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Judi Lynn

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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 135,843

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Political Activist Beheaded In Central Mexico

Source: Bernama (Malaysia)

Political Activist Beheaded In Central Mexico

MEXICO CITY, Feb 6 (BERNAMA-NNN-EFE) -- Police found the decapitated body of political activist Gustavo Salgado on a highway in the central Mexican state of Morelos, the People's Revolutionary Front, or EPR, said Thursday.

The body of the 32-year-old EPR member was found on Wednesday afternoon, a day after he was reported missing, by police in Mototepec, a town outside the city of Ayala.

Salgado, who appeared to have been tortured, was identified by EPR members, who blamed the government for the murder.

"This crime is part of the policy of terror that the state has implemented to try to scare the popular movement in general and our organisation in particular," the EPR said.

Read more: http://www.bernama.com/bernama/v7/wn/newsworld.php?id=1106775



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political activist Gustavo Salgado[/center]

Robert White:Diplomat who served in El Salvador but angered many by speaking out on human rights abu

Robert White: Diplomat who served in El Salvador but angered many by speaking out on human rights abuses in the country

White's views cost him his career but earned him the respect of many Salvadorans and the vindication of history

Friday 06 February 2015


In 1980, when El Salvador was erupting in guerrilla war and military violence, the Carter administration sent a little-known Foreign Service officer as its new ambassador, hoping he could help the US-backed government find a reformist middle ground. Instead, Robert White became an outspoken critic of the assassinations and massacres being carried out by US-trained military units and private right-wing death squads. His views cost him his career but earned him the respect of many Salvadorans and the vindication of history.

His brief tenure in San Salvador was marked by atrocities such as the assassination of Catholic Archbishop Óscar Romero in March 1980 while he was saying Mass in the national cathedral, and the abduction and killing that December of four American women, two church workers, a nun and a lay missionary.

Whiteworked to promote human rights, economic reforms and political negotiations between leftist rebels and El Salvador's junta. But he found himself at loggerheads with the rightist military and establishment, which had powerful allies in Washington and Miami.

White began denouncing security abuses in diplomatic cables, then in interviews and congressional testimony. He called the right-wing leader Roberto D'Aubuisson a "pathological killer" and accused him of orchestrating the execution of Romero. White also accused the Salvadoran national guard of murdering the four American women, two of whom he had dined with the night before their disappearance. He was there when the women's bodies were dug up, and said angrily, "This time the bastards won't get away with it."

More:
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/robert-white-diplomat-who-served-in-el-salvador-but-angered-many-by-speaking-out-on-human-rights-abuses-in-the-country-10027275.html

Uribe administration directly involved in Supreme Court wiretaps: Former chief justice

Uribe administration directly involved in Supreme Court wiretaps: Former chief justice
Feb 5, 2015 posted by Nat Smith

The former President of Colombia’s Supreme Court has accused ex-Colombian President Alvaro Uribe of being directly involved in the wiretapping of the Supreme Court and others seemingly deemed inconvenient to the former administration.

Former chief justice Cesar Julio Valencia told weekly Semana that Maria del Pilar Hurtado, the former director of the now-defunct intelligence agency DAS, did not work alone and that the Uribe administration had given her the red light and subsequent support.

“There is no doubt that the orders to spy on me came from the Uribe government,” Valencia told Semana.
The former chief justice said he believed it most likely that the DAS director had been instructed by her superiors in the President’s Office.

“I do not think she acted on their own, she probably had someone more powerful than her who gave the orders” said Valencia.

More:
http://colombiareports.co/uribe-administration-directly-involved-supreme-court-wiretaps-former-chief-justice/

Scholarship students in Bogota receive hateful welcome messages from wealthy classmates

Scholarship students in Bogota receive hateful welcome messages from wealthy classmates
Feb 5, 2015 posted by Rebecca Florey

The new government scholarship program which allows more than 10,000 low-income students to study in the best universities in the country, has not been well received by some of the wealthy students who published a series of hateful messages on social media.

In a flurry of messages which often began with “I have nothing against the scholarship students, but …,” the scholarship students were being referred to as ‘thugs’ by the perturbed paying students.

The offensive messages began circulating on social networks relating to underprivileged youth who have been admitted to Bogota universities such as Los Andes and La Sabana, until recently only affordable by the most wealthy in the country.

On a university confessions page where the students normally wrote anonymously about the boy or girl they had a crush on, many students began posting offensive and accusatory messages suggesting that the new influx of underprivileged youths had led to robberies and thuggish behavior on campus.

More:
http://colombiareports.co/scholarship-students-bogota-receive-hateful-welcome-messages-wealthy-classmates/

The US Covert War on Venezuela in 2015 – Diary: Feb 4

The US Covert War on Venezuela in 2015 – Diary: Feb 4
By Arturo Rosales writing from Caracas
Wednesday, Feb 4, 2015


Government Counter Offensive well underway

Tuesday February 2nd was a fitting day to take enemy territory and prisoners in the ongoing media and economic war being waged against Venezuela, its government and people. This date, 16 years ago was when President Chávez was first sworn in as President in 1999 after his landslide victory the previous December.

The United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) held a plenary meeting attended by around 14,000 delegates from all 24 states to plan the strategy for internal elections to postulate candidates for the December elections for the National Assembly (Congress) and to plan strategy to combat the economic war that has been waged by the business sector and property owning bourgeoisie against its own people.

President Maduro spoke in detail about the arrest and occupation of the 167 Farmatodo shops in the country and then went on to describe another important retailer and distributor of food that had been caught participating in the economic war against the people.

The supermarket chain Supermercados Día a Día has 36 hypermarkets up and down the country, located mainly in popular areas. Reports have shown that each day, every day, there were lines outside these outlets as people struggled to find basic products for their families. The directors of the chain had been to Miraflores Palace on at least two occasions to assure the Executive that they were “doing their best” to provide decent service and products to the customers. However, this assertion and demonstration of good will proved to be a well-crafted web of deceit.

When the Minister for Food Sovereignty and Security, Carlos Osorio, accompanied by Caracas Governor Ernesto Villegas, went to inspect the Supermerados Día a Día store in the popular area of La Yaguara in south west Caracas, they discovered the doors closed and a line of about 60 people waiting to be allowed entry to search for the products they needed.

Osorio challenged the duty manager and the people were allowed in to buy their goods. This irregularity led to an inspection of the warehouse and – lo and behold – the authorities discovered more than 2500 tons of food, cleaning and personal hygiene products hoarded there. Some of the corn flour needed to make traditional arepas had the date of being packaged on August 7th 2014 and was still sitting there. In fact, the country’s biggest private producer of food, The Polar Company, had over 1000 tons of products in this warehouse including corn cooking oil, margarine and the fabled corn flour.

More:
http://axisoflogic.com/artman/publish/Article_69274.shtml

A Peace Deal with Colombia's Marxist Guerrillas Won't Fix Latin America's Cocaine Problem

A Peace Deal with Colombia's Marxist Guerrillas Won't Fix Latin America's Cocaine Problem
February 4, 2015
By Steven Cohen

At last year's United Nations General Assembly, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos asked the world to imagine his country "without coca," the plant precursor to crystal cocaine. This "dream," which would have been unthinkable a decade ago, is now at least plausible, with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), the country's largest rebel group, signing a preliminary peace agreement and partnering with the government to implement programs to replace coca crops with other plants.

But coca production has never been the focal point of the Colombian drug trade, and the FARC has only ever played a marginal role in moving cocaine to foreign markets. Colombia's broader drug problem is, and always has been, that drugs are illegal elsewhere, and the global drug war does not seem nearly as close to ending as the FARC's guerrilla insurgency. There's just too much money left on the table.

It was an accident of geography that brought cocaine to Colombia in the first place. Vast territories with little to no state presence and coasts on both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans made the country a prime maritime shipping hub. Nestled between traditional growing regions to the south and Central American smuggling routes to the north, Colombia stood—and, thanks to Brazil's rise as a top consumer, remains—at the key crossroads of international supply and demand. Pablo Escobar, who has become as synonymous with cocaine as cocaine has with Colombia, built his empire as a middleman, not a producer.

The right-wing paramilitary groups funded, and in some cases even founded, by Escobar and other drug lords looking to mask their activities under the guise of Cold War counterinsurgency have played a far greater role in international trafficking than the FARC ever has. Indeed, the rebels' initial foray into the drug business was facilitated by the very groups whose mission, ostensibly, was to eliminate them.

More:
http://www.vice.com/read/why-peace-with-colombian-marxist-guerrillas-wont-fix-latin-americas-cocaine-problem-204

Was Uribe complicit in a 1997 paramilitary massacre?

Source: Colombia Reports

Was Uribe complicit in a 1997 paramilitary massacre?
Feb 4, 2015 posted by Adriaan Alsema


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What was left of El Aro after the massacre (Photo: Semana)
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A Medellin court ordered the investigation of former Colombian President Alvaro Uribe for his alleged involvement in a 1997 massacre that has been haunting the former head of state in spite the fact that a number of key witnesses have been murdered or extradited.

According to a court that has been sentencing paramilitary commanders, there is enough evidence to merit an investigation against Uribe who was governor of Antioquia when members of the paramilitary group AUC murdered 14 in El Aro, a village that was burned to the ground after the massacre. The evidence consists of corroborated statements made by former members of the AUC and a local human rights worker who was assassinated months after the massacre.

In a 2006 ruling, the Inter-American Court for Human Rights had already convicted the Colombian state of taking part in the massacre, forcing Bogota to pay compensation to victims and the families of victims. This court established that members of the army’s 4th Division, local police and the governor’s office had either actively taken part or had failed to comply with their constitutional duty to protect the civilian population.

The international court also established that a helicopter belonging to the governor’s office was present during the massacre. Uribe’s Office was also held responsible for failing to provide the most basic assistance to the survivors of the massacre.




Read more: http://colombiareports.co/uribe-complicit-1998-paramilitary-massacre/



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Argentina Prosecutor Who Accused Kirchner Had Steady Contact With US Embassy, Leaked Cables Show

Argentina Prosecutor Who Accused Kirchner Had Steady Contact With US Embassy, Leaked Cables Show

By Gaston Cavanagh

January 30, 2015 | 2:40 pm

Alberto Nisman, the prosecutor who accused Argentina's president of a cover-up plot over the 1994 bombing of a Jewish center before being found shot to death, met repeatedly with the US embassy in Buenos Aires during his investigation, leaked diplomatic cables show.

Nisman gave US officials advanced notice on his procedural moves and was apparently coached by the embassy in "improving" his requests for arrest warrants for Iranians that Nisman suspected of carrying out the deadly attack against the Argentine Israeli Mutual Association, or AIMA, according to cables published by Wikileaks.

"Embassy can now more logically approach the [government of Argentina] about [its] anticipated next steps and ways we might be able to coordinate outreach to other governments [...] to bring attention to the warrants and pressure to bear on Iran and Hezbollah," says one US cable dated November 1, 2006, after a meeting with Nisman.

The revelations are adding fodder to the entangled scandal over the AIMA center bombing, Nisman's mysterious death, and the reactions of President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and her government loyalists.

More:
https://news.vice.com/article/argentina-prosecutor-who-accused-kirchner-had-steady-contact-with-us-embassy-leaked-cables-show

Pope Declares Salvadoran Archbishop Óscar Romero A Martyr

Source: NPR

Pope Declares Salvadoran Archbishop Óscar Romero A Martyr

February 03, 2015 1:02 PM ET

Oscar Arnulfo Romero, the Archbishop of San Salvador in El Salvador, was an outspoken voice for justice during the civil war that tore that country apart between 1980 and 1992. In the end, he paid with his life: on March 24, 1980, he was shot while giving mass.

Romero spoke out against the Salvadorean army's brutal repression. In February 1980, he wrote an open letter to President Jimmy Carter, pleading that the U.S. discontinue aid to the regime.

He was assassinated the day after he called upon Salvadoran soldiers and security force members to not follow their orders to kill Salvadoran civilians. He said in a public sermon:

I want to make a special appeal to soldiers, national guardsmen, and policemen: each of you is one of us. The peasants you kill are your own brothers and sisters. When you hear a man telling you to kill, remember God's words, 'thou shalt not kill.' No soldier is obliged to obey a law contrary to the law of God. In the name of God, in the name of our tormented people, I beseech you, I implore you; in the name of God I command you to stop the repression."




Read more: http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2015/02/03/383524968/pope-declares-salvadoran-archbishop-scar-romero-a-martyr

The Republican Senator Who's Trying to Lift the Cuba Travel Ban

The Republican Senator Who's Trying to Lift the Cuba Travel Ban

Feb 2, 2015 3:22 PM CST

Arizona Senator Jeff Flake has been working on lifting the ban for the past 15 years.


Arizona Senator Jeff Flake has been on Capitol Hill long enough to know that the legislation he introduced last week lifting the Cuba travel ban probably will get little traction in the current legislative environment. Still, Flake is betting on winning in the court of public opinion.

"As more Americans now go down under the relaxed restrictions, they'll just want more freedom," said Flake, predicting that an expansion of regularly scheduled commercial air service would lead to broad calls for lifting the travel ban completely.

Flake, began championing the cause almost 15 years ago as a House member during the early days of the George W. Bush administration, said that at the time he ran into resistance from the White House, specifically top Bush political adviser Karl Rove, who cautioned that effort was broadly unpopular with Florida's large Cuban-American population.

"I started doing this in 2001 and 2002, it was Karl Rove telling me, you know, it's Florida politics," Flake said. "That no longer applies. The politics are different than they were then."

Recent polling shows a reversal in traditional support among Cuban-Americans for punitive policies towards Cuba, a potentially significant development for swing-state Florida politics. A 2014 Florida International University poll found that 69 percent of Cuban Americans support lifting the travel ban and a majority—52 percent—support doing away with the trade embargo of the island nation.

More:
http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2015-02-02/the-republican-senator-who-s-trying-to-lift-the-cuba-travel-ban
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