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Judi Lynn

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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 147,066

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A deadly occupation: Environmentalists in Honduras

One year ago, environmentalist Berta Cáceres was murdered in Honduras – most likely because she was fighting a controversial dam project. The crime has yet to be solved and killings in the country continue.

Date 04.03.2017
Author Martin Reischke

he killers arrived at dawn. On March 3, 2016, several masked men forced their way into Berta Cáceres' house in La Esperanza and shot the prominent environmentalist to death. Many of her supporters are convinced that someone contracted Cáceres' murder because she was actively opposed to a controversial hydro-electric project in northwestern Honduras. The 42-year-old was a coordinator for the Civic Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), and engaged in the fight against a proposed dam on the Rio Gualcarque. Should the project go ahead, the dam will flood much of the property belonging Honduras' indigenous Lenca community. The mother of four's murder was received with shock around the world. Nevertheless, more than a year after her violent death, only uncertainty remains – both concerning the investigation of the crime and the future of the "Agua Zarca" power plant project.

Eight suspects have been arrested so far, among them ex-military men and employees of the Honduran energy company DESA, which wants to build the dam. Yet little more than that has been made public. "The behavior of the Honduran government doesn't exactly invite confidence in the fact that the case will ever be solved," says Mexican environmentalist Gustavo Castro Soto, the only eyewitness to the crime.

'Most dangerous country on earth'

The murder of Berta Cáceres is not unique – environmentalists are regularly murdered in Honduras. Just a few weeks ago, the international NGO "Global Witness" published a new study that declared Honduras "the most dangerous country in the world for environmentalists." According to research conducted by the organization, some 120 environmentalists have been killed in Honduras since 2010 because they were trying to protect the environment. Berta Cáceres may have been the most prominent member of COPINH to be murdered, but she was certainly not the only one – several other members of the indigenous organization were murdered last year as well.

There are accusations that the Honduran government is actively engaged in these murders. Berta Cáceres was apparently suspicious as well. Three years ago, she told news channel Al Jazeera that the Honduran army had a hit list containing the names of 18 environmentalists – and that hers was at the top: "If they want to kill me they will."


Colombia family to speak against ex-paramilitary leader in landmark US trial

Source: Colombia Reports

written by Richard Kelleher March 2, 2017

The former leader of a paramilitary death squad will face the family of one his victims in a Washington court on Friday, reported The Guardian newspaper.

In an unprecedented case, a family will be permitted to speak in a US court about the impact of the perpetrators’ crimes.

Hernan Giraldo Serna once led the “Tayrona Resistance Block,” a faction of the now-defunct AUC paramilitary group that was responsible for the murder of hundreds of farmers, leftist organizers and indigenous leaders on Colombia’s north coast.

This included the torture and murder of farmer Julio Henriquez in 2001, the father of the family that he will be face in court when he will be sentenced for conspiring to import cocaine into the United States when he was a leader of the paramilitary group.

Read more: http://colombiareports.com/colombia-family-speak-ex-paramilitary-leader-landmark-us-trial/

Mexicos Maya could predict hurricanes

Mexico’s Maya could predict hurricanes

The Maya Temple of the God of the Wind, in Tulum, Mexico, used
a web of holes to create a loud whistling sound that warned the
population of an impending hurricane
(Photo: Flickr)

By Brigitte Leoni

CANCUN, Mexico, 1 March 2017 – Mexico’s historical Maya civilisation created not only a written language and a binary mathematical system, but also a hurricane warning system that still works today.

It is housed in the clifftop Templo Dios del Viento, or Temple of the God of the Wind, in Tulum, a Maya site that had its heyday in the years 1200 to 1450.

The temple contains an intricate web of holes that cause an extremely loud whistling sound when early hurricane-force winds blow in from the Caribbean Sea towards Tulum.

To this day, the temple serves as a complementary warning system for the millions of tourists and local residents in the vicinity of Tulum. Fittingly, the site is 130 kilometres south of the city of Cancun, which in May hosts the 2017 Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction.



Templo Dios del Viento [/center]

Just found more info:

Detail of Templo del Dios del Viento (Temple of the Wind God)

The Temple of the Wind God (Templo del Dios del Viento) served as a lookout post and also a storm warning system. The building was constructed with a hole in the roof which produces a whistle when high winds blow. When a hurricane approached the area, the Maya would know to take shelter when they heard the whistle.

This building is associated with the Yucatec Maya deity known as Kukulcán, the feathered serpent. According to Maya mythology: Kukulkan always travels ahead of the rain god Chaac, helping to predict the rains as his tail moves the winds and sweeps the earth clean.

See a shoreline view of the building here: Tulum: El Templo del Dios del Viento


US authorities order recapture of Colombia ex-minister

Source: Colombia Reports

US authorities order recapture of Colombia ex-minister
written by Jamie Vaughan Johnson March 1, 2017

US authorities on Monday requested a warrant for the arrest of Colombias former agriculture minister amid concerns that he wants to flee to evade criminal prosecution in Colombia.

Andres Felipe Arias a.k.a. Little Uribe who is facing a 17 year sentence for embezzling funds worth over $20 million meant for poor farmers was arrested in the US in August last year but later was released on bail.

Wilfredo Ferrer, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida released a seven page letter dated February 27, requesting the arrest of Arias citing the high risk of the ex-minister skipping the country.

Consequently, the Government respectfully requests that the Court order the arrest of Arias Leiva or, in the alternative, that the Court order that his bail conditions be consolidated, states the document.

Read more: http://colombiareports.com/us-authorities-order-recapture-colombia-ex-minister/


He's in Miami, naturally.
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