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jueves, noviembre 13, 2014

Precio del petróleo, elecciones 2014 y revolución energética en EEUU

cubanalisis
Diego Trinidad, PhD
En el dinámico mundo de la energía se producen cambios diariamente. Desde que escribí en agosto mi tercer artículo sobre la revolución energética que se ha producido en Estados Unidos en los últimos cinco años, mucho ha cambiado. Específicamente, el precio del barril de petróleo en el mercado mundial ha bajado dramáticamente un 27% desde principios del verano hasta la fecha (hoy domingo 9 de noviembre cerró en $78.65 el barril; a principios de junio estaba a $115 el barril). 

Esta baja en el precio del petróleo ya ha traído cambios enormes en la geopolítica mundial. En el futuro inmediato, todavía mucho más cambiará si este nivel de precios, entre $78 y $85 por barril, como todo parece indicar, se mantiene en el 2015. El petróleo a ese precio representa una ganancia de un trillón de dólares ($1’000,000’000,000, es decir, un millón de millones en español) para los consumidores en el mundo entero.

Esta semana, cuando en la elección congresional de EEUU el Partido Republicano ganó el control del Senado con un aumento de 8 senadores (quizás 9 cuando se celebre una elección especial en Lousiana en diciembre, donde el candidato republicano es favorito para ganar) se produjo el otro gran evento reciente.

Los cambios que el control del Congreso (Cámara de Representantes, donde el Partido Republicano ganó 18 escaños adicionales, y Senado, en el que en enero controlarán 53 ó 54 asientos frente a 46 ó 47) por los republicanos, comenzando en enero del 2015, traerán a EEUU en el campo energético serán sísmicos. El desarrollo de estos dos temas, y como afectarán a EEUU y el resto del mundo en el próximo año, es el tema de este cuarto artículo. Durante el nuevo año, según se produzcan más acontecimientos, continuará esta serie de artículos.

Algunos analistas y expertos previeron la caída en el precio del petróleo durante el verano, pero pocos pensaron que sería tan súbita y tan grande. Sin embargo, al nivel presente, la producción de petróleo en EEUU no será afectada significativamente.

La nueva tecnología de fracking (fraccionamiento hidráulico) para extraer petróleo de las formaciones rocosas de shale (esquisto) es productiva por lo menos hasta un precio de $60 por barril. Casi nadie prevé que los precios bajen a ese nivel, pero aunque así fuera, los nuevos pozos de petróleo que utilizan la tecnología de fracking son diferentes a los pozos tradicionales. Cuando el precio del petróleo baja y hace estos pozos económicamente  improductivos, pueden ser clausurados y fácilmente reabiertos cuando el precio sube de nuevo. 

Además, algunas compañías como Whiting Petroleum, basada en Denver, Colorado, y una de las dos grandes compañías que han desarrollado los yacimientos del campo Bakken, en Dakota Norte, junto con Continental Petroleum, tienen una estrategia interesante para enfrentar precios mas bajos en el mercado, como los de ahora: compran acciones futuras a precio más bajo, y cuando el precio baja, lejos de perder, ganan dinero.  De esa manera, se protegen y pueden soportar precios más bajos.

Para los consumidores americanos -y para el resto del mundo que no es productor de petróleo- los nuevos precios más bajos han sido una enorme bonanza económica. Cada consumidor americano ahorrará como $700 por año con la gasolina a menos de $3.00 por galón, como está ahora por primera vez en dos años.

Para el resto del mundo significará grandes ahorros en la importación de petróleo, presupuestos más bajos, y un nivel de inflación mucho menor. China ahorra más de $2 billones (un billón en inglés son mil millones) por cada dólar que baje el precio del barril de petróleo. Para la India, estos nuevos precios significan un ahorro de más de $40 billones.

Pero para ciertos países gobernados por regímenes autoritarios y dictatoriales, como Rusia, Irán y Venezuela, estos nuevos precios son ruinosos. Para Arabia Saudita y los Emiratos del Golfo Pérsico representa pérdidas multimillonarias de dólares en exportaciones, pero Arabia Saudita en particular, con reservas de 737 billones de dólares, puede fácilmente soportar este nivel de precios por largo tiempo.

Rusia, Irán y Venezuela no pueden. Rusia basa su presupuesto en un barril de petróleo a $100. Pero tiene reservas de 454 billones de dólares. Sin embargo, las tremendas pérdidas en divisas a precios alrededor de $80 significan que los proyectos expansionistas del Presidente Vladimir Putin quedan paralizados. De la misma manera, las mejoras necesarias en la infraestructura de Rusia, incluyendo en la exploración y producción de los pozos petroleros de Siberia, también tendrán que ser pospuestas.

Irán basa su presupuesto en el petróleo a $136 por barril y tiene bajas reservas por motivo de las restricciones comerciales provocadas por las sanciones impuestas por EEUU y la Unión Europea, a pesar de haberse relajado en meses pasados. Por otro lado, Irán produce y exporta gas natural, y en China sobre todo tiene un cliente a largo plazo. Pero los nuevos precios del petróleo han limitado mucho su capacidad para hacer daño en el Medio Oriente y en su apoyo a grupos terroristas, lo cual es una bendición para el resto del mundo.

Venezuela es el país que más y mayores riesgos enfrenta en el futuro inmediato. Venezuela necesita el petróleo a $120 por barril. De manera que desde principios del verano está sufriendo pérdidas ruinosas en sus recaudaciones por la exportación de petróleo, las cuales han caído a muy bajos niveles debidos al deterioro de su infraestructura de producción.

Por cada dólar que baja el precio de un barril, Venezuela pierde entre 450 y 500 millones de dólares en sus ganancias por la exportación de petróleo, y sus entradas dependen en un extraordinario 90% de la exportación de petróleo. Además, el año pasado Venezuela tuvo un déficit fiscal del 17% de su Producto Interno Bruto (PIB). Con un nivel de inflación del 60% anual (el mayor del mundo), reservas de solo 20 billones de dólares y una deuda externa gigantesca, la cual ya malamente puede pagar, el país está al borde de la quiebra. Cuanto tiempo puede sobrevivir bajo estas condiciones es la gran pregunta.

Claro que los problemas de Venezuela son mucho mayores debido a su ayuda, a través de PetroCaribe, a países de la Cuenca del Caribe, incluyendo, por supuesto, a Cuba. Todos estos países sufrirán muy pronto las consecuencias de la ruina venezolana, pero ninguno como Cuba.

El gobierno de Cuba ya hace años viene previendo el momento cuando los subsidios de Venezuela se reduzcan o terminen. Se ha asegurado de otros suministradores como Angola, Irán, Brasil, Rusia y otros exportadores de petróleo. Recibe ayuda económica de Rusia y de China, y esta misma semana se reportó que tiene planeado producir hasta un 24% de su energía de fuentes renovables para el año 2030. Además, todavía aspira a desarrollar las reservas de petróleo en sus aguas adyacentes.

Pero para esto falta mucho tiempo, el tiempo que el régimen cubano no tiene. Cuba probablemente nunca se verá en la situación que afrontó a partir de 1991-92, cuando perdió los subsidios económicos y el suministro de petróleo de la Unión Soviética, pero una reducción inmediata en la ayuda de Venezuela puede afectar seriamente al régimen en el futuro próximo.

Casi tan importante, si no mucho más, que la caída en los precios del petróleo, ha sido -y será- el impacto de las elecciones congresionales ganadas el pasado martes 4 de noviembre por el Partido Republicano. El control del Senado por los republicanos, y por consiguiente del Congreso, ya que la mayoría en la Cámara no solo se mantuvo, sino que aumentó, logrará que en enero del 2015, los grandes cambios previstos (y predichos en esta serie de artículos desde hace casi tres años) en lo que puede ser un renacimiento económico en Estados Unidos, se logren antes que un nuevo presidente sea electo en el 2016.

Ya los líderes republicanos de ambas cámaras han anunciado lo que será su programa de gobierno para el 2015. La primera ley que probablemente aprobará el Congreso, quizás en el mismo enero, será la construcción y apertura del viaducto Keystone XL, desde la provincia occidental de Alberta, en el oeste de Canadá, al Golfo de México. Este importante proyecto, paralizado innecesariamente por razones estrictamente políticas por el Presidente, producirá por si solo una tremenda bonanza económica para EEUU.

El Presidente dijo durante la campaña presidencial del 2012 que este proyecto solo crearía 50 empleos (lo que le ganó el premio de 4 “Pinochos” del Washington Post por una de las mentiras mas grandes del año). En verdad, de acuerdo con varios estudios recientes, creará al menos 45,000 empleos durante su construcción -y hasta medio millón de nuevos empleos para el 2035.

Pero no solo eso, sino que existen al menos 25 otros proyectos relacionados con la construcción del viaducto Keystone XL en Canadá y EEUU que pueden convertir a Norteamérica (incluyendo a México) en un productor de 17.5 millones de barriles de petróleo diarios, casi igual a la producción de Arabia Saudita y Rusia sumadas.

Otros dos proyectos de ley planeados por los republicanos en enero del 2015 son casi tan importantes como el anterior. Uno es la abrogación de la ley federal de 1975 que prohíbe la exportación de petróleo americano. El otro es el relajamiento en las regulaciones para construir plantas y terminales para la exportación de gas natural licuado a Europa en la costa este, y a Japón y China desde la costa oeste de EEUU.

Hay más de 25 proyectos esperando por su aprobación, y estas plantas/terminales demoran como dos años en construirse, de manera que el tiempo apremia. Claro que estos tres proyectos de ley, de ser aprobados por el Congreso en enero, pueden ser vetados por el Presidente.

Pero los tres proyectos cuentan con apoyo bipartidista (en el Senado quizás cuente con 65 votos; se necesitan 66 para anular un veto presidencial), y es muy posible que el Presidente, debilitado políticamente como ha quedado, y con solo dos años restantes en su segundo período, firme cada una de estas tres leyes. En estos momentos solamente se puede imaginar el efecto positivo que esto produciría en la industria privada en general, pero más que todo en la industria energética en particular.

Solo se puede imaginar el efecto que esto produciría en la industria privada en general, pero en la industria energética en particular será impactante. Los empresarios de negocios verían con optimismo un nuevo clima en el cual la economía funcionaría con mas libertad, menos regulaciones y menos interferencia del gobierno federal. Una tasa de crecimiento mayor que el 3% anual sería fácil de visualizar.

Tres otras medidas que pueden beneficiar mucho a la economía americana y contribuir a un mayor crecimiento económico, son la apertura de la gran reserva ANWR en el norte de Alaska (10 billones de barriles de petróleo), la apertura en general a la exploración y perforación en tierras federales del oeste de EEUU, donde se encuentran mas del 80% del petróleo y gas natural en el país, y finalmente, la liberación al mercado del petróleo contenido en la Reserva Estratégica de Petróleo situada en varias cuevas en las costas del Golfo de México.

Esta Reserva, una reliquia de los tiempos de Carter y Ford, cuando primero la OPEP (Organización de Países Exportadores de Petróleo) restringió la exportación de petróleo a EEUU después de la segunda guerra entre Israel y Egipto, ya no es necesaria, debido a que EEUU es el primer productor de petróleo en el mundo. Pero contiene 700 millones de barriles de petróleo, los cuales, si se liberan lentamente, pueden ayudar a bajar todavía más el precio de la gasolina en EEUU y aumentar la capacidad exportadora de petróleo americano al resto del mundo.

Adicionalmente, la aprobación de otras dos leyes más generales se contempla por el liderazgo congresional republicano. Una es rebajar la tasa a los impuestos corporativos,  que ahora están en un 39.1%, los mas altos en el mundo desarrollado. En contraste, en la Unión Europea promedian menos del 24%. El Presidente y los demócratas públicamente apoyan una rebaja al 29%; los republicanos prefieren el 25%. Pero claramente hay apoyo bipartidista a la medida, y esto sería quizás el mejor estímulo que pudiera recibir la economía.

La otra ley propone invitar a los capitales de compañías multinacionales americanas en el extranjero, que se calculan puedan llegar a dos trillones de dólares (dos millones de millones en español), para que sean repatriados sin pagar impuestos, solo con la condición de que sean invertidos en EEUU para crear empleos.

Pero el Presidente y su partido demócrata irracionalmente amenazan con cobrar hasta un 50% de impuesto a las compañías que accedieran a repatriar esos capitales, algo obviamente absurdo. Aquí no hay ningún espacio para negociar, pero tres trillones de dólares invertidos para crear empleos posiblemente producirían al menos tres millones de nuevos trabajos. El impulso para la economía sería incalculable. 

Sin embargo, estas dos últimas medidas, y hasta las tres anteriores (excepto la aprobación del viaducto Keystone XL, la abrogación de la ley que prohíbe exportar petróleo americano, y el relajamiento de las restricciones para exportar gas natural, las que SÍ cuentan con apoyo bipartidista) no serán fácilmente aprobadas por el Congreso, y si lo fueran, indudablemente serían vetadas. De manera que todas ellas son proyectos a largo plazo, casi seguro para después que una nueva administración llegue a Washington en 2017.

Todo esto, lo que hasta el pasado martes solo era una gran esperanza para el 2017, cuando un nuevo presidente (o presidenta), sin importar de que partido, tomara posesión del cargo, ahora puede ser realidad, mucho antes de lo que nadie hubiera pensado.

El mundo desde el nuevo año 2015 puede ser un mundo distinto, de mayor prosperidad y de mayor cooperación internacional, en el cual Estados Unidos otra vez se convierta en el motor de la economía mundial.

Ya no es un sueño, ya no hay que esperar tres años más. Ya puede ser realidad.

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viernes, septiembre 12, 2014

CANADA ON GUARD: Assessing the Immigration Security Threat of Iran, Venezuela and Cuba

Tarek El Aissami
The Center for a Secure and Free Society has released a report,CANADA ON GUARD: Assessing the Immigration Security Threat of
Iran, Venezuela and Cuba
which
highlights attempts to violate Canada’s immigration system, examines Venezuela’s role as a “bridge” for Iranian covert access to Canada, reviews the use of cultural exchange and other soft power strategies to win support for state sponsors of terrorism, and presents preliminary policy recommendations for strengthening Canada’s immigration and national security system
The report’s key points are:
  • Iran is cooperating with Venezuela and Cuba to exploit the seams in the Canadian immigration system.
  • From 2009 t0 2011, Latin America was the largest embarkation region for improperly documented Iranians migrating to Canada who seek refugee status.
  • Venezuelan authorities provided at least 173 passports, visas and other documentation to Islamist extremists seeking to slip unnoticed into North America.
  •  Soft power solidarity networks in Canada serve as a “Trojan Horse” for Iran and ALBA to establish cover for spies, saboteurs and other nefarious actors.
Less than a year after Canada shuttered the Iranian embassy in Ottawa, the Iranian regime opened an “unofficial” consulate in Montreal and began shuttling paperwork back and forth to the Iranian embassy in Cuba for processing.
Especially interesting: the sections on how Cuba’s role in the Misión Identidad (biometric ID cards) immigration system facilitates the entry of Cuban agents into Venezuela, and Tare[c]k El Aissami’s role as Iran, Syria and Hezbollah’s man in Mérida.
Read more about Iranian infiltration in Canada and the Americas here >>
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martes, mayo 27, 2014

Report: Iran Executes Billionaire Businessman Without Notice

Mahafarid Amir Khosravi, an Iranian billionaire arrested for allegedly perpetrating a $2.6 billion dollar bank fraud, was hanged on Saturday after a swift court decision to impose the death penalty. The decision was so sudden Khosravi's lawyer told Iranian media that no one had told him the execution had been scheduled.

According to the Associated Press, Iranian state television reported that the Iranian Supreme Court upheld a death sentence handed down in a case in which 39 individuals were found guilty of a large-scale fraud. Khosravi was summarily executed for "corruption on earth ... through bribery and money laundering." Khosravi and the three others sentenced to death in the conspiracy are alleged to have forged documents to improve their credit and receive loans from major Iranian banks. Those loans were later used to invest in state-owned companies. While many others were accused of being involved in the scam, Khosravi was accused of leading and organizing the fraud.
The scandal was the largest of its kind in post-Revolutionary Iran and threatened at one point to engulf the government itself. The Iranian Parliament called on President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to testify in a government investigation on the case in 2011 and how it may have affected the strength of corporate entities run by the government into which the bankers had invested. Ultimately, the President was not found to have had a broad role in the case, and prosecutors continued to focus on the leaders of the scheme.
The execution was so sudden that Khosravi's lawyer, Gholam Ali Riahi, told media outlets that he was not informed that his client would be executed during the weekend. According to the UK's Independent, Riahi told khabaronline.ir, an online news outlet in the country, that "he had not been informed of the execution" and that all of his client's assets were "at the disposal of the prosecutor's office."
Khosravi is one of four individuals sentenced to death over the scandal. This year, Amnesty International condemned Iran as one of the nations with the highest number of executions in the world, along with Iraq and Saudi Arabia. In 2013, Iran reported 369 executions, an increase from the year before, but Amnesty researchers noted that investigations had led them to tally the total number of killings to 704, including unreported executions. Researchers at Amnesty International believe that China has the highest number of annual executions, but given the lack of official data on state behavior, there is no way to prove just how many people are killed by the Chinese government annually.

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viernes, mayo 09, 2014

ALERT! Huge Explosion in Iranian Secret Nuclear Facility: Closes City of 1.1 Million

Mary Greeley


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viernes, marzo 07, 2014

Société Générale and Crédit Agricole Under U.S. Investigation for Alleged Money Laundering in Iran, Cuba and Sudan

Wall Street Journal
French banks Société Générale SA and Crédit Agricole SA are under U.S. investigation for alleged money laundering and sanction breaches involving Iran, Cuba and Sudan, according to a person with direct knowledge of the matter, the latest case in a series of probes of European banks related to embargo violations. The banks are being investigated by the U.S. Treasury Department, the Justice Department, the Manhattan district attorney,...
Read the full article >>

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sábado, febrero 15, 2014

El hombre que lleva 60 años sin bañarse (Foto)

lapatilla
El iraní que lleva 60 años sin bañarse
Se llama Amoo Hadji y lleva 60 años de su vida sin tomar una ducha. El hombre iraní de 80 años decidió tajantemente no volver a tomar una ducha en lo que le quedaba de vida y lleva una convivencia con su entorno un tanto primitiva viviendo en una cabaña y fumando estiércol con un tubo de acero, publica que.es.
La piel de este hombre está escamada y a penas se le puede mirar a los ojos de la suciedad que tiene encima. Lo más sorprendente del caso de este hombre es que no tiene su decisión de no limpiarse en 60 años no le ha repercutido en tener enfermedades debido a la no higiene.



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Ayatollah Khamenei: Iranian University Students Are 'Cyber-War Agents'

ntpinto.wordpress.com

The Supreme Leader of Iran, Ayatollah Khamenei, released a statement this week urging university students to "refine your souls and to approach God," but also to prepare for "cyber-war." According to Iran's Mehr News Agency, the Ayatollah released a message urging students to "ready for such war wholeheartedly."

The Mehr report includes a number of disjointed messages about self-improvement and the future of the nation, telling students that they should strive for achievement but never forget their duty to the nation. "You are the cyber-war agents and such a war requires Ammar-like insight and Malik Ashtar-like (two Prophet’s Companions in early Islamic history) resistance," the Ayatollah's message reads, "get yourselves ready for such war wholeheartedly."
Israeli newspaper Haaretz describes Mehr as a "semi-official" news source in Iran, and adds that the message was accompanied by other official statements regarding cyber warfare. Iran's Chief of Staff, General Hassan Firouzabadi, specifically targeted the United States and Israel, suggesting that his country was ready for a "decisive battle" with both. He added that Iran had been "staging different war games" to practice, in a statement eerily reminiscent of war statements out of Pyongyang.
Iran has a longer history with cyber war than many nations, being the victim of the single most destructive cyber attack known in history--Stuxnet, a virus jointly created by the United States and Israel, wiped out a major nuclear development plant in the country. It has since spent years developing a cyber wing of their military with mixed success. Last October, the head of Iran's cyber warfare program was found shot dead, a report the country initially denied.
The Ayatollah's call to cyber warfare and generally jingoistic disposition in the message significantly contrast with the image of Iranian leader Hassan Rouhani as a "moderate" compared to his predecessor, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Rouhani's official twitter account yielded a Rosh Hashanah greeting last year that the Iranian government denied existed and is said to believe that the Holocaust happened, putting him somewhere in the middle of the Iranian political spectrum. But in absolute terms, the aggression from the Supreme Leader folds nicely into Rouhani's open boasting about lying about Iran's nuclear program and rejecting invitations from President Obama to bilateral talks. The number of executions in Tehran has also skyrocketed under Rouhani, for infractions ranging from adultery to homosexuality to blasphemy. 
Last month, the White House suggested that sanctions might be in order for Iran should they continue to develop their nuclear program, but by this year's State of the Union Address, President Obama clearly stated that he would veto any attempt to impose sanctions on Iran coming from Congress.

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miércoles, diciembre 25, 2013

Iranian Lawmakers Introduce Bill To Allow Production Of Weapons Uranium

pb-110215-iran-245a.photoblog900
Excerpted from The Jerusalem Post: Iran’s hardline lawmakers are seeking to increase uranium enrichment under the country’s nuclear program to a level that can produce bomb-grade material, a state-run website said on Wednesday.
The bill could bring Tehran into direct conflict with the major powers that reached an interim agreement with Iran in Geneva last month, requiring Tehran to suspend its enrichment of higher grade uranium.
However, Iran’s most powerful authority Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has so far backed the accord.
The hardliners, irked by the foreign policy shift since moderate President Hasan Rouhani was elected in June, oppose the Geneva deal.
The bill introduced on Wednesday, “if approved, will oblige the government to … enrich uranium to 60 percent level in order to provide fuel for submarine engines if the sanctions are tightened and Iran’s nuclear rights are ignored (by major powers),” said hardline lawmaker Mehdi Mousavinejad, according to the English language Press TV website.
It was not immediately clear whether or when the parliament might discuss the bill but the official IRNA news agency said it was introduced by some 100 lawmakers and had been tagged with a “double urgency” status, meaning it could be discussed in parliament within a week.
“The bill is aimed at giving an upper hand to our government and the negotiating team … It will allow the government to continue our nuclear program if the Geneva deal fails,” IRNA quoted Hossein Taghavi Hosseini, spokesman for parliament’s National Security and Foreign Affairs committee, as saying.
DISSUADING FURTHER SANCTIONS
The November 24 accord is meant to give the United States, Russia, China, France, Britain, Germany and Iran a period of six months to negotiate a final settlement of the decade-old standoff, easing worries over a new war in the Middle East.
“Iran’s parliament lacks power and particularly after Rouhani’s election win, the hardline lawmakers do not have the upper hand,” a senior western diplomat in Tehran said.
“Iran’s Supreme Leader backs the deal and ultimately, lawmakers have to follow his path.”
The Iranian government would have no choice but to obey such a bill if passed by parliament. But diplomats and analysts believe Iran could be using parliament as a bargaining tool in the talks.
“This draft bill has been prepared in reaction to America’s hostile measures,” Mousavinejad told the official IRNA news agency on Tuesday.
Despite opposition by President Barack Obama’s administration, 26 US senators introduced legislation on Thursday to impose new sanctions on Iran if the country breaks the Geneva interim deal.
The proposed legislation would require reductions in Iran’s petroleum production and apply new penalties to Iran’s engineering, mining and construction industries if Iran violated the interim agreement or if negotiators failed to reach a final comprehensive deal.
Washington earlier this month also blacklisted 19 more Iranian companies and individuals under sanctions aimed at Iran’s nuclear program.
Keep reading >>

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viernes, diciembre 13, 2013

Iran Delegates Break Off Nuclear Talks

VIENNA, Dec. 13 (UPI) --
An Iranian delegation broke off talks with six world powers over implementing a landmark nuclear deal to return to Tehran, Iran's news agency said Friday.
The so-called expert-level delegates, meeting since Monday at the Vienna headquarters of U.N. nuclear watchdog International Atomic Energy Agency, halted the talks on enforcement mechanisms to return to Tehran for consultations, the official Islamic Republic News Agency said in a report monitored by United Press International.
The report did not say why the delegation, led by Iranian Foreign Ministry political and legal affairs Director General Hamid Baeidinejad, suspended the talks Thursday night.
Stephen Clement, leading the talks for EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton on behalf of the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, had no immediate comment.
The suspension of the talks came hours after the Obama administration, facing growing pressure from Congress to maintain or increase economic sanctions on Iran, blacklisted more than a dozen companies and individuals for allegedly helping Tehran evade international oil sanctions.
At the same time, House and Senate lawmakers agreed Thursday not to vote on new sanctions this year, following a White House campaign to stall legislative action for at least six months while the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany negotiate a comprehensive deal over Tehran's nuclear program.
Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif told Time magazine in an interview published Monday any new sanctions would kill a comprehensive deal.
The talks in the Austrian capital were part of an interim six-month deal reached Nov. 24 in Geneva, Switzerland, calling for Iran to halt production of near-weapons-grade nuclear fuel in exchange for some relief from economic sanctions amounting to $6 billion to $7 billion.

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miércoles, diciembre 11, 2013

Iran Executions Skyrocket Under 'Centrist' Rouhani

Executions in Iran have skyrocketed since "centrist" President Hassan Rouhani came to power in June.

According to UPI, "there were 190 executions carried out during the first half of 2013" while Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was president. 
However, there have already been 370 more executions under Rouhani since June of this year.
Consequently, an October report to the U.N. General Assembly's Third Committee indicates "the situation of human rights in Iran remains a source of concern with no sign of improvement." This report not only cites "waves of executions" but also "consistent violations of [the] civil, political, economic, social, and cultural rights of the Iranian people" via "the regime's official laws." 
In June, CNN reported that Rouhani was the "centrist" candidate in Iran's election.

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sábado, noviembre 30, 2013

The Nuclear Deal With Iran Was About Trust, Not Verification | Foreign Affairs

By Kenneth Pollack
An Iranian boy holds the national flag with a plastic gun with in central Tehran, March 31, 2008. (Morteza Nikoubazl / Courtesy Reuters)
It is difficult to judge the nuclear agreement forged last weekend in Geneva as anything other than a good deal. The Iranians will be no closer to having a nuclear breakout capability when the deal concludes than they are today. The amount of money that the Iranians will get is paltry -- about $7 billion total over six months -- especially compared to the roughly $30 billion that Tehran will lose during that period as a result of the sanctions on oil sales and financial transactions, all of which remain firmly in place. The objections that have been raised to the deal so far are either specious or tautological, or require the kind of tenuous conspiracy thinking that we typically disparage when it comes from the Iranians. 
But the deal is only a small step in the right direction. Iran will end up somewhat farther away from developing a nuclear breakout capability, but it is hard to go much beyond that. There are so many ways for Iran to acquire the fissile material for a nuclear weapon that it is impossible to assess whether it will set Iran back by a week, a month, or a year. (Any such claims tend to reflect what the claimant wants you to believe much more than objective reality.) Moreover, the interim agreement will last for only six months and says nothing about what will happen at the end of that period. The hope is that the two sides will use the time to craft a comprehensive follow-on agreement; but the interim deal contains only the broadest signposts for such an agreement. Three years from now, if there is no comprehensive agreement, this interim deal is going to look irrelevant -- not bad, just immaterial. 
In that sense, the interim deal is only important to the extent it helps to produce that ultimate, comprehensive agreement. Fortunately, the deal has real value as a confidence-building measure.
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Rouhani's Gorbachev Moment | Foreign Affairs

By Stephen Kotkin
www.internationalpolicydigest.org
Could Iranian President Hassan Rouhani be another Mikhail Gorbachev -- a real reformer who opens his country’s political system and creates the space for détente with the United States and Europe?
Historical analogies are always fraught, of course, and leaders who are championed as reformers almost always leave disillusionment in their wakes. In addition, the jury is still out on whether a nuclear deal between the United States and Iran, which would open the door for a relaxation of painful sanctions, is even a good idea -- the specifics of the agreement matter greatly.
But whichever side one comes down on, it is worth considering where the Islamic Republic might be headed. In that regard, there are a few areas to watch.
NOTHING LEFT TO LOSE
Gorbachev was unique, a true believer in Soviet renewal who sat at the very top of a profoundly centralized political system.
Rouhani is nothing like him. In fact, Rouhani came to power precisely because of Tehran’s deep fragmentation, particularly within its right-wing establishment. The fracturing created an opening that Rouhani burst through in a surprise electoral victory in June 2013. But it also means that he cannot impose far-reaching reform. No one in Iran could, not even Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. (If anything, the ceaseless invocations of Khamenei’s “supreme” authority testify to its absence, as well as his desire to have it.)
That said, the Iran state structure is similar to that of the former Soviet Union in some respects. Namely, both were born of revolution, which created a theocracy -- in one case with a clerical establishment, in the other with a Communist party -- that overrode the formal institutions of the state, such as parliaments, judiciaries, and civil service. In Iran, as in the Soviet Union in the 1980s, the revolution is aging, with far-reaching consequences. An official ideology, whether Marxism-Leninism or political Islam, can give a regime great power. But it can also destabilize the theocratic system if the populace and the rulers lose faith. And there, Iran is vulnerable.
A second similarity can be found in Iran’s imperial overstretch. It is problematic enough that Iran’s geopolitical ambitions significantly exceed its capabilities. But it is really taxing that the places and causes in which the country has chosen to become enmeshed are so volatile. Soviet leaders would sympathize: as KGB analysts ruefully lamented, mostly after the collapse of the union, the regime’s allies almost always seemed to be impoverished basket cases whose only industry was perpetual civil war. Working with them might have poked the United States in the eye. But it did little for Soviet prestige, economic well-being, and security. From Afghanistan and Angola to Cuba and Yemen, to say nothing of North Korea, hawkish Soviet foreign policy often resembled a very determined stomp on a rake. (Thwack.)
Something similar, on a smaller scale, could be said of Iran's foreign policy. By now, most Americans understand that the intervention in Iraq (the second Iraq War), waged at great cost in American blood and treasure, redounded to Iran’s geopolitical benefit. Many analysts argue that the United States’ failure to intervene militarily in Syria did the same. But it is difficult to pinpoint, precisely, what Iran gained in Iraq or Syria. It is unclear that Iranian regional “successes” improved its security or its citizens’ well-being. One could even argue that Iran’s support for mischief (and worse) has only heightened the regime’s vulnerability -- just like the domestic failures of political Islamism.
Like the Soviet Union, Iran lives in a tough geopolitical neighborhood, one that has only been getting tougher. Statelets concocted by French and British colonial officials, the bankruptcy of pan-Arab nationalism, the recent struggles to the death between hopelessly corrupt authoritarians and the opposition (which is also often authoritarian), some violent de facto partitions -- these have created a regional tangle that inflicts immense suffering and that no outside power can readily unknot.
Simply put, U.S. policy in the Middle East is in shambles because the Middle East is in shambles. Iran’s Middle East policy is in shambles too. Persistently playing the role of spoiler in one’s own neighborhood brings few long-term rewards -- and that is even before the recent round of international sanctions (a stunning achievement made possible by the fact that China and Russia, as much as they chafe at U.S. power, dislike any kind of revisionism other than their own). Thanks to Iran’s behavior, its neighborhood has become still more treacherous, and the pain is multiplied by the country’s international isolation, high inflation, and collapsing currency.
At this point, Iran has little to lose but its own chains if it reforms and cooperates with the West. Of course, that is no guarantee that it will. Just because something is necessary does not mean that it is politically feasible. In fact, Iran’s political establishment is far from ready for a drastic turnabout in relations with the Great Satan. The structures that facilitated the U.S.-Iranian alliance during the Cold War are long gone -- the genuine Soviet menace, the strongman regime installed by a U.S.-sponsored coup, even the intense dependency on foreign oil. At the same time, the U.S. alliance with Israel, Iran’s sworn enemy, has only deepened. Any mini-détente with the United States, which is vital for Iran’s domestic development, is going to require far-reaching domestic changes.
And herein lies Rouhani’s Gorbachev moment.
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Emboldened by Iran Deal, North Korea May Have Restarted Nuclear Reactor

warnewsupdates.blogspot.com

It didn't take long for concerns that the Iranian nuclear deal could embolden other rogue nations to materialize. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) announced Thursday satellite footage strongly indicates that North Korea has restarted a formerly shut down plutonium plant.

The International Atomic Energy Agency, which governs regulations for nuclear activity internationally and works with and under the United Nations, said Thursday that it has seen images showing steam, water, and other signs of life over the Yongbyon nuclear complex that had closed years ago, its cooling tower destroyed in 2008 as part of a multilateral deal to slow North Korea's nuclear development. "I remain seriously concerned," said IAEA head Yukiya Amano of the situation, noting that they have only overhead images as North Korea removed any UN inspectors from the country in 2009. 
North Korea had indicated it had intentions of restarting Yongbyon last April, but this is the first evidence that it is actively seeking to carry out that threat.
The restart of the Yongbyon complex is not the only post-Iran deal red flag from Pyongyang this week. The Johns Hopkins research institute specializing in U.S.-Korea relations published a report this week that overhead activity also indicated movements at an old missile launch control center in the Korean city of Tonghae. This news comes after yet another report this week shows evidence of Iran sending missile technicians to North Korea, which is especially alarming given that American intelligence indicates North Korea and Iran are both two years away from building a missile that could reach the United States.
North Korea's rhetoric has aligned with these increasingly belligerent actions. The communist state has also reacted belligerently to comments by U.S. Special Envoy for North Korea Glyn Davies' comment that the rogue nation was "out of step" with the rest of the world on nuclear policy.
More than any other country on the globe, North Korea understands the benefits that come from haggling a sweet nuclear deal out of the West. From the 1990s through to the Obama administration, North Korea routinely signed onto and subsequently broke a number of agreements to stop its nuclear program in exchange for diminished sanctions and humanitarian aid. It milked the system to the best of its ability until, in 2009, it kicked UN inspectors out of the country and openly asserted its intention to develop nuclear weapons. 
Many have noticed the deal brokered with Iran bore some similarity to the deals with North Korea in the 1990s and have wondered whether Iran is following in North Korea's footsteps. It's possible, but what is irrefutable from the data on the table is that DPRK has taken the Iranian deal as a sign that it, too, can rekindle diplomatic fires long since diffused, restart nuclear plants, and ally with Iran to advance their agenda of mutually strengthening their military might against the West. 
The Iran deal did not just fail the West because of the impending threats to Israel's existence Benjamin Netanyahu so artfully articulated; it failed the civilized world because it expanded the scope of what is or isn't acceptable from unstable, aggressive states. It gave the green light to countries like North Korea to challenge the United States' authority on nuclear power and expect sanctions to be lowered and threats diminished if they agree to a meaningless diplomatic dance and ambiguous de-weaponization. 
That road is long, troubled, and riddled with danger for both negotiating Western nations and the neighboring states North Korea already has the technology to attack.

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sábado, octubre 12, 2013

Iran wants the bomb — and sanctions relief - TWP


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lunes, septiembre 23, 2013

Iran parades 30 2,000 km range missiles

A military truck carries a Qadr-2 medium-range missile past a portrait of the late Islamic republic's supreme leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini during an annual military parade which marks Iran's eight-year war with Iraq, in the capital Tehran. (AFP PHOTO/ATTA KENARE)
By Staff Writers Tehran (AFP) Sept 22, 2013
Iran paraded 30 missiles with a nominal range of 2,000 kilometres (1,250 miles) Sunday, the first time it had displayed so many with the theoretical capacity to hit Israeli targets.
Iran displayed 12 Sejil and 18 Ghadr missiles at the annual parade marking the anniversary of the outbreak of the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war.
The stated range of both missiles would put not only Israel but also US bases in the Gulf within reach.
But in his speech at the parade, President Hassan Rowhani insisted the weaponry on show was for defensive purposes only.
"In the past 200 years, Iran has never attacked another country," he said.
"Today too, the armed forces of the Islamic Republic and its leadership will never launch any aggressive action in the region.
"But they will always resist aggressors determinedly until victory."
The Sejil was first tested in November 2008 and the Ghadr in September of the following year.
Both are two-stage missiles that use solid fuel that allows them to be moved around and launched rapidly.
The naval chief of the elite Revolutionary Guards was meanwhile quoted as saying that Iran has the capability to strike US warships in the Gulf.
"We have the necessary equipment to destroy American aircraft carries and warplanes in the Gulf," the ISNA news agency quoted Admiral Ali Fadavi as saying.
Bahrain, a strategic archipelago just across the Gulf from Iran, is the home base of the US Fifth Fleet.
The elite Revolutionary Guards is in charge of protecting the strategic Strait of Hormuz, at the entrance to the Gulf, a key gateway for the world's oil supplies.
Over the past year, the United States has gradually strengthened its naval forces in the Gulf region, particularly after Iran at one point threatened to block the strait.

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miércoles, septiembre 18, 2013

Iran’s president Rouhani: We will never develop nuclear weapons

 
Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy
Read at worldnews >>
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viernes, julio 26, 2013

Putin to visit Iran for nuclear talks: report

spacewar
By Staff Writers
Moscow (AFP) July 24, 2013
President Vladimir Putin is to visit Iran in August to try to restart talks on Tehran's controversial nuclnegocear drive, a Russian newspaper reported Wednesday.
Putin's visit is planned for mid-August, shortly after Iran's moderate new president Hassan Rowhani takes office on August 3, Kommersant reported, citing sources in the Kremlin and the Iranian foreign ministry.
Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov told AFP: "I cannot so far confirm this".
Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Araqchi told the ISNA news agency: "I do not confirm the report regarding Putin's visit," which would be his first to Iran since 2007.
Moscow hopes the visit will provide impetus to restart the currently stalled talks on Iran's nuclear programme, Kommersant reported.
It cited a source in the Iranian foreign ministry as saying the trip would take place August 12-13. It said a Kremlin source confirmed the trip, but said it was not yet decided whether it would last one or two days.
Western governments have expressed cautious hopes for a change in tone in talks after the June election of Rowhani, a centrist cleric who has vowed to engage constructively with the international community in a bid to ease the burden of EU and US sanctions on Iran's economy.
Russia is a member of the so-called P5+1 group made up of the five UN Security Council permanent members plus Germany that has for years been engaged in talks with Iran to try to persuade it to curb sensitive nuclear activities.
After the last round in Almaty in April, the talks were put on hold as Iran prepared to choose a successor to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Ahmadinejad's eight-year term was marked by a defiant expansion of the Iranian nuclear programme, which fuelled Western suspicions that it masked a drive for a weapons capability.
Both the European Union and the United States slapped tough sanctions on Iran's key oil and banking sectors which have taken a heavy toll on the economy.
During his election campaign, Rowhani hit out at the "sloganising" of the Ahmadinejad regime, which he said had unnecessarily aggravated the sanctions, and promised a more conciliatory approach in a bid to get them eased.
Following Rowhani's election, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called on the West to consider relaxing the sanctions, saying Tehran was ready to make a major concession.

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miércoles, junio 26, 2013

Iran: The doomsday counter

EconomistMagazine


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martes, junio 18, 2013

Iranian Nuclear Program Progresses with Activation of Plutonium Facility

On June 8, Iran inaugurated the main nuclear fission container at the country's heavy water reactor in Arak, part of Iran's plutonium production facility. Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) director Fereydoon Abbasi called the inauguration of this container, "an important step in the advancement of the project."

According to The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), this development has "several ramifications" for Tehran and the international community:
  1. It will force the international community to recognize Iran as a nuclear power. 
  2. It shows that Tehran has decided to break through the deadlock in the nuclear talks by shifting the focus to plutonium enrichment while moving uranium enrichment to the back burner. 
  3. The plutonium plant theoretically provides Iran with some protection against being attacked "because attacking a plutonium reactor that has been activated and is operating will have, inter alia, very grave environmental consequences."
Tehran claims the purposed of the heavy water reactor is "to produce Isotopes for medical purposes." 
However, MEMRI cites an article on the Iranian website Irannuc.ir, which claims "a heavy water reactor could be the easiest path to weapons grade plutonium."

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lunes, junio 17, 2013

Who is Iran’s new president? Nine things you need to know about Rowhani

Thousands of joyous Iranians flooded the streets of Tehran on Saturday night after centrist cleric Hassan Rowhani scored a stunning victory in a closely watched presidential election, winning 50.7 percent of some 36 million votes cast in a six-way race, according to the country’s interior ministry.
But many analysts say it remains to be seen if Rowhani, 64, will usher in a new era of sweeping democratic reforms or if he will capitulate to the hardline conservative doctrines of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei.
“A reform-minded president has been elected, but he still has to survive in a system that existed before the election,” said Geneive Abdo, a fellow at the Stimson Center and Middle East scholar.
Rowhani has been widely characterized as a mild-mannered and moderate counterpoint to outgoing President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, but the international community may not get a complete picture of the president-elect until after he takes office in early August.
Meanwhile, here’s some of what we know about the man who may change the face of Iran:
Background: He was born Nov. 12, 1948 near the northeast province of Semnan. Rowhani’s family reportedly opposed the former Shah of Iran, who was ousted in the Iranian Revolution in 1979. He studied religion at an early age; he took classes taught by leading Shia scholars in his teens.
He’s a lawyer: Rowhani reportedly received his bachelor’s degree in judicial law at the University of Tehran before earning a master’s degree at Glasgow Caledonian University in Scotland, according to Hussein Banai, a scholar and co-author of the book “Becoming Enemies: U.S.-Iran Relations and the Iran-Iraq War.”
He’s a political insider: He launched his political career in the 1960s as an acolyte of Ayatollah Khamenei and, after the shah was overthrown in the Islamic Revolution, played a wide range of key roles in the new republic. Rowhani has a lengthy political CV —including stints as a former commander of the Iranian air defenses, a leader on three war and defense councils, and several terms in parliament.
“He’s been part of the establishment for a very long time,” Banai said, adding that Rowhani has close relationships with the clerical elite as well as political figureheads on both ends of the Iranian ideological spectrum.
Ebrahim Noroozi / AP
Iranian President-elect Hasan Rowhani, center, is accompanied by Hasan Khomeini, grandson of the late revolutionary founder Ayatollah Khomeini, right, and Ayatollah Mousavi Bojnourdi, during a visit to Ayatollah Khomeini's shrine, just outside Tehran, on Sunday.
Perhaps most prominently, Rowhani served for almost 15 years as a top national security consigliere to the president, according to Trita Parsi, the founder and president of the National Iranian American Council. Rowhani reportedly resigned from his post after clashing with newly elected Ahmadinejad in 2005, but he remained involved in Iran’s foreign affairs.
“One of the things people need to understand is that for a very long time he’s been a national security expert,” Banai said. “He’s a technocrat, in many respects.”
He’s a top-shelf negotiator: During his years as secretary of the Supreme National Security Council, Rowhani was Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator with the West. He earned the nickname “Diplomat Sheikh” — an Arabic honorific that means “elder” — because of the smooth, savvy way in which he handled allies and rivals alike.
“He’s a firm, tough negotiator — but he’s a constructive negotiator,” Parsi said. "I think he'll be a unifying presence and help to significantly reduce internal quarrels and fights between various political factions."
Banai said Rowhani is a political natural whose demeanor alone will help start "systemically undoing the public relations damage left by Ahmadinejad."
“He’s managed to basically have every side think of him as one of their own,” Banai said. “He’s very skilled at listening to people and giving them the impression that he understands them without revealing where he stands.”
He’s an understated guy: Rowhani’s cool temperament offers a stark contrast to that of Ahmadinejad, a political leader partial to inflammatory rhetoric, Banai said.
“He is a very low-key figure,” Abdo said.
Rowhani has a reputation for “not unnecessarily stoking any drama,” Banai said. “He’s kind of a no-drama person.”
He’s a pragmatic moderate: Rowhani is widely seen as an even-handed political thinker who has avoided staking out extreme ideological territory over the course of his career.
“He’s from the center of the political spectrum,” Parsi said, adding that Rowhani rarely articulates radical ideas.
Although Rowhani has been frequently characterized as a moderate, Banai said the term should be used cautiously.
“In an Iranian context, being a moderate means you don’t pick fights with the ruling class and, at the same time, you pander to popular grievances people have about the ruling class.”
Abdo struck a similar chord.
"As Iran has moved to the right, we have redefined what it means to be moderate in Iran," Abdo said.
He's promised social reform: Rowhani has vowed to pursue certain liberal reforms that don't exactly square with the Ayatollah's stern religious edicts, including loosened restrictions on speech and lessened security on college campuses, according to Abdo. These policies would almost certainly be celebrated by young activists, particularly those involved with the Green Revolution, who have lobbied the government for social reform.
However, Rowhani's promises may not come to fruition because ...
He's a traditionalist: Rowhani -- who campaigned on the slogan "Prudence and Hope" -- may talk the democratic talk, but lest we forget: He's no revolutionary, according to Abdo.
"He believes in the system," Abdo said.
What's more, "we should be careful not to over-interpret" Rowhani's reformist rhetoric, Parsi said.
He's open to friendlier U.S. relations: There's no doubt foreign policy officials in Washington will be keeping tabs on Rowhani's every utterance in the next few months -- particularly since the president-elect has signaled he has interest in improving ties with the U.S.
"It is not that Iran has to remain angry with the United States forever and have no relations with them," Rowhani said in May, according to a state news report. "Under appropriate conditions, where national interests are protected, this situation has to change."
As former chief nuclear negotiator, Rowhani may be uniquely skilled to reach a compromise with the Obama administration on the issue of Iran's alleged nuclear program. But ultimately ...
He's beholden to the Ayatollah: Rowhani has publicly criticized Khamenei, and yet generally speaking, he has a "sufficiently good relationship" with the Supreme Leader, according to Parsi. But more importantly, structural changes in Iran -- particularly any changes to the the country's weapons stock -- don't happen without the Ayatollah's approval.
"I don't think anything is going to change on the nuclear issue," Abdo said, adding that the Ayatollah is believed to exercise full control over Iran's alleged nuclear program.
"If you want to be cynical about it," Abdo added, "Rowhani is ... just a smiling face to the West."

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"Hablame"

"EN TIEMPOS DIFÍCILES" - Heberto Padilla

A aquel hombre le pidieron su tiempo

para que lo juntara al tiempo de la Historia.

Le pidieron las manos,

porque para una época difícil

nada hay mejor que un par de buenas manos.

Le pidieron los ojos

que alguna vez tuvieron lágrimas

para que contemplara el lado claro

(especialmente el lado claro de la vida)

porque para el horror basta un ojo de asombro.

Le pidieron sus labios

resecos y cuarteados para afirmar,

para erigir, con cada afirmación, un sueño

(el-alto-sueño);

le pidieron las piernas

duras y nudosas

(sus viejas piernas andariegas),

porque en tiempos difíciles

¿algo hay mejor que un par de piernas

para la construcción o la trinchera?

Le pidieron el bosque que lo nutrió de niño,

con su árbol obediente.

Le pidieron el pecho, el corazón, los hombros.

Le dijeron

que eso era estrictamente necesario.

Le explicaron después

que toda esta donación resultaria inútil.

sin entregar la lengua,

porque en tiempos difíciles

nada es tan útil para atajar el odio o la mentira.

Y finalmente le rogaron

que, por favor, echase a andar,

porque en tiempos difíciles

esta es, sin duda, la prueba decisiva.

Los Aldeanos: "El Socialismo en Tiempos del Colera: Toda Una Nación"

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La columna de Cubanalisis

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]
¨Saturno jugando con sus hijos¨/ Pedro Pablo Oliva

Seguidores

Carta desde la carcel de Fidel Castro Ruz

“…después de todo, para mí la cárcel es un buen descanso, que sólo tiene de malo el que es obligatorio. Leo mucho y estudio mucho. Parece increíble, las horas pasan como si fuesen minutos y yo, que soy de temperamento intranquilo, me paso el día leyendo, apenas sin moverme para nada. La correspondencia llega normalmente…”

“…Como soy cocinero, de vez en cuando me entretengo preparando algún pisto. Hace poco me mandó mi hermana desde Oriente un pequeño jamón y preparé un bisté con jalea de guayaba. También preparo spaghettis de vez en cuando, de distintas formas, inventadas todas por mí; o bien tortilla de queso. ¡Ah! ¡Qué bien me quedan! por supuesto, que el repertorio no se queda ahí. Cuelo también café que me queda muy sabroso”.
“…En cuanto a fumar, en estos días pasados he estado rico: una caja de tabacos H. Upman del doctor Miró Cardona, dos cajas muy buenas de mi hermano Ramón….”.
“Me voy a cenar: spaghettis con calamares, bombones italianos de postre, café acabadito de colar y después un H. Upman #4. ¿No me envidias?”.
“…Me cuidan, me cuidan un poquito entre todos. No le hacen caso a uno, siempre estoy peleando para que no me manden nada. Cuando cojo el sol por la mañana en shorts y siento el aire de mar, me parece que estoy en una playa… ¡Me van a hacer creer que estoy de vacaciones! ¿Qué diría Carlos Marx de semejantes revolucionarios?”.
¨La patria es dicha de todos, y dolor de todos, y cielo para todos, y no feudo ni capellaní­a de nadie¨ - Marti

"No temas ni a la prision, ni a la pobreza, ni a la muerte. Teme al miedo"
-
Giacomo Leopardi

¨Por eso es muy importante, Vicky, hijo mío, que recuerdes siempre para qué sirve la cabeza: para atravesar paredes¨Halvar de Flake [El vikingo]

"Como no me he preocupado de nacer, no me preocupo de morir" - Lorca

"Al final, no os preguntarán qué habéis sabido, sino qué habéis hecho" - Jean de Gerson

"Si queremos que todo siga como está, es necesario que todo cambie" - Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

"Todo hombre paga su grandeza con muchas pequeñeces, su victoria con muchas derrotas, su riqueza con múltiples quiebras" - Giovanni Papini


"Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans" - John Lennon

"Habla bajo, lleva siempre un gran palo y llegarás lejos" - Proverbio Africano

"No hay medicina para el miedo" - Proverbio escoces

"El supremo arte de la guerra es doblegar al enemigo sin luchar"
- Sun Tzu

"You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother" - Albert Einstein

"It is inaccurate to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office" - H. L. Menken

"I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented" - Elie Wiesel

"Stay hungry, stay foolish" -
Steve Jobs

"If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert , in five years ther'ed be a shortage of sand" - Milton Friedman

"The tragedy of modern man is not that he knows less and less about the meaning of his own life, but that it bothers him less and less" - Vaclav Havel

"No se puede controlar el resultado, pero si lo que uno haga para alcanzarlo" -
Vitor Belfort [MMA Fighter]

Liborio

Liborio
A la puerta de la gloria está San Pedro sentado y ve llegar a su lado a un hombre de cierta historia. No consigue hacer memoria y le pregunta con celo: ¿Quién eras allá en el suelo? Era Liborio mi nombre. Has sufrido mucho, hombre, entra, te has ganado el cielo.

Para Raul Castro

Cuba ocupa el penultimo lugar en el mundo en libertad economica solo superada por Corea del Norte.

Cuba ocupa el lugar 147 entre 153 paises evaluados en "Democracia, Mercado y Transparencia 2007"

Cuando vinieron

Cuando vinieron a buscar a los comunistas, Callé: yo no soy comunista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los sindicalistas, Callé: yo no soy sindicalista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los judíos, Callé: yo no soy judío. Cuando vinieron a buscar a los católicos, Callé: yo no soy “tan católico”.
Cuando vinieron a buscarme a mí, Callé: no había quien me escuchara.

Reverendo Martin Niemöller

Martha Colmenares

Martha Colmenares
Un sitio donde los hechos y sus huellas nos conmueven o cautivan

CUBA LLORA Y EL MUNDO Y NOSOTROS NO ESCUCHAMOS

Donde esta el Mundo, donde los Democratas, donde los Liberales? El pueblo de Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan los Green, los Socialdemocratas, los Ricos y los Pobres, los Con Voz y Sin Voz? Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan el Jet Set, los Reyes y Principes, Patricios y Plebeyos? Cuba desesperada clama por solidaridad.
Donde Bob Dylan, donde Martin Luther King, donde Hollywood y sus estrellas? Donde la Middle Class democrata y conservadora, o acaso tambien liberal a ratos? Y Gandhi? Y el Dios de Todos?
Donde los Santos y Virgenes; los Dioses de Cristianos, Protestantes, Musulmanes, Budistas, Testigos de Jehova y Adventistas del Septimo Dia. Donde estan Ochun y todas las deidades del Panteon Yoruba que no acuden a nuestro llanto? Donde Juan Pablo II que no exige mas que Cuba se abra al Mundo y que el Mundo se abra a Cuba?
Que hacen ahora mismo Alberto de Monaco y el Principe Felipe que no los escuchamos? Donde Madonna, donde Angelina Jolie y sus adoptados around de world; o nos hara falta un Brando erguido en un Oscar por Cuba? Donde Sean Penn?
Donde esta la Aristocracia Obrera y los Obreros menos Aristocraticos, donde los Working Class que no estan junto a un pueblo que lanquidece, sufre y llora por la ignominia?
Que hacen ahora mismo Zapatero y Rajoy que no los escuchamos, y Harper y Dion, e Hillary y Obama; donde McCain que no los escuchamos? Y los muertos? Y los que estan muriendo? Y los que van a morir? Y los que se lanzan desesperados al mar?
Donde estan el minero cantabrico o el pescador de percebes gijonese? Los Canarios donde estan? A los africanos no los oimos, y a los australianos con su acento de hombres duros tampoco. Y aquellos chinos milenarios de Canton que fundaron raices eternas en la Isla? Y que de la Queen Elizabeth y los Lords y Gentlemen? Que hace ahora mismo el combativo Principe Harry que no lo escuchamos?
Donde los Rockefellers? Donde los Duponts? Donde Kate Moss? Donde el Presidente de la ONU? Y Solana donde esta? Y los Generales y Doctores? Y los Lam y los Fabelo, y los Sivio y los Fito Paez?
Y que de Canseco y Miñoso? Y de los veteranos de Bahia de Cochinos y de los balseros y de los recien llegados? Y Carlos Otero y Susana Perez? Y el Bola, y Pancho Cespedes? Y YO y TU?
Y todos nosotros que estamos aqui y alla rumiando frustaciones y resquemores, envidias y sinsabores; autoelogios y nostalgias, en tanto Louis Michel comulga con Perez Roque mientras Biscet y una NACION lanquidecen?
Donde Maceo, donde Marti; donde aquel Villena con su carga para matar bribones?
Cuba llora y clama y el Mundo NO ESCUCHA!!!

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