Nicaragua is Central America’s poorest country, yet its children aren’t fleeing to the border along with their Salvadoran, Guatemalan and Honduran neighbors. Experts say that’s because of the country’s low crime rate, effective police force and unique migration history.
Given his background, what American Jewish leader Rabbi Henry Siegman has to say about Israel’s founding in 1948 through the current assault on Gaza may surprise you. From 1978 to 1994, Siegman served as executive director of the American Jewish Congress, long described as one of the nation’s “big three” Jewish organizations along with the American Jewish Committee and the Anti-Defamation League.
Born in Germany three years before the Nazis came to power in 1933, Siegman’s family eventually moved to the United States. His father was a leader of the European Zionist movement that pushed for the creation of a Jewish state. In New York, Siegman studied the religion and was ordained as an Orthodox rabbi by Yeshiva Torah Vodaas, later becoming head of the Synagogue Council of America. After his time at the American Jewish Congress, Siegman became a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. He now serves as president of the U.S./Middle East Project.
In the first of our two-part interview, Siegman discusses the assault on Gaza, the myths surrounding Israel’s founding in 1948, and his own background as a German-Jewish refugee who fled Nazi occupation to later become a leading American Jewish voice and now vocal critic of Israel’s policies in the Occupied Territories. “When one thinks that this is what is necessary for Israel to survive, that the Zionist dream is based on the repeated slaughter of innocents on a scale that we’re watching these days on television, that is really a profound, profound crisis — and should be a profound crisis in the thinking of all of us who were committed to the establishment of the state and to its success,” Siegman says.
Responding to Israel’s U.S.-backed claim that its assault on Gaza is necessary because no country would tolerate the rocket fire from militants in Gaza, Siegman says: “What undermines this principle is that no country and no people would live the way that Gazans have been made to live. … The question of the morality of Israel’s action depends, in the first instance, on the question, couldn’t Israel be doing something [to prevent] this disaster that is playing out now, in terms of the destruction of human life? Couldn’t they have done something that did not require that cost? And the answer is, sure, they could have ended the occupation.”
None of the people interviewed for this story would necessarily admit they are bona fide fresas — but all admit the term and its characteristics have come to mind living in North Texas. And all agree that they are learning about something once thought of as foreign: humility. Part of the reason? Mexico’s elite is usually walled off from the rest of the world, living in fortresses with private drivers, gardeners and personal chalanes, gofers. They live in their own bubble, as did many relocated fresas. Consider Fernando Krasovsky, U.S. manager of Bestel USA, a telecommunication and technology information firm that is part of Mexico’s giant Televisa network. He and his family moved to North Texas two years ago after a brazen robbery in which a gunman walked up to his chauffeur-driven car during a standstill rush hour on the Periférico, (the main freeway) and demanded his watch, wallet and cuff links, which he promptly handed over. As he now chows down beef tacos at Taco Diner — the touches of silver around his temples giving him a distinguished, elegant look — Krasovsky embraces the sense of security in North Texas and relief for his family but admits life post-Mexico is an adjustment. He recalls one incident with his brother, visiting from Mexico City. As they drove the upscale neighborhood in Lewisville, where his family now lives, Krasovsky dared him: “Want to see something unusual?” “Sure,” the brother replied. They drove past a neighbor who was taking out his own garbage. The man, Krasovsky told his brother, owns 29 Ferraris. “We just stared, shocked,” Krasovsky recalls, brushing crumbs off his light-brown sports coat. “You don’t see that in Mexico. At least, not us.”
A peek into the world of Mexico’s financial-elite diaspora in Dallas, TX, a sharp contrast to the working-class diaspora in other regions.
On August 2 at 10am, the MIND Research Institute will host a free MATH Fun Fair at the UCI Bren Center. To support,
Sergio C. Muñoz
features the life story of María Cervantes, the Director of Community Relations and Outreach at MIND. This is her immigration story from Zamora, Michoácan to Santa Ana, California to the MIND Research Institute.
Production Notes from Sergio:
Very rarely do we get the opportunity to showcase the depth of the indigenous cultures of México. On this radio broadcast, I hip listeners to the history and culture of Zamora, Michoácan up until the point when María Cervantes is born and then it becomes her story.
The indigenous tarasco people called the area now known as Zamora, the land of cienegas. Cienegas are a spring at the foot of a mountain, in a canyon, or on the edge of a grassland where groundwater bubbles to the surface. Through their language of Purépecha, they were a deep culture with creation philosophies on Curicáveri, the one who burns, as the master creator. Father of Tata Jurihata, the sun, and Nana Kutsi, the moon. Jurihata and Kutsi married and had Nana Cueráperi who gave birth, first, to the four elements of earth, water, air and fire. During her second birth, she bore all plants. In a third birth, all animals. In a fourth birth, she bore man and woman and gave them Mitikua, the philosophy of good and evil and Uandakua, the power to communicate.
It is in present day Zamora that María Cervantes is born. Thank you for listening.
Can a band like El Mato A Un Policia Motorizado make it in the US, despite having a name a large portion of the country will be unable to pronounce in its entirety? Nacional Records thinks so. The LA-based label recently inked a deal to bring the band’s latest album, La Dinastia Scorpio, to the US, with a few bonus tracks attached.
The band recently completed a tour of the country that began in NYC with shows at LAMC, and ending in California at the Viva Pomona Festival. It was in Pomona that I witnessed the band play to a small but loving crowd that already knew every word to every song.
I spoke with singer/bassist Santiago Motorizado about where exactly the band name comes from (hint: it wasn’t from “Die Hard” as is commonly suspected), as well as the band growth from humble beginnings in La Plata, Argentina to touring the world, and taking off with a publishing deal from Nacional Records.
“Why are they trying to stop us?” asks Osman, a 16-year-old migrant who was recently caught in Mexico and bused back to the Honduran city of San Pedro Sula. “I am just trying to survive. There is nothing for me here. My mom is in Miami and I haven’t seen her for four years.”
I remember when I was in grade school, in my social studies textbook when we spoke about latin america, haiti was like the 2nd country to come up. Haiti’s revolution was important, believe or not. We paved the way for a lot of other countries to see that freedom was a possibility.
The experience—roughly three minutes long—puts you in one of Pac Rim's early scenes: the first big Jaeger-versus-kaiju fight with Raleigh Becket and his brother in the cockpit. You're put in the mech's head, given a neural handshake, and thrown into battle. Look back, and you'll see the guts of the massive apparatus you're in. Look down, and you'll see the Jaeger's massive humming energy core beneath your moving feet. (“This,” you might say, “is the closest I may ever come to being Charlie Hunnam and/or fighting a kaiju.”) Oh, and when you look forward, you're looking right into the eyes (or mouth, or whatever) of a massive kaiju. It's more immersive than even seeing the film in 3-D Imax, and—let's face it—that felt pretty freaking immersive.
The United States recorded the largest number of new asylum applications out of all countries of asylum, having receiving 85% of the total of new applications brought by individuals from [El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala] in 2012. The number of requests for asylum has likewise increased in countries other than the U.S. Combined, Mexico, Panama, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Belize documented a 432% increase in the number of asylum applications lodged by individuals from El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala.
notabene: People are not applying for asylum in the US because they think it’s the best country ever (i.e., American dream). They are applying for asylum in the US because it’s the closest country they can get to that they think might be safe from extortion, forced gang recruitment, and/or death threats they have received.
Maccabi Haifa players and pro-Palestinian protesters clashed during a preseason friendly between Haifa and Lille in Austria, with the incident caught on video.
According to the Jerusalem Post, a group of male fans stormed the pitch in the 85th minute waving Palestine flags. Punches were thrown and profanities exchanged between Haifa players and the pitch invaders, but security eventually removed the protesters.
Thankfully, it appears everyone emerged from the fracas uninjured.
A new, extremely persistent type of online tracking is shadowing visitors to thousands of top websites, from WhiteHouse.gov to YouPorn.com.
First documented in a forthcoming paper by researchers at Princeton University and KU Leuven University in Belgium, this type of tracking, called canvas fingerprinting, works by instructing the visitor’s Web browser to draw a hidden image. Because each computer draws the image slightly differently, the images can be used to assign each user’s device a number that uniquely identifies it.
What the hell people, the reason Israel is in Gaza is because that’s were the rockets came from
Are you a fucking idiot full-time or just when it suits the illusions that bolster your daily life?
In order to understand what is happening today, yesterday, last week, last month, last year, last decade, and so on all the way back to the formation of Israel, you have to be willing to study a little history and able to look at the situtation without complexity denying common sense. There is no such “that’s w[h]ere the rockets came from” in this discussion. That’s propaganda. To argue “that’s w[h]ere the rockets came from” is to willfully ignore all reason and evidence that has led to this most recent attack on Gaza.
Pull your head out of the polarity Palestinians-Israelis binary here that is typically used to assign the Israeli state a goodness and innocence that stateless and imprisoned Palestinians are denied.