From Volume 38, Issue 19 of EIR Online, Published May 13, 2011

Ibero-American News Digest

Health Emergency Declared in Colombia, as Flooding Continues

May 3 (EIRNS)—Hector Zambrano, Bogotá's Health Secretary, declared a health emergency for Colombia's capital city today, in the face of unprecedented rains and flooding which have caused sewers to overflow in some parts of the city, posing a risk of epidemics.

It has been raining non-stop in most of the country for nearly a year, another case in the pattern of planet-wide extreme weather and seismic activity. The damage in Colombia has been extensive, with 418 deaths, 140,000 homes destroyed, and at least 3 million victims/evacuees overall. The rains have also damaged 2.6 million acres of land, killed 115,000 head of cattle, and caused another 1.4 million to be relocated. One runway at the El Dorado Airport is also flooded, and water from the overflowing Bogotá River nearby threatens other runways. The National Weather Institute foresees heavy rains through June.

In one part of the Fontibón section of Bogotá, rains have caused the sewers to overflow, filling the streets with foul-smelling waters and human waste. Efforts by the Water and Sanitation Co. to pump the water out of the district have failed, which is also the case in other affected districts. Residents of the Fontibón district have taken to the streets, protesting that the Water and Sanitation Co. lied about having the necessary equipment to pump out the filthy water, and in any case, didn't act in time.

Zambrano warned that people in the affected areas of the city are at risk of contracting respiratory and skin illnesses, as well as dengue, malaria, or other infectious diseases, due to the contaminated water. And, he added, the threat isn't limited to Bogotá: "The whole country is at risk."

In a videoconference with students at La Gran Colombia university in Bogotá and the Universidad de Medellin on May 5, EIR Ibero-American Editor Dennis Small addressed the methodology required to respond to such weather-caused natural disasters, in his presentation on the global economic crisis, the galactic challenge facing humanity, and the underlying issue of sense-perception vs. creativity. If you want to address the flooding in Bogotá, Small told the students, "let's start with the simple reality. As you may have noticed, Bogotá is located in Colombia; Colombia is in South America; South America is on the planet Earth; the Earth is part of the Solar System; and the Solar System is part of our galaxy. That's our starting point." The discussion provoked quite some intellectual turmoil. As one student put it: "I guess to be a good economist you have to know physics."

Argentines Reject Latest Royal Provocation Over Malvinas

May 5 (EIRNS)—Argentine Congressman Julio César Martínez, head of the Defense Commission of the Lower House of Congress, announced on May 5 that he is preparing to introduce a bill on May 18, repudiating the reportedly planned four-month deployment of Prince William, second in line for the British throne, to serve in the empire's military force occupying Argentina's Malvinas Islands. According to a report from London, appearing shortly after Prince Willie's wedding, his deployment to the South Atlantic islands which the British Crown continues to claim, occupy, and call the Falklands, is planned for next year, near the 30th anniversary of the Malvinas War.

Should this news be confirmed, Martínez said, "we are looking at another act of British provocation ... which is an insult to Argentines."

There are many in Argentina who still refuse to bow before the British Empire. Disgusted by the deluge of media coverage of the royal wedding, veterans of Argentina's 1982 Malvinas War against Great Britain took to the streets to parody the wedding in downtown Buenos Aires on the day it took place.

A carriage rode through the capitol's streets carrying the "royal couple"—one person dressed like the prince, and the "bride" dressed in white, sporting a moustache and a hairy chest—exclaiming as they went, "Fuck You, Argentina! Fuck the World!" The parody intersected an early May Day march, whose members greatly enjoyed the royal mocking by the Malvinas veterans.

The veterans pointed out that, while international media televised the royal wedding to the world, in Argentina, several TV networks (Channel 13 and C5N in particular) slavishly conferred extraordinary importance on the event, as if nothing else of significance were occurring in the world. No one should ever forget ongoing "British atrocities in the Malvinas, Kosovo, and Afghanistan," and in other places around the world, the veterans reminded Argentines, in interviews and leaflets.

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