Upside Down World
 
Friday, 29 April 2016
Deepening Police Violence in Mexico: “Ley Eruviel,” Megaprojects and Organized Resistance
Written by Ryan A. Knight   
Thursday, 21 April 2016 21:27

The authorities of the state of Mexico have grown impatient, or perhaps even fearful.  Faced with the well-organized and constantly growing resistance to countless megaprojects in the state of Mexico—projects driven by the ruthless pursuit of capital accumulation—political authorities have sought justification and legal protection to violently repress the resistance and see these projects through.

 
Nestora Salgado: A Triumph of Cross-Border Organizing for Justice in Mexico
Written by Nidia Bautista   
Wednesday, 13 April 2016 19:00

Two and a half years after she was thrown into a Mexican federal penal facility, arrested without a warrant and charged with kidnapping, indigenous community police leader Nestora Salgado was freed from Tepepan Women’s Social Rehabilitation Center in Mexico City mid-March.

 
Brazil: Building New Worlds in the Favelas
Written by Raúl Zibechi   
Friday, 08 April 2016 18:54

The debate is part of all new movements in Latin America: how much energy should be spent building something unique and how much should go to dealing with state institutions. There are two sides to the debate on public policies (participation in the management of public institutions at the local level): fear of being co-opted by the State and fear of isolation. It is the need to choose between creating popular community or governing without power.

 
Does Brazil's Proposed Anti-Terrorism Law Threaten Public Protest? Two Opinions
Written by Paulo Pimenta and Aloysio Nunes Ferreira. Translated by Holly Holmes   
Wednesday, 30 March 2016 12:22

As the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro quickly approach, Brazil continues to debate the introduction of a new counterterrorism law. Despite strong criticism from Human Rights Watch that the bill is “overbroad and vague”, the bill has passed in both the Brazilian Senate and, as of February 24, the House of Representatives. As the bill makes its way to President Rousseff’s desk, we consider the arguments of two politicians.

 
Interview with Berta Cáceres: “To Fight Against Repression in Honduras is to Fight for our Whole Continent”
Written by Beverly Bell and Berta Cáceres   
Friday, 25 March 2016 15:05

The coup in Honduras hasn’t just been against Honduras. It's been against all emancipatory processes. It's been a clear, threatening message to the progressive and leftist governments in our continent. It's a message that the ultra-right and the imperialists aren't going to stop. They want to reclaim power, and they know very well that they need our resources. - Berta Cáceres

 
Mexico: The Struggle of Traditional Pulque Against European Beer and Colonization
Written by Tamara Pearson   
Monday, 21 March 2016 10:28

Pulque, once the most consumed alcoholic drink in Mexico, is fighting to regain broad appeal following decades of being out-marketed by the European beer industry. But the current struggle goes much further than the drink. It is also an attempt to preserve an indigenous tradition that dates back thousands of years.

 
Murder of Indigenous Activist Berta Cáceres Exposes Reality of War on Honduran Social Justice Movements
Written by Sarah Blaskey   
Friday, 04 March 2016 22:20

Yesterday the world woke to the terrible news that Berta Cáceres, world-renowned Honduran indigenous activist and mother of four, was murdered in her home in La Esperanza, Intibuca, Honduras. It was a shock to many who knew and worked with her. Cáceres was a founder of the Civic Council of Grassroots and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), a powerful coalition active in various struggles around Honduras. The violence and impunity against indigenous activists like Cáceres cannot be fully understood outside of the context of the 2009 military coup, which paved the way for multinational interests and free market policies to be implemented at any cost in Honduras.

 
Mexico: Why Ayotzinapa Still Matters
Written by Nidia Bautista   
Monday, 29 February 2016 18:09

In a country where political crises are ignored by the government until they fade into oblivion, the families of the missing students of Ayotzinapa have kept their search alive for seventeen months.

 
Berta Cáceres Lives On, and So Does Violence by Honduran Government and Dam Company
Written by Beverly Bell   
Thursday, 21 April 2016 19:41

Fifteen hundred people from at least 22 countries convened in Honduras from April 13-15, 2016 for the "Peoples of ¡Berta Vive!" International Gathering. They came to honor slain global movement leader Berta Cáceres and to commit themselves to keeping her legacy alive.

 
Guatemalan Campesino Organizations Mobilize to Demand Agrarian Reform, Energy Nationalization
Written by Jeff Abbott   
Friday, 08 April 2016 19:12

On February 10, 2015, thousands of indigenous campesinos from across Guatemala associated with the Committee for Campesino Development (CODECA) took to the streets of Guatemala City in the first large march of the administration of Jimmy Morales. The campesinos were continuing a decade-long struggle to demand that the Guatemalan government nationalize the electrical system.

 
The Dammed of the Earth: The Deadly Impact of Mega Hydroelectric Projects in Latin America
Written by Sian Cowman and Philippa de Boissière   
Thursday, 31 March 2016 19:27

Early in the morning of March 3, Berta Cáceres was assassinated as she slept. Berta is not alone, nor is her story unique to Honduras. Across the Global South, mega hydroelectric projects are expanding — driven by governments and multinationals as a source of cheap energy, they also displace communities, destroy the local social fabric and spiritual ties to land, lead to privatization of land and water, and generate food insecurity.

 
More or Less Dead: Feminicide, Haunting and the Ethics of Representation in Mexico - A Book Review
Written by Jen Wilton   
Monday, 28 March 2016 20:22

More or Less Dead, author Alice Driver’s first book, is a critical and timely look at the ethics of portraying violence against women in the media. The book’s title refers to the ways that disappearances leave families in limbo, robbing the victim of even having the right to death. Although Driver focuses on the issue in the context of Mexico, the ideas and conclusions she comes to are equally applicable to other cultures and geographies.

 
Honduras: Gustavo Castro Soto and the Rigged Investigation into Berta Cáceres’ Assassination
Written by Beverly Bell   
Wednesday, 23 March 2016 08:52

The sole eyewitness to Honduran social movement leader Berta Cáceres’ assassination on March 3, 2016 has gone from being wounded victim to, effectively, political prisoner. Now Gustavo Castro Soto may also be framed as the murderer of his long-time friend, Berta Cáceres. Both the Mexican Ambassador, Dolores Jiménez, and Castro himself are worried that he will be charged by the government for the killing, they told the National Commission of Human Rights of Honduras on March 16.

 

 
¡Berta Lives! The Life and Legacy of Berta Cáceres
Written by Beverly Bell   
Wednesday, 09 March 2016 19:38

I began writing a eulogy for Berta Isabel Cáceres Flores years ago, though she died only last week. Berta was assassinated by Honduran government-backed death squads on March 3. Like many who knew and worked with her, I was aware that this fighter for indigenous peoples’ power; for control over their own territories; for women’s and LGBTQ rights; for authentic democracy; for the well-being of Pachamama; for an end to tyranny by transnational capital; and for an end to US empire was not destined to die of old age. She spoke too much truth to too much power.

 
Indigenous Communities in Guatemala Fight Against the Privatization of Sacred Sites
Written by Jeff Abbott   
Friday, 04 March 2016 22:06

In recent years, the popular tourist attraction of Semuc Champey in the Guatemalan department of Alta Verapaz has become a point of social conflict for the indigenous Q’eqchi’ Mayan communities surrounding the site. On February 8, tensions erupted and led to the occupation of the municipality building of Lanquín by over 200 members of the communities near the tourist attraction. Community members demanded the recuperation of the site. Since that day, residents have maintained management of the park. As the indigenous-led recuperation of this park continues, the conflict has shed light on a longstanding dilemma in Guatemala around indigenous communities’ access to sacred sites.

 
The Horizon of Evo Morales’ Long Decade in Power: Implications of Bolivia's Referendum Results
Written by Benjamin Dangl   
Wednesday, 24 February 2016 13:22

Bolivian President Evo Morales lost the referendum last Sunday that could have given him the ability to run for re-election in 2019. The margin was small, but the implications are huge: Bolivia’s longest standing and most popular president finally has an end date for his time in power, on January 22, 2020. The Bolivian left and its vibrant social and indigenous movements were always bigger than Morales, and Sunday’s referendum results underline this.

 
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