Murder, and Other Disasters

NEED TO KNOW Murder, and Other Disasters ECUADOR [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/7dbfcec9-d17b-43ce-97b7-0ce48bb12d1f.png"] Under the conservative government of President Guillermo Lasso, Ecuador’s economy grew 3.2 percent last year, inflation today is relatively low compared with the region, employers have hired 500,000 people and 750,000 fewer Ecuadorians now live in poverty. In an interview...

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The Exile and the Mob

NEED TO KNOW The Exile and the Mob BRAZIL [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/b4df2610-e790-44f6-bec1-f859c705ae8b.png"] The former president of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, might finally be planning to return to his native country after decamping for Florida in late December, shortly before his successor, the now incumbent Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva,...

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Breathing Politics

NEED TO KNOW Breathing Politics BRAZIL [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/b4df2610-e790-44f6-bec1-f859c705ae8b.png"] On Jan. 1, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva was sworn in as the new president of Brazil. A week later, supporters of his opponent, former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, stormed Congress, the Supreme Court, and the Presidential Palace to try to...

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Cry For Me

NEED TO KNOW Cry For Me ARGENTINA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/76e4f41e-d963-4fc8-b435-ba5bf19812a5.png"] The throngs that crowded Buenos Aires and other Argentine cities after the South American country’s World Cup victory testified to a vibrant country that can field world-class athletic teams, as a photo essay in the Atlantic portrayed. But the unorganized...

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When Dullness Is a Virtue

Editor’s Note: Last month, we asked our readers to select a country for us to focus on and collected the results. Now, we’re pleased to offer our inaugural Readers’ Choice Week, with reports on four of the top vote-getters. We wish we could have featured...

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A Doll’s Tale

Editor’s Note: Last month, we asked our readers to select a country for us to focus on and collected the results. Now, we’re pleased to offer our inaugural Readers’ Choice Week, with reports on four of the top vote-getters. We wish we could have featured...

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Rule By Chaos

[featurecontent2] NEED TO KNOW Rule By Chaos PERU [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/7d13971f-19d8-4bc2-ac9e-119d2f349be4.png"] Foreign tourists were recently stranded at Machu Picchu, the 15th-century Incan citadel and UNESCO World Heritage Site, CNN wrote, amid a major political crisis in Peru. Officials declared a state of emergency, reported the Associated Press, shutting public transportation amid...

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Quitting, Loudly

NEED TO KNOW Quitting, Loudly CHILE [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/baed026e-8c02-42fc-8c27-383b8bf87a6c.png"] Irina Karamanos recently resigned from her position as First Lady of Chile. She is still Chilean President Gabriel Boric’s partner. The 33-year-old Santiago-based anthropologist, feminist and political organizer simply didn’t want a public position based on that personal relationship. Writing in the...

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Inviting Locusts

NEED TO KNOW Inviting Locusts GUATEMALA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/db73a011-021f-466b-9b89-77add155facc.png"] Guatemalan authorities recently detained two Americans for attempting to steal scores of Mayan artifacts – “stone spheres, mortars, sphinxes, yokes, anthropomorphic figures – loaded on a truck,” according to the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project. The arrests were an unfortunately...

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Voting with the Feet

NEED TO KNOW Voting with the Feet NICARAGUA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/b1f74445-4296-4463-949d-e92d66c3e3b1.png"] Jose Galeano, 35, has a degree in veterinary medicine. In his home country of Nicaragua, however, where poverty, corruption, and the suppression of political dissent are commonplace, he has worked as a farm laborer. So recently he took out...

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Peace in the Household

NEED TO KNOW Peace in the Household BRAZIL [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/b4df2610-e790-44f6-bec1-f859c705ae8b.png"] Brazilian truckers and other supporters of conservative President Jair Bolsonaro blocked roads in the South American country recently in protest at the victory of Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, the leftist ex-president who served previously from 2003 to 2010,...

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The Quiet Bienvenue

NEED TO KNOW The Quiet Bienvenue CANADA [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/c7ee49a6-d768-4bd1-93d6-b44b086c3c21.png"] Politicians in Quebec usually use secession from the federal union of Canada as a wedge issue when seeking votes. Incumbent Québécois Premier Francois Legault, however, opted to forgo talk of breaking from the rest of the country for the provincial...

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No Joy in Mudville

NEED TO KNOW No Joy in Mudville BRAZIL [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/b4df2610-e790-44f6-bec1-f859c705ae8b.png"] Supporters of left-wing Brazilian politician and former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, or simply “Lula,” suffered a rude awakening recently when, rather than easily winning his country’s presidential race, he now must face the incumbent right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro...

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Rinse, Repeat

NEED TO KNOW Rinse, Repeat PUERTO RICO [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/20e7440e-baf0-4e4c-8dd8-699b2e71c3b0.png"] Five years after Hurricane Maria knocked out Puerto Rico’s electrical grid, it’s déjà vu. Hundreds of thousands of residents of the US territory are without power because of Hurricane Fiona, reviving memories of when Maria killed thousands, turned off the...

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The Time To Choose

NEED TO KNOW The Time To Choose BRAZIL [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/b4df2610-e790-44f6-bec1-f859c705ae8b.png"] Tanks rolled and soldiers marched through the streets of the Brazilian capital of Brasilia recently. They were ostensibly celebrating the 200th anniversary of the South American country’s independence from Portugal. But the military parades on Sept. 7 had a different...

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Pinned Down

NEED TO KNOW Pinned Down ECUADOR [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/7dbfcec9-d17b-43ce-97b7-0ce48bb12d1f.png"] Ecuador’s president, Guillermo Lasso, managed to drag his country out of the coronavirus pandemic. Now, however, he might be too embattled on two fronts to solve the other major problems facing his South American country. On the one hand, he is trying...

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Out of Touch

[featurecontent] NEED TO KNOW Out of Touch CHILE [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/baed026e-8c02-42fc-8c27-383b8bf87a6c.png"] Technocrats, scientists, environmentalists, and other experts and policymakers love Chile’s proposed new constitution. As Nature detailed, the new founding document for the South American nation would “boost science, expand environmental protection and improve the nation’s education system.” Problem is, few Chileans...

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Suffer the Monkeys

NEED TO KNOW Suffer the Monkeys WORLD [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/486ddb7e-3777-4543-ab44-3536360a3ce9.png"] What’s in a name, Shakespeare once wrote. Well for monkeys these days, everything. Since May, monkeypox has been spreading exponentially around the globe, with countries that have never seen a case now reporting surges. Unfortunately, fatigue and anger stemming from the...

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A Grand Companion

[featurecontent] NEED TO KNOW A Grand Companion HONDURAS [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/5e2a67ee-c113-425a-b7dc-9cb08a72f95e.png"] A judge in Honduras recently sentenced Roberto David Castillo, a top business executive and graduate of the US Military Academy at West Point, to 22.5 years in prison for his role in the 2016 murder of Berta Caceres, an indigenous...

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Cycles of Despair

NEED TO KNOW Cycles of Despair HAITI [map url="https://mcusercontent.com/a2e22d7f24f6d1e3464d05be4/images/49e3c059-ec02-49d2-b8d4-2a7e10c83ff3.png"] The gang warfare that has claimed more than 230 lives in Haiti recently has also threatened to cut off energy imports vital to transportation and electricity generation. As Agence France-Presse reported, the black market in gasoline in the Caribbean nation...

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