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Judi Lynn

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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 142,661

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Colombia’s Constitutional Court president also linked to paramilitary land theft

Colombia’s Constitutional Court president also linked to paramilitary land theft
Apr 14, 2015 posted by Ardalan Al-Jaf

The president of Colombia’s Constitutional Court — already in trouble over bribery allegations — has also been linked to paramilitary violence after investigators found that land he owns had been stolen from displaced farmers.

Prosecutors have called the wife of court president Jorge Pretelt, Martha Patron, for questioning after finding that the Pretelt family owns plots of land that was stolen from local farmers from the northwestern Uraba region by paramilitaries in the 1990s.

. . .

Towards the end of the 1990s, in an apparent alliance with leaders of paramilitary organization AUC, the ranchers appropriated at least 6,500 hectares of land belonging to 60 families of farmers in Uraba.

. . .

Other than being a training ground for the AUC and the site of their victims’ mass graves, two country houses on the land owned by Pretelt were allegedly obtained through forced displacement.



Colombia remains Latin America's largest recipient of US taxpayers' boatloads of foreign aid.

Artic drill rig protesters will have to stay in safety zone

Artic drill rig protesters will have to stay in safety zone
By CHRIS GRYGIEL, Associated Press | April 14, 2015 | Updated: April 14, 2015 4:22pm

SEATTLE (AP) — The Coast Guard says protesters opposed to offshore drilling in the Arctic will have to stay in safety zones when a drill rig arrives in Seattle.

Chief Petty Officer Sara Mooers says a Seattle-bound drill rig and a heavy-lift vessel are expected to arrive in Port Angeles later this week, though an exact day wasn't known. She says when the rig and vessel enter Elliott Bay off Seattle protesters will have to stay 500 yards away from a moving vessel and 100 yards from one that is anchored.

Conservationists oppose Arctic offshore drilling and say oil companies have not demonstrated they can clean up a major spill.

Protesters have said they plan use kayaks to meet the 400-foot Polar Pioneer and the heavy-lift vessel called the Blue Marlin that is carrying it when the vessel comes to Seattle for staging.


Government and Media Fantasies About Cuban Politics

Government and Media Fantasies About Cuban Politics
by Matt Peppe / April 13th, 2015

The historic meeting between President Barack Obama and President Raúl Castro of Cuba at the Summit of the Americas in Panama over the weekend could be interpreted as a stepping stone toward the end of U.S. subversion and economic warfare relentlessly carried out since the success of the Cuban revolution 55 years ago. But it is questionable whether President Obama intends to transform relations, treating the government of Cuba as a sovereign equal and recognizing their right to choose different political and economic models, or merely to continue the same decades-old policy with a more palatable sales pitch – the way he has done with drones and extrajudicial surveillance. U.S. media, however, appear to have fully embraced the propaganda line that Washington is acting in the best interests of the Cuban people to liberate them from political repression. The New York Times weighed in the day before the Summit by claiming that most Cubans identify not with the sociopolitical goals advanced by their country’s government, but rather with those supported by Washington.

In an editorial titled “Cuban Expectations in a New Era” (4/7/2015), the New York Times advances the proposition that engagement between the two governments will lead to Cuba’s integration (at least partially) into the global capitalist economy. This in turn will create increased financial prosperity as Cuba grows its private sector and turns away from the failed model the government has imposed since the start of the revolution.

The New York Times portrays the Cuban government as intransigent, stubbornly holding its citizens back from the inevitable progress that would result from aligning itself with Washington. The Times claims that the Cuban government maintains a “historically tight grip on Cuban society.”

They insinuate there is a Cuban version of the U.S.’s political police, the FBI, who for decades spied on nonviolent activists representing African Americans, Puerto Rican nationalists, the anti-war movement, animal rights and environmental groups to prevent social change through political action. Many of the activists illegally targeted by the FBI’s COINTELPRO program still remain incarcerated as political prisoners. But the Times doesn’t mention any such Cuban equivalent, likely because none exists.


71 Years Ago FDR Dropped a Truthbomb That Still Resonates Today

Kevin Drum

71 Years Ago FDR Dropped a Truthbomb That Still Resonates Today

—By Marianne Szegedy-Maszak
| Sun Apr. 12, 2015 6:00 AM EDT

When was the last time you heard an American politician invoke Franklin Delano Roosevelt's policies as models to be emulated? Democrats avoid him because his New Deal policies seem to embody the tax-and-spend, overbearing, and intrusive central government that always puts them on the defensive. And why would a Republican bother with Roosevelt when they believe that Obama is so much worse?

Sunday is the seventieth anniversary of FDR's death on April 12, 1945. Since anniversaries are always good opportunities to reflect on the past, I reread one of Roosevelt's speeches that I somehow still remember studying in college. It was his penultimate State of the Union Address, which he delivered on January 11, 1944, and the one in which he outlined a "second Bill of Rights"—a list of what should constitute basic economic security for Americans.

The world was still at war. Roosevelt had returned in December from meeting Stalin and Churchill at the Tehran Conference where the three leaders discussed not only the final phase of the war, but also how Europe would be divided after the conflict was over. The worst of the Great Depression was over, remedied in large part by the wartime economy. Roosevelt, who was starting his fourth term and was sick with the flu, decided not to go before Congress. Instead, he delivered the address from the White House. Across the country, people could tune in on their radios and hear their president speak.

Looking at his speech again, I was struck by how he grapples with so many of the same issues that we do now. Here he is on the domination of special interests:

While the majority goes on about its great work without complaint, a noisy minority maintains an uproar of demands for special favors for special groups. There are pests who swarm through the lobbies of the Congress and the cocktail bars of Washington, representing these special groups as opposed to the basic interests of the Nation as a whole. They have come to look upon the war primarily as a chance to make profits for themselves at the expense of their neighbors—profits in money or in terms of political or social preferment.


Opposition hacker gets 10 years for spying on Colombia peace process

Opposition hacker gets 10 years for spying on Colombia peace process
Apr 12, 2015 posted by EFE

A Colombian court sentenced a former employee of a presidential candidate in the 2014 elections to 10 years in prison after he admitted to spying on the government’s peace talks with the FARC, and accepted the prosecution’s offer of a reduced penalty in exchange for his cooperation.

Hacker Andres Sepulveda was judged guilty of five crimes, including illegal interception and espionage, according to the sentence handed down by the a Bogota court. He must also pay a fine worth approximately $30,000 as part of the agreement.

The Internet pirate was arrested in May 2014 after being traced to secret offices that hacked confidential information and messages, including one whose objective was to sabotage the peace process.

Several months earlier he had been contracted by the Colombian presidential campaign of then-candidate Oscar Ivan Zuluaga of the Democratic Center Party, led by ex-President and Senator Alvaro Uribe.


Che´s Daughter Rejects Presence in Panama of Man that Murdered her Father

Che´s Daughter Rejects Presence in Panama of Man that Murdered her Father
Created on Saturday, 11 April 2015 11:57 | Hits: 96 |

Tamaño letra:

HAVANA, Cuba, Apr 10 (acn) Aleida Guevara, daughter of Cuban-Argentinean revolutionary Ernesto Che Guevara, described as shameful the presence in the activities of the Summit of the Americas of Felix Rodriguez Mendigutia, who was directly involved in the assassination of her father, in Bolivia.

"In was a nonsense decision by whoever admitted him, said Guevara and reiterated that the presence of the former CIA agent is shameful. Felix was a CIA instrument and he offered himself in a mean manner to murder him."

Che´s daughter also said that the presence of Rodriguez Medigutia at the continental forum, the first to have Cuba´s participation in history, is a provocation and she added that the former CIA agent and other anti-Cuba paid mercenaries there are fully discredited before public opinion because it is evident—she said—that they are trying to disrupt the summit.

Guevara said that as the daughter of Che she was pleased with the strong rejection expressed by Cubans and other nationals attending the activities prior to the summit. Such response rewards me a lot because you realize that Che is still a living example for the honest young people in this world.



Dr. Aleida Guevara's mother, Aleida March, and her father, Che Guevara

Raul Castro, his wife, Vilma Espín, who died in 2007,
Che Guevara, his wife, Aleida March de Castro, wedding.

Dr. Aleida Guevara

From a thread posted by DU'er dipsydoodle,
a video with Dr. Aleida Guevara, Michael Moore:


SunSeeker (10,857 posts) Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Sat Sep 8, 2012, 11:38 PM

5. I just had to Google her to see what she looked like.

Che Guevara, as a boy, left side, with original family in Argentina. [/center]

Obama Could Face Another Disastrous Summit Due to Sanctions Against Venezuela

Obama Could Face Another Disastrous Summit Due to Sanctions Against Venezuela
Posted: 04/09/2015 12:06 pm EDT Updated: 4 hours ago

The last Summit of the Americas, in Cartagena, Colombia, in 2012, was a disaster for President Obama. There were scandals involving Secret Service agents and sex workers, an increasing rebellion from the South against the failed U.S. "War on Drugs," and -- most of all -- unanimous opposition to the U.S. embargo on Cuba.

The most decisive evidence that this was not just the usual suspects stirring up trouble was the warning from President Manuel Santos of Colombia -- one of Washington's few "friendlies" in the region -- that there would not be another Summit without Cuba.

So President Obama offered up a surprise Christmas present to the United States' Southern neighbors last year: After more than a half-century of aggression against Cuba, he would finally begin to normalize relations. Welcome to the 21st century, finally! Although Republican jihadis and neocons would inevitably delay the process in Congress, the White House publicly expressed hope that there would at least be embassies open in the two countries before the Summit on April 10.

But the Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away. On March 9 the White House declared a "national emergency" due to the "extraordinary threat to the national security" posed by Venezuela. The Obama administration tried to dismiss the language as a mere formality, but the world knows that such threatening language and accompanying sanctions can be quite hazardous to the designated country's health -- in the past they have sometimes even been followed by military action.


The top story in Mexico is about a feisty journalist who exposed the first lady’s secret mansion, an

The top story in Mexico is about a feisty journalist who exposed the first lady’s secret mansion, and lost her job
By Joshua Partlow April 8 at 4:19 PM

[font size=1]
Journalist Carmen Aristegui attends the presentation of a book at a hotel in Leon in this March 24, 2012, photo. One of Mexico's most prominent journalists, whose team revealed a conflict-of-interest scandal ensnaring President Enrique Pena Nieto in 2014, has been fired, her employer MVS Radio said March 15. (Tomas Bravo/Reuters)
MEXICO CITY -- It's been nearly a month since Carmen Aristegui, Mexico's most famous journalist, was fired from her radio program after investigating the first lady's real estate, but her prominent colleagues have not stopped rallying to her cause.

On Wednesday, a group of journalists and academics argued that her firing amounted to violating the rights of the Mexican audience's access to information, and said they are starting a legal process to try to get her reinstated to her popular morning program.

Denise Dresser, a prominent Mexican columnist and professor, said that it was "unacceptable in a democracy" that a company given a government concession for news content "censors and controls the content that the audience receives."

"And that's why we ask today that the citizens who are aware of their rights be willing to fight for them and join together," Dresser said at a news conference in Mexico City.


U.S. seeks extradition to Spain of Salvadoran wanted in priest killings

Source: Reuters

US | Wed Apr 8, 2015 12:45pm EDT

U.S. seeks extradition to Spain of Salvadoran wanted in priest killings

WASHINGTON | By Lindsay Dunsmuir

(Reuters) - U.S. authorities will seek the extradition of a former colonel in the Salvadoran army wanted by Spain to face charges over the murder of five Spanish Jesuit priests in El Salvador in 1989, the Department of Justice said on Wednesday.

Inocente Orlando Montano Morales, 72, had been indicted in Spain in March 2011 along with 19 other former Salvadoran army officers in connection with the murders, which took place during El Salvador's bloody 12-year civil war from 1980-1992.

He is currently serving a 21-month prison sentence in North Carolina on unrelated U.S. immigration fraud charges, and was due for release on April 15. At the time of the killings, Montano Morales was both a colonel in the army and the vice minister of defense and public safety.

He is accused of overseeing a radio station that urged the murder of the priests as well as participating in meetings a day before the deaths in which a colleague gave the order to kill the men.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/04/08/us-elsalvador-spain-crimes-idUSKBN0MZ1TH20150408?rpc=401


Roses planted where the Army assassins took the 5 priests, their housekeeper, her daughter to murder.

Inocente Orlando Montano Morales [/center]

Panama: Background And Buildup To Invasion Of 1989

Useful, interesting information on Panama, in the forefront during the Summit:

Panama: Background And Buildup To Invasion Of 1989
by Jane Franklin; Tuesday, September 18, 2007

. . .


1968: On October 11, the National Guard, under Col. Omar Torrijos, overthrows the government of the oligarchy and installs a junta from which Torrijos emerges the leader. He heads the armed forces 1968-81. Torrijos moves toward independence from Washington, relying on the nationalist base. Torrijos is not part of the oligarchy; his base comes from the dispossessed. Under his leadership, the Panamanian Defense Forces become part of the movement for national liberation. During the government of Torrijos and the National Guard, public schools increase from fewer than 2,000 to more than 3,000; infant mortality decreases from 40 to 25 per 1,000 live births; social security is extended by more than 1 million; roads and electricity are brought to rural areas; labor unions grow.

1972: Junta is confirmed by election. Torrijos remains as the head of Panamanian Defense Forces.

1974: Panama and Cuba re-establish diplomatic relations.

1976: General Omar Torrijos makes a state visit to Cuba. In the joint communiqué issued by the two countries, Cuba supports Panama's struggle for sovereignty in the Canal Zone.

1976: On December 8, CIA Director George H.W. Bush meets with Manuel Noriega for lunch at the home of the Panamanian ambassador to the United States. Noriega, a graduate of the School of the Americas, is on the CIA payroll.

1977: The Carter Administration signs three agreements known as the Carter-Torrijos treaties, arranging for the return of the Panama Canal Zone to Panama at midnight December 31, 1999.

1979: The Carter-Torrijos treaties take effect October 1 and 65 percent of the Canal Zone is returned to Panama. Areas still under U.S. control are called green zones; those under Panamanian conrol are white zones. Washington has the responsibility of operating and defending the Canal through December 31, 1999, but not after that.

1981: Ronald Reagan becomes president January 20, with his commitment not to "lose" the Canal. Six months later, on July 31, General Omar Torrijos is killed in an airplane crash.

1983: On January 5, in an effort to settle Central American conflicts, the foreign ministers of Colombia, Mexico, Panama and Venezuela meet on the Panamanian island of Contadora and draft an initial proposal, calling for an end to all foreign intervention in the region, suspension of all military aid, and negotiations to end El Salvador's civil war and the fighting in Nicaragua between government troops and "contras."

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