Guyana: More Amerindian communities to get govt grant this year

Several Amerindian communities which received government grants have shown improvement in their economic activities and this year more communities will be benefiting, the Government Information Agency (GINA) reported on Monday.

Arukamai, Manawari, Capoey, Kopinang, Kaibarupai, Kanapang, Shea, Sawaraiwau, Rupunau, Aishalton, Yakarinta and Matara are among the areas earmarked for assistance, GINA stated.

During the period 2004-2006, Government disbursed grants totalling $118.8M to 77 communities in Regions One, Seven, Eight and Nine. These grants were given directly to the village councils, GINA said.

The councils were asked to submit proposals to the Ministry of Amerindian Affairs for projects which they considered absolutely necessary. Among the projects that were realized were a community hall at Paruima, a housing project at Kamarang and a community centre at Kaikan, all in Region Seven while cattle-rearing projects were done in Region Nine.

Meanwhile, a road link from Kako, Region Eight, to Waramadong in Region Seven is set to continue this year.

To manage their finances, Government has been training village councillors in accountability and finance. Training is being conducted in all Amerindian communities in order that the councils operate effectively, GINA added.

*Source: Starbroek News


Human experimentation in Puerto Rico*

The following is taken from "In the Name of Science, A history of secret programs, medical research and experimentation" by Andrew Goliszek published in 2003:

"...corroborated by witnesses involved in the experiments, the Rockefeller Institute, founded in 1901 to study the science of medicine and to develop an understanding of the nature and causes of disease... sponsored a cancer research project using healthy Puerto Rican citizens... unwitting human subjects were deliberately injected with cancer cells... to see how humans develop cancer... Dr. Cornelius Rhoades (who conducted the experiments)when asked why he chose Puerto Ricans to conduct the research stated flatly, 'The Puerto Ricans are the dirtiest, laziest, most degenerate and thievish race of men ever to to inhabit this spphere'. Despite the resulting cancer deaths and blatant racism, Dr. Rhoades was lauded for his research."

It is inconceivable that experiments similar to this are still being condoned all over the world. Governments are polluting not only the atmosphere but our bodies as well.

Save the Trees - Save the World


*UCTP Taino News Editor’s Note: The above entry notes a case of actual “human experimentation in Puerto Rico” with concern to the injection of cancer cells into human subjects who were unaware of the “experiment”. This is not the first time “human experimantaion" has been conducted on the People of Puerto Rico.

Considering that indigenous Taino ancestry is traditionally traced via the mother’s linage, it is important to note that Puerto Rican women have specifically been targeted within population control policies. Beginning in the late thirties, privately funded foundations based in the United States, and later, the Puerto Rican government, with U.S. government funds, promoted sterilization programs developed by the ‘Eugenics Board” under the guise of “limiting population growth”.

By the the 1950s, large numbers of Puerto Rican women were forcibly sterilized unknowingly or thinking they were undertaking a simple reversible procedure. Women factory workers were given time off to attend appointments in clinics, which were located within the very factories where they were employed. Social workers were encouraged to promote this program “door to door” by making home visits. By 1974, 35 percent of Puerto Rican women of child-bearing age - some 200,000 women - were permanently sterilized. By 1980, Puerto Rico had the highest per-capita rate of sterilization among women in the world. From the 1950s through 1980, Puerto Rico was also used as a testing ground for birth control pills while they were under development. Pills twenty times stronger than the ones used today were tested on Puerto Rican women.

Today, "human experimentation" in Puerto Rico continues as daily experiments are conducted on genetically modified plants where there is little regulation, oversight or accountability. Puerto Rico is host to more GM food experiments per square mile than any U.S. state except Hawaii. Located on a small island with a civilian population, the U.S. military bases on Vieques, which were used as a testing site for weapons should also be considered within the context of “human
experimentation” on the Puerto Rican People.

To review stories on these issues, see the following:

The Sterilization of Puerto Rican Women

Female Sterilization in Puerto Rico

The Role of Fertility Control in Socio-Economic Development

Puerto Rico’s Biotech Harvest

Olmos decries bomb test site cleanup


LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Important health warning

Dear Sir:

I just want to transmit to the people of CARICOM what I just saw on the American ABC news at 8.19am on Thursday, February 15, 2007. There is a very bad batch of Peter Pan brand name peanut butter in circulation that starts with the product code 2111 (read the label to find it); it has caused over 300 Americans to contract salmonella poisoning already.

It is a popular brand in most CARICOM countries (and the ONLY brand I see in the interior communities of Guyana) - readers please take the time to check for the 2111 product code and avoid purchasing any jars of Peter Pan brand peanut butter with this code; and go a step further and ask the store manager to remove all the jars of this infected batch from the store shelves, some unsuspecting person will undoubtedly purchase and consume some and become violently ill.

Bear in mind that whenever the developed countries have products they cannot legally sell in their own borders - they tend to end up being sold to our developing countries (DDT ring a bell?); the unscrupulous will not lose money - they just sell their products to others.

God willing, the editors of CARICOM newspapers who are reading this will exert some influence on the various ministries of health in CARICOM and urge the ministers to sieze and remove the infected jars with the 2111 product code. I have seen Amerindian children die of severe diarrhoea in my lifetime in a community that had a health centre - what about the thousands of other poor communities of all races where no such facilities exist? If even one person dies because those who could have done something chose to do nothing, we can consider ourselves to be members of a 'humanity' that is devoid of 'human beings'.

Damon Gerard Corrie

Editor's note: For the guidance of readers, the following wire service report on this topic was released on Thursday:

Hundreds sickened by peanut butter

WASHINGTON, USA (UPI) -- The US Food and Drug Administration has warned that certain batches of Peter Pan and Great Value peanut butter had been linked to a salmonella outbreak.

An FDA warning affects jars of Peter Pan and Great Value peanut butter with a product code on the lid that begins with the number "2111." Both products are manufactured at a ConAgra facility in Georgia.

In a release, the agency said the warning is based on a study by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that linked 288 cases of food borne illness in 39 states to Peter Pan peanut butter.

The agency said that if consumers have any of the Peter Pan or Great Value brand peanut butter in their home that has been purchased since May 2006, they should discard it. ConAgra has recalled the peanut butter.

Symptoms of illness caused by salmonella bacteria include fever, diarrhea and abdominal cramps. The illness can be life-threatening to people in poor health or with weakened immune systems.


Some western countries endorsing obscuring of UN Indigenous Rights declaration -GOIP

The Guyana Organisation of Indigenous Peoples (GOIP) says, in a letter to President Bharrat Jagdeo, that interpretations of sections of the United Nations (UN) Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as distinct from the whole is leading to negative interpretations in some African and Caribbean states.

According to the letter, signed by GOIP secretary Percy Peneux, the declaration, adopted by the UN Human Rights council in June 2006, is "a long-overdue affirmation of the minimum international standards needed to uphold the human rights of Indigenous Peoples" in Guyana. It is based on core international principles and values that embraces tolerance, peace and respect for the dignity of all cultures and peoples and, consistent with the UN Charter, it requires that the "human rights and freedoms of all shall be respected." The organisation said it has been alerted that a small number of African and Caribbean states have been encouraged by a few Western States: Aotearoa, New Zealand, Australia, Canada and the United States, to interpret the declaration in an erroneous way. Each provision of the declaration cannot be read as a separate fragment but should be interpreted in a holistic manner as to do otherwise could lead to extremist and absolute interpretations that could not be justified under the declaration or international human rights law as a whole.

The GOIP said the negative interpretations have recently led to a General Assembly resolution to defer action on the adoption of the declaration which authorises "time for further consultations." In response to this resolution, the GOIP said, "It is our sincere desire that your Administration recommend that these "consultations" should not be converted into a working group or any other process that fails to preserve the text of the Declaration" as adopted by the council in 2006.

The GOIP said the declaration is described as a "standard of achievement to be pursued in a spirit of partnership and mutual respect". It does not create new rights but elaborates on existing human rights and standards as they apply to indigenous peoples. The organisation said it agrees with the Indigenous People's Caucus which in a recent statement submitted to the president of the General Assembly, said the key purpose of "consultations" is to bridge understanding, especially for those countries who chose not to participate in the "standard-setting process" that took place over 20 years.

The organisation said in the Indigenous global context, the declaration is an essential complement to the survival, dignity and well-being of the world's indigenous peoples and to achieving the Millennium Development Goals. GOIP calls on the government to join with sister Caricom states Dominica and Haiti and in urging the General Assembly to adopt the declaration as soon as possible.

Source: Starbroek News, 15 February


Corrie is not an Exploiter of Amerindians

A Letter to the Editors of the Guyana Chronicle Newspaper, Stabroek News, Kaiteur News - all on Sunday February 11th 2007. The letter supports Corrie's work and address a number of unfounded charges. - UCTP Taino News Editor

See: http://www.pantribalconfederacy.com/confederacy/News/pdf/targeting.pdf



Astronomia en la Prehistoria del Caribe Insular

Características principales del libro:

▪Es la fuente más completa sobre la astronomía en la prehistoria del Caribe Insular.

▪ Examina el significado de la astronomía en el juego de bola antillano.

▪ Revela la importancia de los cuerpos celestes en la mitología de los indígenas antillanos.

▪ Se enfoca en la relación de los eventos astronómicos con los ciclos estacionales.

▪ Analiza la arqueoastronomía de las plazas ceremoniales en las Antillas.

Contact: Editorialnuevomundo@hotmail.com


Taino women's gathering and retreat Boriken 2007

In our Taino communities, in order for patriarchy to become balanced by the discerning wisdom and compassion that is associated with the feminine aspects of our humanity, as well as by our indigenous wisdom — a fusionof the women in our communities must occur.

The Taino Women's circle is a way to the embodiment of our ancestral wisdom. A non-hierarchical circle of women is where this equality can flourish, where culture listens and everyone in the circle learns.

With this thought in mind, Yaboa Native Women's coalition invites Taino women from every Taino community and/or organization to join in a Taino Circle of Sisterhood: Gathering & Retreat to be held in Boriken from Monday July 23 to Sunday July 29, 2007.

We will spend a week together conversation, ceremony, song, dance and in celebration of our earth mother.

We will share stories and learn things taught in circles of spirit around a sacred fire; things known only by the elders. This gathering and retreat will bring us together with Taino women living in Boriken while we explore our horizons and rediscover each other.

As Caribbean Indigenous women, our social, economic, and political concerns are similar and yet different from other indigenous women. How we address our issues, how the world sees us and how we interrelate with other indigenous communities is contingent on how we relate to each other and our environment. Native women throughout the Americas know these are trying times for the family of man. Globalization, war, contamination of the environment, disrespect for the basic human rights of indigenous peoples are all part of the ongoing problems indigenous communities endure daily. Were it not for its women many of these communities would be completely devastated. As such, crimes against indigenous women are on the rise.

Never has there been a greater need for Taino Women to come into circles of oneness than now. In unity, we can develop projects that will help to change the way we as Taino people bypass the borders of division and adversities imposed on us by the society we live in.

Taino Sisters of one heart, in kindred spirit from everywhere — Boriken, Kiskeya, Cubanacan, Bimini, and the Diaspora — together to once again feel the heart of our ancestral land beneath our feet.

Ignore the man-made borders that divide us and come to dance in the sacredness of our waters and to share in the warmth of our council fire.

Sisters, Taino women of the Caribbean First nations, let us rebuild our communities with respect for each other and love for all our people while honoring our spirit by honoring our ancestors.

That said, ladies, get a piggy bank and save your money! You have close to six months before the Taino Circle of Sisterhood: Gathering & Retreat in Boriken from July 23 to 29th, 2007.

It is the hope of Presencia Taina's YABOA Indigenous Women's Coalition that we can all take back to our respective communities from this circle a better understanding of our role as Taino women within the global community; as well as, how our Indigenous values and principles help earth mother and all her children and our future generation.

For reservation, cost, and trip information call 718-796-2460 or email prestaina@aol.com

You must reserve and confirm your attendance no later than Friday, June 1, 2007 — no exceptions. Itinerary is forth coming.

Hope to hear from you soon,
Co-Director Presencia Taina,


Amerindian ministry taking steps to curb fleecing of interior workers

Minister of Amerindian Affairs Carolyn Rodrigues has voiced concerns about Amerindian men working in the logging and other areas not being given remuneration.

Rodrigues said "we haven't had many reports from the women but of our Amerindian men going out to work in mining, logging and in other areas and not being paid" a Government Information Agency press release said. The minister said some workers who travel from far distances to obtain work are often told to return home and that their money would come by mail. Rodrigues said this year her ministry would be "cracking down on individuals and companies who try to swindle Amerindians." The ministry will be working closely with the Guyana Forestry Commission and the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission, who grant concessions to companies involved in logging and mining, to try to curb this practice.

Rodrigues said the ministry intends to take a more aggressive stance on the issue and will publish the names of individuals, some of whom are "very prominent people that you would not expect this from" as some of them have appeared repeatedly. The minister also called for a reform of the Code of Practice as it relates to forestry, especially when it deals with treatment of workers and since State Forest Permits are renewed annually. Rodrigues said in some cases, the commission had assisted the ministry in ensuring that workers were paid and that this arrangement should be formalised to bring an end to the problem.

Source: Starbroek News


Taino is Nominated for UNPFII Membership 2008-2010

New York, NY (UCTP News) - The Secretariat for the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) has received over 35 nominations from indigenous organizations for UNPFII membership for the period 2008-2010. The deadline for nominations was 1 February 2007 deadline.

New UNPFII members will be appointed by the President of ECOSOC towards the end of April 2007. Further information will be posted at the Forum's web page as it becomes available.

Nominations for UNPFII members for Central and South America and the Caribbean include Mr. Roberto Mucaro BORRERO (Taino), President and Chairman of the United Confederation of Taino People. Support for Mr. Borrero’s nomination was received from indigenous organizations from Puerto Rico, Dominica, Barbados, Venezuela, the Dominican Republic, and the United States.

The Permanent Forum is comprised of sixteen independent experts, functioning in their personal capacity, who serve for a term of three years as Members and may be re-elected or re-appointed for one additional term.

Eight of the Members are nominated by governments and eight are nominated directly by indigenous organizations in their regions.


Support Needed for Jamaican Maroons

Dear UCTP Taino community:

Please ask people to visit the petition to save the heart and soul of Jamaica from local government and blood hungry capitalists.

The Land called the Cockpit country is the last area owned and given by treaty to the Maroons, an independent group of indigenous communities living together and apart from laws and rules from the rest of the island for over 400 years. The government and other "Interest groups" have been trying to undermine the influence and catalyst role the Maroon community has played on the island for the same amount of time.

The government and local good ole boys want to sell the land off for mining.

Can you ask people to support this petition


Chet Alexander
Alexander Foundation
Tel: 305-856-0506
Mobile: 786-271-5170


More Evidence of Indigenous Ancestry in Puerto Rico...

Summary: Discovery of the Boricua Eve

"Six out of 10 Puertoricans have American Indian ancestors according to a recent study."

The simple vision of the tri-racial formula defining Puerto Ricans as a mixture of African, Spaniard and Taino could change due to a major scientific discovery involving 19 maternal indigenous lineages that could be defined as the Eve's of modern day Boriken (Puerto Rico).

This discovery is a new twist taken from a scientific investigation in 2003, in that it suggest that six out of 10 Puertoricans have a women ancestor of direct American Indian or of indigenous to American origina and that "indigenous women" have had a greater influence on Puerto Rican culture than previously admitted by academics.

According to investigative research done by genetic scientist specialising in molecular evolution, Juan Carlos Martinez cruzado and archeologist and anthropologist Juan Jose Ortiz Aguilu, the indigenous lineage is most common to the Puertorican of today than that of those with African lineage or Spaniard (European) descendance.

Review full article at: http://www.endi.com/XStatic/endi/template/nota.aspx?n=156387

De la zona amazónica las antiguas madres....

Por Carmen Millán Pabón

La zona amazónica parece ser la cuna de las antepasadas indígenas de la mayoría de los puertorriqueños de hoy.

Según estudios científicos de material de ADN mitocondrial que desarrollan el genetista especializado en evolución molecular Juan Carlos Martínez Cruzado y el arqueólogo y antropólogo Juan José Ortiz Aguilú, en Puerto Rico se han detectado 19 linajes indoamericanos, y el más común tiene un marcador que lo identifica como oriundo de América del Sur, específicamente de la región del Amazonas. “La evidencia arqueológica demuestra que, hace 6,000 años, había gente en Puerto Rico. ¿De dónde vinieron? Unos dicen que de América del Norte, otros de (América del) Sur. Una cosa no excluye la otra y queremos averiguar”, expresó Martínez Cruzado.

El genetista, que además es profesor en la Recinto Universitario de Mayagüez (RUM), de la Universidad de Puerto Rico (UPR), identificó el linaje que tiene el 21% de todos los indígenas como el C-1.

“Sospecho que este grupo es representativo y que llegó a Puerto Rico con los llamados saladoides, aproximadamente 500 años antes de Cristo. Ellos trajeron la cerámica y también la yuca”, sostuvo el estudioso.

El linaje C-1 experimentó una expansión poblacional al llegar a Puerto Rico, de manera que, aunque es el más frecuente, no es el más antiguo.

El segundo linaje más común -según apunta la investigación- es el que han llamado A-1, que tiene 16% de frecuencia. Aunque todavía no se ha podido asociar con ninguna región en el continente, la variabilidad sugiere que es de origen muy antiguo, posiblemente arcaico (antes de los saladoides y de los arauacos).

De los 19 linajes maternos indígenas encontrados en Puerto Rico, Martínez Cruzado encontró un total de cinco grandes familias de ADN mitocondrial en el “nuevo mundo”.

Esas familias fueron identificadas como A, B, C, D y X, esta última es la única cirscunscrita a América del Norte.

El ADN mitocondrial de las familias A, B, C y D se encuentran en América del Norte, Centro y Sur y en el Caribe.

En Puerto Rico, el más común es el A, con un 52% de frecuencia y nueve linajes; el segundo es el C con un 36% de frecuencia y cuatro linajes; el B tiene 9% y cuatro linajes; y, el D, 3% y dos linajes.

“Los linajes son ADN mitocondriales que son suficientemente distintos a los demás como para proponer que llegaron a Puerto Rico independientemente. Nueve componen el 84% del total de ADN mitocondrial indígena en Puerto Rico. Los otros diez no son frecuentes y sospecho que son de llegada reciente, post colonización. Eso es necesario confirmarlo con las osamentas”, indicó Martínez Cruzado.

El ADN miotocondrial se hereda únicamente de la línea materna y por eso es un marcador tan distintivo. El ADN mitocondrial que tiene una persona hoy en día es el mismo -excepto por las mutaciones- que tenía una antepasada directa hace miles de años atrás.

*Source: El Nuevo Dia

Cronología de los estudios del ADN mitocondrial...

1994 El antropólogo Juan José Ortiz Aguilú convida al geneticista especialista en evolución molecular Juan Carlos Martínez Cruzado a iniciar una investigación para la identificación ADN indígena en restos prehistóricos.

1995 El ADN mitocondrial indígena se extrajo de cuatro osamentas.

1997 Aixa Sánchez Crespo, estudiante graduada del Programa de Biología del RUM, identificó ADN mitocondrial amerindio en las osamentas.

1998 Se tomaron muestras de la población actual puertorriqueña para identificar la incidencia de ADN mitocondrial indígena.

1999 La Fundación Nacional de Ciencias en Washington asigna $262,000 para continuar las investigaciones. El Centro de Investigación Social Aplicada del RUM hizo la selección de muestras para el estudio.

1999 a 2000 Unas 800 personas participan del estudio.

2002 Culmina la investigación que concluye que, de la muestra, el 61% de los puertorriqueños tenía ADN mitocondrial indígena; 27%, africano subsahariano; y el 12%, euroasiático occidental.

2005 El American Journal of Physical Antropology publica el estudio.

2006 Se lanzan dos hipótesis nuevas: Que parte de esos linajes pudieron tener un origen en el periodo Arcaico Amerindio de Puerto Rico; y, que la mujer indígena es figura clave en la transmisión de valores culturales para la sociedad actual.

2007 Están en proceso de recuperar material prehistórico para extracción de ADN indígena en diferentes regiones de Puerto Rico; y, se amplía la muestra de ADN mitocondrial contemporáneo en Puerto Rico y la República Dominicana.

*Source: El Nuevo Dia


Orgullosos de su identidad taína*

Por Carmen Millán Pabón

Participantes del estudio genético celebran la certeza de sus orígenes precolombinos

José Seda Almodóvar se sometió voluntariamente al
estudio genético de interés antropológico, el cual lo
identificó como parte del linaje indígena A-I.

El poeta hizo la pregunta y el estudio del ADN mitocondrial de los puertorriqueños está dando las contestaciones.

José Seda Almodóvar y María de los Ángeles Giménez de Morales ya saben con certeza qué decirle a Fortunato Vizcarrondo, autor de “Y tu agüela, ¿aónde ejtá?”

Ambos son indígenas y haplogrupo A, con combinaciones adicionales que los identifica del Linaje Indígena A-I, el segundo más común en Puerto Rico, que nunca se ha encontrado en personas que no sean de ascendencia puertorriqueña.

José, de 65 años, siempre supo que tenía “la rajita” indígena. Su abuela materna poseía una “mata de pelo lacio y negro” que lo hechizaba cada vez que se soltaba el moño.

“Tenía también la nariz y los pómulos sobresalientes, los llamados ‘dientes de pala’ y la piel cobriza”, dijo evocando recuerdos de la niñez que ahora ata a los resultados de las pruebas genéticas de interés antropológico que se hizo de forma voluntaria.

Esas pruebas se han estado haciendo extrayendo células de la raíz del pelo o de tejido bucal.
“Uno se siente bien. Fue gracioso, porque los que no salieron indígenas no salieron contentos”, añadió riéndose.

Orgullosa de confirmar sus orígenes precolombinos, la pintora Giménez de Morales, se emocionó de manera indescriptible y dijo “entender” muchas de las sensaciones de identidad taína que había tenido a través de toda su vida.

“Mis hijos se pusieron contentísimos. Cuando llegaron los resultados los tuve que leer tres veces”, dijo emocionada.

La mujer, de 66 años y residente en Estados Unidos, siempre estuvo atraída a lecturas sobre temas taínos, que traducía en pinturas y trabajos. “Desde pequeñita mi mamá me hacía historias de los indios y cuando comencé a pintar, pintaba indios”, recordó con entusiasmo.

Al enterarse de que dos investigadores trabajaban en la identificación del ADN mitocondrial indígena, los contactó y se sometió voluntariamente al estudio.

“Me habían dicho que tengo ‘dientes de pala’, una característica indígena, pero otra cosa es saber que tenía genes indígenas y del linaje indígena A-I, que nunca se ha encontrado en personas que no sean de ascendencia puertorriqueña”, dijo más que feliz la admiradora de piezas taínas, que ahora se pregunta si fueron creadas por alguna de sus antepasadas directas.

*Source: El Nuevo Dia


Public Notice: UNPFII 2007

Public Notice: The Sixth Session of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) will take place at United Nations Headquarters in New York from May 14-25 2007.

As in previous sessions, the United Confederation of Taino People (UCTP) is facilitating activities and administrative services for the Indigenous Peoples Caucus of the Greater Caribbean (IPCGC). Please inform us of your planned attendance and desire to participate as part of the Caucus, which is open to representatives of indigenous Caribbean Organizations and communities.

Consistent with the UNPFII, the IPCGC follows an organizational structure similar to the Association of Caribbean States whereas the “Greater Caribbean” is defined here as an area of cooperation in recognition of common ancestral heritages and common geographic spaces shared by the Indigenous Peoples of the region.

Please send all correspondence to the United Confederation of Taino People’s Regional Coordinating Office at uctp_ny@yahoo.com

We say bo’matum (thank you) in advance for your attention and consideration.





Greetings relatives:

American Indian Movement leader and Indigenous Rights Activist, Leonard Peltier has been unjustly incarcerated for the past 31 years.

On Tuesday, February 6th, from 7:00pm – 9:00pm, the New York City Leonard Peltier Support Group invites you to an evening of music, history, spoken word, open mike & updates on his case.

Live music will be hosted by Native American activist and recording artist Wayquay for W.I.N.D. Running Mouth Radio. There will be a legal update by Peltier’s Attorneys and special guests from near and far as well as live radio interviews.

This will all take place at the International Action Center 55 W 17th St., 5th floor, NY , NY 10011 and you can call them at 1(212)633-6646 for more information.

If you are a drummer, musician, singer, or a poet and would like to dedicate a piece to Leonard Peltier you are welcome to attend and participate. There will be some light refreshments served, a live auction, and donations will be accepted at the door.

The late great Dr. Martin Luther King once stated, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” The wrongful imprisonment of Leonard Peltier is a grave injustice and these 31 years of injustice are a threat to justice everywhere.

I hope you can attend this special event in solidarity. Let us show Leonard that we have not forgotten.

In the Spirit of our ancestors,
Oma’bahari (with respect),
Roberto Mucaro Borrero (Taino),
President and Chairman, UCTP
Regional Coordinating Office

“Silence, they say, is the voice of complicity. But silence is impossible. Silence screams.
Silence is a message, just as doing nothing is an act.” – Leonard Peltier*

*For more information on Leonard Peltier visit http://leonardpeltier.net/

Olmos decries bomb test site cleanup

Edward James Olmos criticized the United States and Puerto Rico on Tuesday for not moving faster to clean up the site of a former bombing range on Vieques Island.

Olmos, an Oscar nominee for 1988's ``Stand and Deliver,'' said officials ``have done nothing'' to restore an area that environmentalists say is tainted by dangerous pollutants nearly four years after the departure of the U.S. Navy.

``We are not going to stop until we make them see that a (cleanup) is necessary,'' Olmos said at a news conference in the Puerto Rican capital of San Juan.

The Navy, which withdrew from Vieques in May 2003 following three years of steady protests, has begun controlled detonations of unexploded bombs in sections of the 21-mile-long island and nearby waters.

This has sparked renewed protests by residents who say the explosions are causing more environmental damage on Vieques, some 6 miles off the southeastern coast of mainland Puerto Rico.

Olmos, 59, also urged Puerto Rican legislators to block the construction of large tourist resorts on undeveloped beaches in the U.S. Caribbean territory.

The actor, who was born in East Los Angeles, was among the celebrities who were arrested for trespassing to thwart U.S. Navy bombing exercises on Vieques. ``I believe it is wrong to practice near where people live, period,'' he said in a press conference in 2001.

He trespassed onto the firing range in a fishing boat along with environmental lawyer Robert F. Kennedy and New York labor leader Dennis Rivera.

Olmos' TV credits include ``Battlestar Galactica'' on the SciFi Channel, a network of NBC Universal, and the '80s series ``Miami Vice.''

U.N. climate panel says warming is man-made

By Gerard Wynn and Alister Doyle

The world's top climate scientists said on Friday global warming was man-made, spurring calls for urgent government action to prevent severe and irreversible damage from rising temperatures.

The United Nations panel, which groups 2,500 scientists from more than 130 nations, predicted more droughts, heatwaves, rains and a slow gain in sea levels that could last for more than 1,000 years.

The scientists said it was "very likely" -- or more than 90 percent probable -- that human activities led by burning fossil fuels explained most of the warming in the past 50 years.

That is a toughening from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) last report in 2001, which judged a link as "likely," or 66 percent probable.

Possible signs range from drought in Australia to record high winter temperatures in Europe.

"February 2, 2007 may be remembered as the day the question mark was removed from whether (people) are to blame for climate change," said Achim Steiner, head of the U.N. Environment Program.

"Faced with this emergency, now is not the time for half measures. It is the time for a revolution, in the true sense of the term," French President Jacques Chirac said. "We are in truth on the historical doorstep of the irreversible."

The Kyoto Protocol is the main plan for capping emissions of greenhouse gases until 2012 but it has been severely weakened since the United States, the top source of greenhouse gases, pulled out in 2001. Emissions by many backers of Kyoto are far over target.


A 21-page summary of IPCC findings for policy makers outlines wrenching change such as a possible melting of Arctic sea ice in summers by 2100 and says it is "more likely than not" that greenhouse gases have made tropical cyclones more intense.

The report predicts a "best estimate" that temperatures would rise by between 1.8 and 4.0 Celsius (3.2 and 7.8 Fahrenheit) in the 21st century, within a likely range from 1.1 to 6.4 Celsius.
Temperatures rose 0.7 degrees in the 20th century and the 10 hottest years since records began in the 1850s have been since 1994. Greenhouse gases are released mainly by burning fossil fuels in power plants, factories and cars.

Many backers of Kyoto, binding 35 industrial nations to cut greenhouse gas emissions to 5 percent below 1990 levels by 2008-12, want outsiders led by the United States and big developing nations such as China and India to get involved.

The head of the U.S. delegation defended Bush's policies that brake the rise of emissions rather than cap them. Democrats who control both houses of Congress want tougher action.

"The President has put in place a comprehensive set of policies to address what he has called the 'serious challenge' of climate change," said Sharon Hays, Associate Director of the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy.

Bush pulled out of Kyoto, saying caps would harm the economy and that Kyoto should include developing nations. He focuses instead on big investments in hydrogen and biofuels.

The President of Kiribati, a group of 33 Pacific coral atolls threatened by rising seas, said time was running out.

"The question is, what can we do now? There's very little we can do about arresting the process," President Anote Tong said.

The report projects a rise in sea levels of between 18 and 59 centimeters (7 and 23 inches) in the 21st century -- and said bigger gains could not be ruled out if ice sheets in Antarctica and Greenland thaw.

Some leading scientists had criticized a draft for cutting the range from a 2001 forecast of a rise between 9 and 88 cm. Rising seas threaten low-lying islands, coasts of countries such as Bangladesh and cities from Shanghai to Buenos Aires.


Ice floes dot the bay in Kulusuk,
Greenland, near the Arctic Circle in 2005.
Photo Credit: By John Mcconnico -- Associated Press

*For related UCTP articles on the global climate crisis, see:

UCTP Resolution on Global Climate Crises

UCTP Action on Global Climate Crises

UCTP Takes Position on Climate Change