United States spies helped kill US citizens in Chile


This video from the USA is called Was U.S. Journalist Charles Horman Killed by Chile’s Coup Regime With Aid of His Own Government? 1/2.

And this video is the sequel.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

US intelligence ‘played role’ in Chile executions

Tuesday 1st July 2014

UNITED States military intelligence played a key role in the 1973 executions of two US citizens in Chile, a judge ruled late on Monday.

Judge Jorge Zepeda said that former US naval Captain Ray E Davis had given information to Chilean officials about journalist Charles Horman and student Frank Teruggi that led to their arrest.

They were executed just days after the 1973 coup that overthrew president Salvador Allende, bringing General Augusto Pinochet to power.

Mr Zepeda also upheld the decision to charge retired Chilean Colonel Pedro Espinoza with the murders and former civilian counterintelligence agent Rafael Gonzalez as an accomplice in Mr Horman’s murder.

Cpt Davis commanded the US military mission in Chile at the time of the US-backed coup and was investigating US citizens thought to be “subversives and radicals.”

He and the two Chileans were charged in 2011, but Cpt Davis died in Santiago last year before being found.

A Chilean court issued a ruling Monday that the commander of US military forces in Chile played a pivotal role in the murder of two US citizens following the September 1973 coup that overthrew the elected government of Salvador Allende and installed General Augusto Pinochet as dictator: here.

Brazil to football World Cup quarter finals, congratulations!


This video is called Brazil Wildlife National Geographic Episode 1.

The Brazilian football team has proceeded to the quarter finals of the World Cup, as they were better at taking penalty kicks than Chile, after one goal each in regular playing time. Congratulations, with this video about Brazilian wildlife.

Brazil loses 7-1 against Germany: here.

Chile will beat Dutch football team, toucan predicts


This Dutch video is about animals predicting results of soccer matches. During earlier championships; and for the present World Cup; including toucan Chicito.

The Chilean football team will beat the Netherlands at today’s match at the World Cup in Brazil, Dutch daily Metro (paper edition) of today says.

This is predicted by Chicito, the toco toucan of Rotterdam zoo.

The predictions by the bird of the two earlier matches: Netherlands vs. Spain and Netherlands vs. Australia, were correct.

Both times, Chicito predicted the Dutch team would win.

Chicito has the choice between two hands with a piece of fruit, his favourite food. Behind these hands are armbands with the national flags of the competing teams.

Before the two first matches, Chicito flew each time to the hand with the armband in the Dutch national colours.

However, this time he chose the hand with the Chilean colours.

Abu Ghraib torture, ten years later


This video says about itself:

8 June 2012

The Center for Latin American Studies helped facilitate the display of Fernando Botero’s “Abu Ghraib” collection at the Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos in Santiago, Chile. The paintings and drawings were donated to Berkeley after the first showing at a public institution in the United States was arranged by the Center on the Berkeley campus in 2007. This video highlights the exhibition and includes footage from the opening ceremony.

By JUAN E. MÉNDEZ:

Abu Ghraib’s Ghosts

Ten years later, the United States still hasn’t come clean on its torture record.

By JUAN E. MÉNDEZ

April 27, 2014

Ten years ago today, “60 Minutes II” broadcast infamous pictures of detainee abuse at Abu Ghraib, the Iraqi prison then controlled by the United States. The photographs were heartbreaking. Naked men stacked up on top of each other in human pyramids. Prisoners forcibly staged in humiliating positions to mimic sex acts. Bags placed over men’s heads, denying their humanity. The most memorable image — a hooded man standing on a box, contorted Crucifixion-like with wires protruding from his hands — remains an indelible reminder that a country that long abhorred torture practiced it after the Sept. 11 attacks.

Those pictures shattered my belief that well-established democracies do not torture. I am a survivor of torture who owes his release from the Argentine junta’s notorious Unit 9 prison in part to U.S. pressure in the 1970s. If U.S. citizens and certain members of Congress had not written letters to the Argentine government inquiring about my situation, I might have become one of the thousands of people “disappeared” by the Argentine military in its Dirty War against political activists like me. I owe my life to the solidarity those Americans showed and their principled opposition to the military’s machinery of death and torture.

Unfortunately, the U.S. government that stood up to my torturers has been compromised — by both the Bush administration, which adopted torture as policy, and the Obama administration, which has kept evidence of U.S. torture hidden for years. It also is being compromised by the Central Intelligence Agency itself.

Here’s how. The Senate Intelligence Committee’s massive 6,600-page report on the CIA’s post- Sept. 11 torture program remains secret, although the committee recently voted to send the report’s executive summary, findings and conclusions to the White House for a declassification review. To be clear, the whole report should be public, not just pieces — but there’s a more urgent matter that must be dealt with immediately. According to the White House, President Barack Obama will allow the CIA to review and redact the report summary — a preposterous conflict of interest. Once again, the torturers will have the opportunity to censor what the public can know.

Already, leaked portions of the documents, obtained by McClatchy, show that CIA officers used torture methods that went beyond those approved by the Bush-era Justice Department and CIA headquarters, and that the agency evaded congressional, White House and public oversight. This isn’t surprising. Torture, you see, is a cancer that corrodes the morality of the perpetrators. It is so horrific that even its practitioners must lie to themselves and others to justify their actions, which shock not only the conscience of the world but their own. The CIA does this by rationalizing its brutality with the false argument that torture was necessary to save lives, or by simply relabeling the horrors of torture as the banal “enhanced interrogation techniques.”

This leaves an obvious question: How will the whole truth come out when the perpetrators are the ones holding the black marker? The answer is obvious, too: It will not. That not only violates solemn obligations of the United States under international law but has real consequences for human rights. As many countries with sordid histories of abuse know, those societies that reckon with their brutal pasts — Argentina, Chile and Peru, for instance — go on to have better records of protecting human rights, as well as defending their citizens from terrorists and other violent criminals. But societies that try to bury the past — including many former Soviet bloc countries — are more likely to continue their human rights violations and harm both their national and domestic security in the process.

While there are hugely important distinctions between the previously mentioned countries and the United States, the lesson still applies: The United States has a moral and legal obligation to discover and disclose the entire truth about torture committed by its agents, as a reminder to future administrations and to the world that torture is the very negation of human rights.

Just days after Obama took office in 2009, he did the right thing and immediately banned torture. But the 10th anniversary of the release of the Abu Ghraib photos, plus a still-secret report on the U.S. torture program under George W. Bush, serve as a reminder that Obama must do more before we can be confident that torture was an aberration that will never be repeated. He must take responsibility and lead the nation forward. The president — and not the CIA — must decide what is made public about the agency’s torture program. And he should release the Senate’s torture report in full.

The United States can once again become a full partner in the global movement for human rights, but only if it faces up to its dark side and atones for its torturous transgressions.

Juan E. Méndez is the United Nations special rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment.

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Good whale news from Chile


This video is called BBC Planet Earth (Blue whale).

Not only news about extinct whale species from Chile, also about living species …

From Wildlife Extra:

Blue whales get a boost in Chile

February 2014: Blue whale and dolphin conservation gets a boost with the decision by Chile Government to make Tic Toc, situated on Chile’s southern coast, the largest Marine Protected Area (MPA) in continental Chile. With an area of around 90,000 ha (equal to the urban area of Chile’s capital), Tic-Toc is one of the most biodiverse areas of Chilean coast.

“This marine park is a gift and a great inheritance for our children,” said Dr Francisco Viddi, Marine Conservation Program coordinator at WWF Chile. “Tic-Toc will finally be protected; its rich waters, innumerable species and fragile ecosystem will be conserved and the blue whales will continue to have a home here every summer.”

The new MPA is an important feeding and nursing ground for the blue whale, the world’s largest mammal. The area is also home to unique species of dolphins such as the Chilean dolphin and Peale’s dolphin, as well as two endangered species of otter.

“This is the beginning of a path to achieve conservation of at least 10 per cent of Chilean seascapes,” said Dr Viddi. “Still there is much left to do, but we are convinced that the declaration of these new protected areas will be a significant contribution and will be managed seriously and efficiently.”

Along with Tic-Toc, the government also approved the designation of a Marine Coastal Protected Area further south in Aysén. Both efforts will help to consolidate an important pole of conservation in the area.

“Chile urgently needs a network of marine protected areas along the coast and the Tic-Toc Marine Park and the Aysén protected area opens the door,” said Carlos Cuevas, Founder and Director of the Melimoyu Foundation. “We hope that they serve as a model to be replicated in the rest of the country.”

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Did Chilean prehistoric whales die from algae?


This video says about itself:

Smithsonian 3D Digi Landscape – Chilean Fossil Whales – Time Lapse

26 November 2011

9 exposure HDR time lapse shot overnight. Newly discovered fossil whales in foreground with the Pan-american Highway leading towards the port of Caldera, Chile.

From Wildlife Extra:

Ancient marine graveyard mystery solved

February 2014: The 40 marine mammals that washed up on the Chilean coast millions of years ago died at sea probably from being poisoned by toxic algal blooms say scientists.

The marine graveyard was discovered in 2011 when builders working to extend the Pan-American Highway discovered a 250 metre wide quarry site filled with the skeletons of more than 40 marine mammals including 31 large baleen whales, seals, a walrus-like toothed whale, an aquatic sloth and an extinct species of sperm whale, suggesting that they died from the same cause.

The wide array of animals buried at the site over four levels indicated that the cause of death didn’t differentiate between the young and old or between species, and occurred repeatedly over thousands of years. This suggests that harmful algae blooms, which cause organ failure, could be the most common cause of mass strandings.

Other causes, like tsunamis, were ruled out by the team of Chilean and Smithsonian paleontologists because they would have produced a range of skeletons including much smaller species, rather than the primarily large mammals found at Cerro Ballena. A mass stranding while alive was ruled out as a cause of death due to the way all the marine mammals were were found at right angles to the direction that the current would have flowed.

Humans have been using echolocation in the form of sonar since the early part of the 20th century, but whales have made use of the ability to use sound to pinpoint locations for tens of millions of years. As evidenced in the fossils – which belong to a new species of ancient whale named Cotylocara macei – cetaceans have been using echolocation for at least 30 million years: here.

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Plesiosaur discovery in Chile


This video says about itself:

This animation shows how the juvenile plesiosaur, discovered in Antarctica by an American-Argentine research team, might have appeared.

From I Love Chile News:

Chile’s Loch Ness Monster: New Marine Reptile Fossil Found

February 10 15:28 2014

by Josh King

Paleontologists working in Chile’s Bío Bío region have discovered the fossilized remains of a previously unknown species of marine reptile.

Bío Bío — The fossilized remains of a species of plesiosaur has been discovered by a group of Chilean paleontologists working in the country’s Bío Bío region. The Aristonectes quiriquinensis specimen is over 60 million years old and lived in the seas of the Southern hemisphere as long ago as 251 million years.

That is a confusing sentence. 60 million and 251 million is quite a difference. Aristonectes is said to be from the Late Cretaceous, 100-66 million years ago. So, this species did not exist yet 251 million years ago. And 60 million years ago, all plesiosaurs, like all dinosaurs, had become extinct.

The plesiosaur was a large marine reptile that inhabited all of the world’s oceans. They appeared during the late Cretaceous period,

No, the origin of plesiosaurs is earlier. During the Triassic.

and since being found and named in 1821, over a hundred species have been found. They are probably most well-known in modern popular culture as the template for the Loch Ness Monster, which has the benefit of making this species quite famous and generating interest for the study of ancient creatures, but also often makes people mistake the plesiosaur for a made-up fantasy creature. Much to the dismay of any paleontologist.

This new species was first found in 2001, when only its skull was discovered. In 2009, however, parts of its neck were found and it was seen to have a slightly shorter neck than those found in the Northern Hemisphere. This meant that there was a notable difference between Northern and Southern species.

Having published their findings in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, the paleontologists are now studying the remains to find out why these differences have occurred.

With evidence of new extinct creatures being discovered all the time, such as the large meat-eating dinosaur found last year in Utah, it’s just as exciting as ever to hear about new findings of these ancient giants and beginning to sort out the fantasy from the reality.

The scientific description of the species newly discovered in Chile is here.

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