"The democratic Venezuela that so often received exiles from neighboring countries and gave asylum to political refugees fleeing military governments is once again alone." Maruja Tarre
, a Venezuelan journalist, reflects on the violent situation in her home country. Previously: "Snowden and Venezuela: My bizarre experience in the surveillance state
," an essay on Boing Boing by her daughter Isabel Lara
, about the experience of being spied upon in Venezuela.
A first-person account of the current chaos in Venezuela from Guido Núñez-Mujica
, a Boing Boing reader and biotech entrepreneur who calls the South American country his homeland.
"Spain, whose judges have aggressively pursued human rights abuse cases far beyond its borders, finds itself on the receiving end of such an inquest." A judge in Argentina is trying to extradite and bring to justice Spanish police officials accused of torturing opponents of the regime under Francisco Franco, the Spanish dictator who died in 1975. Read the rest
Huge human rights news from Latin America today: the Center for Justice & Accountability and the family of Victor Jara are suing the man indicted by Chilean prosecutors for torturing and killing Jara in 1973. Read the rest
Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay will withdraw their ambassadors from European countries involved in last week's grounding of the Bolivian president’s plane. The incident was sparked by false rumors that NSA leaker Edward Snowden was on board. Read the rest
Some of the same Latin American nations whose presidents are shocked and outraged over newly-revealed details of America's electronic surveillance programs are conducting versions of the same within their own borders. Read the rest
In 2009, a private call placed from the US by Isabel Lara
to her mother was broadcast on Venezuelan state TV. Secretly taped calls are routinely used there to disgrace political enemies—or worse. To locals, the South American surveillance state is an odd place for government transparency advocate and NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden to end up.
Rios Montt listens to a prosecution witness, during the tribunal.
I am blogging from inside the Supreme Court in Guatemala City, where the trial of former Guatemalan Army General and US-backed dictator Guatemalan José Efrain Rios Montt and his then chief of intelligence Jose Mauricio Rodriguez Sanchez has reconvened for the 18th day. Read the rest
Anita Isaacs, in a NYT op-ed: "I have spent the past 15 years researching and writing about postwar justice in Guatemala. I am encouraged that, a decade and a half after peace accords ended 36 years of civil war, Guatemala is being given a chance to show the world how much progress it has made in building democracy. Read the rest
Photo: NISGUA. A witness testifies in the trial of Rios Montt, with aid of court-appointed Nebaj Ixil interpreter.
As Emi McLean writes on the Open Society Justice Initiative's blog about the genocide trial in Guatemala, "Semana Santa (or Holy Week) seemed to slow down Guatemala City everywhere but in Judge Jazmin Barrios’s courtroom on Monday."
And the trial continues at breakneck speed. Read the rest
Rios Montt. Photo: James Rodriguez.
As noted in previous Boing Boing posts, former Guatemalan dictator Efraín Rios Montt is on trial in Guatemala City this week, three decades after the army he presided over massacred Ixil Maya villages in the Central American country's highlands. Read the rest
My new ambient-sound-while-working internet radio jam: Brazilian Birds.
(Photo: Toucan eye, a Creative Commons image from doug88888's photostream) Read the rest
Richard Perry/The New York Times
A worthy and overlooked story in the NYT by Elizabeth Rosenthal about a new economic riptide hitting Central America, a result of America's changing corn policy. Read the rest
James Rodriguez, a brave and talented photojournalist in Guatemala, has a striking photo-essay up on his blog.
Read the rest
On this occasion I share a photo essay documenting events in the Guatemalan northern city of Huehuetenango during the much-awaited end of the Mayan Oxlajuj Baktun.
A clever example of short-form advocacy filmmaking by Max Joseph for Rainforest Alliance.
"It goes by many names, but around here they call it 'the malady of the sugar cane," writes Will Storr in the Guardian. A quiet epidemic has been preying on Central American sugar field laborers for decades, and it is killing more and more each year. Read the rest
Via the New York Times: In Chile, a judge who lost custody of her daughters in 2004 because she is a lesbian will now receive damages, after an Inter-American Court of Human Rights ruling. Read the rest