Mob Killing in Rio de Janeiro

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-34837999

Thirty-three year old seller of ice, Fabiano Machado da Silva, was found dead early Sunday morning next to General Osorio Square.

Sources and family members say that he was intoxicated at a party when the events played out.  Witnesses at the party say that he was harassing a female at the party and became violent when he was rejected.  This evidence was backed up when footage was seen of the ice man throwing a metal bar at two women.

After that three men that soon became a group of ten people jumped in and began chasing, kicking and punching Mr. da Silva.

Hours later, his family began receiving messages from the aggressors that he “got what he deserved”

The da Silva family believe this is an act of savagery instead of justice despite their family members actions considering random party goers joined in without knowing the premise of the fight.

The question is, who exactly is the victim in this scenario and was justice served for Mr. da Silva and what will the outcome be in the court system?

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The United States, Kidnappers??

Efrain Antonio Campo Flores and Franqui Flores de Freitas were charged with one count of drug trafficking last Thursday.  These two men are the nephews of Venezuela’s first lady, Cilia Flores.  Mr. Cabello claims that the United States has kidnapped these two men unjustly, while the United States claim that they planned to smuggle about 800 kg of cocaine into the the country.

Ties between Venezuela and the United States have previously been shaky. The United States and Venezuela have not exchanged ambassadors since 2012 and have had allegations that the United States is trying to “destabilize the Latin American country.”  They also claim that the “kidnapping,” of the First Lady’s nephews is a way to damage the elections approaching this December.  The two men are planning to plead “not guilty,” at their next court appearance, but who knows what other allegations will continue after this appearance.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-34842723

No More Guns and Ammunition For The Rebels

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-34784029

Since 2012, there have been a talk of a truce between Columbia’s rebel group FARC, and Cuba.   This has been ongoing for three years.  The real beginning of the efforts to stop the violence came from the Colombian president via tweet that he has asked as of the thirtieth of September to suspend the purchasing of guns and ammunition by members of FARC.

They have recently agreed on four main points for the truce political participation of the rebels, land rights, drug trafficking.  Recently, they have added transitional justice for how rebels will be punished for their crimes.

By March 23, 2016, there will be a signed truce.  The rebels have even stated how they would like to the deal finalized before then, but there is still a few kinks that need to be worked out.  The truce has already been making an appearance in the media and all that is left is for the final deal to be brought to the Colombian public for referendum.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-34720637

In the town of Carrizalillo, Mexico,  forty-three missing students may have been disposed of in this town.  Residents of this area say that the night of the disappearance, there was high gang activity.  Over the few years the town has been slowly being overrun by the gang the Guerrero’s.  

Members of the Guerreros Unidos believed that the forty-three students were apart of another drug gang which they decided to dispose of the bodies and burn them.  Families,however, do not believe what the government and media has ruled has happened to those forty-three students.  Apparently soldiers in the area during this time are not being questioned about how this could have happened, but forensic scientists have been brought in to identify the bodies that have been discovered.  Carrizalillo is slowly becoming home to many more mass graves, that the government is ruling as not the forty three students that have gone missing.

Guatemala’s New President

In Guatemala, the new run-off election for president has been won by Jimmy Morales.  Mr. Morales is a known comedian of fourteen years without any experience in the political field.  In fact, Morales has a degree in Business Administration!  Even though Morales is highly against abortions and possibly a racist and homophobic, he still won majority of the votes coming in with 67.4% of the vote!  Morales was up against Sandra Torres who was formally married to a previous president.  She ran social programs for the state, but even then was not popular with the voters.

Morales claims to be an ordinary common man.  He is an Evangelical Protestant and on top of that advocates that his lack of experience and knowledge in the political field will allow for changes and policy and that because of this there may be a way to reform the government.

Torres on the other hand, seems to have  been highly unfavorable and even apart of some scandals when she divorced former president and husband, Colom in 2011.  She may have been favored in highly rural areas, but majority of the voters claimed that they were tired of the same faces in the government who continue to get rich off of them.

Hopefully due to this risk, corruption will be less.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-34632485

“They Were Taken Alive, We Want Them Back Alive.”

Citizens of Mexico have been chanting, “they were taken alive, we want them back alive,” since last year when forty three students disappeared.  The believed reason behind the disappearance is due to the gangs and crooked cops.  Earlier this year Mexico was ranked number three on an armed conflict survey.  This put Mexico behind Syria and Iraq.  In this article they go almost as far as calling Mexican president Pena Nieto a “dictator, but not quite a dictator.”

They believe that the way Nieto remains in control is by the fear of the gangs and allowing drug trafficking to continue on.  Former president had declared of a war of drugs, but in 2015, Nieto has done very little to make any advancements on this war.

Mexico before was not as violent as it is today.  Policies that require violence to combat violence are in place.  The forty three students that have been missing is just one of the casualties that has taken place in Mexico and this was met with a march through the center of Mexico that was also centered around no more deaths or disappearances, and the blame is all to President Nieto.

Pope Visits Fidel Castro

September 20th, 2015,  Pope Francis made a trip to Cuba.  While he was there he made a visit to Fidel Castro in his home.  According to the Pope, this meeting was “informal and friendly.”  While in his home, they exchanged three books.  One being a book of sermons by Castro’s old teacher and also was given a book called “Fidel and Religion,”

It appears as though there is a new revolution taking place in Cuba and it may be one of religion.  Pope Francis held a hominy in Havana.  During this he stated that “service is never ideological, for we do not serve ideas, we serve people.”  His hominy was not just to create a stir within the Cuban people, but those in Columbia.

Pope Francis is to travel to the United States and apparently ties between Cuba and the U.S. have been “thawed” because of him.

Drug Trafficker on the Run

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-34183285

Four Mexican officials are being charged with not raising the alarm of drug trafficker Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman escaping from a maximum security prison.  His son may have leaked a decoy picture detailing the location of Guzman.  Guzman is responsible for a good bit of the drugs that have been transported into the United States, therefore more special forces are being involved in finding Guzman.  In the meantime, the three officials that were present in the maximum security have been fired and more could follow suit.   Guzman escaped through his shower through a tunnel that led 1.5km outside of the prison to another building.  A newspaper in Mexico said 88% of the people believed the escape was an inside job.  Another 65% blamed the authorities’ for not paying closer attention to Guzman.  But it appears as though Guzman has been arrested at this time.

Hi!

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My name is Meghan Philmon, I am a senior History major at Wingate University.  My interests include the influences around the revolutions that took place and comparing them to other revolutions around the world.  Focus outside of the class is anything pre-modern era of Latin America and European history and even Colonial United States.

This article describes the massive dislike for how the different governments are ran in Latin America.  Each country is different (speaking globally), so what works for one country may not work for another country.  Because government in Latin America has not always been stable, the only way the people can get their voices out would be through literally fighting back against the government. The people know what they want and are not afraid to kick someone out of office if it is not resolved ASAP.   To Latin Americans, this is a “completely rational” way of thinking.  To change the government now, would cause for more weakening of the government.

Green Activists- Body Count Rises

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-32377110

Without the Earth, we would cease to exist. So why is that green activists have been abducted or killed while defending environmental problems in Latin America.  116 deaths have occurred due to protecting the environment.  Twenty nine people in Brazil, and twenty five in Colombia have been victims of this.  Honduras is actually home of the most brutality when it comes to green activism. 111 causalities, since 2002, have occurred.  Many of these people defending the land are protecting land that was once home to their ancestors and are considered to be enemies of the state.  These people have either lost their lives or have been forced to live like fugitives, because of the need to protect their land and the Earth. In the last year the killings have risen by 20%.  Previously four Peruvians travelling through Brazil were murdered while trying to prevent deforestation.  Which we all know that if the forests are depleted to greatly the land will turn into desert which would prevent vegetation from ever growing and also depleting our oxygen.  The question remains why these activists are being considered enemies to the state, when the state should be considered enemies of the Earth.