International Women’s Day, anti-Bush riots, Afghan soldiers, some briefs [videos]

As you might expect, a lot of Colombian bloggers are celebrating International Women’s Day. equinoXio brings a 12-article special, ranging from poems, to self-reflections, criticism to extremist “feminism” and even two articles on women’s situation in Norway and Japan. For example, pequeña padawan says:

Leaving the obsession on others’ standards and finding in ourselves the strength to become the kind of woman we’d like to be, no matter if it resembles our mother’s ideal one or not, is our best bet not only for gender equality, but above all for the peace of spirit.

All the articles featured in the special are interesting and worth reading. On other blogs, journalist Julio Suárez Anturi remembers the origins of this observance and says that anyway women “as it has been always known, are the axis of the world and from them every breathing come”, while Jaime Restrepo highlights five remarkable Colombian women (social leaders, politicians). The mainstream media, on the otherhand, remarks Yaneth Mosquera, a displaced woman by the violence who became a leader, helping more than 1,000 families in a settlement in western Popayán [southwest]. She was awarded with the Cafam Price to Women 2007.

But another important issue is U. S. President George W. Bush’s Latin American tour, where he’s being “welcomed” with demonstrations and riots. At National University of Colombia in Bogotá, some masked students threw “potato bombs” to the cops on Wednesday and Thursday (see video above). The university will be closed on Friday for students. As Isabel Hilton informs UK readers about the latest developments in Colombia, O-lu criticizes the press coverage on the event by Colombian mainstream media, while Bilioso slams the excessive adulation to Bush, who will arrive on Sunday, by Colombian elite.

And well, the experience Colombia has forcedly acquired on war has been useful to provide some special training to Afghan soldiers at a police base in Tolima department. In Caracol TV journalist Mónica Villamizar’s report (see video above), the Afghan soldiers, which are been trained on counter-terrorism manoeuvres by Colombian and American experts, you can see they have two translators. They also pray 6 times a day and, while they walk, they sing military songs. And the assault techniques class is held with actual bullets!

Some briefs:

  • Remember the Colombia Clean thing? Former FARC hostage and now foreign minister Fernando Araújo Perdomo decried Amnesty USA animation mocking paramilitary demobilization by saying it “constitutes a lack of respect for the efforts, the suffering and the struggle of the government and the Colombian people in their hopes to achieve peace”.
  • Carlos Sanabria has a scoop: El Espectador, a weekly newspaper since 2001, founded in 1887 and owned by the Santodomingo family (one of the “owners” of the country), would become a daily again very soon. Since that year, El Tiempo, owned by the Vicepresident’s and Defence Minister’s family, has enjoyed a monopolical position as the only non-tabloid national daily newspaper.
  • Lovely Caracol TV newscaster Silvia Corzo‘s fans feature a very interesting material, with screen captures of her first appearances in (local) television 10 years ago. You can compare them with more recent pics of her or enjoy this superb report featuring her becoming a sewer cleaner for one day.

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