Peru approached the twenty-first century a polarized country. In the year 2000, with increased authoritarian control over the legislative and judicial branches along with constitutional reforms paving the way for his re-reelection, President Alberto Fujimori campaigned for a third term in office. His main electoral opponent, Alejandro Toledo, along with opposition leaders, spearheaded massive demonstrations in Lima accusing the government of repression, corruption, drug trafficking, and electoral fraud. Opposition figures were joined by grassroots social movements, unions, students, and human rights activists who opposed the regime's repressive and corrupt practices, which included by now reports of torture and extrajudicial killings. When Fujimori first became president a decade earlier he had inherited a country ravaged by widespread poverty, hyperinflation, nearly depleted foreign reserves, a growing narcotics trade, and two armed terrorist groups: the MRTA (Tupac Amarú Revolutionary Movement) and the Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso). Both were on the offensive across the country, the Shining Path most prominently, planting car bombs in the capital, kidnapping and killing civilians, and besieging towns and villages across the country. Looking for a way out of economic and terrorist violence, Peruvians were faced with two options in 1990: Alberto Fujimori, an ex-university president and agricultural engineer of Japanese descent, and Mario Vargas Llosa, a white, upper-middle-class novelist and liberal intellectual. Though Fujimori was less well-known, many Peruvians saw Vargas Llosa's center-right coalition as a repackaged version of the same traditional political groups that had lead the country into crisis. Fujimori would appear much like Hugo Chávez later in Venezuela, a populist outsider ready to challenge the traditional party system. Many saw Fujimori's succinct rhetoric as refreshing when contrasted with Vargas Llosa's elaborate speeches, especially since the former president, Alan García, who fled the country in 1992 on corruption charges, was also well-known for his loquacious disposition.