6:22 PM 5/17/2018 – A peek into the lives of Puerto Rican Muslims and what Ramadan means post Hurricane Maria – Front Page Review

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Source: A peek into the lives of Puerto Rican Muslims and what Ramadan means post Hurricane Maria

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A peek into the lives of Puerto Rican Muslims and what Ramadan means post Hurricane Maria
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Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
A peek into the lives of Puerto Rican Muslims and what Ramadan means post Hurricane Maria
 

mikenova shared this story .

For Juan, Ramadan is a balancing act. On the one hand is his religious faith and practice. On the other is his land, his culture, his home: Puerto Rico.

Although he weaves these two elements of his identity together in many ways, during Ramadan, the borderline between them becomes palpable. For the Puerto Rican Muslims like Juan, the holy month of fasting brings to the surface the tensions they feel in their daily life as minorities – and as Muslims among their Puerto Rican family and Puerto Ricans in the Muslim community.

That is even more true this year in the wake of Hurricane Maria, the storm that made landfall in the southeastern city of Yabucoa on Sept. 20, 2017, and devastated parts of Puerto Rico. Even today, many parts of the island are without essential services, such as consistent electricity and water or access to schools.

I met Juan in 2015, when I first traveled to Puerto Rico in an effort to better understand the Puerto Rican Muslim story as part of my broader research on Islam in Latin America and the Caribbean. What I have found, in talking to Muslims in Puerto Rico and in many U.S. cities, is a deep history and a rich narrative that expands the understanding of what it means to be Muslim on the one hand, and, on the other, Puerto Rican. This Ramadan, Muslims in Puerto Rico are using the strength of both these identities to deal with the havoc of Hurricane Maria.

The history of Muslims in Puerto Rico

Muslims first came to the island as part of the transatlantic colonial exchange between Spain and Portugal and the “New World.” There is evidence that the first Muslims arrived with the explorers in the 16th century. Many “Moriscos,” or Iberian Muslims, came to the Caribbean bypassing several Spanish laws that prohibited them from coming to the Americas and served as merchants and explorers. Some were taken as slaves.

Enslaved Muslims from West Africa also came to the island beginning in the 16th century. While exact numbers are not known, scholars believe they were significant. These Muslim slave communities did not thrive, or even survive, but Islam established itself across the Western Hemisphere. It became the region’s “second monotheistic religion” thanks to Muslim slaves, former slaves and maroons – Africans who escaped slavery and founded independent settlements. These Muslims left their mark and contributed to the culture and history of the continents.

Due to conversion to Catholicism or the adoption of Afro-American religious traditions such as Candomblé or Santería the influence and presence of Islam in the Americas faded over time. There is no evidence of direct links between present-day Muslim communities and the enslaved Muslims who came before.

Today’s Muslim communities largely comprise recent immigrants from Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon, Egypt and Syria, with some descendants of the late 19th- and 20th-century immigrants. Ethnically speaking, nearly two-thirds of Puerto Rico’s Muslim population is made up of Palestinian immigrants, living in places like Caguas and San Juan, who came fleeing political turmoil or to pursue business interests.

Recent conversions

In recent years some Puerto Ricans have been reverting to the religion of their ancestors: Islam. In each of Puerto Rico’s nine mosques, researchers have found an increasing number of recent local converts.There is no accurate measure, but anecdotal evidence suggests rising numbers.

How do they wrestle with their identity as both Muslim and Puerto Rican?

Straddled between a predominately Arab Muslim population on the one hand and their avowedly Puerto Rican families, neighbors and co-workers who imagine Islam as a religion foreign to Puerto Rico, converts to Islam struggle to marry the two identities they now claim. They are in search of a “Boricua Islamidad” – a unique Puerto Rican Muslim identity that resists complete assimilation to Arab cultural norms even as it re-imagines and expands what it means to be Puerto Rican and a Muslim.

When I first met Juan at an Eid al-Fitr celebration, the festival of breaking the Ramadan fast, at the San Juan Convention Center in 2015, the 40-something man said, “I came to Islam by asking questions: about the ills of society, the difficulties of life.”

For Juan, Catholicism, the religion adopted by his ancestors when they converted, was too confusing. The doctrine of “tawhid” in Islam – the oneness of God – was, as he saw it, simpler than what he believed to be the complex theology of the Trinity. Furthermore, he felt that Islam called for a higher morality and sense of self-discipline. And so, he “reverted” – that is, returned to the faith of his birth and the heritage of his Iberian forebears in al-Andalus, in what is modern-day Spain.

But Juan, like many other converts, is also searching for a sense of authenticity in his new community. While Juan finds that his Muslim brothers and sisters appreciate him, he still feels marginalized because of his cultural background. He finds ways to express his “Boricuan” (a term for resident Puerto Ricans, derived from the island’s indigenous name Borinquen) pride and his Muslim identity by sporting a “taqiyah,” a short, rounded skull cap, decorated with the Puerto Rican flag.

Another Puerto Rican convert from Aguadilla, Abu Livia, lives in this tension as well. He told me during an interview, “Too often we hear people say you have to wear certain clothes, speak a certain language, look like an Arab, talk like an Arab, behave like an Arab.”

Not just Juan and Abu Livia, as I found in my research, but many other Puerto Rican Muslims are looking toward Andalusia, or Moorish Spain, to search for their roots and define who they are in a Puerto Rican society that claims a mixed background of indigenous, African and European influences.

‘Puerto Rico se levanta’

Puerto Rican Muslims not only look across the Atlantic. They also look within themselves and are finding ways of expressing their Muslim faith through the symbols and struggles of Puerto Rican culture, whether it be their flag, their family traditions, or in how they respond to the trials of Hurricane Maria.

Following up with Juan after a year of struggle in the wake of the storm, he said, “Puerto Ricans are proud, committed, strong, and ‘pa’lante’ (moving forward). And that includes Muslims.” After the destruction of Hurricane Maria, the month of Ramadan, held special meaning for him. It held hope for “renewal.”

“‘Puerto Rico se levanta,’” he said, meaning Puerto Rico will rise, and “this Ramadan it will do so in the prayer, fasting, and charity of Muslims to help one another and their fellow Puerto Ricans prepare for a better future today and forever.”

For Juan, this is just another way his Puerto Rican identity helps him be a better Muslim. As he said, “We will fast this month, but we already know what it means to be in want.”

This incorporates elements of an earlier article published on June 23, 2017.

A peek into the lives of Puerto Rican Muslims and what Ramadan means post Hurricane Maria – The Conversation US
 

mikenova shared this story from puerto rico business – Google News.


The Conversation US
A peek into the lives of Puerto Rican Muslims and what Ramadan means post Hurricane Maria
The Conversation US
… 19th- and 20th-century immigrants. Ethnically speaking, nearly two-thirds of Puerto Rico’s Muslim population is made up of Palestinian immigrants, living in places like Caguas and San Juan, who came fleeing political turmoil or to pursue business 
Nielsen Survey: Puerto Ricans Turn to RadioRadio World
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Students reflect on Puerto Rico rebuildBennington Bannerall 25 news articles »

Demandan a Rosa Emilia en momentos que se habla de su reemplazo
 

mikenova shared this story .

La jefa de la fiscalía federal en la isla, la fiscal federal Rosa Emilia Rodríguez Vélez suele estar en el lado acusador de los procesos judiciales en el tribunal federal. En estos días, sin embargo, le tocará sentarse en el banquillo de los acusados, pues está incluida en una demanda por daños, represalias ilegales y discriminación sometida por un exagente de la fiscalía federal en Puerto Rico que dejó su puesto como especialista de inteligencia en el 2015.

El juicio para atender esta demanda comenzó esta semana, ante el juez Joseph Laplante.

Según los documentos de la corte, el exagente Francisco J. Reyes Caparrós alega en la demanda que sometió en el 2015 haber sido víctima de un patrón de hostilidad mientras trabajaba en la oficina local de la fiscalía federal, que incluyó entre otras cosas que se le impidiera hacer las funciones para las que había sido contratado, le desacreditaran, fuera objeto de una campaña infundada de que podía ser un espía ruso, implementaran acciones disciplinarias en su contra, le amenazaran con evaluaciones negativas, le aislaran de otros colegas, y eventualmente lo relevaran.

Reyes Caparrós, quien es un veterano con discapacidad parcial que luego se hizo abogado, agrega que el patrón de acoso comenzó luego que participara de actividades que están protegidas por ley. Cita en particular a la Ley de Protección de Informantes. Asegura que la hostilidad llegó a ser tal, que no le quedó otro remedio que renunciar, luego de un fallido intento de que lo reinstalaran en su puesto de especialista de inteligencia.

En su denuncia, Reyes Caparrós alega que tanto la fiscal Rodríguez Vélez como otros supervisores incurrieron en conductas humillantes luego que interviniera en favor de otros agentes considerados “locos” que se quejaban de los supervisores, para conseguirles chalecos antibalas. Posteriormente fue enviado a otras oficinas y se le impidió dar seminarios. Luego, alega el demandante, la fiscal Rodríguez Vélez habría sugerido que era un espía ruso.

La demanda de Reyes Caparrós contiene además serias denuncias de que la oficina local de la fiscalía federal usaba agentes para gestiones personales tales como arreglos para pagos de utilidades y arreglos para reparaciones de vehículos personales. Indica además que hubo manipulaciones de estadísticas, y que al reportarlas fue objeto de más represalias.

Por todos los daños y situaciones que alega haber sufrido, el demandante reclama un monto de $390,000 en compensación.

Se espera que el proceso continúe durante esta semana con la presentación de los testigos.

Rumores de remplazo

El juicio ocurre en momentos en que se especula que el Departamento de Justicia federal tiene intenciones de remplazar a Rodríguez Vélez como la persona al mando de la fiscalía federal en Puerto Rico.

Según el diario Wall Street Journal, el Departamento de Justicia federal está próximo a nominar candidatos a sustituir a Rodríguez Vélez, y la Casa Blanca apoya la movida de remplazarla. La fiscal lleva 12 años al mando, aunque nunca ha sido confirmada al puesto por el senado federal.

Según diversas fuentes, ya se manejan nombres para su remplazo, como el del abogado Juan Masini.

Aunque no se ha emitido una notificación oficial sobre el posible remplazo de Rodríguez Vélez, la comisionada residente en Washington, Jenniffer González salió en su defensa y envió incluso una notificación oficial al presidente Donald Trump abogando porque le permita continuar al frente de la fiscalía federal en Puerto Rico.

Asignan un FEI al exjuez Rafael Ramos Sáenz
 

mikenova shared this story .

El Panel sobre el Fiscal Especial Independiente (FEI) informó hoy que la entidad realizará una investigación contra el expresidente de la Comisión Estatal de Elecciones (CEE), Rafael Ramos Sáenz por el caso del chat de WhatsApp.

La presidenta del FEI, Nydia Cotto Vives, indicó que del informe que presentó el Departamento de Justicia surge que el exfuncionario “pudo haber incurrido en violaciones a varios artículos del Código Penal, del Código Electoral, así como de la Ley de Ética Gubernamental”. 

Entretanto, la entidad determinó que “no surge prueba ni recomendación que requiera ulterior investigación” contra el exsecretario de la Gobernación, William Villafañe, por su participación en el chat.

Cotto Vives informó que el fiscal especial independiente a cargo de la investigación contra Ramos Sáenz será Ramón Mendoza Rosario y Iris Meléndez Vega fungirá como fiscal delegada.

Según un comunicado de prensa, el FEI también “acogió  la recomendación de Justicia para que se analice la prueba —en unión con la evidencia recopilada— a fin de determinar si Itza García Rodríguez, Waleska Claudio, Yoniel y Yesenia Díaz Román pudieron haber infringido la ley por su participación e interacción con el exjuez Sáenz”

Los fiscales asignados al caso tendrán 90 días para realizar la investigación sobre los hechos y posteriormente deberán presentar su informe ante el FEI.

El 2 de mayo la secretaria de Justicia, Wanda Vázquez, refirió al FEI su informe de la ivestigación e incluyó una recomendación para designar un fiscal especial a Ramos Sáenz, así como también a los otros funcionarios públicos que participaron en el chat mientras se confeccionaba el Plan para Puerto Rico que presentó el gobernador Ricardo Rosselló en su campaña eleccionaria.

En ese momento, la secretaria informó que los fiscales de Justicia examinaron 34,375 documentos y 108 participantes en los chats.

Vázquez añadió que “de la investigación se desprende que el exjuez Ramos Sáenz compartió información privilegiada relacionada a su puesto”.

Tanto Ramos Sáenz como Villafañe, y los otros funcionarios implicados en el caso, renunciaron a sus puestos en el gobierno. 

Latino Rebels | From Russian Spies to Labor Discrimination: Trial Begins Against Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico
 

mikenova shared this story from Latino Rebels.

SAN JUAN — Room 510 of the Federal Court in Old San Juan was crowded with almost 100 citizens on Monday, May 14, at 9am. They were fulfilling their jury duty obligation.

Yet this is not any trial. It is a case of damages over retaliation in the workplace, the facts of which include FBI investigations, Russian spies and an alleged hostile work environment by the Acting U.S. Attorney in Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez.

The News and Times of Puerto Rico from mikenova

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From: MASTER-KING-BORICUA TV-ENTERTAINMENT.
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Telenoticias es un programa de noticias locales de Telemundo Puerto Rico. Noticias sobre el tiempo,entretenimiento
y deportes,así como las noticias nacionales, internacionales y de última hora en el ámbito de la poliítica,policiacas,
condiciones del tiempo,economía,crímenes y noticias interés humano transmitido por telenoticias canal 2 en Telemundo Puerto Rico en vivo.
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La actriz retirada Meghan Markle confirmó este jueves que su padre, Thomas, no asistirá a su boda con el príncipe Harry, nieto de la reina Isabel II de Inglaterra.

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Vea la SEÑAL EN VIVO de NTN24 las 24 horas del día

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Luis Videgaray, canciller de México, y Evo Morales, presidente boliviano, criticaron las declaraciones del presidente Donald Trump en las que llamó “animales” a algunos inmigrantes que cruzan la frontera de forma ilegal.

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Saved Stories – None: Fuertes vientos causará aumento en oleaje

From: noticias247prtv
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Aunque ahora considere que el mar está picado, espere a que aumente el oleaje en los próximos días. Nuestra meteoróloga, Ada Monzón, nos dice más en el informe del tiempo.

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From: noticias247prtv
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El secretario de Asuntos Públicos de La Fortaleza, Ramón Rosario, aseguró que hay puertas abiertas para un diálogo continuo entre la Junta de Supervisión Fiscal, la Rama Ejecutiva y la Legislativa para que la aprobación del presupuesto no afecte a pensionados ni a los más vulnerables.

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Saved Stories – None: Empresarios boricuas participan del “Puerto Rican Summit” buscando ampliar sus mercados

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En la búsqueda de crear nuevos nichos de mercados un grupo de empresarios y pequeños comerciantes están en el Estado de Florida para participar del evento Puerto Rican Summit. Un evento que provee las herramientas para establecer intercambio de ideas y negocios con el fin de establecer actividad de exportación e importación de productos.

Felix Alemán y Miguel Rosa están en la cuidad de Orlando y nos ofrecen los detalles del evento.

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Saved Stories – None: La meta de la AEE es tener a Humacao energizado al 100% para el 31 de mayo

From: noticias247prtv
Duration: 02:00

La Autoridad de Energía Eléctrica se comprometió hoy a asignar más brigadas al municipio de Humacao para agilizar el proceso de re-energización. La meta, según Justo González, es tener el 100 por ciento de Humacao con energía eléctrica para el 31 de mayo. Este compromiso surgió durante una reunión que sostuvo el presidente cameral y González con el alcalde y varios residentes de ese municipio. Recordemos que la temporada de huracanes comienza el 1 de junio. Glorinel Soto con el reportaje.

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Saved Stories – None

Saved Stories – None: Rosselló no hará comentarios sobre acuerdos que discutir en reunión con miembros de la Junta

From: noticias247prtv
Duration: 02:44

Luego de la reunión que sostuvo el gobernador, Ricardo Rosselló, con el presidente de la Junta de Supervisión Fiscal, José Carrión III, el primer ejecutivo fue enfático en que no comentará públicamente sobre los acuerdos que aceptará o no cuando se reúna mañana con los otros miembros de la Junta en Nueva York.

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Saved Stories – None

Saved Stories – None: Hay advertencia de uso de pequeñas y medianas embarcaciones para el norte y este de Puerto Rico

From: noticias247prtv
Duration: 02:25

Fuertes vientos afectarán el oleaje del norte y el este de Puerto Rico. Ada Monzón nos dice más en el informe del tiempo.

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Saved Stories – None

Saved Stories – None: Condiciones del tiempo causan demoras en vuelos de Estados Unidos

From: noticias247prtv
Duration: 01:36

Lo que una vez fue una baja persión se ha esparcido por la costa este de los Estados Unidos causando demoras en vuelos. Veamos lo que dice nuestra meteoróloga, Ada Monzón.

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Saved Stories – None

Saved Stories – None: Donald Trump: “Pena de muerte para asesinos de policías”

From: vozdeamerica
Duration: 01:39

“Pena de muerte” para los asesinos de policías, pidió el presidente Donald Trump a los legisladores estadounidenses, durante la ceremonia en la que rindió homenaje a los uniformados caídos en cumplimiento de su labor.
Publicado originalmente

Saved Stories – None

Saved Stories – None: “Trágico” lo que sucede en Venezuela

From: vozdeamerica
Duration: 07:38

Así definió la crisis en ese país el último embajador de EE.UU. en Caracas, Patrick Duddy. El diplomático en retiro, aseguró a la VOA que aún así, no ve viable alguna salida militar y agregó que el Hemisferio debe cerrar filas con EE.UU. para restablecer la democracia.
Publicado originalmente

Saved Stories – None

Saved Stories – None: California exigirá paneles solares en las casas nuevas

From: vozdeamerica
Duration: 01:49

California se ha convertido en el primer estado de Estados Unidos que exigirá la instalación de paneles solares en la mayoría de los hogares para el año 2020.
Publicado originalmente

Saved Stories – None

Saved Stories – None: Venezuela: oposición marchó hasta la OEA

From: vozdeamerica
Duration: 02:07

La alianza de partidos y ciudadanos opositores al actual gobierno de Venezuela, pidió a más naciones de la comunidad internacional desconocer el resultado de las elecciones convocadas por Nicolás Maduro este domingo y se movilizaron hasta la sede de la Organización de Estados Americanos en Caracas.
Publicado originalmente

Saved Stories – None


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In Brief – Saved Stories

Saved Stories – None
Britain’s Royal Wedding Is Terrible News for Prince William Impersonators
Mueller investigation enters 2nd year, where is it headed? – The Mercury
Trump denounces Russia probe one year after Mueller appointment – Boston 25 News
Trump: ‘Bigger Than Watergate’ if Obama’s FBI Spied on My Campaign – Daily Beast
Trump marks Mueller anniversary by claiming FBI ‘spied’ on his campaign – Washington Post
How Mueller’s First Year Compares To Watergate, Iran-Contra And Whitewater – FiveThirtyEight
FBI Director Sticks By Position: Mueller Probe Is Not A Witch Hunt – TPM
Trump Suggests the FBI Had an ‘Embedded Informant’ in His 2016 Campaign – TIME
‘Bigger Than Watergate!’: Trump Thinks the FBI Spied on His Campaign – New York Magazine
Trump team tries new tactics to discredit Mueller – Politico
DOJ inspector general completes long-awaited review of Hillary Clinton probe – Fox News
FBI Arrests ‘Rocket-Builder’ Former Boyfriend Of Woman Killed In California Explosion – NPR
Voice of America: International Edition 1305 EDT – May 17, 2018
Asignan un FEI al exjuez Rafael Ramos Sáenz
California Leaders Opposed To Sanctuary Law Meet With Trump – KPBS
This Trump Russia Conspiracy Theory Is Being Pushed By The President Himself – Bustle
From Russian Spies to Labor Discrimination: Trial Begins Against Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico
Héctor Pesquera: “Aquí hay que levantar a la Policía” – Primera Hora
Caribbean Recipes – Cook-Up Rice
Caribbean Recipes – Doubles
Caribbean Recipes – Baigan Choka
Photo – Public School Enrollment Sees Sharpest Drop in 2 Decades – http://eepurl.com/duKt41
Policyholders suffer as natural disasters overwhelm industry; divert expert resourceshttps://go.cb.pr/2KmYWlg
The Future Cost Of Trump’s ‘America First’ Policy On The Caribbean
Bahamas Seeks US Assistance on Illegal Immigration

Saved Stories 

Saved Stories – None
Britain’s Royal Wedding Is Terrible News for Prince William Impersonators

Meghan Markle’s marriage to Prince Harry is the only monarchical topic people care about, prompting career crises; Going to ‘milk it for as long as I can.’

Mueller investigation enters 2nd year, where is it headed? – The Mercury


The Hill
Mueller investigation enters 2nd year, where is it headed?
The Mercury
In this file photo, former FBI Director Robert Mueller, the special counsel probing Russian interference in the 2016 election, departs Capitol Hill following a closed door meeting in Washington. It was one year ago Thursday when Robert Mueller, the 
One year: Anniversary of start of Robert Mueller’s probeHerald & Review
Mueller may have a conflict — and it leads directly to a Russian …The Hill

all 19 news articles »

Trump denounces Russia probe one year after Mueller appointment – Boston 25 News


Boston 25 News
Trump denounces Russia probe one year after Mueller appointment
Boston 25 News
Mr. Trump’s tweet came a day after the current FBI Director, Christopher Wray, rejected assertions that the probe was a ‘witch hunt,’ telling a Senate panel that his agents are doing the best they can to find the truth about Russian meddling in the 

and more »

Trump: ‘Bigger Than Watergate’ if Obama’s FBI Spied on My Campaign – Daily Beast


Daily Beast
Trump: ‘Bigger Than Watergate’ if Obama’s FBI Spied on My Campaign
Daily Beast
Donald Trump has said it would be “bigger than Watergate” if a theory that the FBI spied on his presidential campaign turned out to be true. The theory, which Trump attributed to former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy, doesn’t appear to have 
Trump marks Mueller anniversary by claiming FBI ‘spied’ on his campaignWashington Post
Trump: Report that Obama FBI spied on campaign could be ‘bigger than Watergate’The Hill

all 13 news articles »

Trump marks Mueller anniversary by claiming FBI ‘spied’ on his campaign – Washington Post


Washington Post
Trump marks Mueller anniversary by claiming FBI ‘spied’ on his campaign
Washington Post
President Trump marked the first anniversary of the special counsel’s Russia investigation Thursday by repeating accusations that the FBI had a confidential informant inside his 2016 campaign and by calling the probe “disgusting, illegal and unwarranted.”. campaign. Trump tweeted: “Wow, word seems to be coming out that the …

and more »

How Mueller’s First Year Compares To Watergate, Iran-Contra And Whitewater – FiveThirtyEight


FiveThirtyEight
How Mueller’s First Year Compares To Watergate, Iran-Contra And Whitewater
FiveThirtyEight
It’s a big day for Robert Mueller and his team: One year ago today, Mueller was appointed to lead the special counsel investigation into possible ties between the 2016 Trump campaign and Russian officials. It’s a miracle, in some ways, thatMueller has 

and more »

FBI Director Sticks By Position: Mueller Probe Is Not A Witch Hunt – TPM


TPM
FBI Director Sticks By Position: Mueller Probe Is Not A Witch Hunt
TPM
FBI Director Christopher Wray reiterated his position that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Trump-Russia probe is not a witch hunt in an appearance before the Senate Appropriations Committee Wednesday, continuing to stake a position opposite to …
Trump denounces Russia probe one year after Mueller appointmentBoston 25 News

all 640 news articles »

Trump Suggests the FBI Had an ‘Embedded Informant’ in His 2016 Campaign – TIME


TIME
Trump Suggests the FBI Had an ‘Embedded Informant’ in His 2016 Campaign
TIME
President Donald Trump suggested Thursday that the F.B.I. under President Barack Obama had embedded an informant within the Trump campaign in 2016. The President attributed this claim to Andrew McCarthy, an editor at the conservative National …
‘Bigger Than Watergate!’: Trump Thinks the FBI Spied on His CampaignNew York Magazine
Trump marks Mueller anniversary by claiming FBI ‘spied’ on his campaignWashington Post
Trump: ‘Bigger Than Watergate’ if Obama’s FBI Spied on My CampaignDaily Beast
The Hill –Fox News
all 42 news articles »
‘Bigger Than Watergate!’: Trump Thinks the FBI Spied on His Campaign – New York Magazine


New York Magazine
‘Bigger Than Watergate!’: Trump Thinks the FBI Spied on His Campaign
New York Magazine
Giuliani also appeared on Fox & Friends Thursday morning to stoke the flames, saying that if the FBI had spied on the Trump campaign, “That would be the biggest scandal in the history of this town, at least involving law enforcement.” This morning’s 
Trump Suggests the FBI Had an ‘Embedded Informant’ in His 2016 CampaignTIME
Trump marks Mueller anniversary by claiming FBI ‘spied’ on his campaignWashington Post
Trump: ‘Bigger Than Watergate’ if Obama’s FBI Spied on My CampaignDaily Beast
Fox News –The Boston Globe –The Hill –National Review
all 51 news articles »
Trump team tries new tactics to discredit Mueller – Politico


Politico
Trump team tries new tactics to discredit Mueller
Politico
President Donald Trump and his allies ramped up their pressure campaign against special counsel Robert Mueller on Thursday — the one-year anniversary of his sprawling investigation — as they seek to discredit the probe that shows no signs of wrapping …
Trump marks Mueller anniversary by claiming FBI ‘spied’ on his campaignWashington Post

all 50 news articles »

DOJ inspector general completes long-awaited review of Hillary Clinton probe – Fox News


Fox News
DOJ inspector general completes long-awaited review of Hillary Clinton probe
Fox News
Horowitz’s review has already put top FBI official Andrew McCabe in legal jeopardy. The Justice Department’s internal watchdog sent a criminal referral for McCabe in April to the U.S. attorney’s office in Washington. That was in response to Horowitz’s 
Justice Department inspector general finishes draft of report on Clinton email caseBangor Daily News
DOJ watchdog completes Hillary Clinton reportWashington Times
It’s Coming: DOJ Inspector General Has Finished His Report on How the FBI Handled Hillary Clinton’s Email ScandalTownhall

all 7 news articles »

FBI Arrests ‘Rocket-Builder’ Former Boyfriend Of Woman Killed In California Explosion – NPR


NPR
FBI Arrests ‘Rocket-Builder’ Former Boyfriend Of Woman Killed In California Explosion
NPR
FBI officials say they expect to charge a 59-year-old California man with “possession of an unregistered destructive device” following an investigation into an explosion on Tuesday that killed a California spa owner. Officials were quick to add that 
‘Not an Accident’: FBI Investigates After Beautician Killed in OC BlastNBC 7 San Diego

all 379 news articles »

Voice of America: International Edition 1305 EDT – May 17, 2018

International Edition delivers insight into world news through eye-witnesses, correspondent reports and analysis from experts and news makers. We also keep you in touch with social media, science and entertainment trends

Download audio: https://av.voanews.com/clips/VEN/2018/05/17/20180517-170500-VEN060-program_hq.mp3

 Voice of America

Asignan un FEI al exjuez Rafael Ramos Sáenz

El Panel sobre el Fiscal Especial Independiente (FEI) informó hoy que la entidad realizará una investigación contra el expresidente de la Comisión Estatal de Elecciones (CEE), Rafael Ramos Sáenz por el caso del chat de WhatsApp.

La presidenta del FEI, Nydia Cotto Vives, indicó que del informe que presentó el Departamento de Justicia surge que el exfuncionario “pudo haber incurrido en violaciones a varios artículos del Código Penal, del Código Electoral, así como de la Ley de Ética Gubernamental”. 

Entretanto, la entidad determinó que “no surge prueba ni recomendación que requiera ulterior investigación” contra el exsecretario de la Gobernación, William Villafañe, por su participación en el chat.

Cotto Vives informó que el fiscal especial independiente a cargo de la investigación contra Ramos Sáenz será Ramón Mendoza Rosario y Iris Meléndez Vega fungirá como fiscal delegada.

Según un comunicado de prensa, el FEI también “acogió  la recomendación de Justicia para que se analice la prueba —en unión con la evidencia recopilada— a fin de determinar si Itza García Rodríguez, Waleska Claudio, Yoniel y Yesenia Díaz Román pudieron haber infringido la ley por su participación e interacción con el exjuez Sáenz”

Los fiscales asignados al caso tendrán 90 días para realizar la investigación sobre los hechos y posteriormente deberán presentar su informe ante el FEI.

El 2 de mayo la secretaria de Justicia, Wanda Vázquez, refirió al FEI su informe de la ivestigación e incluyó una recomendación para designar un fiscal especial a Ramos Sáenz, así como también a los otros funcionarios públicos que participaron en el chat mientras se confeccionaba el Plan para Puerto Rico que presentó el gobernador Ricardo Rosselló en su campaña eleccionaria.

En ese momento, la secretaria informó que los fiscales de Justicia examinaron 34,375 documentos y 108 participantes en los chats.

Vázquez añadió que “de la investigación se desprende que el exjuez Ramos Sáenz compartió información privilegiada relacionada a su puesto”.

Tanto Ramos Sáenz como Villafañe, y los otros funcionarios implicados en el caso, renunciaron a sus puestos en el gobierno. 

California Leaders Opposed To Sanctuary Law Meet With Trump – KPBS


KPBS
California Leaders Opposed To Sanctuary Law Meet With Trump
KPBS
City and county officials from across the state who oppose California’s sanctuary-state law sat down with President Donald Trump Wednesday to voice their objections to the law, and they got a pep talk from the president who slammed the state for 

and more »

This Trump Russia Conspiracy Theory Is Being Pushed By The President Himself – Bustle


Bustle
This Trump Russia Conspiracy Theory Is Being Pushed By The President Himself
Bustle
Back in August, Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson alleged before the Senate Judiciary Committee that the FBI had placed an informant inside Donald Trump’s campaign in 2016. Now, both Trump and Rudy Giuliani — the president’s newly appointed …

and more »

From Russian Spies to Labor Discrimination: Trial Begins Against Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico

The top federal official in Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez is implicated in a trial over retaliation and hostile work environment against the Federal Prosecutor’s Office that began this week.
Héctor Pesquera: “Aquí hay que levantar a la Policía” – Primera Hora


Primera Hora
Héctor Pesquera: “Aquí hay que levantar a la Policía”
Primera Hora
Héctor Pesquera: “Aquí hay que levantar a la Policía”. Publicado: 05/15/2018 03:41 PM. Error loading player: No playable sources found. 0. comentarios ↓. El secretario del Departamento de Seguridad Pública admite que “para poder empezar a buscar el …

Caribbean Recipes – Cook-Up Rice

Caribbean Recipes – Cook-Up Rice

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. April 20, 2018: One of the more popular one-pot dishes from the South American CARICOM nation of Guyana is cook-up or cook-up rice. The meats here can be substituted with chicken or just plain beef or simply cooked down with coconut milk, vegetables like callaloo and ochros and seasonings and served as a vegetarian option but at the end of the day, this is one delicious meal. Here’s the typical Guyanese recipe:

INGREDIENTS

    • 2 cups parboiled rice or 2 cups long grain rice
    • ½ lb salted beef (cut into bite sized pieces)
    • 1/2 lb pig’s tail (cut into bite sized pieces)
    • 1 lb fresh beef (cut into stew sized pieces
    • 1onion
    • 2 cloves of garlic
    • 1 can coconut milk
    • 1 tomato
    • 1 sprig fresh thyme
    • 2 cups water or as necessary
    • 1 can gungo peas, black-eyed peas, red kidney peas
    • Salt, to taste
    • 1 scotch bonnet pepper
    • 6 small ochros (optional)
    • 1 bunch spinach or half a pack of spinach or a bundle of callaloo leaves.
    • 2 Tablespoons Guyana Casareep
    • 2 Tablespoon oil

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METHOD

Season fresh beef or other meat being used if any with all of your favorite dry and wet seasoning. Set aside.

Add oil and the pig tail and salt beef together into a pressure cooker and sauté until it runs off any liquids.

Add water and pressure for about 15 mins or until tender.

Drain the water, remove from pressure cooker, and set aside.

Add the seasoned fresh beef or other meat to the pot and sauté until it runs off any liquids.

Add oil and cassareep to meat and coconut milk and pressure until tender.

Add in can of peas – black eye, gungo etc.

Wash rice and add to pot.

Add back the salt beef and pig tail.

Add in all other seasoning and additional water to cover rice and bring to boil.

Then lower heat and cover pot to steam rice.

Half way through add ochros and callaloo.

Add a little bit more water if needed.

Steam rice until it is cooked though and loose, not pasted together. Season with salt to taste.

Serve with a cucumber salad and tomato ketchup and enjoy!

PS: When making the no meat version, simply add rice, peas, coconut milk, seasonings and veggies to one pot and cook until rice is tender and loose.

Wal-Mart.com USA, LLC

The post Caribbean Recipes – Cook-Up Rice appeared first on Caribbean and Latin America Daily News.

Caribbean Recipes – Doubles

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. April 27, 2018: Doubles is a Trinidadian delicacy that is basically a snack-sized sandwich made of two flat-breads known as bara, filled with a curried chickpea (or channa filling) and served with hot sauce. Here’s the recipe from our Trinidadian friends.

Wal-Mart.com USA, LLC

INGREDIENTS

Flat Bread or Bara

1 lb flour

1 tsp turmeric

1 tbsp. baking powder

1 tsp yeast

1/4 tsp. sugar

1 tsp. salt

2 cups water

1 tbsp. oil

oil for frying

Chick Peas or Channa

2 cans of Chick Peas

2 tbsp. oil

1 tsp. curry

1 tsp. turmeric

1 tsp. cumin/geera

1 tsp. masala

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1/2 onion, finely chopped

½ Scotch Bonnet Pepper

5 leaves cilantro or chadon beni chopped finely

Salt to taste

GET YOUR WEST INDIAN HOT SAUCE NOW

west-indian-hot-sauce

METHOD

Flat Bread/Bara

Mix all of the dry ingredients together in a bowl.

Add water and knead until a smooth dough is formed.

Add a tablespoon of oil over the dough and cover with a cloth and let it rest for at least 1 hour or until double in size.

Spread a thin layer of oil over a clean flat surface and start making little dough balls, about 2 inches in diameter.

Heat oil over a medium to high flame.

Take each ball and flatten out the dough with your hands like you are making a tiny pizza.

Fry in hot oil on both sides for 7 to 10 seconds and then drain on paper towels.

Chick Peas Or Channa

Heat about two tablespoons of oil over a medium flame.

Add the onion, pepper and garlic and sauté.

Mix the curry powder, cumin or geera, and masala in water and add to the pot.

Sauté until golden and the curry is just about to get dry.

Drain the cans of chick peas/channa and add, quoting all of the peas.

Pour enough water to cover the channa and simmer for about 15 minutes.

When its nearly finished, smash a few of the chick peas or channa to thicken the sauce.

Mix in the finely chopped chadon beni or cilantro and adjust salt to taste.

SERVING

Overlap two of the small flatbreads or bara on wax paper.

Add the curried chick peas or channa filling and top with pepper sauce or a tamarind or mango chutney and serve hot.

Wal-Mart.com USA, LLC

The post Caribbean Recipes – Doubles appeared first on Caribbean and Latin America Daily News.

Caribbean Recipes – Baigan Choka

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. May 11, 2018: This week, we bring you a unique Caribbean recipe that is especially known in parts of Guyana and Trinidad. It’s baigan choka or roasted eggplant. Here’s the recipe.

INGREDIENTS

1 large eggplant

4 garlic cloves

1 medium tomatoes (seeded and cut into 6 wedges)

1⁄4 cup onion, finely chopped

2 teaspoons vegetable oil

1⁄8 teaspoon scotch bonnet pepper (minced) (optional)

DIRECTIONS

Wash eggplant and make slits in it with a knife.

Peel garlic cloves and stick into the slits made in the eggplant.

Insert tomato wedges into the slits.

Rub the eggplant with a teaspoon of oil.

Roast over an open flame (for example, a gas cooker) until soft. Do not grill because the taste will not be the same. The open flame imparts a smokey flavor which gives this dish its signature flavor.

Additionally you can place into a Ziploc bag and microwave on high for about 5-6 minutes.

When eggplant is soft, slit the charred or microwaved skin lengthways with a knife and scrape out the soft somewhat stringy pulp. Discard skin.

Mash the pulp, tomato and roasted garlic in a bowl with a fork.

Add 1 tsp oil to a non-stick frying pan and cook 1/4 cup onion until fragrant but not translucent.

Add the barely cooked finely chopped onion, salt to taste and scotch bonnet pepper to the eggplant pulp.

Serve with Sada Roti or Naan (Indian flatbread)

Wal-Mart.com USA, LLC

The post Caribbean Recipes – Baigan Choka appeared first on Caribbean and Latin America Daily News.

Photo – Public School Enrollment Sees Sharpest Drop in 2 Decades – http://eepurl.com/duKt41

Public School Enrollment Sees Sharpest Drop in 2 Decades – http://eepurl.com/duKt41

Policyholders suffer as natural disasters overwhelm industry; divert expert resourceshttps://go.cb.pr/2KmYWlg

Policyholders suffer as natural disasters overwhelm industry; divert expert resources
https://go.cb.pr/2KmYWlg

Puerto Rico under tsunami of insurance claims caused by Hurricane Maria

Nearly eight months after Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, thousands of personal and commercial insurance claims continue in limbo amid payment delays by insurers.

The Future Cost Of Trump’s ‘America First’ Policy On The Caribbean

By David Jessop

News Americas, LONDON, England, Tues. May 15, 2018: At first sight, last week’s decision by the US President to abrogate the hard-won 2015 UN Security Council deal on nuclear weapons with Iran may seem to have little bearing on the Caribbean.

What it does, however, is take US exceptionalism to a new level. It ignores the interests of the co-signatories to the agreement including Russia and China and close allies in the EU, all of which continue to believe that the agreement represents a viable way of curbing Iran’s nuclear intent. More broadly, it demonstrates to every other state that Washington has abandoned multilateralism and in the singular pursuit of its own objectives will in future ignore previously valued allies.

Speaking about this in Brussels, the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker observed that the US decision suggests that the US is turning its back on multilateral relations, “no longer wants to cooperate with other parts of the world” and is doing so “with a ferocity that can only surprise us”.

In moving against Iran, the US Administration has made clear that its policy will be applied in ways that will not only cause US companies to cease doing business there, but through the enforcement of secondary sanctions it will try to halt almost all third country trade with Tehran. Although the full details have yet to emerge, new US regulations will mean for example that EU companies from Airbus to Total engaged in any Iran-related commercial activity will potentially be subject to prosecution in the US courts, as will any bank facilitating related trade or investment decisions.

BuymyTrip

For Caribbean states other than Cuba, Iran is of little consequence as a trading partner. However, Washington’s ‘America First’ unilateralism may resurface next in a hemispheric context after Venezuela’s May 20th Presidential elections, if as widely expected, President Maduro is re-elected.

Discussions in Lima at the time of the Summit of the Americas and comments made subsequently by Mike Pence, the US Vice President, about the need for Latin American and Caribbean nations to do “more, much more” to impose sanctions on Venezuela, suggest that this is now the administration’s direction of travel.

If that happens, the economic and social consequences for the Caribbean could be severe, particularly if as some in Washington suggest, the US decides to place an embargo on Venezuelan oil exports which account for 95% of the country’s foreign-currency earnings.

In February, the US Council on Foreign Relations spelt out the implications of what this could mean for the region. In its report ‘A Venezuelan Refugee Crisis’, it noted: ‘The United States should consider not only the potential damage and disruption caused to Venezuela’s neighbors by a refugee crisis but also the implications of the crisis for US interests.

The economic, national security, and health costs imposed on the United States by a potential disruption in Venezuelan oil production, an increase in drug trafficking, or an epidemic, respectively, would be substantial. The United States can do little to prevent Venezuela’s further downward spiral. However, it can and should take measures to mitigate the political, economic, and humanitarian consequences of a potential mass emigration’.

For the geographically proximate Caribbean, the practical consequences of a unilateral change in US policy with such an outcome would be catastrophic. There are already three million Venezuelan’s who have felt they have no option other than to become economic refugees in Colombia, Brazil, Trinidad, Guyana and the Dutch speaking Caribbean, and there is little capacity to support more.

Hilton Hotels

This is not to defend what is now happening Venezuela. Although Caracas blames external forces, the private sector and the divided opposition, this long ago ceased to be a plausible excuse for the continuing mismanagement of Venezuela’s vast oil wealth, the mistaken policies that have led to hyperinflation, the decisions that have resulted in hunger, corruption and violence, or the poverty and disease that now afflicts parts of the country.

Notwithstanding, President Maduro makes clear that his position is ideological, and that his government will not negotiate away its revolutionary principles with any nation. Rather, once re-elected he “will call for a great national dialogue for peace”, but how he intends on reviving the country’s collapsing economy or rapidly restoring stability, remains a mystery.

What this suggests is that short of supporting a military-led coup, the US will continue to pressure the Caribbean to engage in transactional politics over new sanctions on Venezuela or suffer the consequences of whatever it decides its post May 20 response will be.

Washington is now seeking a US made world based on unilateral foreign and economic policies that through tariffs, sanctions and dispensations seek to place it in a position of global economic supremacy.

Other nations, including those in the Caribbean, of course think differently and value multilateralism, seeing it as a way of maintaining their independence of thought and action.

Changing US policy suggests that a new global political climate is developing that will cause all economic and trade relationships to be subject to question and challenge, eventually destabilizing existing political and military alliances.

Despite Washington’s sometimes unwarranted past actions, it has always seemed reasonable to believe that US multilateralism would continue, and that its broadly liberal values, willingness to listen and debate would lead those at the highest levels in Washington to find and deliver rational and consensus-based solutions. It is what bestowed great power status and more recently enabled it to share peace globally through balance and proportionality.

The US decision on Iran marks a watershed in international relations. It will require even relatively powerless nations in divided regions like the Caribbean to determine how best to respond to the increasingly divergent positions of the US, China, the EU27, the UK, and Russia as well as to the region’s hemispheric neighbors.

david-jessop

EDITOR’S NOTE: David Jessop is a consultant to the Caribbean Council and can be contacted at david.jessop@caribbean-council.org Previous columns can be found at www.caribbean-council.org.

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The post The Future Cost Of Trump’s ‘America First’ Policy On The Caribbean appeared first on Caribbean and Latin America Daily News.

Bahamas Seeks US Assistance on Illegal Immigration

The Bahamas is seeking assistance from the United States of America in stemming the tide..

The post Bahamas Seeks US Assistance on Illegal Immigration appeared first on Caribbean Media Network USA.

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mikenov on Twitter: 9:06 AM 5/17/2018 – M.N.: Investigate all of them, and in-depth! | Latino Rebels: From Russian Spies to Labor Discrimination: Trial Begins Against Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico pr-us.org/2018/05/17/lat…
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9:06 AM 5/17/2018 – M.N.: Investigate all of them, and in depth! | Latino Rebels: From Russian Spies to Labor Discrimination: Trial Begins Against Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico

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M.N.: It appears to me, in my humble opinion, and rightly, wrongly, or under questions and therefore the subjects for the further investigations, that there is more there than meets the eye at the present moment, like the proverbial tip of the iceberg lurching on a distance. 

Investigate all of them, and in depth!

“Them”, meaning the relevant current and past officials and workers of PR DOJ and the PR branch of the FBI. 

It seems to me, that Carlos Cases, who in his capacity of the PR FBI Director, worked with Rodríguez-Vélez as a team for many years, was very much a part and one of the “driving” (where?) forces behind everything that was going on in PR those years before 2015, when he was transferred to the FBI central services, and possibly, after. It is also possible that both of them carry their share of responsibility for the atmosphere, climate, and the culture of corruption and nepotism mixed with hypocritical, resentful, pervasive nationalism, which appear to have flourished especially flamboyantly, in their specific tropical fashion, during the Obama years (which are or should be the subject of political and social pathological studies by themselves).

I also have questions if Mr. Cases did engage in illegal and possibly undocumented “Cointelpro operations” against the American citizens. The general quality of these types of “operations” which according to my impressions, sometimes do approach the common village idiot level, in their conceptual sophistication and in their best samples, is no excuse for their modest anonymity. 

The public simply does not know much about the details, styles, complexities, and intricacies of their (these and other officials’) work, actions, activities, personalities, and social ties. And we should. The FBI secrecy rules cannot and should not be used as an excuse to hide, cover, or protect this information when the “secrecy” is inappropriate. These tactics are self-serving and self-protective, and they are used to hide the deep problems, organizational dysfunction, and embarrassment. The public has the right to know, this information is of potential public value, just like any other public political information. In addition, the inefficient or heavily censored communications with the public deprive the Bureau of one of the major learning and corrective feedback avenues and possibly contribute to their ills. Thank you, Mr. Ortiz and “The Latino Rebels” for this article. 

This previously posted story also needs its follow-up: “the caller claimed it became clear that family members of Puerto Rican FBI agents and family members in the Puerto Rico U.S. Attorney’s office were receiving payments based on these “kickbacks.” He went on to tell me that the Puerto Rico’s FBI office and U.S. Attorney will do nothing about the oil kickback scheme and the bond rating scheme because they were participating in it.” 

The Puertorican Culebra of Corruption is indeed poisonous and dangerous. That is why I will say it again, and as loudly as I can: 

Investigate all of them, and in depth!

The fact that Ms. Rodríguez-Vélez was able to stay in her “interim position” for the last twelve years is curious in and by itself. 

It looks like the whole Island is in limbo, frozen and crucified on its identity, financial, political, and other issues and problems.

Michael Novakhov

10:32 AM 5/17/2018

_______________________________

Google Translated

Investigue a todos ellos, y en profundidad!

MN: Me parece, en mi humilde opinión, y con razón, sin razón, o bajo las preguntas y por lo tanto los temas para las investigaciones posteriores, que hay más de lo que se ve en este momento, como la proverbial punta del iceberg tambaleándose a cierta distancia.

Investigue a todos ellos, y en profundidad!

“Ellos”, es decir, los funcionarios relevantes actuales y anteriores y los trabajadores de PR DOJ y del FBI.

Me parece que Carlos Cases, quien en su calidad de Director del PR-FBI, trabajó durante muchos años con Rodríguez-Vélez como equipo, fue una gran parte y una de las fuerzas “motrices” (¿dónde?) Detrás de todo eso estaba sucediendo en PR aquellos años antes de 2015, cuando fue transferido a los servicios centrales del FBI, y posiblemente, después. También es posible que ambos asuman su parte de responsabilidad por la atmósfera, el clima y la cultura de corrupción y nepotismo mezclados con un nacionalismo hipócrita, resentido y penetrante, que parece haber florecido especialmente extravagantemente, en su forma tropical específica, durante los años de Obama (que son o deberían ser objeto de estudios políticos y sociales patológicos por sí mismos).
También tengo preguntas si el Sr. Cases se involucró en “operaciones Cointelpro” ilegales y posiblemente indocumentadas contra los ciudadanos estadounidenses. La calidad general de este tipo de “operaciones” que, de acuerdo con mis impresiones, a veces se acercan al nivel idiota de la aldea común, en su sofisticación conceptual y en sus mejores muestras, no es excusa para su moderado anonimato.

El público simplemente no sabe mucho sobre los detalles, estilos, complejidades y complejidades de su trabajo (estos y otros funcionarios), acciones, actividades, personalidades y vínculos sociales. Y deberíamos. Las reglas de secreto del FBI no pueden ni deben usarse como excusa para ocultar, cubrir o proteger esta información cuando el “secreto” es inapropiado. Estas tácticas son autosuficientes y autoprotectoras, y se utilizan para ocultar los problemas profundos, la disfunción de la organización y la vergüenza. El público tiene derecho a saber que esta información tiene un valor público potencial, al igual que cualquier otra información política pública. Además, las comunicaciones ineficientes o fuertemente censuradas con el público privan a la Oficina de una de las principales vías de aprendizaje y retroalimentación correctiva y, posiblemente, contribuir a sus enfermedades.

Es por eso que lo diré nuevamente, y tan fuerte como pueda:

Investigue a todos ellos, y en profundidad!

Gracias, Sr. Ortiz y “The Latino Rebels” por este artículo.

El hecho de que la Sra. Rodríguez-Vélez haya podido permanecer en su “posición interina” durante los últimos doce años es un hecho curioso en sí mismo.

Parece que toda la isla se encuentra en un limbo, congelada y crucificada por sus problemas de identidad, financieros, políticos y de otro tipo.
Michael Novakhov

10:32 a.m. 17/05/2018

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5.17.18

Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
Demandan a Rosa Emilia en momentos que se habla de su reemplazo
 

mikenova shared this story .

La jefa de la fiscalía federal en la isla, la fiscal federal Rosa Emilia Rodríguez Vélez suele estar en el lado acusador de los procesos judiciales en el tribunal federal. En estos días, sin embargo, le tocará sentarse en el banquillo de los acusados, pues está incluida en una demanda por daños, represalias ilegales y discriminación sometida por un exagente de la fiscalía federal en Puerto Rico que dejó su puesto como especialista de inteligencia en el 2015.

El juicio para atender esta demanda comenzó esta semana, ante el juez Joseph Laplante.

Según los documentos de la corte, el exagente Francisco J. Reyes Caparrós alega en la demanda que sometió en el 2015 haber sido víctima de un patrón de hostilidad mientras trabajaba en la oficina local de la fiscalía federal, que incluyó entre otras cosas que se le impidiera hacer las funciones para las que había sido contratado, le desacreditaran, fuera objeto de una campaña infundada de que podía ser un espía ruso, implementaran acciones disciplinarias en su contra, le amenazaran con evaluaciones negativas, le aislaran de otros colegas, y eventualmente lo relevaran.

Reyes Caparrós, quien es un veterano con discapacidad parcial que luego se hizo abogado, agrega que el patrón de acoso comenzó luego que participara de actividades que están protegidas por ley. Cita en particular a la Ley de Protección de Informantes. Asegura que la hostilidad llegó a ser tal, que no le quedó otro remedio que renunciar, luego de un fallido intento de que lo reinstalaran en su puesto de especialista de inteligencia.

En su denuncia, Reyes Caparrós alega que tanto la fiscal Rodríguez Vélez como otros supervisores incurrieron en conductas humillantes luego que interviniera en favor de otros agentes considerados “locos” que se quejaban de los supervisores, para conseguirles chalecos antibalas. Posteriormente fue enviado a otras oficinas y se le impidió dar seminarios. Luego, alega el demandante, la fiscal Rodríguez Vélez habría sugerido que era un espía ruso.

La demanda de Reyes Caparrós contiene además serias denuncias de que la oficina local de la fiscalía federal usaba agentes para gestiones personales tales como arreglos para pagos de utilidades y arreglos para reparaciones de vehículos personales. Indica además que hubo manipulaciones de estadísticas, y que al reportarlas fue objeto de más represalias.

Por todos los daños y situaciones que alega haber sufrido, el demandante reclama un monto de $390,000 en compensación.

Se espera que el proceso continúe durante esta semana con la presentación de los testigos.

Rumores de remplazo

El juicio ocurre en momentos en que se especula que el Departamento de Justicia federal tiene intenciones de remplazar a Rodríguez Vélez como la persona al mando de la fiscalía federal en Puerto Rico.

Según el diario Wall Street Journal, el Departamento de Justicia federal está próximo a nominar candidatos a sustituir a Rodríguez Vélez, y la Casa Blanca apoya la movida de remplazarla. La fiscal lleva 12 años al mando, aunque nunca ha sido confirmada al puesto por el senado federal.

Según diversas fuentes, ya se manejan nombres para su remplazo, como el del abogado Juan Masini.

Aunque no se ha emitido una notificación oficial sobre el posible remplazo de Rodríguez Vélez, la comisionada residente en Washington, Jenniffer González salió en su defensa y envió incluso una notificación oficial al presidente Donald Trump abogando porque le permita continuar al frente de la fiscalía federal en Puerto Rico.

Asignan un FEI al exjuez Rafael Ramos Sáenz
 

mikenova shared this story .

El Panel sobre el Fiscal Especial Independiente (FEI) informó hoy que la entidad realizará una investigación contra el expresidente de la Comisión Estatal de Elecciones (CEE), Rafael Ramos Sáenz por el caso del chat de WhatsApp.

La presidenta del FEI, Nydia Cotto Vives, indicó que del informe que presentó el Departamento de Justicia surge que el exfuncionario “pudo haber incurrido en violaciones a varios artículos del Código Penal, del Código Electoral, así como de la Ley de Ética Gubernamental”. 

Entretanto, la entidad determinó que “no surge prueba ni recomendación que requiera ulterior investigación” contra el exsecretario de la Gobernación, William Villafañe, por su participación en el chat.

Cotto Vives informó que el fiscal especial independiente a cargo de la investigación contra Ramos Sáenz será Ramón Mendoza Rosario y Iris Meléndez Vega fungirá como fiscal delegada.

Según un comunicado de prensa, el FEI también “acogió  la recomendación de Justicia para que se analice la prueba —en unión con la evidencia recopilada— a fin de determinar si Itza García Rodríguez, Waleska Claudio, Yoniel y Yesenia Díaz Román pudieron haber infringido la ley por su participación e interacción con el exjuez Sáenz”

Los fiscales asignados al caso tendrán 90 días para realizar la investigación sobre los hechos y posteriormente deberán presentar su informe ante el FEI.

El 2 de mayo la secretaria de Justicia, Wanda Vázquez, refirió al FEI su informe de la ivestigación e incluyó una recomendación para designar un fiscal especial a Ramos Sáenz, así como también a los otros funcionarios públicos que participaron en el chat mientras se confeccionaba el Plan para Puerto Rico que presentó el gobernador Ricardo Rosselló en su campaña eleccionaria.

En ese momento, la secretaria informó que los fiscales de Justicia examinaron 34,375 documentos y 108 participantes en los chats.

Vázquez añadió que “de la investigación se desprende que el exjuez Ramos Sáenz compartió información privilegiada relacionada a su puesto”.

Tanto Ramos Sáenz como Villafañe, y los otros funcionarios implicados en el caso, renunciaron a sus puestos en el gobierno. 

Latino Rebels | From Russian Spies to Labor Discrimination: Trial Begins Against Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico

3:01 PM 5/17/2018

Cobertura destacada

Diario Metro de Puerto Rico

De espías rusos a discrimen laboral

Toda la cobertura

_____________________________________

By Luis J. Valentín Ortiz

Center for Investigative Journalism

_________________________________

Quote:

“In addition to the head of the federal prosecutor’s office in Puerto Rico,

expected to testify at the trial are: the former director of the FBI in Puerto Rico, Carlos Cases; María Domínguez, who worked under Rodríguez and

currently works at the McConnell Valdés law firm; and well-known federal prosecutors on the island, Timothy Henwood and José Capó. Reyes-Caparrós’ defense has 11 people on the list of confirmed witnesses, while Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez’s lawyers have 16.” 

The top federal official in Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez is implicated in a trial over retaliation and hostile work environment against the Federal Prosecutor’s Office that began …

Source: Latino Rebels | From Russian Spies to Labor Discrimination: Trial Begins Against Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico 

Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks 

Mike Nova’s Shared NewsLinks
Latino Rebels | From Russian Spies to Labor Discrimination: Trial Begins Against Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico
Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Wall Street Journal
Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez
Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez – Google Search
At a Crossroads, Part II: No More Shadows: The Future of Intelligence Oversight in Congress
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Paris knife attack: Investigators widen probe into Chechen-born Khamzat Azimov – National

 

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Latino Rebels | From Russian Spies to Labor Discrimination: Trial Begins Against Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico
 

mikenova shared this story from Latino Rebels.

SAN JUAN — Room 510 of the Federal Court in Old San Juan was crowded with almost 100 citizens on Monday, May 14, at 9am. They were fulfilling their jury duty obligation.

Yet this is not any trial. It is a case of damages over retaliation in the workplace, the facts of which include FBI investigations, Russian spies and an alleged hostile work environment by the Acting U.S. Attorney in Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez.

The plaintiff, Francisco Reyes-Caparrós, says that while serving as an intelligence specialist in the Office of the Federal Prosecutor in Puerto Rico, he was a victim of retaliation from 2012 to 2015 by his superiors, including Rodríguez-Vélez, who is the federal official of highest rank in Puerto Rico. Reyes-Caparrós, 38, who is now a lawyer, alleges that the pattern of actions against him forced his resignation in 2015 after almost six years of working with the federal government. That same year, in September, he sued the Federal Prosecutor’s Office. It has taken three years for the case to go to trial.

While the people waited for the jury selection to begin, the last bench in the room, on the left side, smelled of roses. After talking about Hurricane María, the inventory of sardine and sausage cans, the importance of always having a little stove and how someone learns to see in the dark, one lady asked another what many people were asking there: “How long will this take?”

Rosa Emilia Rodríguez Vélez (Photo by Juan Costa | Center for Investigative Journalism)

Shortly after noon, four women and four men were chosen as the jurors who would see the trial that began that same Monday afternoon. The judicial process is expected to last at least two weeks, as anticipated by Joseph Laplante, the judge in charge of the case, who comes from the district of New Hampshire.

From a coffee shop across the street from the federal building in Old San Juan, the interim chief prosecutor in Puerto Rico waited alone for her lawyers. During lunch, before the trial began and after almost two hours of waiting, Rodríguez-Vélez spoke briefly with her team of lawyers. She finished her meal and went to the fifth floor of the federal court. There, standing in the corridor, she waited for the trial to start.

Unlike in the morning, there was no longer any murmuring in Room 510, and only the judge, the lawyers of the parties, some court officials and a citizen who also happens to be a journalist, were present. Shortly before the entrance of the jury and the start of initial arguments, the lawyer defending the U.S. Attorney Office, Jason Weida, asked to address Laplante.

“Your Honor, we anticipate this will be a high profile case,” Weida said. Laplante immediately asked, “You’re not asking for a gag order?” The lawyer explained that he was not asking for a gag order, but that the parties and lawyers refrained from making statements to the press during the course of the trial. After clarifying that he would not be issuing a gag order, the judge said although he does not prohibit comments to the press, he strongly discourage them.

The jury made its entrance at 2:45 p.m. and received the judge’s initial instructions. Laplante emphasized that the objective is to determine if Reyes-Caparrós carried out actions protected by law and because of this he was subject to retaliation at work by his superiors.

The plaintiff’s attorney, Bamily López, argued in her initial turn that Reyes-Caparrós’ life “completely changed” at the end of 2012, after providing a bulletproof vest to Idalia Mestey-Borges, a former federal agent who was allegedly a target of threats at that time. The plaintiff alleges that his supervisors did not see this decision with good eyes, because Mestey-Borges —who testified on the first day of the trial— had a complaint against the prosecutors’ office before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

After this incident, Reyes-Caparrós suffered a pattern of reprisals that included stripping him of his management position, transfers of offices, investigations, scolding, surveillance, tasks destined to fail and his eventual resignation because of these working conditions, according to López. Two other witnesses in the case, Carmen Márquez and Nelson Pérez, also have similar complaints against the Federal Prosecutor’s Office for hostile work environment.

“In this case, Rosa Emilia is not the head of the federal prosecutors; Rosa Emilia is the person in charge of this office,” said the plaintiff’s attorney, emphasizing that it is a claim of labor discrimination.

On the other hand, the attorneys for the Federal Prosecutors began their initial statement presenting Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez to the jury, shortly after she made her entrance to the courtroom and was the only other person sitting in the audience.

Reyes-Caparrós’ defense did not object, neither did the Judge, so the jury met the Head of the Federal Prosecutors in Puerto Rico, while Rodríguez-Vélez stood looking at them from the audience. Once her attorney finished his initial statements, the federal official left the courtroom. She is, nevertheless, on the list of witnesses, so she is expected to testify at one point in the trial against her and her office.

Weida and the defense team affirm that the disciplinary actions taken by Reyes-Caparrós’ superiors happened in response to an ongoing investigation that the FBI was conducting regarding the plaintiff. The reason? Reyes-Caparrós interest to travel to Russia as part of a cultural exchange program.

“This case is about bad judgment [on the part of the plaintiff] and a Russian spy,” Weida argued, adding that Reyes-Caparrós could not exercise the intelligence functions he had until October 2013 due to the investigation carried out against him by the FBI.

That was when Reyes-Caparrós received an invitation to travel to Russia to participate in a cultural exchange program coordinated by Yury Zaytsev, an alleged Russian spy. Because of this, the FBI began an investigation into Reyes-Caparrós in October 2013, after which the pattern of retaliation claimed by the former employee began. According to the defense, this investigation was the reason for the decisions made by Reyes Caparrós’ superiors, which the plaintiff identifies as reprisals.

Neither the FBI investigation —which culminated at the end of 2015, after Reyes-Caparrós’ resignation— nor another investigation carried out by the Office of the Inspector General, recommended disciplinary actions against the plaintiff, nor did they find criminal conduct, the plaintiff’s lawyer said.

In addition to the head of the federal prosecutor’s office in Puerto Rico, expected to testify at the trial are: the former director of the FBI in Puerto Rico, Carlos Cases; María Domínguez, who worked under Rodríguez and currently works at the McConnell Valdés law firm; and well-known federal prosecutors on the island, Timothy Henwood and José Capó. Reyes-Caparrós’ defense has 11 people on the list of confirmed witnesses, while Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez’s lawyers have 16.

Already on the third day of the trial, only four witnesses had testified and Judge LaPlante warned the lawyers that the process was taking too long.

At the same time, there was also a story by El Vocero that named Rodríguez-Vélez as one of two candidates to formally occupy the position, and another story from the Wall Street Journal about the U.S. Department of Justice’s alleged intention to replace Rodríguez-Vélez after almost 12 years in office on an interim basis.

The head of the Federal Prosecutor’s Office in Puerto Rico was appointed to the post in 2007 by the judges of the U.S. District Court, but more than 10 years after her appointment and an extension of her term, Vélez-Rodríguez has never been confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Wall Street Journal
 

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Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor
Wall Street Journal
The Justice Department is attempting to replace the top federal prosecutor in Puerto Rico, who has been quietly campaigning to keep her job, according to people familiar with the matter. The Justice Department is close to proposing a candidate to 
Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez
 

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Lla secretaria del Departamento de Justicia, Wanda Vázquez y la jefa de fiscales federales, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez. (Juan R. Costa / NotiCel)

Lla secretaria del Departamento de Justicia, Wanda Vázquez y la jefa de fiscales federales, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez. (Juan R. Costa / NotiCel)

El Departamento de Justicia federal está buscando sustituir a la jefa de Fiscalía en Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez Vélez, quien lleva casi 12 años al mando.

Según reseña el diario Wall Street Journal, el sucero o sucesora deberá pasar el cedazo del Senado de Estados Unidos, proceso que pudiera tomar semanas o meses. No solo el Departamento de Justicia busca el cambio, si no la Casa Blanca, aseguran fuentes del medio estadounidense.

Al parecer los esfuerzos por cambiar la dirección de Fiscalía federal en Puerto Rico crecieron junto a alegatos de esquemas de corrupción y fraude en contrataciones públicas. El propio Negociado de Investigaciones Federales (FBI por sus siglas en inglés) ve la corrupción gubernamental como un problema creciente en la isla, más aún con los millones que han entrado al fisco para la recuperación del país luego del embate del huracán María.

Una portavoz de Rodríguez Vélez apuntó que trabajan muy de cerca con el FBI, con el cual nunca han tenido desacuerdos. Sin embargo, ni el jefe del FBI en Puerto Rico, Douglas Leff, ni personal de Justicia federal quisieron hacer declaraciones oficiales al medio.

Por otro lado, la comsionada residente Jenniffer González, abogó en Casa Blanca por mantener a Rodríguez Vélez en su puesto “por la estabilidad del sistema”.

Entre 2007 a 2016, se ejecutaron 364 sentencias por corrupción pública en Puerto Rico, quedando como el cuarto distrito de Estados Unidos con más convicciones de este tipo.

 Lea además: FBI anticipa arrestos en la isla por fondos federales post María

Típicamente, el presidente nomina a un candidato o candidata para dirigir la Fiscalía federal, y el Senado los confirma. Rodríguez Vélez fue nominada por George W. Bush en enero de 2007, pero nunca fue confirmada por el Senado aunque los jueces de los Tribunales de distrito la renominaron a términos de cuatro años, siendo el más reciente en 2015.

Fuentes aseguran que Rodríguez Vélez tiene cabilderos en Washington para mantener su jefatura, principalmente abogando por la continuidad de investigaciones en curso.

La funcionaria está citada para testificar en un juicio por represalia y discriminación de un antiguo subordinado, que comenzó el lunes, según documentos judiciales. El demandante, el exespecialista en inteligencia, Francisco Reyes Caparrós, presentó una demanda en 2015 alegando que Rodríguez Vélez y otros lo despojaron de sus obligaciones laborales normales después de quejarse de tener que hacer recados personales para sus superiores. Su oficina ha negado haber actuado mal y dijo que el demandante renunció después de varias reprimendas internas.

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Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor

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The Justice Department is close to proposing a candidate to succeed Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez, the U.S. attorney for the district of Puerto …

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Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez

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Former Puerto Rico DOE teacher found guilty of child exploitation

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement NewsroomApr 30, 2018
… Cotto-Flores guilty of robbing a child’s innocence,” said United States Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez.
At a Crossroads, Part II: No More Shadows: The Future of Intelligence Oversight in Congress
 

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Author’s Note: The author wishes to thank Tressa Guenov for her immense and valuable substantive contributions to this project..

In the 2012 James Bond film Skyfall, M (Judi Dench) and Gareth Mallory (Ralph Fiennes) debate how to respond to a leak that has led to the assassination of several MI6 intelligence agents. They are torn between a desire to ensure that MI6, Britain’s premier spy agency, remains a credible part of British democratic institutions and the need to avoid antiquation in the face of rapidly changing technology and spycraft. At one point, Mallory laments, “We can’t keep working in the shadows. There are no more shadows!”

Mallory and M’s conversation encapsulates the broader, real-life dilemma that the intelligence community and intelligence oversight face in the modern era. Today, carefully guarded covert operations, undercover identities, and secrets of spy tradecraft can be exposed in seconds. Intelligence agencies face unprecedented political accusations of bias from their commander-in-chief. The tide of politics crashes headlong against the buttoned-up traditions of analytical integrity and inviolable protection of sources and methods.

There are indeed fewer and fewer shadows in which to conduct, manage, and oversee traditional intelligence work. Nowhere in Congress has that fact been more acutely felt than on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, which oversee the organizations and activities of the U.S. intelligence community.

Over the years, congressional oversight of the intelligence community has wrestled with the balance between support and oversight, the extent of member and staff access to intelligence information, the challenge of transparency in a highly classified enterprise, and how to approach appropriating intelligence funding. The 9/11 Commission’s 2003 Final Report described congressional intelligence oversight as “dysfunctional” – lacking “power, influence, and sustained capability.” Committees in the House and Senate have different jurisdictions, different relationships with other national security committees, and different approaches to addressing intelligence community funding. Moreover, they do not have their own correlate appropriations subcomitttees the way the foreign affairs and defense committees do.

In part two of this series on national security oversight (read part one here), I argue that intelligence oversight is also at a crossroads. Existing challenges have been exacerbated significantly, but not exclusively, by the proclivities of the Trump administration, its openly adversarial relationship with the intelligence community, and congressional intelligence committees’ high-profile investigation of Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election. Intelligence oversight has also been challenged by the dizzying speed of modern media coupled with regular public leaks of massive amounts of digitized classified information, each of which increasingly intrudes on the shadows in which intelligence professionals are accustomed to operating.

Other factors – enormous growth of the intelligence enterprise since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the technical complexity of many intelligence activities, and intelligence operations’ prominent role in broader foreign policy – have left congressional intelligence oversight disadvantaged and struggling to keep up. But Congress must evolve along with intelligence, improving its capacity to confront these challenges, organizing itself for the mission, and developing new tools for new problems.

A Unique Oversight Role, Challenged

In many ways, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence share the same duties as all other oversight committees in Congress. They must ensure that the 17 agencies of the intelligence community have the personnel and resources to do their jobs, are following the law, and are implementing policies in an appropriate and strategic manner. The committees hold hearings, write letters, conduct investigations, and pass legislation. But they diverge from other committees in one critical regard: Most of their oversight work is done in the shadows, in classified form and outside of public view.

The significance of this difference cannot be overstated. Other committees are also at the vanguard of oversight in their jurisdictions, but their work is buttressed much more robustly by public watchdog groups, lobbyists, think tanks, journalists, and even concerned private citizens. Although transparency on the other national security committees is not perfect, the policies they are considering are usually openly debated and dissected.

For the intelligence community, however, congressional oversight committees are the last line of defense. Beyond a small number of inspectors general and occasional reviews by the Government Accountability Office, there are no other entities with the access and mandate to check executive branch excess or error.

Most years, Congress passes a rather banal unclassified Intelligence Authorization Act, but the real meat of oversight legislation is contained in a classified annex to the bill. The annex is technically not law, but it is treated as such by the intelligence agencies who receive it, and they cannot discuss its details publicly. The vast majority of members of Congress are never exposed to the annex or to the intelligence community’s workings more generally, so the burden falls on a small group of members and staffers to ask the right questions and sustain oversight initiatives.

Adding to the secrecy challenge, the already small intelligence committee staffs are divided and fractured: Only a subset of staff may have access to information on sensitive National Security Agency activities, while a different subset may be granted access to certain CIA information. This means that the congressional staff empowered to conduct oversight on any given issue often number in the single digits. And the defense appropriations subcommittees, which oversee the intelligence community’s budget, do similar work with even smaller staffs than the authorizing committees.

Further, intelligence oversight committees must often negotiate – not always successfully – for access to vital intelligence with the very agencies they are charged with overseeing. Congress has three general levels of access to information at escalating levels of classification: the general membership, the intelligence oversight committees, and the “Gang of Eight” consisting of the top Republican and Democratic lawmakers in the House and Senate and on the two intelligence committees along with their corresponding staffs. Yet, the executive branch often makes unilateral decisions about which groups to share what with — sometimes information is given to only the Gang of Eight plus appropriators, for example, or to committee members but not staff. No clear rules guide these determinations, and key oversight staff are often excluded.

A third challenge is staff capacity. I can attest that the members and staff on the intelligence committees approach their unique oversight role with great rigor, seriousness, and patriotism. Quality bipartisan oversight on taxpayers’ behalf goes on every day, though it rarely makes headlines. Yet the staff are snowed under by volume and complexity. Consider that intelligence committee staff must oversee and maintain requisite expertise on 17 separate agencies conducting intelligence collection and analysis through six major technical disciplines, while also maintaining specialized expertise to support oversight of research and acquisition programs and regional expertise to support oversight of intelligence strategies across high-priority countries and conflicts. As technological innovations in data analysis, artificial intelligence, cyber tools, and satellites grow ever more sophisticated, this complexity only increases.

According to the Congressional Research Service, intelligence committees have approximately the same number of staff now as they did in 1987. In that same period, five intelligence agencies have been created — not to mention the paradigm-shifting technological developments, particularly in space and cyberspace that have fundamentally changed and exponentially expanded technical intelligence collection. The intelligence community’s budget, at over $70 billion, is 18,421 times larger than that of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence budget of $3.8 million. The inability of intelligence oversight committees to keep pace with the sprawling growth of intelligence agencies, personnel, and contractors is cause for concern, given the committees’ role as the last line of defense.

In addition to problems of capacity and resources, the environment for intelligence activities is dramatically more public and more partisan than when the committees were first formed. Congressional staff lack the necessary tools and support to face the chaotic environment created by the enormous scrutiny of the tweet-driven media and partisan political groups on serious matters such as the Russia investigation. For example, despite the swirl of press inquiries about this probe, neither House nor Senate intelligence committees maintain any dedicated staff for media relations. Moreover, the challenge of conducting such high-profile investigations while protecting classified information and privileged discussions can erode the integrity of the oversight. The stumbling of the House intelligence committee’s Russia inquiry as headed by its chairman, Devin Nunes, serves as a case in point.

In fact, investigations pose their own unique challenge to intelligence oversight. While investigations are typically viewed as special, occasional events, in practice, they have  become an ongoing feature of intelligence oversight – a shift that staffing should reflect. In the past ten years, intelligence committees have conducted multi-year, detailed investigations of pre-Iraq War intelligence, the CIA’s use of enhanced interrogation techniques, the 2012 Benghazi attacks, and Russia’s election interference.

The time needed to complete a thorough oversight investigation does not comport with ravenous expectations of the political and media environment. Intelligence committees have faced considerable pressure to accelerate these politically sensitive reviews to keep up with the fast-paced news cycle. Such press interest has gone hand-in-hand with frequent leaks of intelligence secrets through actors ranging from Edward Snowden to the Shadow Brokers. Without dedicated investigative staff, each major leak that requires investigation diverts attention from normal oversight activities.

Another challenge is the cross-jurisdictional nature of many sensitive intelligence activities. Military intelligence operations, electronic surveillance programs, embassy management of covert action programs, and cybersecurity all cross into multiple committee jurisdictions. Moreover, the jurisdictions of House and Senate intelligence committees are not aligned. Gaps and redundancies in committee jurisdictions can create opportunities for the executive branch to evade oversight or venue-shop and can cause confusion and inefficiencies for overseers. Take, for instance, overseas collection of imagery intelligence: The Armed Services Committees must make determinations about resources for airborne intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance platforms without any knowledge of how the intelligence community’s satellite programs might duplicate airborne collection. This breeds inefficiency and waste. While, on the House and Senate Appropriations Committees, a single subcommittee maintains oversight of both defense and intelligence enterprises, the subcommittee staffs are too small to effectively bridge this oversight gap.

Finally, oversight committees have always occupied the dual role of overseers of the intelligence community and explainers of its activities to the broader public. In recent months, the committees have been called upon like never before to serve as interpreters and even arbiters of attacks against the intelligence community from the president’s Twitter account and, sometimes, from the media. However, this education function is of enduring importance. In the last two decades, there have been frequent controversies over intelligence activitiesbudgets, and authorities, but the public has had few tools with which to make sense of these debates. The dangers of a wide gap between intelligence activities and public information was demonstrated by the reaction to Snowden’s leaks: Public opposition forced the termination of collection activities that the government had viewed as essential to counterterrorism efforts and that Congress had lawfully authorized and carefully (but secretly) scrutinized. The episode shows that the intelligence community can no longer continue to operate strictly in the shadows.

Opportunity in the Light

How can the intelligence committees improve their oversight capabilities in an age where government secrecy has become increasingly fluid and, in some cases, an active target for attack? I propose several concrete measures.

First, intelligence oversight committees should pay much more attention to programmatic and organizational concerns, particularly through ongoing hearings. By its nature, real oversight lacks glamor, especially when almost no one knows what you are doing. Intelligence committee members get little political or constituent credit for delving into, say, the finer details of compartmented space programs or the way the CIA organizes itself bureaucratically.

Yet, the most mundane aspects of intelligence work – how agencies are organized, how personnel are recruited and developed, how programs are administered and executed, and how resources are budgeted and allocated – are the most important for effective oversight. Based on my own experience and conversations with oversight staff, however, the committees rarely conduct hearings dedicated to oversight of these issues beyond routine budget hearings, and few committee members invest in familiarizing themselves with their details. It is worth remembering that the 9/11 Commission overwhelmingly impugned bureaucratic issues – stovepiped communications, divided management, poor prioritization – not tradecraft, as the leading culprits for that intelligence failure. Avoiding such problems in the future requires careful, sustained oversight of the intelligence community’s organizational structures, processes, and incentives.

Just as importantly, the committees should hold more hearings specifically dedicated to bureaucratic oversight, as opposed to specific threats or operations. A good place to start would be a sustained examination of the state of intelligence community integration after the reorganization brought by the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004. To my knowledge, this reform has received negligible attention from intelligence committees in the 14 years since its passage, despite the enduring importance of cross-agency collaboration and communication.

Second, as the House and Senate Russia investigations have painfully demonstrated, authorizing committees should maintain professional, nonpartisan investigative staff. Although the staff members handling high-profile investigations are highly competent, this work often comes on top of their daily support roles for their members and traditional oversight portfolios. Effective investigations require special expertise and rigorous attention. The committees should rebuild their bipartisan investigations teams and be resourced to do so with permanent, professional, nonpartisan investigative staffs who have the expertise to support future investigations.

Third, the intelligence committees must reshape their role as educators of the public. One way this can be done is by scheduling regular unclassified hearings that focus on the organization, personnel, diversity, and long-term resourcing needs of the intelligence community. House overseers have embraced public hearings far more than their Senate counterparts, but their open hearings have tended to focus on security threats rather than structural issues. Public hearings focused on the latter would do much to help the public understand the enduring national security importance of a robust, apolitical cadre of intelligence community personnel. In addition to public hearings, oversight committees should consider providing public notice of the general topics and, if appropriate, witnesses for their classified hearings, after consulting with the intelligence community on possible counterintelligence risks.

Fourth, the committees must create mechanisms to address cross-jurisdictional concerns in collaboration with other national security committees, the Armed Services and Judiciary Committees in particular. In my previous position, I witnessed regular competition and occasional suspicion among these committees on certain sensitive classified programs. Each panel has compelling reasons to think access should be expanded or limited. Shared defense and intelligence issues include oversight of special operations and the intelligence used to support them, targeted counterterrorism strikes, and military intelligence operations. Meanwhile, both the intelligence and judiciary committees are invested in electronic surveillance and other issues involving intelligence support to law enforcement.

I’m not arguing for eliminating jurisdictional lines, but committees must figure out how to collaborate. They can conduct more joint oversight hearings, work with the executive branch to create stronger cross-committee access for certain members and staff, or even consider cross-committee task forces for sustained oversight challenges. Some progress was made on the access front in the Obama administration, but more needs to be done to create predictable and agreed-upon bipartisan, cross-committee oversight tools.

Fifth, the committees must address staffing challenges. More staff, including professional investigative staff, is certainly part of the answer. Though Congress is often averse to spending money on itself, it cannot expect the oversight committees to fulfill their responsibilities by keeping staffing levels flat while the intelligence community has doubled its size. But in addition, as others have suggested, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence should follow its Senate counterpart’s lead, enabling members to have cleared staff reporting directly to them and assigned to support their committee activities. These “designees” ensure that committee members have staff working to directly address their individual concerns and priorities as is the case with every other congressional committee. Intelligence oversight committees, which deal with increasingly sophisticated technical matters, would also benefit from the reestablishment of an independent technical support office, as proposed in Part Iof this series.

Finally, Congress should negotiate or, if need be, legislate standard procedures for member and staff access to sensitive materials. Lawmakers should establish standard procedures based on the following principles. First, information should be shared on a need-to-know basis according to the responsibilities assigned each committee. Second, “Gang of Eight” notifications should be reserved for exceptional circumstances for the utmost sensitivity to national security. Third, at least for committees and the Gang of Eight, staff access should parallel member access. Fourth, for staff of oversight committees, the committees themselves should set access rules, rather than being subjected to arbitrary executive branch caps.

Conclusion

The last two decades have provided no shortage of cautionary tales about the risks of insufficient intelligence oversight. The 9/11 Commission found that “dysfunctional” oversight was a key contributor to the failure to prevent the 9/11 terror attacks. Intelligence committees failed to help Congress parse a distorted picture of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction programs, leading to a decade-long war costing thousands of American lives and hundreds of billions of dollars. In some cases, the executive branch deliberately stymied congressional oversight of the CIA’s torture program. And Snowden’s illegal disclosure of a vast trove of information about electronic surveillance not only damaged ongoing intelligence operations, but also convinced many citizens that they had been misled about the scope and intent of these efforts. As the shadows recede, it’s obvious that challenges for effective intelligence oversight will only grow.

In Skyfall, when secretive intelligence operations are wrested from the shadows, people die. For once, real life is actually like the movies: Misguided intelligence operations, sloppy safeguarding of classified information, and bad policies put the lives of thousands of dedicated intelligence professionals at risk. Robust congressional oversight is the last line of defense against such outcomes. It is fitting, therefore, that later in the movie, Mallory, chairman of the parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee, saves M from an assassin’s bullet. Despite institutional tensions and personal frustrations, legislative branch oversight remains the great shield of our democracy, and we must guard it vigilantly.

Tommy Ross is a senior associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.  He served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Security Cooperation at the Pentagon and was the senior defense and intelligence adviser to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. He has also held other senior positions in the House and Senate.

Image: Wikimedia Commons

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Frank Sinatra’s Mob Ties and Other Secrets from His FBI File
 

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Frank Sinatra was many things: A crooner who could make bobby-soxers faint, an Academy Award-winning actor, the elder statesman of the Rat Pack. At the height of his career, it was rumored that “every woman wants to have him; every man wants to be him.” But his fans and detractors weren’t the only people who wanted a piece of Old Blue Eyes: So did the FBI.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation tracked Sinatra for over 40 years, amassing a dossier of thousand of pages about his movements, words, and friendships. The files, which were made public after Sinatra’s death in 1998, cover Sinatra throughout his tempestuous career—and read like a thrilling account of a life he lead “his way.”

Sinatra rose to fame during the 1940s, and soon attracted the attention of the FBI for claims that he’dpaid a doctor $40,000 to declare him medically unfit for World War II service. Though the FBI dismissed the allegations, calling his exemption for a punctured eardrum and psychological issues legitimate, rumors that he’d dodged the draft persisted throughout his lifetime and even hurt his career in the late 1940s.

His excuse for not serving may have been watertight, but Sinatra’s ties to known Mafia members and a revolving cast of characters connected to the underworld weren’t as squeaky clean. Sinatra’s FBI file reads like a guide to the era’s organized crime figures. Though Sinatra always denied he was connected to the mob, he did interact with famous Mafia figures like Chicago mob boss Sam Giancana, with whom he was close friends.

Sinatra supposedly introduced Giancana to John F. Kennedy‘s campaign in 1960 in an attempt to deliver union votes to the future president. According to Sinatra’s daughter, Tina, he played a gig at Giancana’s Chicago club to repay the favor. Sinatra also introduced Kennedy to Judith Campbell Exner, Giancana’s girlfriend. During the years-long affair that followed, Exner allegedly acted as a liaison between Kennedy and Giancana, helping in a plot for the Mob to assassinate Fidel Castro. (It never did, but Exner later testified before a Senate committee investigating JFK’s potential Mob ties.)

Sinatra had other mafioso friends, many of whom can be found in his FBI files, which contain headings like “associations with criminals and hoodlums” and “accusations of being a dope racketeer.” There are accounts of gifts from Joseph and Charles Fischetti, brothers with the Chicago outfit who ran illegal gambling operations. There’s a Godfather-style appearance at an Atlantic City club as a favor for attendees of the wedding of the daughter of Philadelphia mobster Angelo Bruno. There’s even documentation of the Mob exerting pressure on Sinatra’s behalf to release him from a 1951 contract.

FBI agents also watched Sinatra carouse with Detroit mobsters Anthony and Vito Giacalone. “It was like clockwork,” retired FBI agent Sam Ruffino tells author Scott M. Burnstein. “A few times a year, we’d trail the Giacalones to the airport to pick up Sinatra. They’d spend the weekend together socializing before and after his shows….Almost every night, they’d shut the place down. And he didn’t make any apologies for it. Those were his friends. The fact that they were known hoodlums and murderers didn’t matter to him. He didn’t care, he was going to hang around with who he wanted to hang around with.”

Sinatra flaunted his friendships with people connected to organized crime, and took plenty of public photographs with known mobsters. His gangster friends shared his passions—gambling, women, money—and they often met in casinos and nightclubs. Sinatra, however, offered to snitch on some of the criminals he hung around: In 1950, he sent an associate to J. Edgar Hoover to offer Sinatra’s services as an informant, perhaps in an attempt to protect himself from swirling rumors that he was involved with the Mob. The FBI declined. One of Hoover’s aides wrote “We want nothing to do with him” on the report of the meeting.

Sinatra was never prosecuted for criminal behavior in connection to his many Mob ties. He was never brought before the House Un-American Activities Commission, either—but the FBI had him in its sights for what they considered to be suspicious activity with possible ties to Communism. The FBI file is filled with accounts of Sinatra’s supposedly suspicious activities, from his support of anti-racist initiatives to his defense of people accused of being Communists. In addition to appearing on behalf of many liberal causes, Sinatra was one of the founding members of the Committee for the First Amendment, a group that supported the so-called Hollywood Ten, screenwriters and directors who were blacklisted after refusing to divulge whether they were members of the Communist Party.

“Sinatra’s FBI dossier reveals a dismaying situation,” writes historian Gerald Meyer. “At no time does it contain anything that even hints at an activity disallowed by the Bill of Rights.” Meyer, who documented Sinatra’s support of progressive causes and his public confrontation of things like racism and the McCarthy-era Red Scare, sees the FBI files as evidence of a government that perceived Sinatra as a threat.

The FBI didn’t always focus on the singer himself: Since Sinatra was such a high-profile star, he was regularly targeted by people who wanted to extort or blackmail him. In 1963, those seemingly random attacks became all too personal when three men kidnapped Sinatra’s son, Frank Sinatra, Jr. The FBI told Sinatra to wait for a ransom demand, then pay it so that the bureau could track down the money and the kidnappers. Frank Sinatra, Jr. was freed when the kidnappers became cagey about their crime, and the FBI soon caught the abductors. All three were convicted.

Sinatra knew the government was tracking his activities—in 1979 and 1980, he requested and received his FBI file through the Freedom of Information Act. His FBI file never ended up getting him in trouble, but it reflects the power and influence of the charismatic singer. Though it’s full of references to his shady dealings and thuggish friends, it also shows him speaking out against racism and on behalf of democracy.

Even Sinatra’s professional triumphs were enough to get him reported to the FBI: The file begins not with an account of his Mob ties, but with a letter that complains about the “shrill whistling sound” produced by Sinatra’s fans. “How easy it would be for certain-minded manufacturers to create another Hitler here in America through the influence of mass-hysteria!” wrote the anonymous informer. “They intend to get a Hitler in by first planting in the minds of the people that men like Frank Sinatra are O.K.”

Sinatra, it seemed, could attract attention of conspiracy theorists and bobby-soxers with the same crooning voice—and through his career, FBI agents listened as intently as his closest fans.

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El Ejecutivo no presentará presupuesto con las exigencias de la Junta
 

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El Ejecutivo no enviará un presupuesto recomendado enmendado a la Junta de Supervisión Fiscal (JSF) con las exigencias que pidió el ente a cargo de las finanzas de la isla, indicó esta noche el secretario de Asuntos Públicos de La Fortaleza, Ramón RosarioCortés.

“No se va a estar presentando un presupuesto con los cambios que ellos solicitaron evidentemente porque refleja parte del tranque en aras de esperar que esos diálogos se den para ver si llegamos a un consenso salvaguardando la política pública que han esbozado los presidentes (legislativos) y el gobernador (Ricardo Rosselló)”, dijo concluida la reunión con el presidente de la JSF, José Carrión.

El cónclave duró casi una hora y tanto Rosario Cortés como los presidentes legislativos Carlos “Johnny” Méndez y Thomas Rivera Schatz la calificaron como muy positiva.

“Existe un buen ánimo para lograr entendimientos y no seguir con esta etapa de distensión que existe entre la Junta y el gobierno electo¨, afirmó Méndez.

El gobernador se reunió con Carrión y los líderes legislativos para discutir el tranque en cuanto al presupuesto recomendado, particularmente por la negativa del gobierno a dar paso a la reducción en las pensiones, la eliminación del bono de Navidad y una baja en las licencias de enfermedad y vacaciones.

¨(Carrión) se mostró abierto en escuchar esta propuesta y consultarlo con los demás miembros (de la Junta)”, destacó Méndez.

Por su parte, el presidente del Senado indicó que le solicitó a Carrión evidencia e información que sustente la postura de la JSF que impulsa estas medidas de austeridad.

“eso es justo. No hay un solo aspecto del presupuesto o de los planes fiscales que el gobernador y el equipo económico no tengan información que sostenga y que valide esa posición. Estamos pidiendo lo mismo de parte de la Junta hacia el gobierno de Puerto Rico”, declaró.

Reconocieron que aún no hay un acuerdo con la JSF.

Pasadas las 6:30 p.m. Carrión llegó a La Fortaleza y se disponía a dirigirse a la oficina del primer ejecutivo, pero la reunión se efectuaría en los pabellones de la secretaría de la Gobernación.

Carrión no contestó ninguna pregunta de la prensa a su llegada y fue recibido por el secretario de Asuntos Públicos de La Fortaleza. A su salida tampoco contestó preguntas.

El gobernador se dirigió a los pabellones de la secretaría de la Gobernación donde se produjo la reunión..

A su llegada a La Fortaleza el presidente del Senado dijo “el gobernador me convocó a mí y al presidente de la Cámara -no sé si él llegó ya-  que nos quería ver”.

Desconocía que Carrión estaría en la reunión.

“Si es para reunirnos con él, con mucho gusto. Yo no tengo problemas en conversar con ellos. Ellos conocen mis posturas y no las voy a cambiar”, aseveró.

Los líderes legislativos así como el gobernador han reiterado su postura en contra de la nueva reforma laboral y de la reducción en las pensiones. De hecho, el presupuesto recomendado sometido a la JSF no incluyó ninguna de estas medidas de austeridad.

La JSF rechazó el documento y dio al Ejecutivo hasta mañana para enmendarlo a tono con sus exigencias. La directora ejecutiva de la JSF, Natalie Jaresko, había dicho que si no se corregían las deficiencias, el gobierno se exponía a que el ente a cargo de las finanzas de la isla acuda a los tribunales y termine aprobando el presupuesto que deseen.

Ayer mismo el secretario de Asuntos Públicos de La Fortaleza, dijo que ir a los tribunales no era la alternativa y que el Ejecutivo estaba abierto al diálogo.

“Vamos a ver a qué entendido puede llegarse que sea razonable”, dijo Rivera Schatz.

Esta es la segunda reunión que sostienen Carrión y los líderes de la rama Ejecutiva y Legislativa. La primera fue el año pasado en el oficina del presidente del Senado.

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Sergei Skripal Was Retired, but Still in the Spy Game. Is That Why He Was Poisoned?

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8:40 AM 5/17/2018 – THE NEWS AND TIMES – 20 LATEST POSTS IN 1000 WORDS OR LESS

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THE NEWS AND TIMES – 20 LATEST POSTS IN 1000 WORDS OR LESS

The News and Times from mikenova (5 sites)
Saved Stories – The News and Times: Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez – NOTICEL noticel.com/ahora/justicia…

Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez – NOTICEL noticel.com/ahora/justicia…


Posted by mikenov on Thursday, May 17th, 2018 12:53am

The News and Times of Puerto Rico: 7:29 AM 5/17/2018 – Senate Panel Backs Conclusion That Moscow Attempted to Boost Trump

NEWS IN PHOTOS 1. News in Photos from mikenova (5 sites) WSJ.com: World News: Senate Panel Backs Conclusion That Moscow Attempted to Boost Trump A Republican-led Senate committee backed U.S. intelligence agencies’ finding that Moscow attempted to boost Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, breaking with a GOP-led House panel that examined the same material.WSJ.com: World … Continue reading“7:29 AM 5/17/2018 – Senate Panel Backs Conclusion That Moscow Attempted to Boost Trump”

The News and Times of Puerto Rico

mikenov on Twitter: Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez – NOTICEL noticel.com/ahora/justicia…

Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez – NOTICEL noticel.com/ahora/justicia…


Posted by mikenov on Thursday, May 17th, 2018 12:53am

mikenov on Twitter: 8:32 PM 5/16/2018 – Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Front Page Review pr-us.org/2018/05/17/832…

8:32 PM 5/16/2018 – Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Front Page Review pr-us.org/2018/05/17/832…


Posted by mikenov on Thursday, May 17th, 2018 12:34am

The News and Times of Puerto Rico: 8:32 PM 5/16/2018 – Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Front Page Review

Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Wall Street Journal Wed, 16 May 2018 16:55:00 GMT Wall Street Journal Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor Wall Street Journal The Justice Department is attempting to replace the top federal prosecutor in Puerto Rico, who has been … Continue reading“8:32 PM 5/16/2018 – Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Front Page Review”

The News and Times of Puerto Rico

mikenov on Twitter: The Justice Department is attempting to replace the top prosecutor in Puerto Rico as concerns rise regarding about potential public-contracting fraud wsj.com/articles/justi… via @WSJ

The Justice Department is attempting to replace the top prosecutor in Puerto Rico as concerns rise regarding about potential public-contracting fraud wsj.com/articles/justi… via @WSJ


Posted by mikenov on Thursday, May 17th,…
mikenov on Twitter: At a Crossroads, Part II: No More Shadows: The Future of Intelligence Oversight in Congress @WarOnTheRocks warontherocks.com/2018/05/at-a-c…

At a Crossroads, Part II: No More Shadows: The Future of Intelligence Oversight in Congress @WarOnTheRocks warontherocks.com/2018/05/at-a-c…


Posted by mikenov on Wednesday, May 16th, 2018 12:18pm

Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com: 7:57 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review

7:57 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review

Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com

mikenov on Twitter: 7:57 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review pr-us.org/2018/05/16/757…

7:57 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review pr-us.org/2018/05/16/757…


Posted by mikenov on Wednesday, May 16th, 2018 12:02pm

The News and Times of Puerto Rico: 7:57 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review

The News and Times of Puerto Rico from mikenova The News and Times of Puerto Rico from mikenova (14 sites) mikenov on Twitter: 7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA pr-us.org/2018/05/16/716… Saved Stories – The News and Times of Puerto Rico: RT @cnni: Gaza has been … Continue reading“7:57 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review”

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Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com: 7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA

7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA
mikenov on Twitter: 7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA pr-us.org/2018/05/16/716…

7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA pr-us.org/2018/05/16/716…


Posted by mikenov on Wednesday, May 16th, 2018 11:17am

The News and Times of Puerto Rico: 7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA

The News and Times of Puerto Rico from mikenova The News and Times of Puerto Rico from mikenova (14 sites) Saved Stories – None: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA Saved Stories – None: ¡Buenos días! Saved Stories – None: Muy buenos días, esta es la edición de hoy de @primerahora. Es … Continue reading“7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA”

The News and Times of Puerto Rico

Saved Stories – The News and Times: RT @cnni: Gaza has been through much conflict and political upheaval since the end of World War II. Here’s a two-minute history: https://t.…

Gaza has been through much conflict and political upheaval since the end of World War II. Here’s a two-minute history: cnn.it/2L4jQH9pic.twitter.com/JU6mYLKvzH



Posted by cnni …
Saved Stories – The News and Times: RT @bopinion: How did we go from a president who could not tell a lie to politicians who cannot tell the truth? bloom.bg/2L6gW4I htt…

How did we go from a president who could not tell a lie to politicians who cannot tell the truth? bloom.bg/2L6gW4Ipic.twitter.com/jC5KR1eNVh



Posted by bopinion …
mikenov on Twitter: RT @Forbes: Amazon’s Jeff Bezos–worth $133B– is No.1 on the World’s 10 Most Powerful CEOs of 2018 on.forbes.com/6016Derc4 https://t.co/Nk…

Amazon’s Jeff Bezos–worth $133B– is No.1 on the World’s 10 Most Powerful CEOs of 2018
on.forbes.com/6016Derc4pic.twitter.com/NkHbOqvtgE



Posted by Forbes …
mikenov on Twitter: RT @nathan_nun: 6 Soviet cat poster designs are in my Etsy shop. Also a 3 for price of 2 listing! #cats #catart #sovietcats https://t.co/w…

6 Soviet cat poster designs are in my Etsy shop. Also a 3 for price of 2 listing! #cats #catart #sovietcatsetsy.com/ca/listing/596…pic.twitter.com/HvKBJMKHLN






Posted by …
mikenov on Twitter: RT @Luis_Daniel51: En #Moca participando de la inauguración del nuevo “Centro de Servicios Integrados”. Junto al Gobernador @ricardorossell…

En #Moca participando de la inauguración del nuevo “Centro de Servicios Integrados”. Junto al Gobernador @ricardorossello nuestro Alcalde @KikoAviles2016. pic.twitter.com/rVl1W5qMUi






mikenov on Twitter: RT @Metro_PR: Aquí nuestra portada de hoy, miércoles, 16 de mayo de 2018. ¡Busca tu #Metro! Lea la versión impresa -> https://t.co/ZJiUjNfI…

Aquí nuestra portada de hoy, miércoles, 16 de mayo de 2018. ¡Busca tu #Metro! Lea la versión impresa -> bit.ly/2Kve8NApic.twitter.com/AIUUG9L3eQ



Posted by Metro_PR …
mikenov on Twitter: RT @noticias247pr: [REPORTAJE] Rosselló intentará mitigar el aumento de la gasolina La inesperada salida de Estados Unidos del Tratado de I…

[REPORTAJE] Rosselló intentará mitigar el aumento de la gasolina
La inesperada salida de Estados Unidos del Tratado de Irán podría tener consecuencias para los puertorriqueños y el mundo entero toda vez que la decisión ha tenido el efecto de desestabilizar el precio del petróleo. pic.twitter.com/Wq0CGPlf3f


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8:23 AM 5/17/2018 – Caribbean Review

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_________________________________

In Brief – Saved Stories

Saved Stories – None
American Airlines Adding More Daily Flights to Saint Lucia
A New Beach Club in Belize
Delta Set to Launch Daily New York-St Thomas Flights
A New Caribbean Beach Resort to Try: Skylark Negril
The Caribbean’s Best Yachting Destination: The BVI
Jamaica Launches Major New Solar Project
Caribbean Business – 8 Things To Know About The PDVSA’s Caribbean Link
The Most Wanted Women From The Caribbean
Jail For Chinese Billionaire Who Bribed Caribbean Born UN Officials
Jerusalem embassy: Are other countries planning to move?
Colombia’s ex-fighters taught skills for peace
Venezuela crisis: Cereal maker Kellogg ends operations
Venezuela seizes Kellogg cereal factory after closure
Russia World Cup: Argentina ‘flirting manual’ panned
Trump: Immigrant gangs ‘animals, not people’
Canada proposes sweeping law to block foreign interference in elections
Their Russian-spy parents were fake Americans. Now they want to be real Canadians.
In Mexico, frustration with Trump grows as relations reach a ‘defining moment’
In Cuba, the great American tourism boom turns to bust
Blackouts, hyperinflation, hunger: Maduro faces reelection as Venezuela deteriorates
Venezuela political prisoners ‘revolt’ at Caracas jail
Ricardo Rosselló – Google News: Links for 5/17/18 – National Catholic Reporter
Links for 5/17/18 – National Catholic Reporter
Must-Do for Florida’s Midterm Candidates: A Stop in Puerto Rico. Or Three.
Must-Do for Florida’s Midterm Candidates: A Stop in Puerto Rico. Or Three. – New York Times

Saved Stories 

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American Airlines Adding More Daily Flights to Saint Lucia

By the Caribbean Journal staff

American Airlines is expanding its flight service to the island of Saint Lucia this winter.

The carrier will be launching an additional daily nonstop flight between Miami and Saint Lucia beginning Dec. 20.

“The Saint Lucia Tourism Authority welcomes this news as the US is a major source market for Saint Lucia and we have been fraught with airlift challenges,” said Agnes Francis, executive chairperson of the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority. “One of the greatest impediments to growth in market share is insufficient airlift, especially during the peak winter demand, and the SLTA is confident that the introduction of this new service, especially its timing, will make the island more accessible and translate into more tourism business for the island.”

The Ladera resort in Saint Lucia.

The new flight will supplement American Airlines’ existing daily flight from Miami and its weekend service from Charlotte.

The latter will be expanded into a daily service starting in June, according to the SLTA.

JetBlue and Delta already operate daily flights to Saint Lucia from New York and Atlanta, respectively.

The new daily flights launch bookings this week.

— CJ

The post American Airlines Adding More Daily Flights to Saint Lucia appeared first on Caribbean Journal.

A New Beach Club in Belize

By Dana Niland
CJ Contributor

One of the newest resorts in Belize has launched a new beach club.

Belize’s Mahogany Bay has unveiled its newly opened Beach Club on the white sandy beach of Ambergris Caye.

Just a 10-minute boat ride from the property by private shuttle, it offers guests their own secluded escape, with view of remote islands and clear Caribbean Sea waters along the way.

The restaurant and bar menu, created by Executive Chef Lisa Sellers offers light bites inspired by local ingredients and indigenous fish, while the cocktail list features the Caribbean classics.

Over-water day beds made from local Belizean hardwood are available to rent either for half- or full-day, and hammocks are placed in the water offering plenty of room for guests to spread out and relax.

The Beach Club also features a covered upper deck with a view of Ambergris Caye’s sprawling landscape and lush greenery.

The Beach Club also offers full bathrooms,and a plethora of modern conveniences.

Mahogany Bay is situated 1.5 miles south of San Pedro, the only town on Ambergris Caye, and just 20 minutes from San Pedro Airport.

— CJ

The post A New Beach Club in Belize appeared first on Caribbean Journal.

Delta Set to Launch Daily New York-St Thomas Flights

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Delta Air Lines is set to relaunch an important service for the United States Virgin Islands this month.

The carrier is launching daily nonstop flights between New York and St Thomas, with the expanded service set to begin May 24.

The move has come as the result of strong bookings on Delta’s popular Atlanta-St Thomas route, according to United States Virgin Islands Tourism Commissioner Beverly Nicholson-Doty.

It’s a big lift for a destination that has been steadily recovering from last year’s storms.

Indeed, several of St Thomas’ top place to stay have reopened, including the Marriott Frenchman’s Cove resort, while St Thomas’ Secret Harbour is planning to reopen June 1. The Ritz-Carlton, St Thomas will likely reopen in the fourth quarter of 2018.

The Red Hook ferry to St John.

The island’s beloved Bolongo Bay is also plotting a June relaunch.

The new Delta flights come as several other carriers have also been ramping up their service to the US Virgin Islands, including Spirit, which has added daily service from Fort Lauderdale to St Thomas, and JetBlue which earlier this year added additional flights between San Juan and St Thomas.

The Marriott Frenchman’s Cove.

They also provide a boost for the British Virgin Islands, easily accessible via ferry and short flights from St Thomas to Tortola’s Beef Island Airport.

Delta’s latest expansion comes after the carrier announced a wave of new routes to destinations including Jamaica, The Bahamas and Haiti.

The post Delta Set to Launch Daily New York-St Thomas Flights appeared first on Caribbean Journal.

A New Caribbean Beach Resort to Try: Skylark Negril

By Alexander Britell

Images by Michael Condran

There’s a new Caribbean beach resort on the scene — and it’s instantly one of the region’s hippest places to stay.

This is the Skylark Negril, a Caribbean beach resort that is the sister property to the well-known Rockhouse boutique hotel on the cliffs of Negril.

Skylark, which already launched in soft opening, is planning a grand opening in June that will include the first-ever Caribbean outpost of New York institution Miss Lily’s.

caribbean beach resort

Skylark is a collection of beachfront studios set on 220 feet of beachfront on Negril’s famous Seven Mile Beach.

The aesthetic aims to take travelers back to the jet-set days, with a retro glamour and a bohemian-style beach scene that hearkens back to the Negril of the 60s and 70s.

“We have always wanted to complement the cliffside experience our guests enjoy at Rockhouse with a prime beachfront property,” said Paul Salmon, who is the chairman of both Rockhouse and Skylark. “It was only a matter of time before we found the perfect spot, and when this location presented itself we knew the time was now.”

caribbean beach resort

There are 28 rooms in all (two of which are ocean-view and on the beach), with the remainder of the rooms featuring furnished balconies overlooking Skylark’s interior garden.

Every room has a four-post king bed, a work desk, a minibar, bluetooth speakers and bath essentials.

There’s a signature Skylark Spa led by Linda Hall, along with a dedicated sound program that will feature a rotating selection of iconic Jamaican music.

caribbean beach resort

And yes, there’s Miss Lily’s, which features the culinary team led by Adam Schop and Kingston’s Andre Fowles, with a wide selection of rums from around the Caribbean and nighttime DJ sessions focusing on the latest reggae and dancehall music.

“We can’t wait to offer our guests another way to experience Jamaica’s natural beauty and culture, and deepen our commitment to our local community,” Salmon said. “It is also only fitting that we are bringing Miss Lily’s home and celebrating the island’s beautiful people and rich culture, which have always been a constant inspiration to me.”

It all adds up to what is a very exciting new Caribbean beach resort.

For more, visit Skylark.

— CJ

The post A New Caribbean Beach Resort to Try: Skylark Negril appeared first on Caribbean Journal.

The Caribbean’s Best Yachting Destination: The BVI

By Alexander Britell

It’s long been the Mecca of yachting in the Caribbean, a bucket list destination that has sent a siren song to travelers and adventurers around the world.

And here’s the good news: The British Virgin Islands is still number one.

When it comes to Caribbean yachting, one thing is certain: the British Virgin Islands is still the best yachting destination in the Caribbean.

The territory has seen a remarkable recovery in the wake of last year’s storms, and that means the British Virgin Islands’ 60 islands and cays are ready for you to discover — or rediscover — them.

The BVI’s charter yacht sector has more than 1,800 boats and cabins available, according to data from the British Virgin Islands Tourist Board, with all of the big charter names back in business, from MarineMax to The Moorings.

MarineMax boats at Nanny Cay.

And all of the things that made the BVI such a sought-after sailing spot for so long are back again.

Yes, you can down Painkillers at the Soggy Dollar Bar and sample Foxy’s Fire Water on Jost Van Dyke; you can set up shop on Sandy Spit, or spend a day on the waterslide at Scrub Island, visit one of the Caribbean’s legendary rum bars at Cooper Island, or have an unforgettable lunch on Norman Island.

Cooper Island.

And, perhaps more importantly, the Willy T has made a triumphant return, this time off the coast of Peter Island.

Now, the BVI has announced a major push to help draw travelers to its seas this summer, with “Summer Sails,” a new promotion that puts the spotlight on the yachting sector.

The Baths in Virgin Gorda.

The promotion includes discounts on seven-day sailing charters, with visitors also getting VIP clearance upon arrival, including expedited customs and immigration — in other words, more time to spend exploring.

The famous beach bar at the Anegada Reef.

But the BVI has long been about more than just the water, and yes, Summer Sails also applies to stays on land, meaning if you want to, for example, spend a beach-filled getaway on Anegada, this is the way to do it.

For more information, visit Summer Sails, and use the code BVISS18. Just make sure you hurry, as the promotion is limited to 100 bookings.

– CJ

The post The Caribbean’s Best Yachting Destination: The BVI appeared first on Caribbean Journal.

Jamaica Launches Major New Solar Project

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Jamaica’s green push is continuing with plans for another new solar energy park in the country.

Eight Rivers Energy Company Limited has commenced work on a new 37-megawatt solar energy plant, slated for completion by late 2018 or early 2019, according to Jamaica Energy Minister Andrew Wheatley.

The Jamaica Public Service Company had signed a 20-year power purchase agreement with Eight Rivers in 2017 to supply electricity generated from the park to the national grid.

The project is also notably run by an all-female leadership team.

“This project represents the first Jamaican female-led major Renewable Energy Infrastructure Development. We are very pleased to see that the women are taking charge and they are providing the energy to drive real growth and prosperity,” Wheatley said.

It’s the latest solar project on an island that has moved to the forefront of the Caribbean green energy movement, both in wind and solar production.

The post Jamaica Launches Major New Solar Project appeared first on Caribbean Journal.

Caribbean Business – 8 Things To Know About The PDVSA’s Caribbean Link

By NAN Business Editor

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. May 11, 2018: The big news on the business front this week in the Americas was that U.S. oil firm ConocoPhillips moved to take up the Caribbean assets of Venezuela’s state-run PDVSA to enforce a $2 billion arbitration award over a decade-oil nationalization of its projects in the South American country. So what’s the PDVSA and how is it linked to the Caribbean? Here are 8 fast facts:

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1: PDVSA stands for Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A. and is Venezuela’s state-owned oil and natural gas company founded on January 1, 1976 with the nationalization of the South American nation’s oil industry.

2: Since its founding, it has dominated the oil industry of Venezuela in exploration, production, refining and exporting oil, as well as exploration and production of natural gas.

3: In 2004, the Venezuelan government created Petrocaribe to promote energy cooperation and integration between Venezuela and a number of states in the Caribbean region.

4: This move helped Venezuela’s PDVSA begin to purchase assets and stakes in facilities through joint ventures (JV’s) in most Caribbean and Central American nations including Cuba, Jamaica and the Dominican Republic.

5: It also participated in the construction of storage tank farms in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, St. Kitts and Nevis and the distribution of gasoline or domestic gas through partnerships in Dominica.

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6: Venezuela supplied the Petrocaribe member states with daily shipments of oil and products, offering payment facilities and discounts, with the ultimate goal of displacing U.S. and European oil companies throughout the region while promoting the socialist ideology in the zone.

7: Since Nicolas Maduro came to power after the death of Chavez, this mechanism has been losing steam as oil prices went down and the Venezuelan economy began collapsing. This has led to it gradually losing market share in the Caribbean, unable to sustain its diverse JV’s with Petrocaribe states.

8: Now is in danger of also losing its decades old facilities leased Isla refinery on the island of Curaçao and its fully owned BOPEC tank farm and terminal in Bonaire which is crucial for exports to China.

9: And despite having the largest non-conventional oil reserves in the world, Venezuela is fast becoming a less relevant oil producer and could see itself overtaken by its neighbor Guyana, where oil finds continue unabated.


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The post Caribbean Business – 8 Things To Know About The PDVSA’s Caribbean Link appeared first on Caribbean and Latin America Daily News.

The Most Wanted Women From The Caribbean

By NAN Staff Writer

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. May 4, 2018: Six women from the Caribbean are on the Interpol’s Wanted Persons list, making them the region’s most wanted. The six are from The Bahamas, Cuba, Suriname, The Dominican Republic and Guyana. They are:

1: Nicole Russell

most-wanted-russell-from-the-bahamas
Nicole Russell

Nicole Russell, 29, of The Bahamas is wanted by U.S. authorities for aggravated assault, aggravated battery and possession of a knife during a felony.

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2: Maria Eugênia Olmes Garcia

cuba-most-wanted
Maria Eugênia Olmes Garcia

Cuban national Maria Eugênia Olmes Garcia, 74, is wanted by Brazilian authorities for criminal association money laundering.

3: Niurka Apolinar Pedro Silva

cuba-most-wanted-woman

Niurka Apolinar Pedro Silva, 53, of Guane Pinar Del Rio, Cuba, is also wanted by Brazilian authorities for criminal association money laundering.

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4: Elizabeth Cleydy Peralta Marte

DR-most-wanted

Elizabeth Cleydy Peralta Marte, 27, of the Dominican Republic, is wanted by authorities in Argentina for counterfeit money.

5: Julie Elizabeth Avel

wanted-guyana-criminal

Julie Elizabeth Avel, 64, who has both Guyanese and German nationality, is wanted by authorities in Uruguay for homicide.

6: Patrícia Terezinha Miguel Bom

suriname-wanted-female-criminal

Patrícia Terezinha Miguel Bom, 43, of Suriname, is wanted by authorities in Brazil for international drug trafficking.

If you have any information on these wanted women, contact your national or local police.

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The post The Most Wanted Women From The Caribbean appeared first on Caribbean and Latin America Daily News.

Jail For Chinese Billionaire Who Bribed Caribbean Born UN Officials

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Mon. May 14, 2018: A Chinese businessman who bribed two Caribbean-born UN officials will have to spend four years in jail a New York judge has ruled.

Ng Lap Seng, aka “David Ng,” 69, Chairman of Macau Real Estate Development Company will serve 48 months in prison and three years of supervised release for his role in a scheme to bribe two Caribbean-born United Nations ambassadors to obtain support to build a conference center in Macau that would host, among other events, the annual United Nations Global South-South Development Expo.

invest-caribbean-now

The sentencing comes after Ng was convicted on July 27, 2017, after a five-week trial of two counts of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, one count of paying bribes and gratuities, one count of money laundering and two counts of conspiracy.

U.S. District Judge Vernon S. Broderick of the Southern District of New York also ordered Ng to pay a $1 million fine and $302, 977 in restitution to the United Nations $1.5 million in forfeiture money judgment.

Ng must report to the U.S. Marshals Service by July 10th to start his prison sentence.

According to the evidence presented at trial, Ng, the chairman of the Sun Kian Ip Group, conspired with and paid bribes to Francis Lorenzo, a former UN Ambassador from the Dominican Republic, and John W. Ashe, the late former Permanent Representative of Antigua and Barbuda to the UN and the 68th President of the UN General Assembly (UNGA).

The trial evidence showed that Ng bribed Ambassador Ashe and Ambassador Lorenzo in exchange for their agreement to use their official positions to advance Ng’s interest in obtaining formal UN support for the Macau Conference Center.

As the evidence demonstrated at trial, Ng paid the ambassadors in a variety of forms.  For example, Ng appointed Ambassador Lorenzo as the President of South-South News, a New York-based organization — funded by Ng, which described itself as a media platform dedicated to advancing the implementation of the UN’s Millennium Development Goals.

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Ng provided bribe payments to Ambassador Lorenzo through South-South News by transmitting payments from Macau to a company in the Dominican Republic affiliated with Ambassador Lorenzo’s brother.

Through South-South News, Ng also made payments to Ambassador Ashe, including to Ambassador Ashe’s wife, who was paid in her capacity as a “consultant” to South-South News, and to an account that Ambassador Ashe had established, purportedly to raise money for his role as President of UNGA.

According to the trial evidence, one of the actions that the ambassadors took in exchange for bribe payments, to advance Ng’s objectives, was to submit an official document to the then-UN Secretary-General in support of the Macau Conference Center.

The UN Document claimed that there was a need to build the Macau Conference Center to support the UN’s global development goals.

Ambassador Ashe, aided by Ambassador Lorenzo, initially submitted the UN Document to the UNGA in or about late February 2012.  More than a year later, at Ng’s behest, the Ambassadors revised the UN Document to refer specifically to Ng’s company, the Macau Real Estate Development Company, as a partner in the Macau Conference Center project.

The UN Document requested that the Secretary-General circulate the UN Document “as a document of the 66th session of the General Assembly,” under a specific item of the official UNGA agenda.  The Secretary-General followed this request, thereby making the UN Document an official part of the UNGA record.

Lorenzo pleaded guilty to various charges, including bribery, and are awaiting sentencing.  Ashe passed away in 2016 and the charges against him were dismissed.


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The post Jail For Chinese Billionaire Who Bribed Caribbean Born UN Officials appeared first on Caribbean and Latin America Daily News.

Jerusalem embassy: Are other countries planning to move?

The US officially opened its new embassy on 14 May to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the creation of Israel.
Colombia’s ex-fighters taught skills for peace

Farc guerillas have returned home, but they are often illiterate and unemployed and in urgent need of new skills for jobs.
Venezuela crisis: Cereal maker Kellogg ends operations

The US-based firm blames the economy but President Maduro says workers will take over the factory.
Venezuela seizes Kellogg cereal factory after closure

Venezuela president Nicolas Maduro says the plant has been handed to workers and will continue output.
Russia World Cup: Argentina ‘flirting manual’ panned

Argentina’s football association is panned for giving advice about flirting in Russia.
Trump: Immigrant gangs ‘animals, not people’

The president says the US has the “dumbest immigration laws in the world” and he wants that to change.
Canada proposes sweeping law to block foreign interference in elections

The new bill would restrict political advertising and force political parties to reveal what voter information they’ve collected.


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7:51 AM 5/17/2018 – Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor | Canada proposes sweeping law to block foreign interference in elections | Their Russian-spy parents were fake Americans. Now they want to be real Canadians – Front Page Review

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Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Wall Street Journal


Wall Street Journal
Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor
Wall Street Journal
The Justice Department is attempting to replace the top federal prosecutor in Puerto Rico, who has been quietly campaigning to keep her job, according to people familiar with the matter. The Justice Department is close to proposing a candidate to 

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Their Russian-spy parents were fake Americans. Now they want to be real Canadians.

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In Brief – Saved Stories

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In Mexico, frustration with Trump grows as relations reach a ‘defining moment’
In Cuba, the great American tourism boom turns to bust
Blackouts, hyperinflation, hunger: Maduro faces reelection as Venezuela deteriorates
Venezuela political prisoners ‘revolt’ at Caracas jail
Ricardo Rosselló – Google News: Links for 5/17/18 – National Catholic Reporter
Links for 5/17/18 – National Catholic Reporter
Must-Do for Florida’s Midterm Candidates: A Stop in Puerto Rico. Or Three.
Must-Do for Florida’s Midterm Candidates: A Stop in Puerto Rico. Or Three. – New York Times
el nueva dia opinion – Google News: Valiosa herramienta para el desarrollo pleno del país – El Nuevo Dia.com
Opioid Overdoses Are Rising Faster Among Latinos Than Whites Or Blacks. Why? – Washington Post
Old San Juan Jewelers is Painesville’s latest start-up (photos, video) – cleveland.com
[DETAILS] The joint tentative settlement is not aligned with the New Fiscal Plan for Puerto Rico, according to the Financial Oversight and Management Board and the Puerto Rico Fiscal Agency & Financial Advisory Authority: https://go.cb.pr/2rHeyZ9
Assured Guaranty asks FOMB to reconsider certification of Fiscal Plan for Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico Treasury Department’s account balance decreases to $2.65B
Puerto Rico Rejects Bondholders’ $10B Sales Tax Deal – Law360
Puerto Rican grocery store serves up record breaking dish to celebrate anniversary – Guinness World Records
Cocaine valued at over $15M seized from boat off Puerto Rico – The Province
Two weeks before hurricane season, Puerto Rico is not ready … – NBCNews.com
Why Puerto Rico deserves statehood – NBCNews.com
Nicaragua unrest: Protesters confront Ortega in televised debate
Gang crackdowns have increased arrests, deportations of Latino, immigrant youth, says report “What we’re seeing is an addiction to policing based on profiling and stereotyping people, instead of focusing on evidence,” ” https://www.nbcnews.com/news/latino/gang-crackdowns-has-increased-arrests-deportations-latino-immigrant-youth-says-n874766 …

Saved Stories 

Saved Stories – None
Canada proposes sweeping law to block foreign interference in elections

The new bill would restrict political advertising and force political parties to reveal what voter information they’ve collected.
Their Russian-spy parents were fake Americans. Now they want to be real Canadians.

Highest court will decide whether to rule on a case that the government argued will impact “the integrity of Canadian citizenship.”
In Mexico, frustration with Trump grows as relations reach a ‘defining moment’

Mexican officials are reviewing bilateral programs and have quietly canceled some meetings with U.S. counterparts.
In Cuba, the great American tourism boom turns to bust

The slowdown in tourism comes amid a worsening of relations between the U.S. and Cuba.
Blackouts, hyperinflation, hunger: Maduro faces reelection as Venezuela deteriorates

As citizens head to polls Sunday, for many there’s no water for toilets, no buses and no hope for change.
Venezuela political prisoners ‘revolt’ at Caracas jail

Anxious relatives gather after reports of an uprising in a former shopping centre now used as a jail.
Ricardo Rosselló – Google News: Links for 5/17/18 – National Catholic Reporter
 

Links for 5/17/18
National Catholic Reporter
The Susan B. Anthony List, a pro-Republican group that pretends to be a pro-life group, has announced that President Donald Trump will be speaking at its annual gala next week. The head of the Susan B. Anthony List, Marjorie Dannenfelser, recently …

 Ricardo Rosselló – Google News

Links for 5/17/18 – National Catholic Reporter
 

Links for 5/17/18
National Catholic Reporter
At America, the editors rightly wonder why the protests in Puerto Rico — and indeed the on-going crisis there more generally — have not garnered more public attention. They are correct in asserting that the proposed austerity measures make no sense 
Must-Do for Florida’s Midterm Candidates: A Stop in Puerto Rico. Or Three.

Florida candidates have traveled repeatedly to the island, a sign Puerto Ricans have become an increasingly important constituency.
Must-Do for Florida’s Midterm Candidates: A Stop in Puerto Rico. Or Three. – New York Times
 


New York Times
Must-Do for Florida’s Midterm Candidates: A Stop in Puerto Rico. Or Three.
New York Times
More than a million Puerto Ricans already lived in the state before the hurricane, and another 56,000 joined them in the first six months after Maria, according to an estimate by the Center for Puerto Rican Studies at Hunter College in New York  and more » 

el nueva dia opinion – Google News: Valiosa herramienta para el desarrollo pleno del país – El Nuevo Dia.com
 

Valiosa herramienta para el desarrollo pleno del país
El Nuevo Dia.com
Puerto Rico cuenta, por primera vez, con un Informe sobre Desarrollo Humano que se ofrece como herramienta para redirigirla transformación del país hacia un progreso pleno que tenga a las personas como centro. El estudio confirma lo que loshuracanes …

 el nueva dia opinion – Google News

Opioid Overdoses Are Rising Faster Among Latinos Than Whites Or Blacks. Why? – Washington Post
 


Washington Post
Opioid Overdoses Are Rising Faster Among Latinos Than Whites Or Blacks. Why?
Washington Post
Opioid overdose deaths among Latinos are surging nationwide as well. While the overall death toll is still higher for whites, it’s increasing faster for Latinos and blacks, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Latino 
Old San Juan Jewelers is Painesville’s latest start-up (photos, video) – cleveland.com
 


cleveland.com
Old San Juan Jewelers is Painesville’s latest start-up (photos, video)
cleveland.com
At around 4,000 people, they make up about 20 percent of Painesville’s population — enough to draw businesses that will cater to the Hispanic community. The Pagans are Puerto Rican and their first store on Clark Avenue in the Ohio City neighborhood 
[DETAILS] The joint tentative settlement is not aligned with the New Fiscal Plan for Puerto Rico, according to the Financial Oversight and Management Board and the Puerto Rico Fiscal Agency & Financial Advisory Authority: https://go.cb.pr/2rHeyZ9

[DETAILS] The joint tentative settlement is not aligned with the New Fiscal Plan for Puerto Rico, according to the Financial Oversight and Management Board and the Puerto Rico Fiscal Agency & Financial Advisory Authority: https://go.cb.pr/2rHeyZ9General Obligation and Cofina Creditors reach tentative deal

Puerto Rico’s debt game is on the verge of its first ruck to pawn move with the final tweaks of a deal between the Commonwealth General Obligation bondholders and Puerto Rico Sales Tax Financing Corp. (Cofina) creditors about to be sealed.
Assured Guaranty asks FOMB to reconsider certification of Fiscal Plan for Puerto Rico

Claims the Oversight Board formulated again a fiscal plan without appropriate transparency of information and assumptions, and without collaboration with creditors
Puerto Rico Treasury Department’s account balance decreases to $2.65B

The government has yet to answer the question as to whether the balance of the TSA account has affected the the island’s ability to receive community disaster loans
Puerto Rico Rejects Bondholders’ $10B Sales Tax Deal – Law360
 

Puerto Rico Rejects Bondholders’ $10B Sales Tax Deal
Law360
Law360 (May 14, 2018, 8:41 PM EDT) — Two groups of Puerto Rican bondholders on Monday announced a proposal to cut the island’s debt by $10 billion by putting a portion of sales tax revenue in a trust to be split between them, but the island’s 
Puerto Rican grocery store serves up record breaking dish to celebrate anniversary – Guinness World Records
 


Guinness World Records
Puerto Rican grocery store serves up record breaking dish to celebrate anniversary
Guinness World Records 
Puerto Rican grocery store Supermercados Selectos has celebrated its 40 anniversary by becoming the first supermarket in the country to set
 
“We feel proud and grateful because it was an arduous job – it’s an honour to place once again Puerto Rico in a prominent position once again by becoming a supermarket who has broken
 a Guinness World Records title, specifically for the Largest serving of arroz con gandules, a delicacy in the … 

title,” Mayreg Rodríguez, Executive … 

Cocaine valued at over $15M seized from boat off Puerto Rico – The Province
 

Cocaine valued at over $15M seized from boat off Puerto Rico
The Province
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Authorities in Puerto Rico say they found cocaine worth an estimated $15.6 million on a fishing boat off the southwestern coast of the U.S. island territory. U.S. Border Patrol against and Puerto Rican police searched the boat 
Two weeks before hurricane season, Puerto Rico is not ready … – NBCNews.com
 


NBCNews.com
Two weeks before hurricane season, Puerto Rico is not ready …
NBCNews.com
Hurricane season starts in two weeks and a coalition of groups warned Puerto Rico is not ready, questioning the federal government’s response.
Why aren’t we paying attention to Puerto Rico?America Magazine
Meet the couple bringing Earthships to hurricane-hit Puerto Rico …Aljazeera.com
NRDC Helping to Seed Resilient Energy in Puerto RicoNatural Resources Defense Council
Labor Notes– Carroll County Times National Post –Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News
all 43 news articles »
Why Puerto Rico deserves statehood – NBCNews.com
 


NBCNews.com
Why Puerto Rico deserves statehood
NBCNews.com
The months-long recovery effort in Puerto Rico post-Hurricane Maria has reignited the debate around statehood for the U.S. territory. Jose Fuentes, former Attorney General for Puerto Rico, explains why it’s time to make Puerto Rico the 51st state.May  
Meet the couple bringing Earthships to hurricane-hit Puerto RicoAljazeera.com
The Sustainable Mindset That’s Helping Puerto Rico Rebuild In The Wake Of Tragedymindbodygreen.com
Why aren’t we paying attention to Puerto Rico?America Magazine
Natural Resources Defense Council
all 58 news articles »
Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Wall Street Journal
 


Wall Street Journal
Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor
Wall Street Journal
The Justice Department is attempting to replace the top federal prosecutor in Puerto Rico, who has been quietly campaigning to keep her job, according to people familiar with the matter. The Justice Department is close to proposing a candidate to 
Nicaragua unrest: Protesters confront Ortega in televised debate

President Daniel Ortega and his opponents trade accusations in a heated televised debate.
Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez – NOTICEL noticel.com/ahora/justicia…
 

Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez – NOTICEL noticel.com/ahora/justicia…


Posted by mikenov on Thursday, May 17th, 2018 12:53am
Gang crackdowns have increased arrests, deportations of Latino, immigrant youth, says report “What we’re seeing is an addiction to policing based on profiling and stereotyping people, instead of focusing on evidence,” ” https://www.nbcnews.com/news/latino/gang-crackdowns-has-increased-arrests-deportations-latino-immigrant-youth-says-n874766 …
 

Gang crackdowns have increased arrests, deportations of Latino, immigrant youth, says report “What we’re seeing is an addiction to policing based on profiling and stereotyping people, instead of focusing on evidence,” ” https://www.nbcnews.com/news/latino/gang-crackdowns-has-increased-arrests-deportations-latino-immigrant-youth-says-n874766 …

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AlJazeeraEnglish’s YouTube Videos: First doses of new Ebola vaccine reach DRC amid outbreak
 

From: AlJazeeraEnglish
Duration: 01:56

An Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has spread from rural areas to a city, prompting concern it will be more difficult to control.

The first urban case has been confirmed in the northwestern city of Mbandaka, where one million people live.

It is near the Bikoro area, where the outbreak is centred.

So far, 23 people have died from the disease.

Al Jazeera’s Scheherazade Gaffoor reports.

– Subscribe to our channel: http://aje.io/AJSubscribe
– Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/AJEnglish
– Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aljazeera
– Check our website: https://www.aljazeera.com/

AlJazeeraEnglish’s YouTube Videos

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WSJ.com: World News: A New North Korea Solution: A Down Payment on Denuclearization

A partial surrender of nuclear arms and missiles by North Korea could help break a deadlock between Washington and Pyongyang over how to begin the process of denuclearization.WSJ.com: World News

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Saved Stories – The News and Times: Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez – NOTICEL noticel.com/ahora/justicia…
The News and Times of Puerto Rico: Senate Panel Backs Conclusion That Moscow Attempted to Boost Trump
mikenov on Twitter: Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez – NOTICEL noticel.com/ahora/justicia…
mikenov on Twitter: 8:32 PM 5/16/2018 – Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Front Page Review pr-us.org/2018/05/17/832…
The News and Times of Puerto Rico: 8:32 PM 5/16/2018 – Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Front Page Review
mikenov on Twitter: The Justice Department is attempting to replace the top prosecutor in Puerto Rico as concerns rise regarding about potential public-contracting fraud wsj.com/articles/justi… via @WSJ
mikenov on Twitter: At a Crossroads, Part II: No More Shadows: The Future of Intelligence Oversight in Congress @WarOnTheRocks warontherocks.com/2018/05/at-a-c…
Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com: 7:57 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review
mikenov on Twitter: 7:57 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review pr-us.org/2018/05/16/757…
The News and Times of Puerto Rico: 7:57 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review
Public RSS-Feed of Mike Nova. Created with the PIXELMECHANICS ‘GPlusRSS-Webtool’ at http://gplusrss.com: 7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA
mikenov on Twitter: 7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA pr-us.org/2018/05/16/716…
The News and Times of Puerto Rico: 7:16 AM 5/16/2018 – Front Page Review: Comisión del Senado aprobará Haspel para dirigir la CIA
Saved Stories – The News and Times: RT @cnni: Gaza has been through much conflict and political upheaval since the end of World War II. Here’s a two-minute history: https://t.…
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mikenov on Twitter: RT @Forbes: Amazon’s Jeff Bezos–worth $133B– is No.1 on the World’s 10 Most Powerful CEOs of 2018 on.forbes.com/6016Derc4 https://t.co/Nk…
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mikenov on Twitter: RT @noticias247pr: [REPORTAJE] Rosselló intentará mitigar el aumento de la gasolina La inesperada salida de Estados Unidos del Tratado de I…
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7:29 AM 5/17/2018 – Senate Panel Backs Conclusion That Moscow Attempted to Boost Trump

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WSJ.com: World News: Senate Panel Backs Conclusion That Moscow Attempted to Boost Trump

A Republican-led Senate committee backed U.S. intelligence agencies’ finding that Moscow attempted to boost Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, breaking with a GOP-led House panel that examined the same material.WSJ.com: World News

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8:32 PM 5/16/2018 – Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Front Page Review

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Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor

Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor – Wall Street Journal
Wed, 16 May 2018 16:55:00 GMT


Wall Street Journal
Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor
Wall Street Journal
The Justice Department is attempting to replace the top federal prosecutor in Puerto Rico, who has been quietly campaigning to keep her job, according to people familiar with the matter. The Justice Department is close to proposing a candidate to 

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Attaque au couteau à Paris: Khamzat Azimov, l’assaillant, était fiché S – L’Express
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Paris knife attack: Counterterror police hunt for motive as friends and family of knifeman are detained | London Evening Standard

 

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Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez – Google Search

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Story image for Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez from Wall Street Journal

Justice Department Seeks Ouster of Top Puerto Rico Prosecutor

Wall Street Journal7 hours ago
The Justice Department is close to proposing a candidate to succeed Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez, the U.S. attorney for the district of Puerto …
Story image for Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez from NotiCel

Justicia federal busca sustituir a Rosa Emilia Rodríguez

NotiCel5 hours ago
El Departamento de Justicia federal está buscando sustituir a la jefa de Fiscalía en Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez Vélez, quien lleva casi …
Story image for Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez from El Nuevo Dia.com

DEA arresta a una agente de la Policía destacada en el Seguro del …

El Nuevo <a href=”http://Dia.com” rel=”nofollow”>Dia.com</a>4 hours ago
… jefa de la Fiscalía federal en Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez Vélez. … el administrador de dicha agencia, Jesús Rodríguez Rosa, aclaró …

Former Puerto Rico DOE teacher found guilty of child exploitation

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement NewsroomApr 30, 2018
… Cotto-Flores guilty of robbing a child’s innocence,” said United States Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico, Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez.
At a Crossroads, Part II: No More Shadows: The Future of Intelligence Oversight in Congress

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