Archive for the ‘Lula’ Category

The pre-papal visit Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, September 14th, 2015

Starting on September 19th, Pope Francis will be traveling to Cuba and the U.S.. The Communist regime’s propaganda machine announced it will be releasing 3,522 prison inmates, none of which is a dissident;

The latest 3,522 prisoners to be freed will include minors, people over the age of 60, prisoners in poor health and foreigners who will be repatriated, according to the Granma newspaper. It said there will be no releases of those convicted of “crimes against state security”.

Over in Philly, pop-up-popes are springing up all over town:

Argentine Court Blocks Proclamation of Winner in Provincial Vote

An Argentine court on Tuesday ordered the electoral board of the northern province of Tucuman not to declare any winner in the Aug. 23 gubernatorial election until a move to have the ballot overturned is resolved.

Jorge Lanata’s investigation showed votes bought with drugs (video in Spanish):

Alberto Nisman could not have killed himself, ballistics tests show. The prosecutor investigating Argentina’s worst-ever terrorist attack was shot dead by someone else

Conferencia: “Escenario económico y político de la Argentina preelectoral”

Llegamos a Estados Unidos!

Significant Amendments Made To Bermuda’s Partnership Legislation


Brazilian Police Seek to Question Former President in Petrobras Probe. Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and his ruling Workers’ Party ‘could have benefited,’ authorities say. An understatement if there ever was one.

Brazil to Auction Hydroelectric Plants. Brazil plans to auction off 29 power plants to private operators Oct. 30, a government official said, a move that is expected to bring the cash-strapped government about $4.4 billion.

Down to BB+: S&P Cuts Brazil’s Debt Rating to Junk. Brazil lost its coveted investment-grade credit rating in the eyes of one major firm on Wednesday, dealing a blow to the government’s credibility with investors and threatening to aggravate its economic downturn.

Chilean Police Arrest 2 in Robbery of Bachelet’s Security Team

Bulletproof Vest Saves Colombian Mayoral Candidate

Cloud of Secrecy Obscures Colombia’s Human-Trafficking Blight. Reported Cases the Tip of the Iceberg, Say Anti-Trafficking Specialists

Normalization update: Tens of thousands of Cubans streaming into U.S. through southwestern border

Free Education in Cuba? Sort of / Ivan Garcia

Castro’s Empty Barabbas Politics For The Pope

Ecuador Moves to Shut Down Press Freedom Group

Rafael Correa’s Fairyland of Misinformation. Lies, Distortions Are All Ecuador’s Delusional President Has Left

El Salvador baby-swap couple reunited with child

Guatemala Outsources a Corruption Crackdown.A U.N.-sponsored agency has put Guatemala’s president and much of its political elite behind bars, in one of the most sweeping anticorruption campaigns ever

The International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala, or Cicig, has broad powers to launch its own criminal investigations. It then works alongside Guatemala’s own attorney general’s office to prosecute cases in local courts. Its staff hails from 20 countries, from Italians who have tussled with the Mafia to Colombian anti-money-laundering experts.

Guyana to press UN strongly for judicial end to Venezuela controversy – Granger

Two Out of Three Hispanics Oppose Immigration Increase

Only 34 percent of U.S.-born Hispanics, and 33 percent of foreign-born Hispanics, want to increase legal immigration, said the Gallup report.

Sixty-four percent of each group of Hispanics want migration to be reduced or leveled, said Gallup, which released the report under a misleading headline, “U.S. Support for Increased Immigration Up to 25%.”

Jamaica contributes US$100,000 to flood-hit Dominica

‘El Chapo’ Guzman escape: Mexican prison officials charged. Four Mexican officials have been charged with aiding the escape of the notorious drugs lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman from a maximum security prison.

Uh oh! New Panama Canal lock leaking

Paraguay Guerrilla Splinter Group Brought Back Into Fold?

New evidence has emerged suggesting ACA guerrilla rebels in Paraguay have reunited with their cousins in the EPP, likely marking the end of a tiny guerrilla organization that has suffered several casualties and arrests of top leaders since breaking away last year.

Over 5,000 Chinese citizens applied for Peru visas

S&P Lowers Puerto Rico’s Credit Rating to Its Second-to-Last Rung

Puerto Rico Debt Crisis: A Bond Guide as Potential Defaults Loom, or, a brief guide to Russian roulette, money-wise?

Puerto Rico’s debt. No way out

Uruguay will help Syrian refugees reach another country

[President Tabare] Vazquez said Uruguay has reached out to Lebanon because that’s where the refugees would like to go. Since Lebanon is not willing to welcome them, his government is asking the five Syrian families to choose another country.

Last February’s report on domestic abuse within one of the families (note that the 5 families are comprised of 80 people):

Venezuela Takes Out Full-Page NYT Ad to Defend Violent Deportation Spree

Court Rules TV Network Shut Down by Chávez Must Be Reinstated. RCTV President Celebrates Venezuelans’ “Right to Be Informed”. Good luck with that:

On Monday, September 7, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) issued a ruling ordering the Venezuela government to restore the network’s broadcasting license and return all seized assets.

Miserable Decision Against Leopoldo Lopez No Surprise

VenEconomy: Justice of Horror Enforced All the Way in Venezuela

The week’s posts and podcast:
9/11/2001: It is altogether fitting and proper

Venezuela: Lopez sentenced to 13+ years UPDATED

September 11: In memory of Joe Angelini, Jr.

Argentina: #Nisman could not have shot himself

Colombia: Is the U.S. pressuring Uribe to accept FARC terms?

Mexico: A fifth bus on the Iguala students case

Panama: New leaks


Guatemala: Comedian wins first round

Uruguay: Syrians don’t like it

The royal baby Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, May 4th, 2015

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate Middleton, had a baby daughter born on Saturday, and that’s all you’ll hear about it on this blog.

On with the news in our hemisphere:

Now even the dogs get kidnapped: Gangs Target Purebred Dogs in Argentina

Bahamas court agrees to review new immigration rules

Lula Investigated for Being Odebrecht’s “Trafficker-in-Chief”

Brazil’s Power Dynamics Shifting Amid Political Scandals

Brazilian executed in Indonesia ‘unaware what was happening until end’Priests states Brazilian man executed in Indonesia did not understand what was happening to him because of his schizophrenia and bipolar disorder

Chile’s Calbuco volcano erupts for third time

Colombia’s High Court Seeks Wider Probe of Espionage CaseInvestigation of ex-President Álvaro Uribe, five other aides sought

Where Are Colombia’s Youth in FARC Negotiations?Josías Fiesco: The Most Impacted Have Not a Single Seat at the Table

Colombia’s judiciaryTrouble at the topEven the highest courts are not immune from scandal

Costa Rica is happy — but not too much

From China: Clandestine Arms Shipment Arrives in Cuba

Venezuela’s Maduro Joins Raul Castro for Cuba’s May Day Parade, where no one would dare throw mangoes at them.

What Happened When I Joked About the President of Ecuador

A few months before, I registered the Crudo Ecuador brand with the Ecuadorean Institute of Intellectual Property. The I.E.P.I. published the Gaceta, a booklet that shows all the brands that are being registered, including mine.

That’s when things took a dark turn. Some Twitter users began posting I.E.P.I. documents. These documents are supposed to be confidential; they showed my telephone number, my address, my ID number. Then they started posting information from the civil registry. And then, a photo of me in a mall. When I showed my wife the picture, she said, “Hey, this was taken three days ago.” So they’d been following us.

Guatemala Needs More than OutrageScale Back the State to Starve Corruption


A Tale of Two Plantations: Slave Life and Labor in Jamaica and Virginia reviewRichard S Dunn’s comparative study of slavery makes surprising arguments

Thanks To Vaccination, Rubella Has Been Eliminated From The Western Hemisphere

Mexican army helicopter shot at in drug cartel attackA Mexican army helicopter has been shot at in the western state of Jalisco, killing three soldiers and injuring 12 others.

For “peaceful purposes”? Nicaragua approves Russian satellite base for ‘alternative GPS’Opposition say legislation was rushed through without proper scrutinyNicaraguan military says it plans to buy Russian jets and patrol boats

Crossing the Darién Gap: US-bound migrants marooned in Panama jungleLong voyage winds from half a world away in search of economic opportunity in North America (emphasis added),

As dusk fell on a recent Saturday, a long dugout canoe floated into this remote town in Darién province of Panama, carrying an increasingly frequent cargo of improbable origins.

At a border police base by the Chucunaque River, the human haul — 13 Bangladeshis, seven Nepalese and two Somalis — disembarked to noisy greetings from other migrants on the bank.

Girl, 10, raped by stepfather, denied abortion in ParaguayAmnesty International is calling on Paraguay’s government to allow child to get an abortion for the sake of her health

Hidden early Christian crypt discovered with dozens of skeletons

Puerto Rico on the Brink

Puerto Rico is in trouble, after years of bad policies, mismanagement, excessive debt and bad luck.

Its economy has been shrinking or stagnant for a decade and theunemployment rate sits at nearly 12 percent. The commonwealth and its utilities have a debt of $73 billion, its public pension funds are woefully underfunded and one state agency has warned that the government could be forced to shut down soon because it might run out of money.

Ex-Gitmo Detainees In Uruguay Protest At U.S. Embassy

The U.N.’s Venezuela Crush Gets Orwellian

Report: Venezuela’s Medical Shortages Rival War ZonesHuman Rights Watch: Thousands at Risk while Maduro Looks for Scapegoats

«Yo fui el intérprete de Chávez»Mohamad Mohamadi fue el traductor del líder bolivariano en más de un centenar de encuentros con sus aliados iraníes

The week’s posts and podcast:
Argentina: On with slandering the Jews in the AMIA & #Nisman cases

Cuba: How’s that “easement” going?, part 2

What works

“The Americans” non-values UPDATED

Venezuela: Electricity rationing because of . . . global warming

Chile: Bachelet lifts a page from the Clintons

Don’t rebuild

Minnesota men heading to ISIS via . . . Mexico?

Puerto Rico: Calling Dr. Cardona Harper

Cuba: How’s that “easement” going?

Latin America: Why there’s no light at the end of the tunnel

Mexico and other US Latin America stories of the week

En español: El Foro de Sao Paulo, creación de Castro y da Silva

Friday, June 13th, 2014

Julio M Shilling, escritor y politólogo explica como Fidel Castro y Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva crean y organizan el Foro de Sao Paulo, para destruir la democracia en America a traves del proceso electoral, rescatando e implantando régimenes comunistas.

The lions’ Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, November 18th, 2013

LatinAmerAn American crew rescued twenty five African Lions from Bolivia and now there’s a documentary about it, Lion Ark; this Carnival is dedicated to them.

Argentina’s Cristina Fernandez Kirchner to return to work next week
President has been on leave for six weeks after surgery following a head injury

Bieber’s concert gear impounded in Argentina

Judge Maria Giraudi ordered that the singer’s belongings be held after photographer Diego Pesoa filed suit for damages, alleging that Bieber’s bodyguards hit him and damaged his equipment as the singer was leaving a nightclub.

Pesoa’s lawyer, Matias Morla, said Bieber “gave the order to beat him and then got back in his van.”

Paco Almaraz takes care of the little burned-out twerp (in Spanish):

Dirceu is now in the clink: Brazil Mensalao jailings begin
Brazil starts jailing high-profile politicians convicted last year in the country’s biggest corruption trial, the “Mensalao” (big monthly allowance).

The calm in Chile

Colombia and the FARC
Not out of the woods yet
Just as an agreement is reached, news of an assassination plot highlights the risks to the peace negotiations

Chasing the Ghost of Castro’s Oil

Senate Unanimously Confirms Gay Ambassador to Dominican Republic
In a unanimous decision, the U.S. Senate has confirmed James “Wally” Brewster as the ambassador to the Dominican Republic, despite recent protests from antigay groups in the Caribbean nation.

Oil in Ecuador
The last word, with more to follow

Criminal Violence and Displacement: Notes from Honduras

Will Honduras Become a Failed State?

Corte Suprema hondureña acusa a Lula da Silva de intromisión

Jamaica failed drug tests ‘tip of iceberg’
Jamaica’s most senior drug tester says the country’s recent rash of failed tests might be the “tip of an iceberg”.

Shampoo, rinse, repeat: Time Warp Monday

Forcibly Displaced Persons now a Formidable Concern in Mexico

Farmers against Templars:

Mexican Farmers Confront Drug Cartels
Farmers in the rich agricultural heartland of Mexico’s Michoacán state, fed up with a reign of terror and extortion by a drug cartel, have organized community police forces and driven out the cartel.

Power grab in Nicaragua
The comandante’s commandments
The Sandinistas propose re-election without end for Daniel Ortega

Update on the Chong Chon Gang: Panama extends North Koreans visas to get ship, crew

Mexican Trafficker With Ties To Sinaloa Cartel Extradited To U.S. From Panama

Biden to visit Panama for trade talks, disposal of chemical weapons

AP PHOTOS: A tough life on Lima’s rough edges

How Wall Street Has Profited From Puerto Rico’s Misery

Who is Tareck el Aissami?

The criminalization of dissidence and opposition: CHÁVEZ’S SUCCESSOR SEES A TRILOGY OF EVIL

Venezuela jails 100 ‘bourgeois’ businessmen in crackdown

Venezuela’s President Maduro moves nearer to decree powers

The week’s posts and podcast
Venezuela: The start of the really bad news

Colombia: FARC plot to murder Uribe

Venezuela: Jim Wyss recounts his 48 hours in Venezuelan custody

Brazil: “Mensalão”s must serve their sentences

Ecuador: Court halves Chevron judgement

En español: Terapia intensiva y el avión quemado

The UN Human Rights Council beclowns itself, again.

Venezuela: Price controls, profit caps UPDATED

At Da Tech Guy: Attention Christmas shoppers! Che on aisle nine!

US-Latin America stories of the week

Brazil: “Mensalão”s must serve their sentences

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

The Mensalão trials convicted 25 people over a scheme to pay opposition politicians 30,000 reais (around US$12,000 at the time) every month in order to vote for legislation favored by then-president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva. “Mensalão” means “big monthly allowance”, and it was. The scandal burst into the scene in 2005.

Folha de Sao Paulo outlines how the key members of Lula’s party, Partido dos Trabalhadores (PT) channeled funds to Marcos Valério Fernandes de Souza’s ad agencies that had government contracts, funneling the payments through the Banco Rural.

38 people were accused of corruption, fraud, conspiracy, tax evasion, and money laundering.

The trials also brought up charges of illegal campaign contributions from Cuba and the FARC, but nothing much came from those allegations.

Lula’s own chief of staff, Jose Dirceu, was sentenced to 10 years and 10 months, while Lula to this day insists that he knew nothing.

Yeah, right.

So far, no one has served time in prison.

As you may recall, the convictions were appealed. Back in September I predicted that would take years, but Brazil’s Supreme Court has now upheld the jail terms of 23 out of the 25 people sentenced:

Brazil upholds corruption jail terms
Brazil’s Supreme Court rules that most of the 25 people convicted in the country’s biggest corruption trial should start their prison sentences.

Folha de Sao Paolo, which first uncovered the story, has extensive reports (in Portuguese) on the trials. So far, Dirceu has not turned himself in to the police, which in turn awaits the court orders from the Supremo Tribunal Federal (STF) (Federal Supreme Court) to jail the people involved.

Brazil: “Mensalão” vote-buying convictions to be appealed

Thursday, September 19th, 2013

Their lawyers will be able to put their kids through Princeton University; heck, the lawyers will have enough money left to retire in Princeton, if they ever get to retire! This is going to be drawn out for decades:

Brazil Court Allows Corruption Case Appeals
Decision Could Lead to Lengthy Retrials

Brazil’s Supreme Court voted Wednesday to reassess the landmark convictions it handed down against a dozen defendants found guilty last year of participating in a vote-buying scheme that rocked the government of former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

The 6-5 vote allows 12 of the 25 defendants in the case, including Mr. da Silva’s once-powerful chief of staff José Dirceu, to appeal parts of their prison sentences, which could open the door to lengthy retrials. Mr. Dirceu maintains his innocence and says he is a target of political retribution.

The decision could send shock waves through a country that has long struggled with corruption, and where many held up the court’s earlier convictions of the defendants as a sign of change. The cash-for-votes scandal, dubbed the Mensalão, or ‘big monthly payoff’, resulted in Brazil’s biggest-ever political corruption trial.

Instead, the retrials now risk becoming a symbol of the inability of Brazilian prosecutors to make high-profile corruption convictions stick, said José Garcez Ghirardi, a professor of political theory and law at the Fundação Getúlio Vargas law school in São Paulo.

As I had posted a while ago, no one has served time on these charges.

Lula himself was not implicated in the case and has denied any knowledge of the scheme, so don’t be surprised if he runs again.

Brazil: A Lula comeback?

Friday, August 23rd, 2013

Shampoo, rinse, repeat:
Talk turns to a Lula comeback as Brazil’s president tumbles in polls

Well, well. The protestors who were complaining about corruption would be willing to take Lula back?

Are we talking about the same Lula who’s being investigated?

He has been accused of involvement in an illegal scheme that used public funds to pay coalition parties for political support.

And the guys who ratted him out have not served 1 day in jail.

Oh yes, that Lula.

The Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, June 11th, 2012

A brief Carnival this week,
NY Hasid resorts to hunger strike after nearly a year in Bolivian prison

Brazilian politics
What Lula did next

There’s a lot of public relations recently on Communist William Morgan:
George Clooney’s making a movie about him, George Clooney Puts on His Directing Helmet to Help Castro’s Cuba with ‘Comandante’, based on the New Yorker article, The Yankee Comandante
A story of love, revolution, and betrayal
. Humberto Fontova‘s more realistic,

Something also tells me the film will be devoid of any input by Roberto Martin Perez and others who suffered the longest terms of political incarceration in modern history because of Morgan’s treachery. After all, their anti-Castro plot, as the New Yorker article explains (echoing Castro) had nothing whatsoever to do with restoring Cuba’s freedom. Instead it was inspired by the wicked dictator Rafael Trujillo.

According to Armando Lago about 2000 Cubans were murdered by firing squad while Morgan loyally served Castro. Indeed in 1959-60 many of the men and boys cramming La Cabana’s galeras were were there because of Morgan’s treachery.

Morgan lived in a mansion during this time, had a fancy car and owned a frog farm. Might it occur to Clooney to ask how this AWOL GI, deadbeat-Dad and ex-con managed to acquired these luxuries? In fact they were all stolen at gunpoint from their rightful Cuban owners. “Bienes Malversados”–INDEED!

O’Grady: Castro Endorses Obama
The dictator’s daughter gets a visa to make speeches here while the regime continues to hold an American hostage.

Another Cuba-related Law Heads to Court

Honduran sourdough bread

Mexico election diary
How important is the tactical vote really?

Eric Holder’s sizzling summer
Attorney general on hot seat for probes on gun-running, child exploitation funds

Peru Leader Faces Outrage, Defections on Mining Plan

Peru searchers find bodies in Andes chopper crash

Puerto Rico Borrowing Costs Rise on Rating Concern: Muni Credit

Puerto Rico Schools to Expand Instruction in English

Suriname’s president
Catch me if you can
Legal troubles? Run for office

Venezuela opposition floods streets in support of presidential candidate
Leader Hugo Chávez vowed to flood the streets with supporters as hundreds of thousands turned up in Caracas to rally for his rival

Chavismo Pulls Dirty Trick On Podemos And Patria Para Todos (And Ultimately On Capriles)

Capriles smashing launch: le ladró en la cueva

Fading Chávez Rouses Markets

The week’s posts,
Funereal erection, while “Chavez’s days are numbered,”

Leaks and islands

Remember that dry offshore Cuban oil well? UPDATED

Romney names Hispanic Steering Committee, “Juntos con Romney”

Romney targets Hispanics on jobs

Good luck with that, Italy

Saturday, June 18th, 2011

Italy is still trying to get Cesare Battisti back, in spite of the fact that Lula had granted him political asylum and the Brazilian Supreme Court released him from jail.

Gates of Vienna links to Italy’s latest effort,
Italy calls for formal talks over release of convicted terrorist

Italy has instructed its ambassador to Brazil to ask the Brazilian government to form a bi-lateral commission to resolve a dispute over last week’s release of convicted Italian terrorist Cesare Battisti.

“On the instructions of foreign minister Franco Frattini, the Italian ambassador to Brazil to formally asked Brazilian authorities to activate the Permanent Commission of Conciliation as foreseen by a 1954 convention between Italy and Brazil,” the Italian foreign ministry said in a statement on Friday.

Italy and Brazil signed the agreement “for the amicable settlement of any disputes which might arise between the two countries,” the document said.
Italian judges have sentenced former far-left armed militant Battisti in absentia to life in jail for four murders committed in the 1970s. He spent three decades on the run and has lived in France, Mexico and Brazil, where he was in jail from 2007 until his release on 9 June.

Brazil’s former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva’s last official act before leaving office in December was to grant 56-year-old Battisti political refugee status on the recommendation of a report by Brazil’s attorney general.

Battisti remains in Brazil with his 26 year-old girlfriend and is not about to return to Italy.

As BIll Ayers famously said, “guilty as sin, and free as a bird.”


The Peruvian elections Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, June 6th, 2011

LatinAmerThe big news of the week was yesterday’s Peruvian election of Ollanta Humala as their next president:

Financial markets, which have been riding a roller coaster during the long campaign, are sure to take a win by Mr. Humala badly, analysts said. Investors viewed Ms. Fujimori as the candidate who would maintain the policies of openness toward foreign investment and trade, which helped Peru grow by 9% last year. Mr. Humala, who has made sharply contradictory statements on economic policy, would face pressure to immediately send signals to the market by revealing who would serve in key positions, such as Prime Minister and Economy Minister.

Lagarde, on Visit to Brazil, Vows Speedy IMF Reform

Dilma’s first big test
The political wounding of Antonio Palocci, the president’s right-hand man, comes at an awkward time, when the battle to cool the economy has only just begun

Video: Michelle Bachelet on UN Women

Volcano erupts in Chile

Colombia kills FARC commander
Colombian authorities said they killed the top-ranking security chief of the rebel group FARC
, Alirio Rojas Bocanegra, known as “El Abuelo,” member of the FARC Central Command.

Fábrica de españoles

Ethics and politics get divorced

Congressman McGovern visits Ecuador

SUMMARY: Congressman James McGovern traveled in Ecuador from November 13 to 18, to visit sites at issue in the Chevron-Texaco oil pollution case, and Ecuadorian border communities affected by refugees and other aspects of the violence in Colombia. Congressman McGovern met with Government of Ecuador (GOE) Ministers and President Correa, and while taking no position on the unresolved Chevron-Texaco suit, expressed concern about the humanitarian, health and environmental impacts of oil contamination on local affected communities and the humanitarian situation on the border, and pledged to draw greater attention to the plight of refugees. Foreign Minister Salvador and Vice Defense Minister Miguel Carvajal asked McGovern for the U.S. Congress to investigate the March 1 Colombian attack against a FARC camp in Angostura, along the northern border of Ecuador, which McGovern did not agree to.

New Study Questions Quake Toll In Haiti

Mexico City Retailers Pause

Retailers have put expansion plans on hold in the Mexican capital after the megacity’s government enacted a virtual three-year moratorium on openings of grocers, convenience stores and hypermarkets in an effort to shield traditional markets and small family-run bodegas from corporate competition.

Soul-searching amid the debris
Mexican individualism and violence

Police in Paraguay Seize 2.1 Tonnes of Cocaine Adulterate

Today’s video: Toss up

A pun gone wrong: Coors Light “Emboricuate” Ads Brews Outrage Among Puerto Ricans

Venezuela: The Brazil connection

Why I am not blogging much lately: the “gimme!” culture of Venezuela. Venezuela’s not alone.

The Perverse Gasoline Subsidy in Petrostates

The week’s posts,
Venezuela: Welcome to Club Hugo
Ollanta Humala’s shell game
The short answer is, No

At Real Clear World,
Bolivia Invites, Then Disinvites, Accused Iranian Terrorist