Monthly Archives: March 2016

Peru. The Sacred Ice

Each year at the winter solstice, hundreds of people participate in a procession in Peru in a mix of Christian tradition and the ancient spirit of the Inca. We joined the procession. The night falling in Mahuayani was going to be a cold one, and this was the last town before the ascent to the…

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Ethiopia. Government abandons Great Addis plans but Oromo anger remains.

Oromo people protests have forced the government to abandon its plans to displace thousands of people in order to implement uits Great Addis extension plans. But the toll was high with over 100 victims of the repression and thousands in custody.  After months of protests and more than 100 deaths, the Ethiopian government abandoned on…

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Something amazing is happening!

On 9April 2015, a group of 48 students with Fossil Free Yale launched a sit-in at Yale University (US) to demand their administration divest from fossil fuels, 19 were arrested for refusing to leave the building. Their sit-in is part of a wave of escalated, nonviolent direct action, to demand that US universities divest from…

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Cyber crime. A new emergency for Africa

The spread of information technology on the African continent is opening up new avenues for economic and social development, but it is also creating new opportunities for criminal groups, taking advantage of these new tools for a wide range of offenses. A type of cyber crime practiced in Africa but also known in the West…

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Beatitudes for Justice Builders

Blessed are you who can question your own assumptions and listen with an open mind; you will receive new insights beyond your imagining. Blessed are you who suffer the attacks of others to stand up for what is right; you will not be alone, for your courage will inspire others to rise. Blessed are you…

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Zika virus stimulated by climate change

Global warming and the phenomenon of El Niño are the breeding ground for the propagation of the mosquito that transmits the illness.  The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the Zika virus a public emergency of international significance, especially in Latin America and the Caribbean. Brazil announced its first case in May of 2015, and…

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Book Review. Geopolitics, popularized

One of the consequences of the spreading of social network usage is the possibility of metaphorically having the entire world at hand. By simply logging in on Facebook, Twitter or similar platforms and typing the appropriate words or names in a searchbox, one can be informed in real time of what is happening in that…

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Mexico. The ritual dance of the flyers

This ancient ritual has been vital in the social and cosmological cultural rituals of the Nahua, Totonac and Otomi peoples in the northern region of the State of Puebla. According to the Totonac mythology, the ritual was created to ask the gods to end a severe drought that forced  these peoples into hunger. The wise…

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Myanmar. A car driven by two drivers

Myanmar’s long-term transition from the 50-year military rule to democracy began in March 2011, with a retired general as the president. As he prepares to demit office, the short-term transition between elections on Nov. 8, 2015, and the end of President Thein Sein’s innings on March 30, 2016, has gained momentum. Important developments are unfolding that may…

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The cyber-mafias. The ‘Fourth Age’ of organized crime.

Access to the Internet and to deep web has allowed and allows criminal groups to expand their own illegal activities. Mafia-type criminal organizations are increasingly and very ably exploiting cyber-space. A recent study by the John Grieve Centre for Policing and Security, London Metropolitan University, has defined the digital world as the ‘Fourth Age’ for…

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Brazil. Death along the river.

The collapse of two dams has caused one of the greatest environmental disasters that has ever occurred in Brazil and in the world. It was not an accident. On 5 November 2015, sixty two million cubic metres of mudflow thick with toxic mining waste, spilled from the collapse of two dams and engulfed and devastated…

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The Doors of Mercy

The decision to open Holy Doors worldwide has drawn attention to several difficult realities, often ignored by media. For the first time, by the will of the Pope, the Holy Doors for the Jubilee of Mercy were opened not only in Rome but throughout the world, and not only the doors of cathedrals and shrines,…

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Money as a mission.

St. Basil the Great, in the 4th century would call money ‘the devil’s dung,’  an epithet reused by Pope Francis last year. Oscar Wilde said…

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The Hare, the Hippo and the Fire.

The hare and the hippo were great friends. They walked together in the veld and visited each other in their homes. The hippo was very proud…

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Youth & Mission

The Virus of Racism.

The world is seeing once again the upsurge of a vicious “virus” that has spread to every corner of the world. This time, the “virus” is…

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