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    Edward Snowden and His Friends

    Edward Snowden, the self-glamorizing leaker of National Security Agency secret programs, is still holed up in an airport in Moscow, where he’s been stuck for two weeks. The United States has warned Russia and other countries not to let him travel by air. Snowden is hoping to make it to … More

    Human Rights: A Quiet Victory in the Americas

    In early June, the Organization of American States (OAS) elected three new members to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), an OAS body, whose sole purpose is to promote and protect human rights in the region. The candidate from Ecuador, Erick Roberts Garcés, was not elected, and for that, … More

    Venezuela Tries to Weaken Human Rights Watchdog

    A group of populist Latin American states—led by Bolivia, Ecuador, and Venezuela—hopes to reduce the role of an international human rights commission and watchdog. These radical states aim to weaken the commission because it goes against their political ambitions, as it entails scrutiny and judgments of human rights violations by … More

    Corruption Victimizes the Poor in the Americas

    The recently launched “Americas Barometer,” by Vanderbilt University’s Latin American Public Opinion Project (LAPOP), includes important insights about day-to-day corruption burdening citizens in every country in the Western Hemisphere, including the U.S. and Canada. According to a LAPOP poll, one in five people report that they had to pay at … More

    U.S. and EU Should Take a Firm Stand for Rule of Law in Latin America

    In 2011, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez organized the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) in 2011 specifically to serve as a regional body that excludes the U.S. and Canada—one that might someday supplant the Organization of American States (OAS). News that the next Latin leader to assume CELAC’s … More

    Congress Wants to Know Why an American Is Hostage to Bolivian Injustice

    On May 12, the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health and Human Rights will focus a spotlight on the case of Jacob Ostreicher, an American imprisoned without charge for almost a year in a Bolivian prison. The 53-year-old American from Brooklyn is being held for an investment opportunity … More

    Bolivia: Iran's Newest Friend in Latin America

    Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez has long been Iran’s greatest ally in the Western Hemisphere, but as Chavez’s cancer grows and his country’s future becomes increasingly uncertain, Iran may need to find a new best friend in Latin America—and fast. Enter Bolivia. Since Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad first visited Bolivia in 2007, … More

    The State Department's Turn-the-Other Cheek Policy

    Expel U.S. ambassadors from your country, accuse the U.S. of plotting coups and trying to destabilize your country, and cozy up to Iran, and what do you receive from the Obama Administration? An “Oops, we’re sorry! We’ll try to do better next time.” Ecuador’s temperamental President Rafael Correa has often … More

    Venezuela’s Health: Think of the Nation, Not Its Leader

    The future stability of Venezuela and the survival of the “Bolivarian Revolution” increasingly focuses on the health of Venezuela’s indispensable but stricken autocrat. Before June, the scenario called for Hugo Chavez to rule in Venezuela until 2031. Suddenly, a post-Chavez era in Venezuela, which seemed unimaginable weeks before, moved immediately … More

    Human Rights for Mother Nature Coming to the UN?

    As part of its initiative “to end capitalism” and realize “harmony” with Mother Earth, Bolivia will propose a U.N. treaty this month for the protection of what it calls nature’s fundamental rights. A “Ministry of Mother Earth” would be created, with an ombudsman to hear nature’s cries and translate them for … More