More than 600 members of the United Methodist Church signed on to a letter Monday condemning Attorney General Jeff Sessions for the Trump administration’s policy of separating migrant parents and children at the U.S. border.
In the letter, the group of churchgoers, including clergy and church leadership, accuse Sessions of child abuse, immorality, racial discrimination and dissemination of doctrines contrary to the standards of the doctrine of the United Methodist Church.
They note in the letter that Sessions is a member of Ashland Place United Methodist Church, in Mobile, Ala.
“While other individuals and areas of the federal government are implicated in each of these examples, Mr. Sessions — as a long-term United Methodist in a tremendously powerful, public position — is particularly accountable to us, his church,” the letter reads. “He is ours, and we are his. As his denomination, we have an ethical obligation to speak boldly when one of our members is engaged in causing significant harm in matters contrary to the Discipline on the global stage.”
The letter comes as President Trump and his administration face backlash over its policy to separate migrant families.
Sessions announced the “zero tolerance” policy earlier this year, saying the Department of Justice would criminally prosecute all adults attempting to illegally cross the southern border into the U.S. As a result, families who crossed together would in some cases be separated, he said.
Trump has repeatedly blamed Democrats for the policy, and administration officials have asserted that only Congress can fix the issue by passing immigration reform.
Members of Congress have introduced legislation to end the practice of separating families, while simultaneously urging Trump to unilaterally stop the separations.
U.S. Government Separating Children From Parents At Border: And One Big Lie/Lyers
Today most of the news on the Google News site that I use is loaded with different articles about the child separation from parents at the U.S. Southern Border. One of the things I wonder about is why is this policy not being followed that same way at our Northern Border with Canada? Is this because most Canadians are white folks and most folks at our Southern Border are not white folks? Even though this is an issue that seems to be a non issue at this time maybe one of the major News Agencies will decide to look at the ‘why’ of this issue at some point. Even though this is an important issue it is not the issue that my article today is about. My article today is about what is going on at our Nations Southern Border with Mexico right now.
Like most all things in life, there are at least two sides to every issue, this disaster at our Southern Border is no exception. Technically any person crossing into our country at a non designated entry point is breaking the law and should be arrested. People wanting to live in a country should enter that country legally so that they do not have to always be worried about being deported. The last I heard the U.S. only allows about 55,000 people to legally migrate through the legal system so that they can become legal citizens. That policy, that kind of a number, in my opinion should be raised to about 250,000 for all Americans, North Americans and South Americans. If the legal number was a more realistic number hopefully most people coming to the U.S Borders would choose to try to come in legally so that they could truly feel free once they started working and living here without having worry about ICE arresting them everyday.
I have spoken with many people from Mexico who are here illegally during my decades as a long haul truck driver (1981-2013). Constantly I heard the same thing from them, that they would rather be at home but there was no way to survive there, meaning that the Mexican economy was/is lousy. They were here trying to find a way to send money back home so that their families could afford to pay rent and to buy groceries. Some U.S. people make fun of the reality of having 10-15 Mexican people living in a two bedroom apartment, it is cruel and ignorant to make such comments even though in many cases it is true. Yet the reason you may have 10 working men living in a two bedroom living quarters is because they are pooling their money together so that they can send more money home to their wife and children. I have just been speaking of Mexican folks so far but the reality reaches to the southern end of the South American Continent. People in Central America and South America face the same issues as the poor people from Mexico face. Example, you don’t see Mexican billionaires trying to sneak across the borders do you? This issue in countries south of the U.S. is not going to change until these southern nations are able to get a good strong working economy so that their people can have livable wage jobs. If you are living in (for example) Guatemala and you have a good paying job to where you have a nice home, good food, vehicles, clothes and the such are you really going to give it all up to try to sneak into the U.S. so that you can be a criminal under constant threat of arrest and deportation?
Now let us get to the point of the children being separated from their parents at the U.S. Southern Border. If you break the laws of a Nation that Nations law enforcement agencies are going to consider you to be a criminal whom they will arrest if they possibly can. Lets get away from the Border for a moment and let us look at another angle. If I am a person who lives in Chicago or New York and I commit a crime to where I am arrested and sent to a prison the law does not allow my minor children to be put into prison with me. If I don’t have someone else here in the States the government will give my children to the (DCS) Department of Children’s Services who are going to take my children and house them until they can find someone to give custody to while I am in prison. Would you want your minor children to be thrown into an adult prison with you? This policy that Donald Trump has put into place is cruel, but, what should our government, any government do in these cases?
Do not fall for the Trump Administration lies, this is a Presidential Policy, it is not a Law, and it is not a Law that was instituted during the Obama Administration, this one is all on the habitual liar, Donald Trump. This morning the Chief of the Department of Homeland Security Kristen Nielsen angerally told reporters that the Trump Administration has no policy in place to separate the children form their parents at the Border. Yet many documents from the DOJ and Jeff Sessions state very clearly for the security personal at the Mexican Border to do exactly that. That I know of there is no good answer for the Trump Administration to follow on this issue. They can either do what they are doing which is angering many people and is a death dart for Republicans this November in the Mid Term Elections or they can just say the heck with it and just open up the Borders to anyone who wishes to cross it. Folks, I don’t know how to be the most humane here on this issue unless North and South American Countries all totally open up their borders sort of like what the EU has done. Here is my single biggest issue with Donald Trump and his flunkies who work for him, just be honest, quit lying all the time, quit trying to blame everyone else for what you yourself are doing.
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RIGHT-WING IVAN DUQUE WINS PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS IN COLOMBIA
With 99.6% of the votes cast, in a second round of presidential election in which 47% of the electorate did not appear in the polls, the extreme right-wing Democratic Party candidate wins the presidential election in Colombia with 53.9% % of votes. Gustavo Petro, from center-left, obtained 41.8%
247, with Resistance – Duke was supported by the creator and leader of his party, former President Alvaro Uribe. His election raises the concern of the democratic and progressive sectors of the country and of all of Latin America. Colombia will once again be governed by an oligarchic and pro-imperialist political force opposed to the peace agreements between the national government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.
Duke relied on the support of the entire machine of the traditional parties, all the forces of the conservative establishment in his favor.
Democratic forces fear that the Duke government means control of all branches of government (Executive, Legislative and Judiciary) by a reactionary political group, Uribismo.
Petro’s program advocates peace and national reconciliation, respect for human rights, the fight against corruption, care for the environment, health and education as universal rights and above all the fight against inequality
The country needs democratic and just peace to heal the wounds opened by a war that lasted more than 50 years, caused the death of more than 200 thousand people and the displacement of their homes and regions of origin of more than seven million Colombians.
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The Trump administration has repeatedly denied that its policy is to separate children from their parents when families cross the US border illegally.
But its own internal documents contradict that.
The Department of Homeland Security’s website put out a press release on Friday saying it would separate children from their families.
A “zero tolerance” policy from Attorney General Jeff Sessions mandates that anyone illegally crossing the border be treated like a criminal.
The Trump administration has repeatedly sought to distance itself from its policy separating children from their parents when families cross the US border illegally, but its own internal documents contradict those efforts.
“The Attorney General directed United States Attorneys on the Southwest Border to prosecute all amenable adults who illegally enter the country, including those accompanied by their children, for 8 U.S.C. § 1325(a), illegal entry.
“Children whose parents are referred for prosecution will be placed with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR).”
Another FAQ section deals with questions including “Why Are Parents Being Separated From Their Children?”; “Where Are Children Going?”; and “What Happens to Children in HHS Custody?”
The DHS made a step-by-step guide for detained adults who are trying to reach their children called “Next Steps for Families.”
Furthermore, the rise of facilities that house children separated from their families at the border during Trump’s administration has been well documented.
Nielsen’s real argument is that border crossers are criminals
Nielsen continued: “For those seeking asylum at ports of entry, we have continued the policy from previous Administrations and will only separate if the child is in danger, there is no custodial relationship between ‘family’ members, or if the adult has broken a law.”
Unauthorized border crossings have always been illegal, but previous administrations did not criminally prosecute all border crossers the way Trump’s attorney general, Jeff Sessions, has.
Detainees in the US who are charged with criminal wrongdoing have always been separated from their children; by treating all adult border crossers as criminals, Trump’s administration has therefore crafted a policy that leads families to be separated at the border.
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247, with Granma, by Oscar Sánchez Serra – At the end of 1889, the US government of Benjamin Harrison convened the First Pan American Conference, which was the starting point for “Pan-Americanism”, which was already expressed as the economic and political domain of America under the supposed “continental unity”. It was the updating of James Monroe’s doctrine of December 2, 1823, at a time when American capitalism reached its imperialist phase.
José Martí, an exceptional testimony of the emergence of this imperialist monster, in connection with that conference and from the bowels of the beast, in his capacity as Uruguayan consul, expressed in the Argentine newspaper La Nación that “there has never been in America, from Independence until now, require more vigilance, nor require a clearer and more detailed examination, than the invitation which the powerful United States, full of unsaleable products determined to extend its dominions in America, make to the American nations of less power, linked by free trade with the peoples of Europe, to adjust an alliance against Europe, and to conclude agreements with the rest of the world.of Spanish tyranny Spain was able to save itself, and now, after seeing with and invitation factors, it is urgent to say,because it is the truth, that it came to Spanish America to declare its second independence. “
His keen intuition, his political genius and keen thinker, gave him reason. Between 1889 and 1945, during eight similar conferences, three consultation meetings and several conferences on special subjects, the advance of the economic, political and military penetration of the United States in Latin America was established, until the birth of the OAS in 1948, in the American International Conference of Bogotá, between March 30 and May 2, during which the Colombian liberal leader Jorge Elias Gaitn, of great popular rootedness, was assassinated. That fact motivated a great insurrection known as the Bogotazo, brutally repressed, and that served to manipulate the course and the results of the Conference, when the United States promoted as a threat to democracy the height of the Soviet Union and the communism, to which they accused for the deaths occurred in this uprising.
The history is there, no one can change it, the Organization of American States was born to become the ideal legal instrument to the American domination in the continent. The Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, has just demonstrated this in his speech last Monday (4), at the 48th session of the General Assembly, that Raul Roa (Havana, 1907 – 1982), the Chancellor of Dignity, called ministry of the empire colonies. With his intervention speech, the head of US diplomacy gave the orders to isolate Venezuela, indicating to the region that it breaks relations with the legitimate government of Nicolás Maduro, as it did with Cuba in the early 60’s of last century, and demanding “democratic reforms” in Nicaragua, blaming the government of Daniel Ortega for the deaths caused by the violent acts in that country,
Pompeo, referring to Cuba on Monday, said that, “as democratic societies, we must support the youth of Cuba and other parts of the hemisphere in their hopes for democratic change.” But the same Cuba that emerged from the OAS, and with it all the peoples of America, with the protagonism of its young people, stood up as Martí did in 1889. “Why go as allies, in the best of youth, in the battle that is the United States preparing to wage war with the rest of the world? “
The diplomatic rhetoric of the OAS, concerning the postulates on the independence and sovereignty of nations and the rights of man and people, among which the principle of the non-intervention of one State in the internal affairs of others was based, is a dead letter in the face of a massive bloody expedient. The United States needs the living OAS to influence and divide the region and to restrain the consecration of its unique, inevitable and true historical destiny: the Martí and Bolivarian integration of its peoples.
Synthesis of the OAS trajectory
– In 1954, Guatemala was invaded by mercenary troops organized by the CIA, which overthrew the government of Jacobo Arbenz. The OAS has previously approved a regional collective intervention resolution in clear violation of its Charter and the UN Charter.
– The OAS did not make a single statement about the aggression against Cuba in Playa Girón in 1961.
– April 1965: Yankee marines were disembarked in Santo Domingo to prevent the victory of the constitutionalist popular movement on the militaristic reaction. It was the first collective intervention in a country in the area, with the OAS brand.
– The OAS was silent on the death of Salvador Allende, the murder and enforced disappearance of tens of thousands of South Americans during the grisly Operation Condor.
– The OAS did not promote peace in Central America during the 1980s, in a conflict that cost about 100,000 lives.
– The OAS has not backed investigations into the suspicion of General Torrijos’ death in Panama.
– In March of 1982, the British intervention that began the War of the Malvinas, the first aggression of an extracontinental power to a country of the Inter-American System, which, according to the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance -ARAR (another breeding of domination, supposed criterion of solidarity on the continent wielded by Washington), should call for continental solidarity with the aggressor. And … the United States politically and militarily supported Britain and imposed economic sanctions against Argentina.
– October 1983: A military coup overthrew the Grenada prime minister, Maurice Bishop, who was assassinated. The United States also sent an invasion force of 1,900 Marines to Grenada. The principle of non-intervention was no longer valid.
– The OAS was not even moved by the invasion of Panama in 1989.
– The 1992 Inter-American Democratic Charter raised the level of the treaty to impose unipolarism on the region, that is, the OAS did not change its face, so much so that in the face of the military coup in Haiti that President Jean Bertrand Aristides deposed in February 2004, exhibited the same level of disability and putrefaction.
– The OAS supported the coup d’état in Venezuela in April 2002, which sought to take power from commander Hugo Chavez.
– The OAS contemplated the coup against the government of Manuel Zelaya in Honduras in 2009.
– In 2010, the OAS turned a blind eye to another coup attempt in Ecuador during Rafael Correa’s administration.
– The OAS and its Secretary General, Luis Almagro, today sponsor US policies against Venezuela and Cuba.
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(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE SHANGHAI CHINA NEWS AGENCY ‘SHINE’)
Guatemala ‘fire’ volcano spews new hot mud
02:43 UTC+8, 2018-06-05
A hot flow of mud, ash and gas swept down from Guatemala’s Fuego volcano yesterday, after a new explosion in the morning interrupted disaster workers’ efforts in pulling out bodies from the brown sludge known as a pyroclastic flow that engulfed the village of El Rodeo.
The morning eruption also halted rescue efforts on the southern slopes of Fuego, Spanish for “fire.” The national disaster agency raised the death toll to 38 from 25 on Sunday, but it was unclear whether more bodies had been found or whether more people died in yesterday’s eruption.
The day after the volcano’s eruption, its biggest in more than four decades, residents in the capital Guatemala City woke to sweep ash from rooftops and streets. Technicians assessed whether the runway at the international airport was clear enough to restart commercial flights.
“The landscape on the volcano is totally changed, everything is totally destroyed,” government volcanologist Gustavo Chigna said on local radio.
A witness near the volcano said more people had been evacuated beyond an 8-kilometer perimeter from the site after the new explosion.
Fuego, one of several active volcanoes in the Central American country, is near the colonial city of Antigua, a UNESCO world heritage site that has survived several volcanic eruptions. The latest activity from Fuego is mostly on the far side of the volcano, facing the Pacific coast.
Around 300 people have been injured since the eruption on Sunday that sent columns ash and smoke 10km into the sky, dusting several regions with ash.
National Coordinator for Disaster Reduction (CONRED) shared a photo showing the flows of gas and mud sweeping down a mountainside and across a broad valley, engulfing a small village.
The Institute of Volcanology said the eruption on Sunday ended after over 16 hours of activity. The eruption of the 3,763-meter volcano sent ash billowing over the surrounding area, turning plants and trees gray and blanketing streets, cars and people.
Farmers covered in ash fled for their lives as civil defense workers tried to relocate them to shelters during the event.
“This time we were saved; in another (eruption) no,” said Efrain Gonzalez, 52, sitting on the floor of a shelter in the city of Escuintla, where he arrived with his wife and 1-year-old daughter after fleeing the hard-hit El Rodeo community.
Gonzalez was overwhelmed with despair, as two more of his children, aged 10 and 4, are missing.
They were trapped in their home, which was flooded with hot mud that descended from the volcano.
Guatemala’s President Jimmy Morales and his government declared three days of mourning and a state of emergency for Escuintla, Chimaltenango and Sacatepequez, which must still be ratified by Congress.
Hundreds of personnel from the police, Red Cross and military have been dispatched to support emergency operations, Morales said.
The eruption is the second major one this year from the peak, following another that subsided at the beginning of February after sending ash towering 1.7km into the sky.
Source: Agencies Editor: Zhang Liuhao
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Instalaciones de Reservas Militares de Salamá, Baja Verapaz, se habilitó como Centro de Acopio Departamental, en coordinación y apoyo de la Municipalidad y Brigada de Artillería de Campaña. ¡Apoyemos a los damnificados!.#365DíasAlServicioDeMiPatriapic.twitter.com/aR0QXS8INZ
247, with Prensa Latina – An impressive demonstration was held this Friday (25) on the emblematic 9 de Julio Avenue in Buenos Aires on the Argentine Homeland Day.
On the day that Argentina celebrates the 208th anniversary of the May Revolution, the gestation that paved the way for the definitive independence of Spanish colonialism, a human tide of thousands and thousands of Argentines, expressed their message to the Macri government: “No to the IMF. “
While the president of the Republic was holding the traditional lunch with members of his ministry at Quinta de Olivos, in the streets the social effervescence was felt with phrases like ‘No to the IMF’ and ‘The country is in danger’.
It was a resounding response from the Argentineans to the government’s decision to ask for financial “help” from the IMF, amid the unbridled rise of the dollar, which is also reflected in the increase in the prices of the basic food basket.
More than 40 trade union, social, human rights, political and religious organizations called for the demonstration, which also protested against the steady increases in the prices of basic services and the cut in the state sector that led to layoffs.
‘On this 25th of May the Motherland is in danger. We say no to the IMF, the OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) and the neoliberal adjustment of the ‘Cambiemos’ government alliance, instruments for the domination of the Argentine people. Let’s not let them pass, “wrote Nobel Peace Prize winner Adolfo Pérez Esquivel on Twitter.
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The situation at the gas stations in Minas Gerais is increasingly critical due to the truck drivers’ standstill. According to a survey carried out by Minaspetro and released on Friday morning, about 93% of the establishments are already depleted because of the strike.
The entity that represents the dealers of fuels in Minas Gerais carried out the survey in 115 positions. 71.3% of them no longer have more than one type of fuel available. Another 21.7% have only one type of product – or alcohol, or gasoline or diesel.
The research also indicates that in about 9.6% of the stations surveyed the remaining fuel will end soon.
The research indicates that the situation is serious in the regions that concentrate the largest number of resales, mainly Belo Horizonte and metropolitan region, South of Minas, Zona da Mata and Triângulo Mineiro.
Approximately 60% of the stations surveyed are supplied by the Gabriel Passos Refinery (Regap), in Betim, which is still blocked by truck drivers and representatives of the Union of Fuel Transporters and Petroleum Derivatives (Sindtanque) since last Tuesday (22) .
(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF NPR AND THE BROOKINGS INSTITUTE)
What The World Needs To Do After Venezuela’s Vote
Marcos Carbono (center) joins a protest against the weekend’s election in Venezuela in front of that country’s consulate in Miami. President Nicolás Maduro may have won the vote count but in the process lost the legitimacy to govern, one expert writes.
Joe Raedle/Getty Images
Ted Piccone (@piccone_ted) is a senior fellow in foreign policy at the Brookings Institution.
Venezuela’s latest electoral affair only worsened the country’s continued slide from a relatively stable middle-income democracy to a socialist authoritarian system stricken with hyperinflation, rising poverty, declining oil production and record levels of violent crime. Rather than boost President Nicolás Maduro’s standing after five years in power, the low voter turnout — down from 80 percent in 2013 to 46 percent on Sunday — coupled with a clear rejection of the results by the United States, Canada and a group of 13 Latin American nations, leaves the protégé of former President Hugo Chávez with a crisis of governability. Maduro may have won the vote count but in the process lost the legitimacy to govern.
Venezuela’s deterioration toward despotism and despair comes as little surprise. For years, experts have warned that increasing executive control of the country’s democratic institutions alongside gross mismanagement of its oil-dominated economy would lead to worsening conditions for its 30 million citizens. Hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans have left the country in the past two years, many of them desperate to escape the confluence of food and medicine shortages, lack of decent jobs, terrible crime and political repression.
The situation today is a tragic reversal of the heady days when Chávez first launched his Bolivarian revolution in 1998, promising to spread Venezuela’s vast petroleum wealth more fairly among the majority poor. For years, the charismatic revolutionary rode the wave of high oil prices to deliver social benefits to his constituents, helping him not only to overcome general strikes, mass protests and a coup attempt, but also to win relatively free and fair elections multiple times. He abused that electoral popularity and government largesse to rewrite the constitution in his favor, create paramilitary “Bolivarian circles,” stack the courts and electoral council with his loyalists, control the state-owned oil firm, and stifle free media.
Re-Election Of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro Condemned Widely By World Leaders
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Chávez also effectively used the country’s oil reserves, the world’s largest, to insulate his regime from U.S. pressure, securing favorable loans from China and new military equipment and energy deals from Russia.
By the time Chávez died in March 2013, the winning formula for an elected authoritarian was well-entrenched. His hand-picked successor, Maduro, narrowly won elections a month later and quickly consolidated control by digging even deeper into the trough of state resources to buy off the military, nationalize industries and woo enough voters to stave off electoral defeat.
This strategy, however, has probably run its course. With mounting foreign debt, falling oil production, increased sanctions, diplomatic isolation and a spreading humanitarian crisis on his hands, Maduro can survive only by taking painful steps to reform a system that fuels his regime’s authority. Since this is unlikely, we should expect to see an increasingly desperate hardening of his administration’s tactics against his opponents, domestic and foreign, and an intensified reliance on China and Russia for support.
For the United States and the international community, Venezuela presents a particularly tricky case. The goals are relatively clear — weaken Maduro enough to force him to negotiate a peaceful exit while preventing a worsening humanitarian crisis that is already destabilizing neighboring Colombia and fragile Caribbean states and could bring thousands of desperate Venezuelans to U.S. borders.
Washington, however, is not well-positioned politically to lead the charge. Threats of military intervention, already uttered by President Trump, are a non-starter. Support for a military coup likewise would seriously set back U.S. standing in the region. For the past three decades, the U.S. has mostly stood firm in support of democratic and negotiated solutions to the Latin America’s internal political crises. That leaves expanding the list of targeted economic sanctions, coordinated with partners in the region and Europe, to pressure Maduro and his allies to come to the negotiating table in a serious way.
Up until now, Maduro has managed to avoid such a negotiated pact with the opposition, which remains divided and demoralized. They are not, however, defeated. They will likely return to the streets to protest the government’s abuses and economic malfeasance. As the country becomes more ungovernable, moderates in the ruling socialist party may realize that the benefits of the current system can only be preserved through compromise.
A new mediation process should be launched as soon as possible, facilitated by the United Nations under the secretary-general’s banner of conflict prevention, and supported by a coalition of states that includes not only key South American countries like Peru, Chile and Argentina, but also the United States, France, Germany, China and the Vatican. An early agreement should be reached to allow international agencies to deliver humanitarian assistance to malnourished and sick Venezuelans before they attempt to leave the country. And a package of economic incentives should be assembled to prepare for a post-Maduro scenario.
In sum, while Maduro may claim a historic victory that solidifies his hold on power, the reality is just the opposite. If the domestic opposition can rally, it will signal to the international community that a coordinated plan of increased sanctions and facilitated talks is feasible.
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Kathy Vik is Deeply Awake, an internationally recognized author, speaker and channeler specializing in the daily life application and significance of our current planetary and individual ascensions. She represents "The Teachers," ancients who are her mentors and family. Join her as she delights in sharing her wisdom and insights in these sacred and thankfully changing times.