Posts Tagged ‘Felipe Calderón’

Venezuela: Turned away at the prison gates

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015

The Venezuelan government has turned down a request by former presidents of Chile and Colombia to visit opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez in jail (h/t HACER). Mexico’s former president Felipe Calderón would also been turned away, creating An impossible to avert PR mess for Maduro

Piñera and Pastrana have now a first hand account, a direct witness position on repression in Venezuela. They saw the Nazional Guards everywhere, they were both somewhat threatened by diverse hecklers and possibly by “security”, they experienced personally the harshness and autism of the regime, etc, etc.

@AndresPastrana_ and @sebastianpinera enter Ramo Verde to meet with @leopoldolopez

Maduro then doubled down and accused Piñera and Pastrana of enriching themselves from drug money (as if Piñera needed the money). This is particularly offensive to Pastrana, who was held prisoner by Pablo Escobar 27 years ago.

Pastrana, on his part, scored a dig or two on Maduro, referring to him as “my fellow countryman”, since Maduro may have been born in Colombia – which would disqualify Maduro from being president of Venezuela (video in Spanish),

Pastrana points out that he and Piñera went to the Ramo Verde jail on the regular visiting day, when no permits are required to see the inmates.

Just another day in the Communist Bolivarian Revolution.

The Pope Francis Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, March 18th, 2013

LatinAmerWelcome to the Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean. This week’s big story: Pope Francis, the first Latin American Pope.

Behind the Campaign to Smear the Pope
Argentines who want their country to be the next Venezuela see Francis as an obstacle.


Pope Francis appears for first angelus
Pope Francis appeared before more than 100,000 people massed in St Peter’s Square on Sunday for his first Angelus prayer and asked the faithful to pray for him.

Muchas gracias for a ‘triple first’ of a Pope

Popes and Dopes
Some journalists are remarkably ignorant–or at least think their readers are.

Vatican denies Dirty War allegations
The Vatican has denied that Pope Francis failed to speak out against human rights abuses during military rule in his native Argentina.

Video: Will Pope Francis go left on economics?

Jaime Bayly on the Pope (in Spanish)

Earth to Evo Morales

Brazil’s oil royalties
Counting the barrels

Presidential elections in Costa Rica, El Salvador and Panama

Exhumation of Pablo Neruda’s remains set for 8 April
A court in Chile has set a date for the exhumation of the remains of the Nobel Prize-winning poet Pablo Neruda, as part of an inquest into his death.

National Science Foundation Celebrates Inauguration of Atacama Large Millimeter/Submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile

Colombia’s Peace Process Sans Chávez

In First U.S. Trip, Cuban Dissident Yoani Sanchez Vows To Turn Up The Heat

Report Grand Jury Investigating Robert Menendez

Ecuador preacher sentenced for homophobic comments
The former Ecuadorean presidential candidate Nelson Zavala has had his political rights suspended for a year and been fined for homophobic comments.

The Falklands referendum
Loud and clear
The islanders seek to sway world opinion by voting to stay British

British Media Focus on Bergoglio’s Falklands Remarks

This Map Helps Explain the Falklands Dust-Up

Chicken and avocado stuffed naan

Chavez’s legacy is worse than Calderon’s

Spicy, Spicy

Mexico’s Education Breakthrough
Why February 2013 may be remembered as a turning point for Mexican schools.


Contrary to prior reports, Paulson Not Planning a Move to Puerto Rico

Body of Chavez makes final journey
The body of Venezuela’s late president Hugo Chavez is being escorted to its resting place in a Caracas museum.
For now, that is.

Chavez madcap wake

Venezuela says permanently embalming Hugo Chávez’s body faces ‘technical’ difficulties

Latin America after Chávez

The Narrative of the Dead

Lukoil learns the hard way

ROS-LEHTINEN: Venezuela after Chavez: What comes next?
U.S. dithering won’t encourage democracy

The week’s posts and podcasts:
Yoani Sanchez in NYC

Crazy in Venezuela

At BlogHer, Francis I: The First Latin American Pope

Pope Francis I loves tango

BREAKING: New Pope elected – an Argentinian porteño

Falklands: The votes are in, but Cristina can’t believe it

Hugo’s mummy

Silvio Canto’s

Willie Lawson’s

The Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, October 1st, 2012

The president and the potbangers
Times are getting tougher for Cristina Fernández, but she is not beaten yet

Corruption in Brazil
Worth the wait
The supreme court makes graft riskier

Chile’s economic statistics
For richer—or poorer
Re-crunching the numbers—whatever they might be

Uribe Outbursts Act As Misguided Obstacles to Colombian Peace Talks

Journalists reporting on Lignano murder arrested in Cuba (h/t GoV)

“That *!&^*%$#@! blockade…” (or why the Castro dynasty loves people-to-people exchanges)

VIDEO starts immediately: Rescued tourists describe Ecuador kidnap ordeal
A British and Australian tourist kidnapped in Ecuador while visiting a remote nature reserve in the Amazon jungle speak following their rescue by Ecuadorean authorities on Saturday.

Asylum Granted to Guatemalan Massacre Survivor

Sunday Reminisces: Dinner and Guns at the Whorehouse with my Wife

The Paradoxes of Felipe Calderón
The Mexican president who fought the drug war leaves behind a growing economy and says the U.S. should consider ‘market alternatives.’

Univision: The untold story of what ‘Fast and Furious’ wrought in Mexico
Sunday evening, Univision airs an investigative report on how the botched ‘Fast and Furious’ program resulted in a deadly toll in Mexico when US authorities allowed guns to ‘walk’ across the border
. Instapundit,

I don’t think this operation was “botched” or “deeply flawed.” I think it worked as planned, except for the part about being caught. Still, even if you aren’t troubled by the too-close nexus with the Administration’s preferred gun-control narrative, there’s this: “In order to reach the target of the operation, which was identifying the drug traffickers who were using the guns, [ATF agents] were waiting for the guns to be used. And how are guns used in Mexico? Killing people. I talked to an ATF agent who said there was no other way to explain it.”

Bullets Follow Guns to Mexico
Ammunition Is Easier to Buy and Hide Than Weapons; Smuggling Is Harder to Stop

Puerto Rico Ex-Senator Jorge de Castro Font Pleads Guilty to 93 Charges

Puerto Rico jury rejects death penalty in drug dealer case

Puerto Rico First Lady Luce Fortuño to stump for Romney along I-4 in Florida.

Venezuelan Elections: sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words

Venezuelan Bond Soar On Higher Probability Of A Capriles Victory

Chávez accused of election dirty tricks

A Thug’s Comeuppance? Hugo Loses The Lead

Breaking new ground for the future
Since his election in the primaries as the candidate for the opposition Unified Democratic Panel (MUD), he started a frantic nationwide tour for Venezuelans to know him “face to face”

Venezuela’s presidential election
The autocrat and the ballot box
A united opposition and discontent over government mismanagement mean a genuine electoral challenge for Hugo Chávez

A Serious Challenger for Chávez
Henrique Capriles has been drawing roaring crowds. Hugo Chávez? Not so much.

Video in Spanish of yesterday’s Capriles rally (via Carlos); slide show here [VIDEO MOVED TO BELOW THE FOLD SINCE IT STARTS RIGHT AWAY]

The biggest electoral march / rally / event in the history of the Americas

Venezuelan youth could decide if Chavez remains in power; IMO it’s going to take a lot more than the youth vote.

Do Richard Holloway and other Leftist class warriors realise that El Sistema has links with Opus Dei?

As Venezuelan Vote Looms, Skeptics Anticipate Last-Moment Chávez Victory

The week’s posts & podcast:
Fast & Furious on @Univision

Tonight on @Univision: Fast and Furious

A week from the election, Putin send Chavez “Stalin’s dog”

Brazil: Google chief detained, Court Bans Anti-Islam Video

In Silvio Canto’s podcast

Venezuela: Yet another fire at a refinery


Seals vs El Chapo?

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

The UK’s Daily Mail has this today,
Is the U.S. sending Seal Team Six to capture top drug cartel kingpin? American military ‘plotting military operation similar to bin Laden mission’

  • Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman is one of Mexico’s most wanted drug cartel kingpins
  • He escaped from prison in daring breakout in 2001
  • Mexican President Felipe Calderon reportedly reached out to U.S. for help in taking out Guzman in military raid
  • U.S. agencies have allegedly grown frustrated with Mexico’s inability to catch Guzman
  • Bin Laden killed in Seal Team Six raid in Abbotabad, Pakistan, on May 2, 2011

It’s an extraordinary story in many levels, not the least of which is this,

Mexico’s Procesor magazine (English translation) reported that a new plan to get Guzman was hatched by Mexican President Felipe Calderon, who felt the only way to catch him was through a military raid.

But when Calderon was turned down by Mexico’s army and naval forces, he turned to the U.S. government, which has made catching or killing Guzman a priority.

Sources told Procesor that the U.S. has grown increasingly more frustrated with Mexico’s failure to bring Guzman to justice – especially after a joint effort by U.S. agencies provided the information needed to catch him.

The original article on Proceso is based on unnamed sources in the US and Mexican military. Apparently the mission has been delayed because the US insists on going alone, which the Mexican Marines and Army flatly rejected. Felipe Calderón will soon be out of office as Mexico’s new president, Enrique Peña Nieto, is scheduled to take office on December 1, 2012,

And then there’s the fact that the politicians in Washington are running for re-election. Who’s going to want to stir another hornet’s next now?

In all, color me skeptical.

Linked by The Mex Files. Thanks!
(“The far right-wing Latin American website”? Hah!)

Low expectations for the G20

Wednesday, June 13th, 2012

Mexico’s Calderón Tempers Expectations for G-20 Meeting

Mr. Calderón also sought to temper short-term expectations from the summit.

“Each particular event, and in this case the G-20 meeting, doesn’t necessarily generate in itself some news event that would have a special impact on markets,” he said. “However, what we can expect, and that’s the goal of the meeting, is to deal frankly with the current problems in the world, particularly Europe.”

As you can hear in the above interview, there’s going to be a lot of lip service paid to mostly symbolic issues that will not improve, and may even worsen, economic or market conditions, such as “financial social inclusion, food security and the green economy”.

Calderón also expects a bailout for Spain, which comes as no surprise. Bailout in Spain Leaves Taxpayers Liable for the Cost – which taxpayers?

The G-20 will meet in Los Cabos, Mexico on June 18 and 19.

Monday’s North American summit: Just how bad was it?

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

The North American summit that the US media ignored was a disaster that the foreign media reported: IBD explains how Obama Alienates Canada And Mexico At Three Amigos

Obama’s neglect of our nearest neighbors and biggest trade partners has created deteriorating relations, a sign of a president who’s out of touch with reality. Problems are emerging that aren’t being reported.

Fortunately, the Canadian and Mexican press told the real story.

Energy has become a searing rift between the U.S. and Canada and threatens to leave the U.S. without its top energy supplier.

The Winnipeg Free Press reported that Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper warned Obama the U.S. will have to pay market prices for its Canadian oil after Obama’s de facto veto of the Keystone XL pipeline. Canada is preparing to sell its oil to China.

Until now, NAFTA had shielded the U.S. from having to pay global prices for Canadian oil. That’s about to change.

Canada has also all but gone public about something trade watchers have known for a long time: that the U.S. has blocked Canada’s entry to the eight-way free trade agreement known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership, an alliance of the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Peru, Chile, and Singapore. Both Canada and Mexico want to join and would benefit immensely.

With the media’s “layers of fact-checkers,”

U.S. media dutifully reported Obama’s false claim that Canada, our top trading partner, is too protectionist

But the Canadians know the truth,

Canada’s take was far more blunt: “Our strong sense is that most of the members of the Trans-Pacific Partnership would like to see Canada join,” said Prime Minister Stephen Harper, in essence revealing that it’s the Obama administration alone that is blocking Canada, and suggesting that payback on energy was coming.

Things were even worse, if you read the Mexican press accounts of the meeting.

Excelsior of Mexico City reported that President Felipe Calderon bitterly brought up Operation Fast and Furious, a U.S. government operation that permitted Mexican drug cartels to smuggle thousands of weapons into drug-war-torn Mexico. This blunder has wrought mayhem on Mexico and cost thousands of lives.

The mainstream U.S. press has kept those questions out of the official press conferences, while Obama has feigned ignorance to the Mexicans and hasn’t even apologized.

In short, the summit was a diplomatic disaster for the U.S. and its relations with its neighbors north and south.

It should have been the easiest, most no-brainer diplomatic task Obama faces.

Go read the whole thing, while at the same time keep in mind that Obama diverted the press conference into the issue of Obamacare and the SCOTUS.

And he got his Constitution facts wrong.

Linked by Moe Lane, and Instapundit. Thank you!
Linked by HACER. Thank you!

And now,
Canadian PM Harper: The Price The US Pays For Canadian Oil Is About To Go Up, Up, Up, Thanks To President Ladies’ Tee. AFTER KEYSTONE, WE’D RATHER SELL OIL TO CHINA (h/t Instapundit)

“Smart diplomacy”, folks, “smart diplomacy”…

3 on Mexico

Friday, April 15th, 2011

1. Violence and Calderón:
Violence increases pressure on Calderon (emphasis added)

In yet another case of alleged police complicity in murder, authorities found the bodies of four men detained three weeks ago in the border city of Ciudad Juarez. The men disappeared in the system after they were arrested by a special forces unit of municipal police. Their bodies, showing signs of torture, turned up in the high grass at a ranch Wednesday.

Four years into his U.S.-backed, military-led war against drug cartels, Calderon’s government is struggling to make good on promises to transform the state and local police forces, whose officers are often ill trained and poorly paid. These same units often work for crime mafias and drug traffickers. Calderon’s opponents in the Mexican congress have blocked his efforts to place local police under state control.

Authorities searching shallow pits in San Fernando, about 90 miles south of Brownsville, Tex., said they found 23 more corpses Thursday, bringing the total to 145 since the first were uncovered last week.

The locations highlighted above bring me to
2. The Threat Just Inside Our Door

National Security: The Defense Department warns that the cartels making Mexico a war zone are operating easily here too. And a secret U.S. report leaked in Mexico warns of even worse. So why isn’t anyone talking about it?

“The drug trade is inherently associated with creating instability” and is “often a localized funding source for insurgent and criminal groups.”

As for Mexico’s cartels, he [William F. Wechler, deputy assistant secretary of defense, on his testimony last Tuesday to a Senate armed services subcommittee on emerging global threats] said they operate in Atlanta, Chicago and Detroit. Amazingly enough, that was an understatement.

According to an internal Justice Department report leaked to Mexico’s El Universal this week and available only in Spanish, Mexican drug-trafficking organizations have affiliates in at least 1,286 U.S. cities, with 143 reporting directly to cartel leaders.

Translating from the El Universal report, said the Sinaloa Cartel, run by Mexico’s biggest kingpin, Joaquin “Chapo” Guzman, operates in 75 U.S. cities.

The Zetas, a separate organization known for beheadings, operate in 37. Then there’s the Gulf Cartel operating in 37 cities, the Juarez Cartel in 33, the Beltran-Leyva Organization in 30, La Familia in 27 and the Tijuana cartel in 21.

That would explain why Phoenix has seen beheadings, Las Vegas has seen child kidnappings, Los Angeles has seen freeway shootings and both El Paso and Brownsville, Texas, have seen the murder of American college students.

There’s a lot of money behind all this violence, and the money has to be laundered. Here is a post on trade-based money-laundering,
On Washing Dirty Cash

For what it’s worth, the most notorious money-launderers in Torreón, at least according to the word on the street, were also really successful businesses, especially nightclubs and car dealerships. There were a couple that were always empty yet stayed open for years, but more common were the ones that would have made money with or without the dirty cash flowing through. I can only imagine the huge volume of legitimate sales makes it harder to identify a place as a money-laundry.

Once the money is “clean”, it pays for a lot of politicians’ favors.


Why is Mexico’s Calderon silent about the ATF Gunwalker scandal?

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

Robert Farago asks,

Mystery surrounds the ATF Gunwalker scandal. Who authorized the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ stingless sting operation that allowed, indeed enabled thousands of U.S. guns to flow to Mexican drug cartels? Why is the Obama administration stonewalling the Congressional investigation of Project Gunrunner and Operation Fast and Furious? What else are they hiding? And here’s another one: why has Mexican President Felipe Calderon remained on the sidelines of this story, continuing to cozy-up to President Obama when it’s clear that Uncle Sam supplied weapons to the narco-terrorists plaguing his country?

Here’s an explanation,

Anabel Hernández has made quite the charge: the Sinaloa cartel has bought the Mexican government lock, stock and Calderon. What’s more, the DEA knows about the corruption and plays ball with Calderon to catch other cartels, giving the Sinaloas a pass. Which would account for Calderon’s lack of indignation on the whole Gunwalker deal.

No matter whose, it all boils down to corruption.

(h/t Instapundit)


Today’s podcast: Mexico, in Silvio Canto’s show

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

I haven’t been podcasting due to time constraints, but I was a guest in Silvio Canto’s podcast this morning. You can listen to it here


The last monday in February Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, February 28th, 2011

This week in Latin American news: Michelle Bachmann went to Colombia and Mexico, Obama’s heading to South America, and Ortega loves Gadaffi.

Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru Move Toward Energy Integration

Obama’s Visit to Latin America: A View from the South

In Argentina, a Different Sort of Inflation Fight

Bolivia’s top drug cop arrested for smuggling dope to US

Judge suspends Brazil’s monster dam: contractor ‘imposing’ its interests

Brazil Economy Flickers as Bottlenecks Drive Up Prices

Aprobación de Central Castilla: el debate ambiental-energético no termina

Chilean quake survivors still suffer one year later

Bachmann visits Mexico, Colombia

Colombia Central Bank Increases Key Rate To 3.25%

Chinchilla blasts Ortega for Gadhafi support
Nicaragua’s Daniel Ortega said Monday he called Moammar Gadhafi to express solidarity during these very “tense moments.”

As Cuba Prepares to Drill for Oil Offshore, New Report Urges Major Changes in U.S. Policy. Here’s the Congressional Research Service report: Cuba’s Offshore Oil Development: Background and U.S. Policy Considerations

Alan Gross’ lawyer wears two hats

AFI and PBS Embrace Pro-Castro Propaganda, Ignore Agustin Blazquez’ Documented Criticism

The infiltration of Cuba’s dissident groups

The Graveyard Police

Raul Castro’s Three-Year Report Card

With Increased US Aid, Honduras Militarises Anti-Drug Fight

Home building design tips for the tropics

Teachers and Taxistas strike in La Ceiba

Respected Mexican journalist fired for addressing Calderon drinking rumor

6 Members of Zeta Drug Cartel Arrested for ICE Agent Murder

Speedy Sarkozy Bullied by the Mexicans

The Accusations of an Ex-Governor and the Nature of PRI Support for the Drug Trade

An American Dies in Mexico’s Drug War
Rounding up the killers of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officer Jaime Zapata will not curtail Americans’ voracious appetite for mind-altering substances.

Qaddafi and Ortega: Brotherhood of Blood

Gadhafi gets support from Nicaragua’s Ortega (Updated)

InterAmericana Hwy. Shutdown in David due to Protests…

Peru calls for United Nations intervention in Libya

Five Indicted in Puerto Rico on Organized Crime and Racketeering Charges

Pedro Konrad y Claudia María Sosa Otero – lavado de dinero de narcotrafico

Iranian, Venezuelan Presidents Review Important Regional Developments
TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his Venezuelan counterpart Hugo Chavez in a phone conversation conferred on the latest regional and international developments, and stressed the necessity for the two states to keep vigilant and increase their bilateral consultations.

Venezuela’s government supports Qaddafi: denial ain’t a river next to Egypt…..

Chávez starts to pay the price for that Bolivar sword replica UPDATED

U.S. journalist reports harassment by Venezuelan agents


The mystery of Giordani’s 18% Debt/GDP ratio

Jaime Bayly has a new novel coming out, and the hype is on, not all of it good (video in Spanish, language not suitable for work)

The week’s posts:
Teddy does Santiago
Mexico: More Civilians Killed Last Year in One Mexican Border Town Than All Afghanistan
Will Venezuela really go bankrupt?
Mexican drug wars spreading to Central America
White House won’t talk about Libya, while Peru does