Articles

-Demanding the Right to Education: Student Voices From Chile and Puerto Rico
NACLA Report on the Americas, November/December 2011

Student leaders José Ancalao Gavilán (Chile) and Giovanni Roberto (Puerto Rico) describe their local struggles for the right to education, against the world financial crisis, budget cuts, tuition increases, and police repression.

-The Voices of Support for Occupy Wall Street
NACLA, 20 November 2011

On November 17, the two-month anniversary of Occupy Wall Street, occupiers and supporters took to the streets of New York City for a day of action. 30,000 marched from Foley Square over the Brooklyn Bridge. Among those in the crowd were unions, teachers, students, immigrants, youth, and older activists—united in support for Occupy Wall Street.

-Manipulating Human Rights in Honduras: An Interview With Bertha Oliva
NACLA Report on the Americas, September/October 2011

In Honduras, state-sponsored repression is on the rise, even as the Porfirio Lobo government champions human rights as one of its “highest priorities.” Honduran human rights defender Bertha Oliva explains how human rights discourse in Latin America is being transformed from a tool to protect the victims into one for publicity and manipulation.

-‘Now Is the Time’: Ramsey Clark on Cuba and Lucius Walker
NACLA, 1 July 2011

On Thursday, June 30, hundreds of people packed into Manhattan’s Riverside Church for the launch of 22nd Caravan to Cuba, and a memorial tribute to the late Reverend Lucius Walker, Jr. Among the people that spoke at the event was former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark, who captured the spirit of the evening, reminding the audience that “now is the time as never before” to continue the work that Walker began.

-Streets of Latin America Offer U.S. a Roadmap for Social Change
Truthout, 8 May 2011

The planet is on fire. It comes from above, as bombs come crashing toward Libya in Obama's new military exploit. And it comes from below, as people from Cairo to Madison stand up to for their rights against dictators and hard-line politicians. Not for decades have we seen such a global uprising from below. Not for decades, except for perhaps in Latin America, where, over the last 13 years, social movements have lifted leftist presidents to power across the region.

-After Lula: The Brazilian Workers’ Party in Transition
NACLA Report on the Americas, March/April 2011

The Workers’ Party promised a new style of politics rooted in ethics and activism. But in order to win elections, the party had to make concessions. It embraced a coalition with rival parties, took kickbacks, and paid for votes. Now after Lula’s highly successful second term, the party appears to be back on track—but to where?

- Obama in Latin America: 'Common Prosperity,' But For Whom?
NACLA, 30 March 2011

President Barack Obama's recent trip to Latin America was met with protests at every stop, as people questioned whether he would demonstrate the new era of “mutual respect” with Latin America that he had promised during his campaign. What they heard was mostly “más de lo mismo” (more of the same), dressed up in a language of “partnership” and cooperation.

- New Yorkers Standing Up to Budget Cuts
NYC Indymedia, 30 March 2011 

New Yorkers are upset, and they should be. In a push to balance the state budget, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced $10 billion in cuts to the state budget, with jobs and education on the chopping block. But New Yorkers are not are not lying down. Inspired by Wisconsin, more than a dozen groups are organizing the first mass "camp-in" at the state Capitol in Albany.

-Brazil Eager to be a Force of Change and Moderation
Deutsche Welle, 30 December 2010

On New Years Day, Brazilian Worker’s Party President-elect Dilma Rousseff takes over from her mentor, outgoing President Luis Inácio "Lula" da Silvia. She has big shoes to fill as she tries to emulate her predecessor. It was in Western relations where Lula truly carved his mark, and where Dilma will be expected to pick up where he leaves off.

- Rio Crackdown—Cleaning Up Drug Gangs to Create the Olympic City
New America Media, 6 December 2010

They are calling it: “D Day for the war against drug trafficking.” “Rio’s War.” “Elite Squad 3.” Rio de Janeiro residents are used to living with low-intensity warfare in their own backyard, as gangs and police duke it out in the city’s favelas (slums). But the last couple of weeks have been like nothing residents have ever seen before. They say it’s the largest such operation in Rio’s history and there is likely more to come.

- Culture, Land and Resistance: Brazilians Celebrate Black Consciousness Day
Toward Freedom, 23 November 2010

Over this past weekend Brazilians celebrated the annual Black Consciousness day, commemorating the anniversary of the death of Zumbi dos Palmares, Brazil’s most important black hero. Brazil is South America’s largest country and home to the largest black population outside of Africa.

- Brazilian Foreign Policy under Dilma: Interview with Igor Fuser
Americas Program, 23 November 2010

Over the last eight years, President Luiz Inácio “Lula” da Silva has turned the world’s attention to Brazil like never before, as his country has increasingly participated on the international scene. To understand what this will look like under the new government of Dilma Rousseff, I sat down with Igor Fuser, international journalist and Professor at the Cásper Libero University in São Paulo.

- Brazil’s First Woman President Overcomes Opposition, Hostile Media
Americas Program, 01 November 2010

Worker’s Party (PT) Candidate, Dilma Rousseff, will be the first woman president in Brazilian history. She was elected into office this Sunday, October 31st, with just over 56 percent of the votes. But victory was not easy. The second-round campaign debate centered on abortion, religion, scandals, and a mainstream media deliberately set on defeating the left-wing front-runner.

- Brazilian Elections: Shifting Dynamics and the Green Vote
Upside Down World, 08 October 2010

“Something is different. I don’t know how, but you can tell that things have changed,” said a committed Worker’s Party (PT) supporter on election night in Brazil’s largest city, São Paulo.

- The Homeless World Cup in Brazil: Changing Lives Through Soccer
Toward Freedom, 06 October 2010

In Rio de Janeiro, soccer players concluded the Homeless World Cup in late September. Hundreds of homeless men and women from dozens countries participated in this year’s tournament, drawing crowds of thousands. But the event wasn’t just about soccer, it was about changing lives.

- Cash for Trash: Brazil’s Unemployed Catadores Keep Recycling Rates High while Earning Much-Needed Cash
Earth Island Journal, Spring, 2010

Like hundreds of thousands of Brazilians, Eli Balim is a catador (collector) – an integral component of a complex web of individual recyclers, collecting cooperatives, middlemen, and packaging producers that consistently makes Brazil one of the top recycling countries in the world, with a tin can recycling rate of as high as 96.5 percent. But this achievement is not just about saving the environment. It’s about economics.

- South America: Mercosur’s Cooperatives in an Age of Integration
From Upside Down World, 05 May 2010

“There has to be a process of integration, there has to be a process of cooperation, there has to be a process of strengthening the identities of the coop movements with the respect and the sufficient capacity to know that we are diverse, because according to the sector, according to the region, according to the positive or negative public policy characteristics, the movements acquire a series of identity that have different accents.” - Daniel Bentancur, President of the Specialized Reunion of Cooperatives of Mercosur, speaking in May 2006 at the inauguration of Venezuela’s National Cooperative Councils (Cencoop) in Caracas.

- Rio de Janeiro’s Katrina: Rains, Tragedy and Segregation
Toward Freedom, 29 April 2010

It could have been New Orleans as it was pummeled by hurricane Katrina—the torrential rains, the rising waters, the families separated, bodies lost and still missing—but it was not. This was Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 2010, and the culprit was not a breach in the levee, but dozens of mudslides that leveled whole neighborhoods, burying homes and families alive.

- Venezuela and Brazil Sign 22 Agreements in Brasilia
Venezuelanalysis.com, April 29th 2010 

Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez met with Brazilian President Luiz Inácio “Lula” da Silva in Brasilia on Wednesday, where they signed 22 agreements in the areas of energy, housing, agriculture, culture, tourism and more. This was the first meeting between the two countries since the Brazilian Senate approved Venezuela’s entry into the Mercosur trade bloc on December 15, 2009.

- Brazil’s World Cup Development Debacle
Upside Down World, 14 January 2010

The 2010 World Cup will kick off in South Africa this June, but Maureen Msisi, of the Landless People’s Movement wants to know "who this development [is] really going to benefit? Not ... the people that most need it,” she says. Activists across the Atlantic in Brazil are saying the same thing, throwing into question a development model that has accompanied massive international events such as the World Cup and the Olympics for nearly two decades.

- Hope and Disappointment in Uruguay's Elections
Upside Down World, 02 November 2009

"Democracy doesn’t exist without truth and justice. We have the right to know where our dead are and we have the right to demand that these people, although they are old, pay for the crimes they committed," said Graciela Pintado Nuñez, as their bus reached the outskirts of Uruguay’s capital, Montevideo.

- In Search of Care :: International Adventures in Public Health
Yes Magazine, 29 September, 2009

Freelance journalist and veteran traveler Michael Fox has sought medical care in more than a dozen countries. One of them stands out as the most difficult place to get treatment: his native United States.