You could make a case that it’s crazy season somewhere in the world at any given time, but it’s the Republican primary’s turn.
Elsewhere in our hemisphere,
Nisman case: Spy chief returns to Argentina to make bombshell allegations. Jaime Stiuso, who for almost 40 years was central to Argentina’s secret services, has returned from self-imposed exile to testify before a judge in the Nisman case, and shock a television chat show
Re: the Nisman investigation, read Eamonn’s string, Stiuso’s credibility: He’s a bad, bad man, but that doesn’t mean he’s lying,
— Éamann Mac Donnchada (@EamonnMacDonagh) March 2, 2016
A good, English language article summarizing Evo Morales’s missing child story and how it relates to corruption, Beyond the Zapata scandal: Outsourcing Bolivia’s National Development to China
The basic details behind the scandal have been confirmed by President Morales himself. In 2007 or shortly before, the President had a relationship with Gabriela Zapata, resulting in a child who died shortly after birth. Zapata went on obtain a university education and a law degree, and in 2013 was contracted by the Chinese company CAMC Engineering which won an estimated $580 millionin work from the Bolivian state, of which, $366 million was awarded after Ms. Zapata was hired to represent the company.
As it turns out, Evo’s child is eight years old (link in Spanish).
Without a doubt, the top story of the month (yes, it’s early in the month, but still) is the raid on former president Lula’s home, his detention, questioning and release by the authorities investigating the Petrobras corruption scandal
Prosecutors now say they have evidence that Lula, members of his family and the Lula Institute, an NGO that he heads, received “undue benefits” worth 30m reais ($8m) in 2011-14 from builders embroiled in the Petrobras scandal. Lula was “one of the principal beneficiaries of the crimes” committed at the oil company, prosecutors claim. He vehemently denies any wrongdoing, and reportedly greeted the federal police officers at his door with calm, if not his usual folksy charm.
Many may have thought Lula was above the law at this point, but
Lula’s dawn surprise tops off a rough 24 hours for his embattled successor and protégée, Dilma Rousseff. The day before IstoÉ, a news magazine, published what it claimed was leaked testimony by Delcídio do Amaral, a senator from her (and Lula’s) Workers’ Party (PT), who was arrested last November in connection with the Petrobras affair. Mr do Amaral apparently alleged that Ms Rousseff appointed a judge simply because he was inclined to release important suspects, such as construction bosses, from pre-trial detention. Mr do Amaral also reportedly testified that Lula tried to buy witnesses’ silence. Ms Rousseff and Lula dismissed the report as unfounded speculation by IstoÉ; Mr do Amaral’s office issued a terse note declining to confirm the leaks’ contents (without expressly denying them).
Hours after IstoÉ dropped this bombshell, the Supreme Court charged the speaker of Congress’s lower house, Eduardo Cunha, with corruption and money-laundering. The chief prosecutor accuses Mr Cunha, who denies any wrongdoing, of managing the Petrobras “bribe pipeline”.
Other leftie leaders are uneasy.
Meanwhile, read about How the Left Came to Reject Cheap Energy for the Poor
CentAm Still Dominant Cocaine Route Into US: State Dept
Historia de un oso (Bear Story)Chile Wins an Oscar for Tackling Its Past
Editorial: Colombia Reports will ignore government’s press freedom limitations
Colombia Reports will ignore the Colombian government’s unlawful ban on reporting on FARC leaders’ trips to rank and file guerrillas. If we comply, this website could be censored any time deemed convenient by either the government or guerrillas.
Interior Minister Juan Fernando Cristo told press on Thursday that journalists are prohibited from reporting on FARC leaders’ attempts to explain a pending peace deal to their guerrillas, a significant step in a peace process that — like any process affecting citizens — requires public scrutiny.
— China Xinhua News (@XHNews) March 3, 2016
More on the police prostitution ring,
Broadcast of politician and police leader’s secret sex tape prompts homophobia debate in Colombia. La FM for broadcasting an eight-minute excerpt of a video recording in which former Senator Carlos Ferro and a police captain discuss sex in crude details
Obama’s Cuba Visit Aims To Knock America Down A Peg. President Obama thinks the main problem with the world is the United States. That’s why he needs to cut us down to size in Cuba—and everywhere else.
Why Latin American leftists would love a President Trump
Just how much of this is true? El Chapo entered US twice while on the run after prison break, daughter claims. In an exclusive interview, Rosa Isela Guzmán Ortiz says Mexican officials helped him evade US patrols and that he bankrolled the election of senior politicians
Stratfor report: Dark Pasts and Bright Futures in Paraguay
considering Paraguay’s difficult history, there is much to be impressed with, in terms of the country’s political evolution and economic growth over the past 20 years.
Inside La Isla: The Primary in Puerto Rico. Statehood, the Zika virus, and bankruptcy are big issues on the Island of Enchantment, but when you can’t vote for president, how do you make your voice heard?
At least 6,500 of the island’s 11,500 prisoners are registered to vote, and government officials said this year’s turnout was strong. Even prisoners not registered are allowed to participate in the open primaries, which are held two days ahead of the vote for the general population. The island’s Republican primary is Sunday while Democrats vote in June.