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Judi Lynn

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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 135,893

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The million colors of Pasto’s Blacks and Whites carnival

The million colors of Pasto’s Blacks and Whites carnival
Posted by Adriaan Alsema on Jan 4, 2016



The city of Pasto began 2016 with its annual Blacks and Whites carnival, one of the most important and colorful cultural events in Colombia.

The carnival is the country’s second largest after that of Barranquilla and considered a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by United Nations culture organization UNESCO.

One of the most iconic events of the carnival, the annual Earth Song parade, took place on Sunday and drew tens of thousands of spectators from the Nariño province and beyond.

http://colombiareports.com/the-million-colors-of-pastos-blacks-and-whites-festival/

(Beautiful photos at link.)

Ríos Montt’s trial is the ultimate test for Guatemala’s justice system

January 7, 2016

Ríos Montt’s trial is the ultimate test for Guatemala’s justice system


The trial of Guatemala’s former military ruler, José Efraín Ríos Montt, due to start on January 11, will be a major test for the country’s justice system and a huge opportunity for Guatemala to show it is committed to human rights, said Amnesty International today.

“Tens of thousands of Guatemalans who fell victim to the heinous crimes committed under Ríos Montt’s rule have been waiting three decades to see justice done – they must not be forced to wait one second longer,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

“The Guatemalan ‘see no evil, hear no evil’ approach when it comes to dealing with the hundreds of thousands of cases of torture, killings and disappearances that took place during the country’s civil war is shameful and illegal. The only deterrent to the perpetrators of crimes like these is the clear knowledge that they will face justice and the full might of the law.”

Efraín Ríos Montt is charged with crimes against humanity and genocide in relation to the killing and torture of 1,771 Mayan-Ixil Indigenous people and the forced displacement of tens of thousands when he was president and commander-in-chief of the Guatemalan Army between 1982 and 1983.

More:
http://www.amnestyusa.org/news/press-releases/rios-montt-s-trial-is-the-ultimate-test-for-guatemala-s-justice-system

Guatemala arrests 14 former officials for war-era crimes

Source: Reuters

Guatemala arrests 14 former officials for war-era crimes
Source: Reuters - Wed, 6 Jan 2016 16:47 GMT

GUATEMALA CITY, Jan 6 (Reuters) - Guatemala on Wednesday detained 14 ex-military officials, including the brother of a former president, for forced disappearances and crimes against humanity during the bloodiest period of its 36-year civil war.

. . .

Testimonies from victims helped officials locate 558 skeletons in a secret cemetery inside a military zone and connect them to the accused, said state prosecutor Orlando Lopez.

Over the past decade, the Central American country has begun prosecuting crimes from its civil war past, including massacres of women and children.

Guatemala's 1960-1996 civil war pitted a succession of right-wing governments against leftist insurgents and led to nearly a quarter-million deaths. A U.N.-backed truth commission said the armed forces carried out more than 80 percent of human rights abuses during the conflict.

Read more: http://www.trust.org/item/20160106165011-z3ro9/

Combative Venezuela opposition leader will head congress

Combative Venezuela opposition leader will head congress
Jan 3, 9:01 PM EST
By HANNAH DREIER
Associated Press

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) -- An outspoken opposition leader known for embracing confrontation was chosen Sunday to head Venezuela's new congress when it opens in two days as a counterweight to the socialist administration. The newly elected opposition majority voted to make Henry Ramos Allup the president of the National Assembly when it is seated Tuesday. The new session will be the first time foes of the administration have had control of any government institution in more than a decade.

Ramos, 72, is a divisive figure that government supporters love to hate as much for his acerbic tongue as for his leadership in the once-hegemonic Democratic Action party that co-governed Venezuela for decades before the late President Hugo Chavez won power in 1998 and began his leftist program.

. . .

Ramos, 72, is a divisive figure that government supporters love to hate as much for his acerbic tongue as for his leadership in the once-hegemonic Democratic Action party that co-governed Venezuela for decades before the late President Hugo Chavez won power in 1998 and began his leftist program.

. . .

In recent weeks, Capriles has lambasted opposition leaders who have advocated street activism, particularly a wave of protests that shut down parts of Venezuela in 2014 and resulted in dozens of deaths. Carpriles said that if the opposition had continued to pursue open confrontation in the streets, the coalition would never have won congress. The street protest movement "must be named among our greatest national failures," he told the Venezuelan weekly Tal Cual.

More:
http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/L/LT_VENEZUELA_NATIONAL_ASSEMBLY?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2016-01-03-18-44-37

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Henry Ramos Allup

(Pull my finger) [/center]

Gorgeous Images Reveal Parasitic Plant in 3-Way Symbiotic Relationship

Gorgeous Images Reveal Parasitic Plant in 3-Way Symbiotic Relationship

by Tia Ghose, Senior Writer | December 30, 2015 10:12am ET

Scientists have found a bizarre food triangle between three different organisms lurking deep in the Peruvian Amazon.

The cast of characters includes a yellow parasitic plant that bursts forth like boils from tree bark, a caterpillar that feeds on that plant, and an ant that drinks the sweet liquid that the caterpillar produces in a special gland near its neck. And at least one of these critters seems to have evolved specific adaptations that allow it to better take advantage of this complex relationship. (See Images of the Strange Amazon Love Triangle)

"It's really a weird relationship, I've never seen anything like it before," said Aaron Pomerantz, an entomologist who works with a rainforest expedition company at the Refugio Amazonas near the Tambopata Research Center in Peru.

Tree boils?

Pomerantz was walking in the jungle when he spied strange, yellow bulbs that looked almost like dot candy bursting from a tree trunk. When he took a closer look, he realized that a caterpillar was feeding on the yellow bulbs.

[center]





~ ~ ~

[/center]
More:
http://www.livescience.com/53230-ant-caterpillar-parasite-relationship.html

Paraguay Brings Back Sherman Tanks

Paraguay Brings Back Sherman Tanks

Ancient armor reactivated for training purposes

Dave Majumdar

Paraguay is putting World War II-era M3 Stuarts and M4 Sherman tanks back into service. The country is thought to have three Sherman medium tanks and up to 14 Stuart light tanks in its inventory.

The venerable tanks — which are now over 75 years old — were originally designed to fight the German Wehrmacht and Waffen-SS in Europe. Neither tank proved to be a match for the Nazi Panzers on a one-for-one basis. But the combined Allied effort prevailed, and the Sherman would nonetheless continue to serve around the world for decades to come.

Paraguay decided to re-activate its M3 fleet in 2014, sources told IHS Jane’s, mostly for operational training purposes.
Ten of the vehicles were overhauled with refurbished engines and received M2 .50-caliber machine-guns in place of the original Browning .30-caliber. Four tanks remain in storage, with one other machine being used as a gate guard. There are no further details about the status of the Shermans — which are still serving with Paraguay’s Presidential Escort Regiment.

The Shermans — which were delivered in 1980 from Argentina — and the Stuarts — which were donated by Brazil in the 1970s — have been hopelessly obsolete for decades.

More:
http://warisboring.com/articles/paraguay-brings-back-sherman-tanks/
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