Saturday, December 16, 2006

Dirty War Reprisals

Since the death of August Pinochet, a military Gen. of Cuba, people wishing for justice for the perpetrators of Chile's dirty war are going to have to move fast if they want anything to be done.
Read all about it here.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

world cup

As of 2001, Brazil had last won the world cup in 1994. Before that, they won it in 1970. Add 1994 and 1970 and you get 1964.
Germany last one in 1990. Before that they won in 1974. Add the two and again you get 3964.
Argentina last won the world cup in 1986 before that they won it in 1978. Add 1978 and 1986 and you again get 3964.
So going by this logic the winner of the 2002 world cup would have been the same winner as the winner in 1962, Brazil. Crazy enough, this actually happened.

a little trivia

Alanis Morissette shocked fans when she ended her first gig in Peru by shouting: "Thank you Brazil!" Morissette made the mistake in front of a 14,000 crowd at the Monumental Stadium in Lima. She was criticised by a number of Peruvian newspapers but some were more forgiving. Newspaper Ojo said: "We have already forgiven her thanks to her magical performance in which we witnessed a true rock star. "It was the first time something like that happened over here but it must have been the emotion she felt for being in Peru."

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Two million alcohol cars running in Brazil

A new form of car that runs on flex-fuel, a mixture of any combination of ethanol and petrol, has just hit the two million car mark in Brazil. These now make up 77% of the Brazilian car market. Link is here.

Brazilian Billboard Ban in Biggest City

The recently imposed ban on billiboards in Sao Paulo has been challenged legally as unconstitutional. The link to the article is here.

Monday, December 11, 2006

A leftist leader in Mexico joins Oaxaca protest

Leonel Cota, president of Democratic Revolution Party, joined in protests that are occurring in Oaxaca. These protests are occuring because of a six-month long conflict that has been occurring, and because over 600 people have been arrested since the conflict started. Link here.

Cancer in Haiti's Preval may be back.

Haiti's President Rene Preval, who was diagnosed with prostate cancer five years ago, has recently reported that the cancer may have returned. The article is linked here.

Mexico to begin cracking down on drug violence.

The Mexican government is sending out 6500 soldiers to the state of Michoacan to crack down on the violence, including execution-style killings, that have plagued the region. Link is here.

Marine Reserve Created in Mexico

A new Marine Reserve was created in Espiritu Santo Archipelago in the Gulf of California. This water was home to many endangered species. Link here.

Cancun Prison riots prove to be Deadly

After prisoners overpowered guards at a prison in Cancun, Mexico, over 150 prisoners escaped. About half of these have been recaptured. Link here.

Gas Smuggling Problem in Brazil and Venezuela

The huge price disparity between Brazil and Venezuela have caused a new form of crime to rise, gas smuggling. The link to the story is here.

Protecting the Amazon rain forest

Brazil is ramping up protections on the important and ecologically diverse region known as the Amazon rainforest. Some of this area will be used for sustainable development, while some will be open to only researchers. The link is here.

human right's day protest broken up

On Human Right's Day in Cuba a small protest was broken up in the middle of a Cuban park. Apparently government supporters assaulted a dozen or so people as soon as their protest, they were forced to flee. It is sad that this happened on Human Right's Day but it exemplifies the political and social instability the Cubans suffer.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Gang Violence in Colombia

After some interesting conversation at the last Intercambio session, I thought it would be appropriate to post a link to this page containing information on Colombian gang violence.

"2 U.S. Pilots Charged in Air Collision Over Brazil"

After a deadly September 29 plane crash that killed 154 people, two US citizens who were piloting the private jet that struck and felled a Brazilian commercial airliner have been charged with unintentionally endangering an aircraft. They face up to 12 years in prison. More details here.

Former Chilean Dictator Augusto Pinochet Dies at 91

Pinochet, a dictator who violently ruled the country of Chile from 1973 to 1990 died earlier today due to heart complications. Read the full article here.

South American Economic Bloc

Leaders from 12 South American nations on creating an economic bloc much like the one created in Europe. The hope is that this would give these nations more power in international trade. Read more here--
The former dictator of Chile Augusto Pinochet Ugarte died on Sunday. He ruled Chile from 1973 through 1990. Here is the link--

Chavez's post election visit to Uruguay

Here's an article about Venezual's recently reelected president Hugo CHavez. Apparently he is deeply devoted to greater ties between the leftist communities of South America. He also criticized the U.S. on his recent trip to Uruguay. Read the whole article here.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Hugo Chavez' Reelection

Hugo Chavez was reelected as President of Venezuela and the most significant result of the election is the reappearance of a political opposition. In fact, Mr. Chavez's rule contains the seeds of its own destruction. His wild use of oil revenue -- government spending has grown eightfold during his eight years in office -- has gone mainly for consumption or foolish foreign adventures. Investment in the economy, and even in the oil industry itself, is paltry, and most experts believe Venezuela's petroleum production has declined. Crime and corruption are soaring: Murders are up 67 percent during the Chavez era. If oil prices continue to drop, Mr. Chavez's revolution eventually will be revealed for what it is: a populist fraud. Read the entire editorial here.

VMA's Latin America!

Paulina Rubio, Juanes Performing At VMAs Latin America, along with System of a Down, Shakira, Santana, and Avril Lavigne. Read more about the first MTV Video Music Awards Latin America celebration here.

Latin American Recipes

Check out this awesome website with any Latin American recipe you could possibly want...
Mi Cocina Latina.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Summer in Santiago?

Not exactly anything new, but it's easy to forget that much of South America is south of the equator, thus winter here means summer there. Check out While we freeze our butts off, its sunny and warm from Manaus to Buenos Aires. Check out Asuncion for Monday, December 11: 38 degrees celsius. Guess they've got no hope for a white Christmas/Holiday season.

Dirty War extraditions

Six men accused of abducting and torturing 11 Uruguayans during the period of Argentine history known as the "Dirty War," will soon be extradited to Argentina for trial. Also interesting is the link for related articles, showing the continuing quest for justice from the crimes of the Dirty War. Interesting fact: the sentence of life imprisonment is banned in Uruguay. For more go to:

"American pilots charged in Amazon jetliner crash"

"Brazilian federal police on Friday charged two New York pilots involved in a collision that killed 154 people with exposing an aircraft to danger."

More here:

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Columbian paramilitaries

Those of you who went to intercambio on tuesday should appreciate this. It's an article concerning the paramilitary groups in columbia. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

NY Times Cuba Travel Guide...WHAT?!?!

This caught my eye on a link because it was so bizarre. NY Times has a Cuba Travel guide with articles titled "The Nicest Place You'll Never Go" and the likes. Check it out! It's pretty funny....

Water Issues in Peru

Wow, this is exactly what we were talking about last class with the lack of infrascructure, such as water. Even, within the cities only 2/3 of the population has access to clean drinking water and flushable toilets. This number drops even further to only 1/3 in rural areas. More information on Perus current water issues is available at
Just an ironic story I thought I'd share with ya'll.....Today my Brazilian econ professor was saying that many Brazilians were infuriated and writing letters to protest new Hollywood movie set in Brazil (sorry, I forgot the name), because it depicts them as a violent, aggressive, money-hungry people. However, the same day that their protests were announced on the news, a group of rich American tourists was robbed leaving the Brazilian airport.

Country profiles

Go to for a "country profile" feature, where information is present on any nation in the world. Included are basic encyclopedic facts, media such as national anthems and historical timelines, related articles, and more.

Pinochet's current health and other related stories

General Augusto Pinochet, Chile's former military leader, has suffered poor health in recent years and just underwent heart surgery in a life-saving procedure. More interesting is the current dispute in Chile over what to do when the General dies. Some argue for a state funeral while others feel the ex-dictator doesn't deserve such honors. He currently faces charges of human rights abuses that alledgedly occured during his time in office. For more go to:

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Gabriel Garcia Marquez

In relation to our class discussion of Latin American literature, here is some information on one of Latin America's greatest authors:

"Believed by many to be one of the world’s greatest writers, Gabriel García Márquez is a Colombian-born author and journalist, winner of the 1982 Nobel Prize for Literature and a pioneer of the Latin American 'Boom.'"...

Go to

Instituto Cultural Oaxaca

Hey guys, if any of you are looking for a really amazing summer Spanish language immersion program, I would like to recommend the Instituto Cultural Oaxaca in the colonial city of Oaxaca, Mexico. It is sooo much fun, relatively inexpensive, and I know they give college credit (although I am not sure how it transfers for Tulane). I have gone for the past three summers for about three weeks and my Spanish speaking skills have definitely improved because of it! You stay with really awesome families, go to grammar class from 9-12, and then also have some form of cultural classes, of which I took Salsa Dancing. There are many really interesting/cool people from all over the world that come to the Institute, and I have met and kept so many good friends from my Oaxaca experiences. Here is the link to the website if you are interested to learn more!

U.S. Seeks To Boost Competitiveness of Latin America, Caribbean

Wow, this is pretty much the opposite of what we talked about in class today...these big wigs from the US want to go to Latin America and show them how to conduct business in a competitive way so that they can compete on the world stage. Read more about this here.

Friday, December 01, 2006

HIV Stories from 3 Latin Americans---a tribute to AIDS awareness week

Three people living in Latin America who are affected by HIV/Aids spoke to, as part of the BBC's coverage of World Aids Day on December 1. Read their testimonies here.

Civil War in Bolivia?

It seems that Bolivia might be moving towards civil unrest as the president has threatened to disband the senate as they have not approved his program of land reforms. Although the article is short, it mentions that a number of provincial governors are considering breaking away from the current government. Check out the whole story here: