The Nation has a long, wonky, wonderful article on Mexican maize cultivation, the effects of NAFTA, and the dangers of genetically-modified seeds. Author Peter Canby backs up his excellent writing with piles and piles of meticulous research. Not to be missed. [link, via SM] (Image from Joel Penner.)
Cuban dissident Guillermo Farinas ended his hunger strike yesterday after 134 days. Farinas decided to end his strike after the Cuban government said it would release political prisoners rounded up in the "Black Spring" crackdown of 2003. Get well soon. [link]
The Uruguayan selection, which has made it to the quarter finals of the World Cup, just received a shipment of half a ton of fine cuts of beef for the mother of all asados in preparation for a contest against Ghana on Friday: "450 kilos of lomo, 200 of entrecot, 75 of vacío, 75 of colita de cuadril, 150 of ojo de bife and 50 kg of picaña." [link]
Hitmen have assassinated the PRI candidate for governor of Tamaulipas State, Rodolfo Torre Cantú. Torre was gunned down along with six others at about 10:30 this morning on a highway on the way to a campaign event. Drug mafias are assumed to be responsible. [link]
From the days when coups were something of a regional sport, new documents detail a famous British ballerina's role in a plot to topple the government of Panama. The plan was to use her yacht to gather men and arms, then "land somewhere and collect in the hills." It didn't work. [link]
Mexico's Attorney General's Office has posted on its web site irrefutable evidence that gold-plated AR-15s and diamond-studded pistol grips are not nearly as cool-looking as they sound. The deadly knick-knack collection is said to belong to Valencia Cartel leader El Lobo. [link]
Two Brazilian ranchers were sentenced to 30 years in prison apiece for ordering the killing of an environmentalist nun: "Prosecutors said the pair offered to pay a gunman $25,000 to kill the 73-year-old [Dorothy] Stang because she had prevented them from stealing a piece of land that the government had granted to a group of poor farmers." [link]
This video of a kidnapping and car chase in Mexico is notable mainly for the bad-assitude of the TV journalists who were on this like white on rice. Well done, gentlemen.
The Economist takes a peak at the Mockus phenomenon in Colombia: "His moustacheless beard gives him the air of a Baltic pastor... He is financing his campaign with a bank overdraft. His supporters rely on Facebook and make their own posters; street vendors sell unofficial campaign T-shirts." [link]
Some cruise lines will cease traveling to Antarctica after this cruise season, as a ban on the use and carriage of heavy fuel oil goes into effect next year. The ban came after a 2007 incident when a Gap Adventures ship got punctured by ice and sank, causing a mess. [link]
Tag Archives: farc
By Peter Krupa | Published: July 9, 2010
What is wrong with Ingrid Betancourt? The most charitable explanation is that she is absolutely terrible at public relations. Her first act upon being rescued from six years in FARC captivity last year was to leave her faithful, long-suffering husband. Then she moved to France – her other nationality – and now she’s asking the Colombian [...]
By Peter Krupa | Published: March 26, 2010
Rumors and accusations have been floating around for some time about links between the Chávez government and the FARC. Now Adam Isaacson at the Plan Colombia and Beyond blog has done us all a great favor by compiling all the evidence that’s come out over recent years in one place. The conclusion? There is no [...]
By Peter Krupa | Published: March 1, 2010
Those laptops discovered after Colombia bombed a FARC encampment in 2008 continue to tell tales. The latest is evidence “that demonstrates Venezuelan governmental co-operation in the illicit collaboration between Farc and Eta,” according to Spanish judge Eloy Velasco, who just filed charges against several ETA and FARC members. Specifically, the two groups collaborated in an [...]
By Peter Krupa | Published: February 23, 2010
The indigenous peoples in Colombia just want to be left alone. Instead, they’ve been systematically victimized by left-wing guerrillas, paramilitaries, and the military alike. According to a new report just out from Amnesty International, the attacks increased in 2009.
By Peter Krupa | Published: February 22, 2010
The FARC have taken to recording revolutionary merengue to attract new recruits. According to an article in El Tiempo, they spent US$150,000 on a CD produced by professional musicians. One song on the disk – “La Canción del Guerrillero” – is quite the booty-shaker. Grab your rifle and grenades.
By Peter Krupa | Published: February 19, 2010
A Colombian police report found that despite its claims to the contrary, the FARC controls 70% of Colombia's cocaine production.
By Peter Krupa | Published: February 19, 2010
Being a left-wing revolutionary terrorist isn’t all fun and games. Someone’s got to dig the latrines and carry firewood, and a notebook kept by a FARC leader shows those tasks often meted out as punishment: Liliana GB for having incurred subparagraph “E” of first level violations by losing a Handy radio and two antennae. Make [...]
By Peter Krupa | Published: February 9, 2010
The FARC says it has a new hostage: The sword of Simón Bolívar. The claim was published on Colombian news Web site Anncol and accompanied by a photo. According to Colombia Reports: The sword has had a long and tumultuous history in Colombia, in which myth and rumour are often indistinguishable from fact. In 1974, [...]
By Peter Krupa | Published: February 3, 2010
After being strafed by the Colombian military, an indigenous group is claiming that a controversial mining concession is behind the harassment (story in English).