Archive for the ‘Nicaragua’ Category

Nicaragua: The canal, a pretext for expropriation?

Friday, June 5th, 2015

The Nicaragua Canal, that project of Dubious Plans and Abundant Unknowns, is back in the news.

It appears that HKND Group by now has feasibility studies, property surveys, an environmental impact review and exploratory drilling, according to the Wall Street Journal, but

Still unclear is whether the canal will be built.

However, the proposed canal may be a useful pretext in Daniel Ortega’s road to dictatorship:
Nicaraguan Canal Plan Riles Landholders
Sandinista push to build Chinese-led shipping route across country sparks concerns over property rights
. 642 square miles, to be precise (emphasis added):

But to make room for the waterway, ports, roads and free-trade zones, the company says it needs 642 square miles. Nicaraguan government officials justify the pending expropriations, which would uproot 27,000 people, saying the canal will transform this impoverished Central American nation by creating 50,000 jobs and doubling the economy.

Though the government has yet to seize a single acre, HKND Group says it will pay market prices for confiscated acreage. However, a 2013 law authorizing the government to expropriate any land needed for the canal says payments will be based on each property’s assessed tax value, figures that are usually much lower.

Then there’s this,

“Nothing is going on with the canal because there is not yet any money deposited for it,” said Bayardo Arce, the top economic adviser to President Daniel Ortega.

Say again? A project this big,

and “there is not yet any money deposited for it“?

And, if that’s not bad enough,

More than one-third of the canal’s route skips dry ground altogether by cutting across Lake Nicaragua, the largest reservoir of drinking water in Central America.

Back in the 1980s, Ortega expropriated more than 1.5 million acres, including properties belonging to opposition leaders. The canal project, even (especially?) if no canal actually is built, may serve Ortega’s purposes after all.

The off-the-sponsors-of-terror-list Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, June 1st, 2015

LatinAmerThe week’s big news: Pres. Obama removed Cuba from the list of state sponsors of terror, as part of a deal brokered by the Vatican, in exchange for which Cuba had to do nothing.

The top headlines in the hemisphere: FIFA corruption; as expected, its re-elected president blames the U.S. and England.

Cristina’s not running: ‘CFK will not be candidate in the upcoming elections’ . . . maybe.

Re: Nisman, Calls on prosecutor Fein to hurry probe into Nisman’s deathJudge: investigate Lagomarsino

‘Meteorite thieves’ held by policePolice in Argentina arrest four men who appear to have been trying to steal more than a tonne of meteorites in the northern province of Chaco.

China mulls air route to Bahamas

“Refugio de corruptos”

Former Petrobras Executive Sentenced to Five Years
Nestor Cerveró, Petrobras’ former director of international operations, was convicted of money laundering and sentenced to five years in prison.

Brazil Dangles Leniency to Spur Energy Industry
Brazil’s government is preparing to offer U.S.-like leniency deals to several private companies linked to the Petrobras corruption scandal to lessen its drag on the nation’s economy

How the Cayman Islands Became a FIFA Power

When a government spies on its citizens: lessons from Chile

Colombia’s peace process
Bullet proof
Despite an escalation of violence, the talks continue

One reason for the talks’ resilience is that both sides are used to negotiating during bouts of violence, which did not end even during the quietest periods. Military action by the FARC fell by 85% during its ceasefire and civilian deaths fell by 73%, according to the Conflict Analysis Resource Centre (CERAC), a think-tank in Bogotá. Even so, CERAC recorded 21 attacks by the FARC (and suspects it was responsible for another 75). Mr Santos has staked his reputation on concluding a peace agreement (by the end of this year, he hopes). For the FARC, the alternative to peace is further pounding by the armed forces; it no longer hopes for victory.

Farc peace negotiator killed in Colombia bombingPedro Nel Daza Martínez, the Farc leader better known as “Jairo Martínez”, had returned from peace talks in Havana when he was killed by a government bombing raid

Public opinion and pessimism in Colombia’s peace talks

Raul Castro Meets with Leaders of Mexican Left

Voluntary Corporate Code of Conduct for Cuba Needed

Interamerican Human Rights Commission asked to intervene on behalf of besieged Cuban pastor

On Cuba’s Removal From the State-Sponsors of Terrorism List

Carlos Eire writes on how “they hate it so much when we refuse to be the caricatures they want us to be:” Okay, that’s it. Se acabó la pachanga. The party’s over. Time to say “Hell is my homeland.”

Legal Limbo over for Haitian Descendants in Dominican RepublicCritics Fear Many Still Fall through the Cracks

Bye-bye, dollarization: Ecuador Moves Toward Electronic Currency

Ecuador’s Monetary Council has published a resolution making it mandatory for private and public banks to deal with transactions in electronic currency.

Depending on their size, banks will have between 120 and 360 days to register as Macro Agents of the electronic currency system in the central bank.

The resolution reiterated that the central bank is the only entity authorized to issue electronic currency, and that the electronic currency must be backed up by liquid assets of the central bank.

Tax Me, I’m Ecuadorian
Taking More from Inheritances Will Depress Salaries, Impoverish Middle Class

How gang violence is spreading fear in El Salvador

Accused Clinton Donation Solicitation Used For Haiti Projects

The money will be used for “undetermined” projects in Haiti.

Yeah, right.

U.S. Soccer Probe Brings Adulation From AbroadUnexpectedly, the FBI’s case is garnering plaudits even in regions like Latin America that are traditionally suspicious of Washington’s motives

Mexico Shelves Key Part of Education OverhaulThe Mexican government suspended its planned teacher evaluations that were a cornerstone of the country’s education overhaul, in a decision ahead of midterm elections that dissident teacher groups threatened to boycott.

Major US Banks Closing Border Branches to Fight Money Laundering

A fearless Mexican-American cook routinely travels 2,000 miles, driving through a drug war and slipping out of kidnappers’ fingers, all in the name of a decent mole poblano for her New York customers.
Inexplicably, they let her go.

Beachcombing along the Caribbean drug trail in Nicaragua

Global Migrants Brave Panama’s Vipers, Bats, Bandits to Reach U.S.
Africans, Asians, Cubans cross the treacherous jungle of the Darien Gap

Peru planning to dam Amazon’s main source and displace 1000s
Over 20 hydroelectric projects proposed for the main trunk of the River Maranon would have devastating impacts

Fat lot of good that’s going to do: Puerto Rico Governor Signs Law Raising Sales Tax to 11.5 Pct. To cover its $1.2 billion in debt service due this year from sales tax alone, it would have to raise over $10 trillion in sales – absurd.

June brides: Ex-Guantanamo Prisoners to Marry Uruguayan Women

Abd al Hadi Omar Mahmoud Faraj [a.k.a. Abd al Hadi Faraj], 40, from Syria and Tunisian Abdul Bin Mohammed Ourgy [a.k.a. Abdul Bin Mohammed Bin Abess Ourgy], 50, will marry Muslim women at a mosque in Montevideo.

Venezuelans March in Caracas to Demand Release of Jailed Opposition Leaders

Diosdado is now reading members of NGOs Provea and Public Forum emails on TV.

#SOSVenezuela: Venezuelans, Cubans, others protest for freedom, democracy in Venezuela #30M

Leopoldo Lopez shows us what a selfie should be all about

The week’s posts and podcast:
Cuba: Willfull blindness

Masplaining and the shrinking violets

This just in: Cuba off sponsors of terror list

Latin America: Breitbart news report on Iranian expansion in our hemisphere

Brazil: The WaPo’s evangelical Frank Underwood

Is Venezuela dollarizing

Argentina: #FIFAarrests in 22 tweets

Cuba: Is China rebuilding Cuba’s ports?

The era of moral imbecility

Brazil: Beam him up, Scotti

Mexico: The independent El Bronco

Venezuela: Leopoldo Lopez’s jail video

Note to all Latin Americans: Being a populist socialist won’t save you from ISIS

US-Latin America stories of the week

The Ricky Ricardo Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, May 11th, 2015

Today’s Carnival is dedicated to Desi Arnaz, who raked in the bucks by creating a TV character that interviewers can’t seem to forget.

This week could be decisive for Nisman probeBoard of coroners will issue final report to prosecutor Fein that could answer key questions

No. Is Argentina’s economy pulling a tango turnaround?

Argentinean University: Austrian Economists Need Not Apply
Slighted Professor Claims Ideology Trumps 20 Years Experience at Comahue

Belize offshore oil proposal has environmentalists worried about reefs, fisheries, tourism

Militar boliviano diz que Podemos seria braço do tráfico venezuelano
Relatório afirma que partido de esquerda foi financiado por Hugo Chávez e seus aliados bolivarianos para transformar a Espanha em porta de entrada de cocaína na Europa
[Bolivian serviceman claims Podemos will be an arm of Venezuelan drug traffic
He says the Leftist party was bankrolled by Hugo Chávez and his Bolivarian associates to transform Spain into a port of entrance for Europe’s cocaine]

Bolivia’s access to the sea
Beaches of the future?
A South American border dispute has implications for international law

Both countries are parties to the Pact of Bogotá, which obliges signatories to submit disputes to international tribunals. But the pact excludes conflicts that were settled before 1948.

Brazil football fan club deaths lead to police arrests

British lawyer killed in Amazon fell victim to boat captains’ ‘game of dare’Husband of Gillian Metcalf says neither of the two drivers took action to prevent tragedy in high-speed collision

Crisis socialista: Bachelet despide a todo su gabinete

Colombia ELN rebels ‘displayed solider’s leg as trophy’

Samuel Angel: “Santos y Petro han sido los peores administradores que hemos tenido”

Ca$tro r€gim€ $€nd$ m€dica£ a$$i$tanc€ to N€pa£

EconomyGeeks Radio: Entrevista a Yusnaby Perez

Dominican Republic stunned by two weeks of forest fires

Ecuadorian State Workers Forced to March for Correa
Sign the Roll or Suffer the Consequences

Ecuador’s president demands respect from his constituentsRafael Correa attacks the press for reporting a presidential run-in with a young protestor who gave him the finger. He could start by staying off Twitter.

Fear, uncertainty prevail on San Salvador’s increasingly violent streetsAs homicides soar after failed truce, El Salvador could surpass Honduras as most murderous peacetime country

Guatemala vice-president steps down amid customs corruption scandalPresident announces deputy has vacated her offices as ex-aide stands accused of orchestrating fraud worth million

Death valley: the land war gripping Honduras
With a murder rate 65 times higher than Ireland’s, Honduras is one of the world’s most violent countries. And few parts are more dangerous than the Lower Aguán Valley, where local farmers claim that big business has illegally taken over their land

Mexican police capture one of the masterminds behind Iguala massacreThe suspect, a former deputy police chief, was arrested at an exclusive country club

Mexico rescues more than 100 kidnapped migrants

Police in Mexico have rescued more than 100 migrants kidnapped by a human trafficking gang near the capital.
Reports said some of the migrants had been held hostage for five weeks in a house in Mexico State.
Most of the victims were Central Americans, but they also included people from India and Sri Lanka.

Los Cuinis: The Wealthiest Narcos You Never Heard OfJalisco Battle Brings Mexico’s Top Dogs Out of the Shadows

Nicaragua Canal: A Giant Project With Huge Environmental Costs, if it happens.

Panama Finds Collecting Venezuelan Debt Harder than Pulling TeethNew President Still Hopes to Bring $1 Billion Owed into Port – good luck with that.

Panama Supreme Court Judge Faces Charges of Pederasty, CorruptionCongressman Mario Miller Claims Accusations Have “No Legal Foundation”

Ten-year-old’s pregnancy sparks Paraguay abortion debate

Drug trade’s lowest rung: Peru’s expendable cocaine couriers

Puerto Rico may run out of cash by Sept: Gov. bank

Mass grave found on the Venezuela-Colombia border

The week’s posts and podcast:
Identity politics: Halperin interviews Ted Cruz, expects Ricky Ricardo

Haiti: Clinton’s crony gets the contract

Today’s “WTH Moment” brought to you by Jorge Ramos

Book review: Carly Fiorina’s Rising to the Challenge

John Oliver riffs Latin America

“You will not like Cuba”

Chile: Bachelet ditches entire Cabinet

“Terrorism is most definitely not a weapon of the weak”

Just what we need: Ferries to Cuba! UPDATED

This is what free speech is all about

Mexico: Jalisco’s new generation of crime

Puerto Rico: The great debt scam

It’s that time of year,

Cuba: Fidel, druglord


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

The Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, April 20th, 2015

Following last week’s VII Summit of the Americas, the hemisphere media showed an endless parade of Cuba propagandists touting “Cuba’s moral victory” over the U.S.

Argentina launches lawsuit against Falkland oil drillers

Tact gone, Britons living in the Falklands are like Chinese in Chinatown, says Argentine ambassador
Alicia Castro has likened British sovereignty over the archipelago to Chinese claims to the Soho district of Chinatown, as Argentina’s minister for Falklands affairs spells out the legal action his government is taking against British firms

Pope Francis will visit Ecuador, Bolivia and Paraguay

Olympics: thousands of dead fish at Rio de Janeiro rowing venue
Thousands of dead fish wash up at Rio de Janeiro lagoon that will host rowing and canoeing events

Intel Leak: FARC Outgun Venezuelan Military to Poach Coltan Mines
Colombian Guerrilla De Facto Rulers in Amazonas Region

Colombia’s Santos Wants to Set Deadline for Peace Process


Americans Murdered By Terrorists, Do Not Matter

Hillary Clinton Decided to Run at Oscar de la Renta’s Dominican Republic Beachfront Mansion

Janet Hinostroza: “Justice Has a Very High Price in Ecuador”
Ecuadorian Journalist’s New Documentary Uncovers Deadly US Judicial Failure

Report: Jamaica’s Parliament In Bottom Half Of World’s Effective Law-Making Bodies

Mexico confirms capture of Gulf Cartel leader

U.S. downplays Nicaragua’s concerns about embassy staffer infected with Ebola

In Panama, Restoring Streets And Reforming Gangs At The Same Time

Paraguay activists ensure government’s oil ambitions will be no walk in the park
The threat of oil drilling in Defensores del Chaco national park, where potentially extensive reserves have been uncovered, is causing growing unease in Paraguay

Pre-Inca mummy dumped at Peru rubbish site discovered by cleaners

Treasury Officials Increase Efforts With Finances of Puerto Rico

Pope Francis’ iPad Fetches $30,500 at Auction in Uruguay

VenEconomy: The Sovereignty of Hunger in Venezuela!

The week’s posts and podcasts:
Today’s must-read

Venezuela: May the farce be with you

Cuba: “We’ll pay Spain”

Is ISIS at the US-Mexico border?

Today’s vision of hell, airline travel edition:

Venezuela: News from Poyais

Mexico: Radioactive material stolen

Cuba off Sponsors of Terrorism list; how’s that working so far?

Mexico: ISIS at the border?

Harvard hosts racketeer . . . twice

Breaking: Cuba off Sponsors of Terrorism list

Cuba: Victory lap at the VII Summit

Brazil: The demonstrators are not going away

More at the circus: Correa & Obama, BFFs

Rick Moran’s RINO Hour of Power, Hillary announces: Should we even bother to count the votes? with Rich Baehr.

Silvio Canto’s The Panama summit and other US Latin America stories of the week with Roger Mailhot.

Nicaragua’s steps to dictatorship

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

Sergio Ramírez at El País on how Daniel Ortega is taking Nicaragua towards dictatorship (link in Spanish).
After 9 years of Ortega in power,

48% of the population subsists on less than $2 a day, and in that group, half subsists on less than $1 a day. Nicaragua’s on the bottom three of the Latin American misery index, along with Haiti and Honduras.

Coming elections?

Ortega, or his wife, will win the 2017 presidential elections.

But family Governments always end up as big political disasters. Tensions will turn up and increase as hopes in Ortega’s populist rhetoric wear out, particularly since Venezuela’s aide comes to and end as that country faces plummeting oil prices, shortages, inflation, and a swelling short-term foreign debt.

Ramírez is deeply pessimistic about the proposed Nicaragua Canal, too. He accuses Ortega of turning over the defense of Nicaragua’s national sovereignty to Wang Jing and the Chinese

Another breaking point will be the failure of the canal project, now seen as a huge hope, which will become a cause for frustration once it is proven to be a merciless lie.

By which time, Ortega will be rich enough to live in impunity.

The pizza Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Sunday, April 5th, 2015

Pizza has been in the news recently, so enjoy this week’s Carnival with a slice.

Nearly three months after his murder, Experts to inspect Nisman’s apartment

Buenos Aires streets empty as transport strike hits
The streets of the Argentine capital, Buenos Aires, remained largely empty on Tuesday morning as a number of transport workers’ unions went on a 24-hour strike.

Good: Argentina: Britain Spied to Ensure Falklands Security, Report Says
Britain spied on Argentine military and political leaders to ensure the security of the Falkland Islands from 2006 to 2011, an Argentine television channel reported on Friday, citing intelligence documents provided by Edward J. Snowden.

The Rise of Bitcoin in Argentina
Cryptocurrency Entrepreneurs Sidestep Onerous Restrictions, Financial Chaos

Don’t lose your shirt? Bolivia defence minister sacked over controversial top
Bolivian President Evo Morales sacked Defence Minister Jorge Ledezma on Tuesday over a controversial top he wore on a trip to neighbouring Chile.

#Odebrechting – an Easter egg in the Brazilian media

Rio favela still wracked with fear and violence as Olympics 2016 approaches
Rio’s Complexo da Maré favela is being taken over by police from the soldiers that have been trying – and failing – to pacify it since before last summer’s World Cup

Brazil priest suspended for nude selfie
Brazilian priest known for conservative views on moral issues suspended for sending a nude photograph of himself to an apparent mistress
. Padre Alberto is much better-looking, though.

Freak rainfall in Chile’s Atacama, the driest desert on earth, triggers catastrophic mud slides
Several dead, many missing as area gets lashed with seven years of rain in just 12 hours

Whitewashing and Policy Laundering Cuban Terrorism, Part II

Obama’s Justice Department Charges Menendez … But Not Reid

Even the International Criminal Court has rejected the Chevron Shakedown

Ecuador Bulldozes Guayaquil Slum, Leaves 40 Families in the Street
Over 100 Houses Marked for Destruction amid Public Outcry

Johns Hopkins sued for $1B over Guatemala venereal disease study

Punjabi Sikh-Mexican American community fading into history

Jamaica Activates Army Reserves Ahead of Obama Visit

Obama and the CARICOM heads of government are expected to proceed from the high-level encounter in Jamaica to Panama City for the 6th Summit of the Americas, set for April 10-11.

U.S. Trade Commission Upholds Sugar Pact With Mexico
The U.S. International Trade Commission voted unanimously Thursday to uphold an agreement that suspended duties on sugar imports from Mexico, a decision that Mexico’s Economy Ministry welcomed as positive for Mexican producers.

Historic encounter: Obama, Raúl Castro to have ‘interaction’ at summit


Paraguay has seen a spillover of organized criminal activities from countries such as Colombia, Brazil and Argentina which manifests itself in home invasions, kidnappings, and shootouts with drug traffickers, Maldonado said.

Peru names new prime minister amid spying scandal
Peru’s president has named Defense Minister Pedro Cateriano as new prime minister in a bid to calm a political crisis. Former Prime Minister Ana Jara was sacked this week amid allegations of spying and corruption.

The Many Faces of Puerto Rico


Venezuelan hotels are asking tourists to bring their own toilet paper but
Venezuela plans to buy more Russian and Chinese arms

Venezuela, harboring ETA terrorists, El régimen narco-terrorista de Maduro ignora petición urgente de España para confirmar ubicación del ETARRA De Juana Chaos

US Federal Court Declares Venezuela in Default over $740 Million Claim
Facing $125 Billion Debt, Caracas Tries to Duck Gold Reserve Inc. Ruling

The week’s posts and podcast
Coming up next: State Dept. To Fly Central American Children Into US

Cuba: The next Hotel California? UPDATED

A happy thing for Easter weekend

Bach Johannes Passion

Venezuela, national security threat; Argentina wants a Sandwich

Cuba Forever, Indiana Never

Podcast: US-Latin America stories of the week

Yes, it’s April Fools’ Day

Mexico: Uber driver attacked

Argentina: Yet another Iran connection

Would Peru go for Chavismo?

The crashed plane Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, March 23rd, 2015

An Argentine turboprop airplane crashed and burned shortly after taking off, killing all 10 people aboard,

Witnesses at the airport said that a few minutes after takeoff they heard a significant explosion followed by a huge fireball.

The passengers were members of the Argentine company La Rural which is an associate in a project to exploit a Convention Center under construction in the Atlantic resort of Punta del Este and had flown to Uruguay for a business conference with their Uruguayan partners and the local government.

La Rural is a leading company in Argentina and Latin America in the fairs, congress and events industry.

Was it an accident?

Exactly two months after his murder, Argentine Government Accuses Nisman of Embezzlement

Dead Argentine prosecutor was zeroing in on a terror threat to the entire Western Hemisphere

Investigan un supuesto refugio de jerarcas nazis en Argentina

POLL NUMBERS!!! Dilma’s drop

Why is Brazil so angry?
Big Question: Over a million people took to the streets over the weekend calling for the impeachment of Dilma Rousseff, five months after she won a general election

Hundreds protest over Chile bishopProtesters shout as Rev Juan Barros enter the Osorno cathedral
Hundreds of people in Chile try to stop the ordination of Catholic Bishop Juan Barros, accusing him of covering up a sex abuse scandal.

Drug Gang Led by Female Trafficker from Mexico Nabbed in Colombia

Guerra y paz en Colombia

[pdf file] An Illusory Opening to Cuba:
Why Florida Shouldn’t Walk Through the Breach

Where “Cold War Charm” is the half-century long misery endured by the inmates of the island-prison: Cuba’s Cold War charm has D.R. wary about losing U.S. tourists to next-door neighbor

#19M Protests Put Correa’s Citizen Revolution on Notice
Thousands March in Ecuador as Anti-Authoritarian Outrage Boils Over

Populist Playbook: The Slow Death of Democracy in Correa’s Ecuador

Clinton Foundation’s chickens coming home to roost in Haiti?

WaPo Reporter: Bill Clinton ‘So Disliked’ in Haiti After Charity Work ‘He Couldn’t Even Run for Mayor’


Are Special Economic Zones the answer? How ZEDEs Can Make Honduras Prosperous
Next-Generation Zones for an Anti-Poverty Success Story

Honduras sends soldiers to protect ‘lost city’ from drug cartels
Expendition team reportedly split on how to safeguard artefacts from looters after ‘lost city’ rediscovered in Honduras jungle also used by drug trafficker

US Say Courts Crippling Ja Narcotics Fight

US Court Convicts Mexican of Kidnapping Mexican in Mexico
Federal Jury Convicts Mexican Citizen Living in San Antonio for His Role in Kidnapping Scheme

Wang Jing: The man behind the Nicaragua canal project

Paraguay and Latin America are officially the happiest nations in the world, in a Bobby McFerrin sort of way?

Peru’s Premier Removes Senior Spy Officials
Peru’s prime minister removed the head of the National Intelligence Service and other high-level officials, as allegations widened that the spy agency for years gathered information on a broad range of well-known people.

Puerto Rico’s Catholic Church Calls for Referendum on Gay Marriage

The Islamization of South America

After years in Guantanamo, ex-detainees find little solace in Uruguay Apparently they don’t have Uruguayan passports yet.


Unbroken: Former Venezuelan Political Prisoner Speaks Out
Police Chief Lucchese Describes His Year Behind Bars at Ramo Verde Military Prison

Enabling Maduro’s Tyranny in Venezuela
US Sanctions Give Perfect Excuse for Crackdown on Dissent
. I disagree – the crackdown has been going on, well before any sanctions.

Maduro’s English in action,

Yes, Venezuela is a security threat

Drums of War or Pipes of Peace?

Machiavellian? No, Putinesco!

Saturday, February 21st, 2015

Old: Machiavellian

New: Putinesco.

Russia Boosts Arms, Training for Leftist Latin Militaries
Moscow defense minister inks deals with Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua for joint exercises

Shoygu met with defense and military leaders in Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua and signed several agreements on warship visits and military training during the visit, which ran from Feb. 11 to 14. It is not clear whether any new arms deals were completed during the visit.

Of course, everything old again,

Dan Goure, a Russia expert with the Lexington Institute, said Russia’s current moves into Latin America “are like a page Xeroxed from the Soviet political-military playbook.”

But, hey, the Monroe doctrine is dead, so there.

The Presidents’ Day Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, February 16th, 2015

Prosecutor Pollicita charges President CFK in AMIA cover-up case

Alberto Nisman’s Death Just The Latest Example Of Large-Scale Corruption, Argentines Say

From Stratfor: U.S., Bolivia: The Pieces Are in Place for Improved Relations

Whose oil in Brazil?
One of the many casualties of the Petrobras scandal is a misguided industrial policy

Carnival time in Brazil

Son of Chilean president resigns
The son of Chile’s President Michelle Bachelet resigns as head of a government charity after being accused of influence peddling.

Colombian Oil Firm Recruits FBI to Weed Out Bribery
Four Years Pass before Friends-with-Benefits Contracts Surface

Uribe meets with US Congressmen to seek support for Colombia opposition

Colombia proposes world’s largest eco-corridor with Brazil, Venezuela

Former Obama Official on Cuba Talks: “We didn’t want anything in return”

Dissident savagely attacked by Castro thugs

Aggressive new HIV strain detected in Cuba
Researchers said an aggressive HIV strain in Cuba progresses into AIDS so fast that treatment with antiretroviral drugs may come too late.

Turkey’s Erdogan wants to build a mosque in Cuba. It’s based on a historical fallacy.

The President Of Ecuador Just Went Off On John Oliver In Hilarious Rant


In historic move, Jamaica extradites fraud suspect

What’s Putin’s Game in the Western Hemisphere?
The Russians are coming—again

Worldwide Threat Assessment

Heisenberg: Bill Clinton apologizes to Mexico for the war on drugs which he blames for fueling violence in the country
Bill Clinton spoke at a summit on Youth and Productivity in Mexico
He said: ‘I wish you had no narco-trafficking, but it’s not really your fault’
He then blamed U.S. efforts which had forced trafficking over land
Clinton’s administration followed past president’s efforts on drugs war

HSBC has form: remember Mexico and laundered drug money
For the bank to get off with hollow statements of apology is to treat us all with contempt

Skeptical Panama takes heed of planned Nicaraguan canal

Ohio? Panama Canal expansion shipping jobs to Ohio

Appalachian Ohio could benefit most, in part because the Ohio River could receive goods from the canal after they’ve made their way to the United States via the Gulf of Mexico and the Mississippi River or the East Coast and the Port of Virginia.

Argentina oil company leaves Peru town after protests

Puerto Rico bankruptcy bill to get House hearing: source

Uruguay: Árabes, persas y espías, último capítulo de la gestión Almagro

You think? Uruguay Undecided on Accepting More Syrian Refugees

‘Coup plot foiled’ in Venezuela
An ex-air force general is arrested and more than 10 others implicated in a plot to overthrow Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, officials say.

Coup = toucan’s saliva

Clashes in Venezuela as economic shortages continue to bite
A year after violent clashes between opposition protestors and government forces left 43 dead, protestors returned to the streets of Venezuela

Reporters without Borders: Venezuela flunks in Press Freedom Index
The 2015 World Press Freedom Index, prepared by NGO Reporters without Borders, highlights increasing difficulties in Latin America for journalists to do their job in 2014. Venezuela fell 21 places from 2013

Escándalo en el HSBC revela cuenta en Suiza de Hugo Chávez con 12 mil millones de dólares

The week’s posts and podcast:
Smart diplomacy: “We didn’t want anything in return” from Cuba

Today on Drudgereport

Argentina: Gitmo alumnus “ready to fight”

Latin America: Worldwide Threat Assessment

Ecuador: John Oliver goofs on Correa

Argentina: Why we’ll probably never learn the truth about the #Nisman murder

Venezuela: Persecuting the retailers

At Da Tech Guy Blog:
Argentina: A case of “Forget it, Jake. It’s Chinatown?” UPDATE

Netflix in Cuba, yeah, right

On Venezuela, Argentina & US-Latin America