Tag Archive | Chile

Eight Ex-Military Behind Operation Condor Sentenced to Life*

Eight Ex-Military Behind Operation Condor Sentenced to Life*


Many human rights advocates will be disappointed by the court’s failure to sentence 19 other military officials charged in the case.

A court in Rome handed down Tuesday life sentences to eight former military officers from Bolivia, Chile, Peru and Uruguay who were found guilty of the forces disappearance and death of about 20 Italian nationals as part of the bloody “Operation Condor” in South America in the 1970s and 1980s.

Only eight of the 27 military officers charged from the four countries received jail time in the high-anticipated sentencing hearing after a lengthy 9-year investigation.

“We are disappointed by the decision,” said Uruguay’s Vice President Raul Sendic, who was present at the hearing. The prosecutor had asked for life sentences for the 27 officers.

The former military men sentenced were Chile’s Hernan Jeronimo Ramirez and Rafael Ahumada Valderrama; Uruguay’s Juan Carlos Blanco; Bolivia’s Luis Garcia Meza and Luis Arce Gomez; and Peru’s Francisco Morales Bermudez, Pedro Richter Prada and German Ruiz Figueroa.

The investigation, opened by Italian attorney Giancarlo Capaldo, initially included 140 people accused of human rights abuses, but the list was eventually whittled down to the 27 who were charged, as many of the accused had died or were found too old to be tried.

When the trial launched on Feb. 12, 2015, the case involved 34 former heads of state, military officials, police and secret services agents and other operatives of military regimes in South America in the 1970s and 1980s.

On Dec. 28, 2016, former president and military dictator of Uruguay from 1982 to 1985, Gregorio Alvarez, died while serving a sentence for human rights abuses carried out during his reign.

The deadly multi-state Operation Condor intelligence operation was designed to destroy opposition to U.S.-backed right-wing regimes in Latin America.

Operation Condor operations are thought to have led to the death or disappearance of 50,000 people throughout Latin America during the 1970s and 1980s.



Related Topics:

Bolivia, Paraguay and Retrieving Our Backyard!

Morales Asks Citizens to Believe in Bolivia, Not U.S. Rule*

The U.S. Interfered In Foreign Presidential Elections 81+ Times from 1946-2000*

Occupy World: Chilean Farmer Wins Case against Monsanto*

Child abduction in Peru – but who are the kidnappers?

Rivers Run Blackened by Big Oil in Peru, which the Indigenous are Left to Clean-up*

Occupy World: Peru Aiming to Dismantle Rothschild’s Media Monopoly*

South America and another U.S Invasion*

TiSA: Uruguay Does Unthinkable, Rejects Global Corporatocracy*

Declassified Docs Detail U.S. Role in Dirty War Horrors of Argentina *

The NWOs TPP Will Be Signed Today, but Congress has to Approve It*

The NWOs TPP Will Be Signed Today, but Congress has to Approve It*

It was signed on the 4 February 2016

By Arjun Walia

Today is the day that the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) will be signed, but it won’t become law until Congress approves it, which means there is still time to stop it. The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) is the largest trade agreement since the creation of the World Trade Organization (WTO), and the United States has been engaged in discussion with eight Pacific nations to come to an agreement on the terms of the TPP. It is a free trade contract that would, ostensibly, allow for a more open system of exchange between the United States and less developed nations, and it has been wrapped in secrecy since discussions began within the Bush administration in 2005. This is one of many examples of global economic/political partnerships and deals that are happening underneath public radar.

Despite the vast uproar that has been raised across various non-corporate media outlets, and the seemingly endless amounts of people opposing the trade deal, it still remains wrapped in secrecy. This is because it’s not really about trade. The agreement has 29 chapters, and only five of them have to do with trade. The other 24 chapters either put restrictions on domestic governments or limit food safety, environmental standards, financial regulation, climate policy, and more. It’s basically an agreement for establishing new and enhanced powers for the multinational corporations that have a stranglehold on the world’s resources. It will affect every major industry and influence the way we govern our planet and the way we are allowed to live our lives. It will affect everything.

This is just one of many examples of global economic/political partnerships and deals that are happening outside of the public eye. The TPP itself is not really a secret, but many of the details of it are. And considering the immeasurable impact it is about to have on our lives, it is not talked about nearly enough. Many people remain woefully ignorant of what is going on, so it’s important that we spread the message before it’s too late.

Below is a video of Robert Reich, an American political economist and professor who served in the administrations of Presidents Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter, talking about the deal. He was also Secretary of Labor under President Bill Clinton from 1993 to 1997. Today, he doesn’t agree with what politics has become, and now discusses how America has been taken over by moneyed interests.

To help stop the Trans-Pacific Partnership, please go HERE.  It’s a petition from MoveOn.org urging Congress to vote no on the TPP when the time comes. They state that “an agreement like the TPP should be negotiated in the full light of day. America must reserve the right to determine our own consumer, health, safety, labor, privacy, and environmental regulations. Do not surrender our rights to transnational corporations.”


Related Topics:

New Zealand Police Intimidate Anti-TPP Activists in Their Homes*

TPP Negotiators Meet this Week to Finalize Corporate Trade Deal*

Protest Rally Ends with a Call for Fatwa against TPPA in Malaysia*

Japan to Lift Duties Vegetables, Most Fishery Products under TPP*

Canada under Pressure from Obama for Quick TPP Approval*

Over 1,000 Plaintiffs File Lawsuit to Keep Japan out of TPP*

TPP Preparedness: EU Drops Pesticide Laws*

TPP Preparedness: New Bolivian Law Forces Investor Disputes to Be Settled Locally*

12 Nations Sold their Sovereignty to a Controversial TPP Deal in Atlanta*

12 Nations Sold their Sovereignty to a Controversial TPP Deal in Atlanta*

12 Nations Sold their Sovereignty to a Controversial TPP Deal in Atlanta*

By Derrick Broze

“Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam are pleased to announce that we have successfully concluded the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations,” stated U.S Trade Representative Michael Froman early Monday morning.

The ministerial meeting in Atlanta was expected to conclude on Friday but dragged into Monday morning because of disagreements on dairy products and pharmaceutical regulation. The controversial trade agreement must now be approved by the twelve individual nation-states before it can officially become law.

In the United States, President Obama must wait a minimum of 90 days before signing the agreement, and the full text of the agreement must be made publicly available for at least 60 days. This means that a congressional vote on the TPP will not likely happen before January.

President Obama promised that “Congress and the American people will have months to read every word” and stated that passing the agreement “can help our businesses sell more Made in America goods and services around the world, and we can help more American workers compete and win.”

In late June, President Obama signed into law the so-called “fast-track” bill that set the stage for approval of the TPP. The fast-track bill, officially known as the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), was one of two bills signed by Obama. The president also signed the Trade Adjustment Assistance Act (TAA), aimed at extending aid to workers who might lose their jobs as a consequence of the TPP or other so-called free trade deals.

At Monday’s press conference in Atlanta, USTR Michael Froman discussed the expected benefits of approving the massive trade agreement that will affect 40% of the global economy.

“We expect this agreement to promote economic growth, support higher paying jobs, enhance innovation, productivity and competitiveness, raise living standards, reduce poverty in our countries, and promote transparency in governance and strong labour and environmental protections,” Froman stated.

Critics say the agreement’s Investor-State Dispute Settlement, or ISDS, will give corporations loopholes to escape accountability and empower international bodies, overriding national sovereignty of the signing nations. Under ISDS, foreign corporations would be allowed to appeal legal decisions to international tribunals rather than face domestic courts. Critics fear this could lead to a loss of sovereignty and the enrichment of transnational corporations.

In a recent statement, President Obama did not address critics of the trade deal who believe it will erode the sovereignty of individual nation-states. Instead, he took the opportunity to criticize the Republican Party.

“Within the Republican Party, some of the same impulses that are anti-immigration reform, some of the same impulses that see the entire world as a threat, and we’ve got to wall ourselves off, some of those same impulses start creeping into the trade debate, and a party that was traditionally pro-free trade now has a substantial element that may feel differently,” Obama stated.

Before the conclusion of the trade deal, fifteen different organizations signed an open letter asking TPP negotiators to provide public safeguards for copyrighted works. These groups include Australian Digital Alliance, Consumer NZ (New Zealand), Copia Institute (United States), Creative Commons (International), Electronic Frontier Foundation (United States, Australia), Hiperderecho (Peru), Futuristech Info (International), Global Exchange (International), iFixit (International), New Media Rights (United States), ONG Derecho Digitales (Chile), Open Media (Canada), Public Citizen (United States), and Public Knowledge (United States).

The authors of the letter state that copyright restricts important, everyday use of creative works. The groups call on the negotiators to be open to new changes that require participating nations to develop balanced and flexible rules on copyrights. The letter also highlights four key concerns from the organizations: retroactive copyright term extension, a ban on circumvention of technology protection measures, “heavy-handed criminal penalties and civil damages,” and trade secret rules that could criminalize investigative journalism and whistleblowers reporting on corporate wrongdoing.

As the EFF writes, “Despite its earlier promises that the TPP would bring ‘greater balance’ to copyright more than any other recent trade agreement, the most recent leak of the Intellectual Property chapter belies their claims. The U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) has still failed to live up to its word that it would enshrine meaningful public rights to use copyrighted content in this agreement.”

The TPP is not only facing resistance from electronic privacy groups, but from grassroots activists and concerned professionals around the world. Both the Anglican and Catholic churches of New Zealand have demanded the government be more transparent about the negotiations. Radio NZ reports that bishops from the churches are concerned with the lack of openness and that corporate interests are influencing the agreement while the people are being excluded. The churches also called on the New Zealand government to make the draft text of the agreement public.

Doctors Without Borders released a statement following the conclusion of negotiations:

“Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) expresses its dismay that TPP countries have agreed to United States government and multinational drug company demands that will raise the price of medicines for millions by unnecessarily extending monopolies and further delaying price-lowering generic competition. The big losers in the TPP are patients and treatment providers in developing countries. Although the text has improved over the initial demands, the TPP will still go down in history as the worst trade agreement for access to medicines in developing countries, which will be forced to change their laws to incorporate abusive intellectual property protections for pharmaceutical companies.”

In early February, doctors and health professionals representing seven countries released a letter warning the TPP will lead to higher medical costs for all nations. The letter, published in The Lancet Medical Journal, states,

Rising medicine costs would disproportionately affect already vulnerable populations.”

The doctors called on the governments involved in the trade deal to publicly release the full text of the agreement. They also demanded an independent analysis of the effects on health and human rights for each nation involved in the deal.

Also in February, an analysis by The Washington Post revealed the U.S. government’s numbers on expected job increases from TPP are not factually correct. The Fact Checker examined several quotes from government officials, including Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. Both Kerry and Vilsack claimed the international trade agreement would create 650,000 new jobs. However, these numbers do not take into account income gains and changing wages. According to the government’s own sources, imports and exports would increase by the same amount — resulting in a net number of zero new jobs.

What are the people of the twelve nations supposed to do now? The massive trade deal is expected to pass in the United States, and American politicians will do their part to pressure the other eleven nations into approving the agreement. This means one of President Obama’s last measures while in office will be the passage of a corporate trade deal opposed by the majority of Americans who are actually paying attention.

The TPP is just the latest step in a dangerous march towards a global corporate oligarchy.

We must not rely on corporate-state power to build a future worth living. It’s time for those of us who see what is happening to step out of line, start marching to our own beat, and create the path towards the future we want to see.


Related Topics:

TPP Negotiators Meet this Week to Finalize Corporate Trade Deal*

Negotiations Falter as Europe Balks at TTIP*

Agenda 2030 Translator: How to Read the UN’s New Sustainable Development Goals*

The Flames of the Doctrine of Discovery Burns within the NWO*

The Stock Markets of 10 Largest Global Economies are all Crashing*

Bilderberg 2015: Global Command & Control System‏*

Chile Defends Earth and Halts Gold-Copper Mine*

Chile Defends Earth and Halts Gold-Copper Mine*

By Andréa Germanos

The Atacama Region in north-central Chile, where the El Morro mine is located. (Photo: Pablo Diaz)

Siding with the local indigenous community, Chile’s high court has halted a gold and copper mine.

The ruling issued Tuesday from the nation’s supreme court, which overturns a ruling by a lower court in April, is the latest development in years of legal battles over the El Morro mine.

Canada-based Goldcorp owns 70% of the mine. The local Diaguita community has charged that the mine threatens to pollute a river.

For the project to continue, a “fresh consultation, based on an International Labor Organization convention,” must take place with the Diaguita, Reuters reports.

“The Diaguita people are happy that justice is on the side of the humble, of those who defend Mother Earth, our water resources and our indigenous land,” the Associated Press quotes Diaguita leader Maglene Campillay as saying following the ruling.

A Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal held in Montreal earlier this year found that mining projects are often “undertaken without respect for the right of self-determination of affected peoples and for the right of people to define for themselves their ways of life and their future,” watchdog group MiningWatch Canada noted.

The Tribunal also found that the Canadian state as well as five mining companies, including Goldcorp, were guilty of human rights violations in Latin America for their actions to fuel and protect the mining industry.


Barrick Gold Corporation is the largest gold mining company in the world, with headquarters in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It is owned by Rothschild who controls tthe global gold stockmarket.

Related Topics:

Guatemala: Gold Mine Plundering Sacred Resources

Controling Haiti’s Gold

French Grab for Mali’s Gold*

The Gold Behind the New $100 Bill

Illegal Gold-diggers Lead to Moratorium on Permits in Ghana*

Hoarding Gold: Deutsche Bank Takes up Rothschild’s Offer*

Anglo-Americas, AngloGold Leaves the World Gold Council*

Rothschild’s Rio Reap a $2mn Red Diamond While Aussie Miners Suffer Depression, Illness, and Exhaustion*

Chile Rejects $8bn Dam Project, Again*

Chile Rejects $8bn Dam Project, Again*

President Michelle Bachelet’s government has rejected a huge $8bn hydroelectric project in Chile’s Patagonia region, citing its adverse impact on the environment.

The decision by the Chilean cabinet to shelve the controversial seven-year-old scheme was a victory for environmentalist groups which fought the proposal to build five dams in a pristine river basin.

“The Hidroaysen hydroelectric project is hereby rejected,” said Pablo Badenier, the environment minister.

Hundreds of people on Tuesday cheered the decision in the streets of Santiago and in the region of Aysen, about 1,300km south of the Chilean capital.

Patricio Rodrigo, executive secretary of the Patagonia Defence Council, called the decision “the greatest triumph of the environmental movement in Chile”.

It “marks a turning point, where an empowered public demands to be heard and to participate in the decisions that affect their environment and their lives,” Rodrigo said.

The joint Spanish-Chilean venture formed for the project now has 30 days to challenge the decision in the Environmental Court of Valdivia in southern Chile.

The next step would be to appeal to the nation’s Supreme Court, the AFP news agency reported.

Spanish power company Endesa, which is controlled by Italy’s Enel, has a 51 percent stake in the project, and Chile’s Colbun the remaining 49 percent.

Cost and benefits

The project involved construction of a 2,000km long transmission line to carry power to the centre and north of the country, where Chile’s major population centres and energy-hungry mining industries are located.

It called for dams on the Pascua and Baker rivers that would have flooded 15,000 acres of virgin land in the Patagonia region.

Carving clear-cuts through forests, it would also have eliminated many whitewater rapids and waterfalls that attract ecotourism, the AP news agency reported.

The habitat of the endangered Southern Huemul deer was also seen to be under threat. Fewer than 1,000 of the diminutive animals, a national symbol, are believed to exist.

A net importer of energy, Chile has experienced dwindling supplies and a doubling in energy prices in recent years due to a lack of capital investment and growing competition in the sector.

The project aimed at generating 2,750 megawatts of electricity, boosting Chile’s installed capacity of 17,500 megawatts.

But Maximo Pacheco, the energy minister, said the Hidroaysen project “suffers from important faults in its execution in not giving due consideration to aspects related to the people who live there”.


Related Topics:

Law of Mother Earth: Chile Suspends Nature Buster!

A River Runs Through Us

Nuke Plant Flooding from Missouri Floodwaters

Oil vs Communities: Peruvians Turning a Dream into Action

International: Indigenous Mothers Against Mercury

The Guarani: Reclaiming One’s Conditions of Life

Kenya: The Right to Question Those Who Represent You!

The Law of Mother Earth in Action

Heavenly Signs: Dance of the Planets

The Right to Life and Mother Earth

Bolivia: The Moral Light Shines on Land and People

Kenya: Rights Of Mother Earth – Maasai Response

Another World is Possible!

Where Vultures Fly

The People’s Democracy Stands Vindicated

‘Signs of Change’ Says Bolivia’s Morales

The Seasons of Our Lives

Brazil Signing Away Our Amazonian Legacy

300 Year Old Vietnamese Forest Food System

Occupy World: Chilean Farmer Wins Case against Monsanto*

Occupy World: Chilean Farmer Wins Case against Monsanto*

By Lucía Sepúlveda Ruiz

Translation: Ignacia Guzmán Zuloaga

José Pizarro Montoya, a 38-year-old landless farmer from Melipilla (Santiago, Chile), and ex GMO producer (season 2009-2010) is the first and perhaps the only Latin American who has won a lawsuit against Monsanto/ANASAC for breach of contract.

He tried and failed to break the news at a GMO Seminar which took place on January 22 and was organized by Chilean Agriculture Secretary, Luis Mayol. There, international and national speakers preached about the goodness of GMO crops. Pizarro only wanted to speak out to the audience and share that he did not recommend any farmer to work for Monsanto growing GMO seeds for export, because they could end up ruined as he did, besides damaging the soil.

In Chile there are approximately 30,000 hectares of GMO maize, soy and canola grown for export, marketed by transnational biotech corporations such as Monsanto, Pioneer and its Chilean partners, gathered under ANPROS, Asociación Nacional de Productores de Semillas (National Association of Seed Producers).

The Yo No Quiero Transgénicos en Chile campaign (I Do Not Want GMOs in Chile) stands for a moratorium against the possible expansion of these crops into domestic markets and also demands a strict supervision of GMO seedbeds.

On September 2013, María Elena Rozas, coordinator for Red de Acción en Plaguicidas (Pesticide Action Network) RAP-Chile, and Lucía Sepúlveda learned about Pizarro´s experience and were able to observe from first-hand the results of environmental and commercial malpractices by Monsanto/ANASAC in Chile.

[Rozas said:] “This farmer did not know exactly what he was planting, he had no idea what a GMO seed was; the contract stated a fantasy name, Mon49 maize. He was compelled to an intensive use of more than 10 hazardous pesticides, harmful for health and the environment. The contract he signed forced him to turn only to the Chamber of Commerce in case of disagreement, he could not file lawsuits in local courts. He explained to us that many producers also have had problems with Monsanto, but they don´t turn to the Chamber because it is too expensive.”

The sentence against Monsanto

The trial sentence favorable to Pizarro can be found under roll number 1385-11 and is filed under “Agrícola Pizarro Ltda. con Agrícola Nacional S.A.C”. It was dictated by the Chamber of Commerce´s arbitration judge Francisco Gazmuri Schleyer. The Santiago Court of Appeals confirmed it in September 2013, rejecting the appeal and complaint presented by the corporation (Monsanto).

But during the four following months, the defendant refused to comply with the ruling. This is why the farmer didn´t let his case be known sooner. Only at the end of December 2013 did Pizarro receive the CLP$37 million that the Chamber ordered Monsanto to pay. According to Pizarro, this amount is not enough to cover the damages suffered. SAG’s (Servicio Agrícola y Gandero, Chilean Agency for Farming and Cattle Service) Form of GMO Seedbeds attached to the lawsuit, identifies the certification application form under ANASAC Chile (Monsanto). These forms are put under questioning by Pizarro, who accuses SAG´s complicity with the corporation.

During the process, expert testimony by INIA (Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria, National Institute for Agrarian and Food Technology) was decisive. Agrarian Engineer Gabriel Saavedra del Real presented INIA´s expert opinion regarding what had occured. Levi Manzur’s appearance [in court] was a key piece of the Pizarro case. Manzur is professor at Valparaiso Catholic University and a prominent geneticist from Los Ande. Manzur´s conclusions went in the same direction as the claims made by the plaintiff.

Millions in losses

Pizarro lost his house, his crop spraying machine, a tractor, and his pick-up truck. His wife left him and he had nothing to restart with. He was in debt to Banco Santander, a local bank, to the tune of CLP$90 million after growing Monsanto´s GMO maize in Melipilla for ANASAC.

María Elena Rozas comments: “What happened to this farmer may be an example for hundreds of small farmers, seduced by big earnings and fair treatment promises by corporations which export GMO seeds. But the profit is real only at the beginning. The great majority of the defrauded do not report and make themselves dependent on what the corporation offers, which becomes less every day. And there are not many alternatives for farmers, due to the lack of rural public policies or incentives that effectively favor agroecologic production. We must change this.”

Pizarro comes from a family of farmers from Los Andes (Valparaiso Region), and he worked alongside his brother as a horticulturist. In order to breed GMOs for ANASAC (Monsanto), he leased 33,07 hectares in Melipilla, which are part of the Rumay estate, belonging to a well known entrepeneur, Manuel Ariztía (from the chicken industry, Pollos Ariztía). The GMO “great agribusiness” has been practically the end of Pizarro´s life as a farmer.

He explains: “I am now a scholar of GMOs, I am learning through the internet, and I have found out about Monsanto and its criminal background.” When he realized what had happened to him, he went to the Agrupación Ecologista de Aconcagua (Aconcagua´s Environmental Goup), organization which is part of our Yo No Quiero Transgénicos en Chile campaign, thus establishing contact with RAP-AL Chile in order to make his case public and report Monsanto.

Today, José Pizarro is on the transnational’s blacklist, and at the same time, he believes that Monsanto has entered the category of a corrupt, abusive and predatory corporation. “I was shocked the first time I saw there were dead mice on the roadside, after they ate the maize´s grains”, he reports.

Wrong sowing indications

Over two previous seasons, Pizarro had obtained great profit with the GMO maize and the corporation considered him an exellant producer. Never before did he ask himself what environmental or commercial risks could result from dealing with Monsanto. “In 2009, they wanted to make an experiment with me I guess. We were 12 farmers who were sowing that particular kind of maize in Chile and only two of us were told to sow rows of females (of GMO maize seed) and males (of hybrid seeds) on a proportion of 4:1; the other producers sowed in proportion 4:2.

“SAG was in charge of monitoring, and in my opinion, is an accomplice of the corporation, because on their reports they stated that I had sowed 4:2, which anyone could see that was not the case. According to their reports, it seemed that I had sowed under the same instructions as the other producers. But no, I sowed “blindly”, I did what the corporation ordered me to do, I didn´t even notice what the SAG certificator was writing down because the contract forced me to strictly follow the company´s instructions.”

Burn down your neighbor´s corn

SAG instructions include making sure that there is no native maize around, because the non-GM maize could contaminate the GMO nursery crop and affect its multiplication. SAG watches over and makes sure the GMO crop is unharmed, but, on the contrary, the conventional producer does not get any protection from anyone.

Following Monsanto´s recommendations, Pizarro asked a neighbour who had planted maize to take it out. But the man was elderly, and did not comply because he wanted to have his own corn for cooking homemade humitas (a typical Chilean dish) that summer. The producer informed the company and the agronomist Francisco Araya Vargas ordered him to just “Spray some Roundup!” (the herbicide that kills any plant that is not GMO). Pizarro chose to cut off his neighbor´s maize spikes at night in order to avoid pollen production and therefore, multiplication. He looked embarassed when telling this story.

Trial costs

Rodrigo Malagüeño, ANASAC Chile/Monsanto CEO assured in the trial that none of their maize seed multiplier producers had ever sued the company before. In general, only big corporations can go under arbitration through the Chamber of Commerce. Pizarro, who was not willing to go bankrupt in silence, took a chance. “First I had to pay CLP$700.000 to be able to get served and then CLP$4.400.000 to fund the judge. I placed a lawsuit for CLP$218.000.000 and the judge finally ruled in my favour, but I only got CLP$37.000.000, which is far less than what I have lost.”

Pizarro explains: “I did not get proper instructions for sowing and therefore production was low and so was the sale price. The price is calculated on the basis of production of the maize itself by other seed multipliers of the Maule region, but their instructions were different from the instructions given to me and that is why their production was way higher than mine. I produced 106.780 kg of maize, but only 38.509 kg amounted to the real production, selected according to Monsanto´s required standards in the Lo Espejo processsing plant.”
The recruitment of rural producers
Monsanto searched for Pizarro in 2008. Company employees arrived on the land where he grew vegetables in Melipilla and told him they had found him through satellite because the place was ideal for GMO maize cultivation since there was no other conventional maize nearby. The first year (2008) they gave him the GMO seed and the Roundup for free. Pizarro only had to purchase fertilizer and insecticides. They even paid for the land´s lease. He only had to take care of the crop. They offered to pay him CLP$3 million per hectare. In 2009 they also gave him the seed “but I purchased the poison. I spent two days sowing and although I had machines, the company forced me to sow using theirs, which were brand new, and that was an enormous expense,” the rural producer explains.

That same year, Monsanto bought the soy and maize division of ANASAC. All producers received a note telling them that from now on, they had to follow ANASAC Chile’s instructions, meaning Monsanto´s, the new owner. But oddly, for commercial and legal purposes, Pizarro had to deal with ANASAC SA, of which the CEO is Rodrigo Malagüeño, a strategy in order not to appear publicly in the complaint.

Breach of contract

The arbitration of the Chamber of Commerce established that ANASAC/Monsanto failed to comply with its obligation “which consists in providing services of technical supervision of the sowing in a dilligent manner and giving strict compliance to the manufacturer´s instructions for Monsanto´s seed”, incurring negligent breach of contract. The Santiago Court of Appeals confirmed this ruling and there are no more instances of this type of arbitration. The Court of Appeal´s sentence, signed by Pilar Aguayo, Carlos Carrillo and the member lawyer Claudia Schmat, also sentenced ANASAC to pay the appeal fees.

José Pizarro concludes: “I just don´t want other farmers to go through what I did. I will never again sow GMOs.”


Related Topics:

Legal Action Against Monsanto for GM Aubergines

Occupy World: Just One Man Fought Monsanto and Won!

Occupy World: Monsantos GM Crops Loses Another Battle in Global Food Supply

Mother’s Grief Spearheads Anti-Monsanto Movement*

Occupy World: Five Million and Counting Against Monsanto

Occupy World Shuts Down Monsanto Facility*

List Of Monsanto Free Seed Companies*

Monsanto’s Legacy to the Vietnamese

Philippine Farmers Uproot Monsanto’s GM Golden Rice*

South Korea & Japan Shuts Down U.S. Monsanto Toxic Wheat Imports!

Monsanto Day or Not!

Chilean Women Farmers to Teach the Region Agro-ecology*

Chilean Women Farmers to Teach the Region Agro-ecology*

While the benefit of living in the West for the ordinary person is quickly losing its appeal, there is some respite further ashore where Western solutions have taken there toll…

By Marianela Jarroud Z.

La Vía Campesina is an organisation that has brought together some 10,000 peasant and indigenous women from Chile to launch an agroecology institute for women campesinos, or small farmers, in South America.

For years, the National Association of Rural and Indigenous Women (ANAMURI) has been training thousands of people through La Vía Campesina, the international peasant movement, working on the basis of food sovereignty, which asserts the right of people to define their own food systems.

But today it is undertaking its most ambitious project.

The Agroecology Institute for Rural Women (IALA) will be the first in Latin America to only target women. It is taking shape in the town of Auquinco – which roughly means “the sound of water” in the Mapuche indigenous language – in the district of Chépica, 180 km south of Santiago.

The training sessions have already started, even though the building isn’t ready yet.

“We aren’t pursuing a dream, but a challenge,” the international director of ANAMURI, Francisca Rodríguez, who will run IALA, told Tierramérica*.

The project has a political core: “food production to resolve the problem of hunger.”

“It is essential to find ways to make it possible for us to continue surviving and existing as an important segment of agriculture amidst the fierce attack on campesinos, which has to do with productive sectors but also with the models of consumption,” she said.

IALA is focused on defending campesino family agriculture, she said.

It’s an effort to join in “the big task” of the Agroecology Institutes of Latin America, from which it took its acronym, she said.

These projects began in Venezuela, where the first agronomists – all children from campesino families – have graduated.

The IALA institutes were replicated later in Brazil and Paraguay, as well as Ecuador and the rest of the Andean region. The latest major achievement has been the SURI Campesino University, which opened its doors in Argentina in April 2013.

“It’s important for us to have professionals in the field of agriculture, in order to help achieve food sovereignty, and to continue along this route which requires specialists who have come from the land itself,” Rodríguez said.

“No one better than campesinos can feel the need to continue developing agriculture that is at the service of humanity,” she added.

Rodríguez said that in ANAMURI “we understand the challenge,” and while the institute will initially focus on women from the Southern Cone of South America, it could later be expanded to incorporate men.

In Auquinco, they have a one-hectare plot and a large house where the students will stay, purchased for just 23,000 dollars. They said the price was low because after the former owners, a couple who had gone into exile during Chile’s 1973-1990 dictatorship, returned to the country, they decided to sell the property to the women so the group could do good work with it.

Because of the damages it suffered during the February 2010 earthquake, however, the house needs extensive repairs, though the architects that evaluated the damage assured them it will maintain its character as a traditional rural dwelling, after the renovation.

The repairs must begin as soon as possible, said ANAMURI director of organisation Alicia Muñoz.

“During the current summer, we have to organise brigades of volunteers to help us fix up the house and the grounds, so that it won’t lose its original character,” Muñoz said.

ANAMURI decided that 2014 would be “the year of restoration” – a volunteer campaign that starts Jan. 4 with a visit to the building to clear the overgrown vegetation and begin the most urgent part of the remodeling: fixing the roof.

Our dream is having an institute for the conservation of the kind of agriculture that women know how to do, that is truly trustworthy from the point of view of health and nutrients,” Muñoz said.

In the history of Chilean agriculture, men have always dominated the scene, “with women relegated to the domestic sphere, to the processing of food, keeping house and raising the small livestock,” anthropologist Juan Carlos Skewes told Tierramérica.

But “their contribution, in my view fundamental, to agricultural work and to the alternative development project that is the vegetable garden, has been forgotten,” he added.

“Every vegetable patch, every campesino family farming practice, involves biodiversity, conservation of genetic material, the possibility of reproducing seeds and making better use of local resources,” said Skewes, director of the School of Anthropology at the Alberto Hurtado University.

“There is also the question of better coordination of resources, self-sufficiency and strengthening local economies,” he added.

“So, summing up, there are autonomous projects, a capacity for self-management, autonomous sustainable production, and management of non-genetically-modified material, and there is a chance to counteract, resist or challenge industrial processes in agribusiness, as well as the food processing industry,” he said.

The expert said that “in these tremendously contemporary aspects, the key player is the rural peasant woman, organised in the protection of seeds for self-consumption and the sustainable management of agriculture.”

In ANAMURI, the new year is full of hope. The participants are confident that the new government, to be headed by a woman, socialist former president Michelle Bachelet, will open up doors for them to strengthen their work.

They are also confident in receiving support from the United Nations, which declared 2014 the International Year of Family Farming.

“Many people are going back to the countryside, which means there is hope,” said Rodríguez. “We know we’re helping to strengthen the country on our parcel of land in Auquinco.”


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