Tony Saca has called for the party faithful of ARENA to be "nationalist soldiers" campaigning against the forces of the left.
As the rhetoric and the polarization mount, an editorial in El Faro calls for calm and a commitment to solving the country's problems:
The political forces are already shouting, intending to convince the electorate that their plan is the only path out for El Salvador, and so they have left behind that which is truly important, a convincing declaration of the party's commitment to democracy, to the construction of a national plan not a party plan, to insitutionality as a guaranty for all that the country will walk in an orderly fashion independent of who ends up being the winner [in the next elections]. That is what we urgently need -- not the strident sounds of ones who pretend to strengthen themselves by means of dumping on anything to the contrary.
There is still much time before the elections. It's necessary to make a call for calm to all the parties, to the public officials, and to the media. The country does not deserve to fall into an atmosphere of permanent tension during the next two years. Calm it. What we need most is peace. It's not going to be achieved by shaking flags from iron trenches, but by working together in order to find solutions. The political class, that exercises power from the different institutions of the State, ought to be a source of inspiration and hope and not the embodiment of futile confrontations. (any errors in translation are mine).