It’s going to get even tougher to find a seat on a flight to Venezuela now. International airlines are cutting if not ending their service to the South American country. And that now includes the major U.S. carrier – American Airlines.
The line between confident and conceited was pretty thin in Brazil in October of 2007.
The South American giant was in the midst of a boom that would make it the world’s sixth largest economy. Massive new oil reserves were being discovered off its coast. It considered itself a global player that deserved a permanent seat on the ultra-exclusive U.N. Security Council.
And it had just been awarded the 2014 soccer World Cup.
“God,” then President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva declared, “is Brazilian.”
There’s an old saying among Mexican officials when dealing with the United States: Always tell the gringos yes, but never tell them when.
That dance is the result of two centuries of tortured bilateral relations marked by U.S. insensitivity and Mexican hypersensitivity. And it’s most likely what’s playing out now as Washington and Mexico City haggle over the fate of a former U.S. Marine, Andrew Tahmooressi.
Both President Obama and his Republican opposition had been patting themselves on the back of late for making the 2,000-mile-long frontera between the United States and Mexico more forbidding for undocumented migrants. Fewer and fewer had been crossing each year, because of beefed-up border security and because Obama had made a policy of deporting indocumentados in record numbers.
And then a bunch of Central American kids had to spoil the celebration.
There’s a network of freight trains that runs the length of Mexico from its southernmost border with Guatemala north to the United States. In addition to grain, corn or scrap metal, these trains are carrying an increasing number of undocumented immigrants who aim to cross into the U.S.
And despite the many deadly challenges it poses, more and more children—both with adults and alone—have been risking the journey. That prompted President Obama this week to warn of "an urgent humanitarian situation."
Six U.S. crew members of the Aqua Quest, a 65-foot ship out of Florida, have been sitting in a jungle jail in Honduras for almost a month now. The charge against them: bringing weapons into the violent Central American country illegally. But the case is questionable – especially since Aqua Quest International, the Tarpon Springs ocean exploration and recovery company that owns the vessel, was invited by Honduran officials to carry out development projects like river clearing.
It’s on to Round Two in Colombia. Challenger Oscar Iván Zuluaga, a right-wing former Finance Minister, pulled an upset over the incumbent, President Juan Manuel Santos, in Sunday’s presidential election. But Zuluaga didn't get a majority – far from it at 29 percent to Santos' 26 percent – so they'll go to a run-off on June 15.
Colombia’s peace process hangs in the balance – but Santos has to counter growing skepticism about his ongoing peace talks with the country's Marxist guerrillas, the FARC. Zuluaga has pledged to halt those negotiations.
Any presidential election in Colombia these days is a matter of high stakes.
That’s because the country – now South America’s second-largest economy and the United States’ most important ally on that continent – is in the midst of peace talks with Marxist guerrillas known as the Colombian Revolutionary Armed Forces, or FARC, to end a half-century-long civil war.
Christopher Columbus arrived in the New World in 1492 on a ship called the Santa Maria. The vessel ran aground that Christmas Eve, off Haiti’s north shore near what is now Cap Haitien. Using historical records, underwater archeologist Barry Clifford says he recently located remnants of the ship.
The job of confirming the blockbuster find falls to Charles Beeker, the director of Indiana University’s underwater science program. Beeker says the evidence he’s seen so far, including wrought iron guns, is strong.