Air Forces From the Region Participate in Exercise Cooperacion 1

first_img The air forces of 12 countries of the Americas participated in an exercise aimed at using multinational air assets from SICOFAA member nations (Sistema de cooperacion de las Fuerzas Aereas de las Americas) in support of Humanitarian Civic Assistance Missions, Oct. 4 to 14 in Chile. The “Cooperation 1” exercise scenario was premised on the devastating effects of the 8.8 magnitude earthquake that struck Chile in February, triggering a tsunami, widespread blackouts and the loss of both property and hundreds of lives. “The events in Haiti and Chile this year and other disasters in years past have shown us that none of our countries are immune to natural disaster. In the aftermath of one of these events, when lives are at stake and time is critical, the efficient use of air assets is crucial to providing timely humanitarian support and saving lives,” said Col. Kris Skinner, secretary general, SICOFAA. During 2011, SICOFAA will use lessons learned from Cooperation 1 and recent actual disaster responses to create and publish a manual outlining procedures for the use of member nation air forces. The manual will outline the necessary procedures to stand up a multinational command and control center capable of managing air assets for humanitarian relief, said Col. Skinner. Although the U.S. and other nations are very capable of utilizing a command and control center for fighting a war, the concept has not yet been used in Latin America for humanitarian missions. SICOFAA has proposed a 10-year plan for using the manual in future exercises. Col. Skinner will present the plan to SICOFAA air force commanders at the next annual conference in Brazil. The next SICOFAA exercise, Cooperacion 2 will be held as soon as possible. The host nation and location has not yet been determined. “This type of exercise is important for all of our nations because the next natural disaster will give us another opportunity to come together to help one another, and that is what we want to be able to do,” said Lt. Gen. Glenn F. Spears, commander of 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern). Planning for this SICOFAA exercise began in June of 2007. This is the first SICOFAA exercise, utilizing real cargo and passengers versus paper scenarios. The Chilean Air Force has been planning this exercise since 2008, said Aviation General (two-star general) Luis Ili Delgado, director of Exercise Cooperacion 1. “The exercise has been an absolute success,” said General Ili. “We have been able to learn a great amount about each other’s air forces, cultures, capabilities and procedures. We are learning about the coordinated movement of cargo and passengers for disaster response through an exercise, instead of when lives are on the line.” The United States Air Force contributed two C-130 Hercules from the 136th Airlift Wing (Texas Air National Guard) and 27 personnel from various units to both fly cargo and participate in the command and control aspects of coordinating aerial missions. Six of the 12 participating countries brought cargo aircraft and flew over 232 missions, transported 2,607 kilograms of cargo and 306 passengers to 14 locations. The U.S. flew near daily missions with approximately 100 flight hours and transported approximately 24,000 pounds of cargo between the cities of Santiago, Puerto Montt and Balmaceda – one of Chile’s southernmost cities. During the exercise, the Chilean Air Force also hosted a media day, open house and VIP day with military and civilian leadership from the SICOFAA member nations. By Dialogo October 26, 2010last_img read more

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Waldemar Lorenzana Cordón captured by Guatemalan security forces

first_img The Lorenzana family controls drug markets in the Guatemalan municipalities of Zacapa, Chiquimula, Izabal, El Progreso, and Jalapa, according to the UNODC. Drug traffickers sent cocaine from Colombia to El Salvador on boats, authorities said. Drug smugglers transport the cocaine from El Salvador to Guatemala in banana trucks and other vehicles. The Lorenzana organization receives the cocaine and conspires with the Sinaloa Cartel and Los Zetas to transport the drugs to Mexico and the United States, according to published report. The younger Lorenzanas El Chapo alliance in doubt By Dialogo October 17, 2013 Herrera connection Guatemalan authorities suspect Lorenzana Cordón was a key figure in the Lorenzana drug trafficking organization which was run by his father, Waldemar Lorenzana Lima, who is known as “The Patriarch.” He is 73. Guatemalan security agents captured The Patriarch in 2008. Security forces arrested him on suspicion of working with El Chapo. However, Guatemalan authorities released The Patriarch because of insufficient evidence. Guatemalan security forces arrested The Patriarch again in April 2011 after the U.S. government filed an extradition request, which alleged that he was collaborating with El Chapo. In July 2013, a Guatemalan appeals court denied the last of The Patriarch’s legal motions to avoid extradition. An extradition date has not been set. A family criminal enterprise Guatemalan security forces recently weakened the notorious Lorenzana criminal organization by capturing Waldemar Lorenzana Cordón, a high-ranking member of the drug trafficking group. Anti-narcotics agents with the Public Ministry and investigators with the National Civil Police (PNC) captured Lorenzana Cordón on Sept. 17, 2013 in the department of Zacapa, officials said. Security agents captured the alleged drug trafficker, 48, a few hours after he ran into a building in Teculután, around 9:30 a.m. Police conducted a thorough search, and found and arrested Lorenzana Cordón a few hours later in a different building in the municipality. Guatemalan and U.S. security forces, who are cooperating in the battle against organized crime, suspect that Lorenzana Cordón has collaborated with the Sinaloa Cartel to transport thousands of tons of cocaine from Central America to Mexico and the United States. The cartel is led by fugitive kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman. In capturing Lorenzana Cordón, Guatemalan security forces honored an extradition request from the United States. Lorenzana Cordón is wanted on federal drug trafficking charges in the U.S. Lorenzana criminal enterprises Lorenzana Cordón took over the family drug trafficking enterprise after his father was captured in 2011, Guatemalan authorities said. Guatemalan security agents captured another of The Patriarch’s sons, Elio Elixander, in 2011. He is wanted in the U.S. on federal charges of drug trafficking, conspiracy, and money laundering. No date has been scheduled for his extradition to the United States. Guatemalan security agents suspect The Patriarch’s daughter, Marta Julia, who also known as Yulissa, of having close ties with Jairo Estuardo Orellana Morales, an alleged Guatemalan drug trafficker who is known as “El Pelón.” Security forces suspect El Pelón is collaborating with Los Zetas to traffic drugs from Guatemala to Mexico and the United States Guatemalan security forces captured The Patriarch’s grandson, Hans Breiner Lemus Lorenzana, in June 2013 with 15 kilograms of cocaine allegedly destined for the Sinaloa Cartel. The grandson was 17 at the time. Hans is the son of Marta Julia, according to published reports. center_img Los Zetas Cooperation helpful Guatemalan security forces registered a significant success by capturing Lorenzana Cordón, according to Lorena Escobar, a security analyst at the Association for Research and Social Studies (ASIES), based in Guatemala. “His arrest is a victory for authorities and a tremendous blow to the criminal group. The Lorenzana structure is weakened. It won’t be easy for them to restructure themselves in the immediate future and continue operating in cocaine trafficking,” Escobar said. The Sinaloa Cartel is not the only Mexican transnational criminal organization that the Lorenzana family has worked with. The Lorenzana organization joined forces with Los Zetas in 2008, according to the report “Transnational Organized Crime in Central America and the Caribbean” by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Los Zetas now has a larger presence in Guatemala than the Sinaloa Cartel, according to the report. Guatemalan security forces suspect the Lorenzana criminal organization once worked closely with convicted Guatemalan drug trafficker Otto Herrera. Colombian security forces captured Herrera in that country in 2007. Colombia extradited Herrera to the United States, where he is now serving a 20-year prison term for charges related to drug trafficking. Security success The arrests of The Patriarch and two of his sons could threaten the partnership between the Lorenzana organization and El Chapo, according to Escobar, the security analyst. “The alliance that the Lorenzana family forged with the Sinaloa Cartel is at risk,” Escobar said. “El Chapo may seek a new territorial partner to continue controlling the logistics routes for smuggling drugs into the United States,” Escobar said. “The criminal operations of the Lorenzana family are placed in the blood ties that allow trust and loyalty,” Escobar said. “It will not be easy to replace (another) a third captured member of the Lorenzana family. The authorities are dismantling the group.” The arrests of the Lorenzana family members showed that Guatemalan security forces are “ prepared to arrest criminals and bring them to justice with full respect for human rights,” the security analyst said. The captures of The Patriarch and two of his sons demonstrate that Guatemala and the U.S. are cooperating to fight transnational organized crime, according to Escobar. “The assistance and cooperation of the United States with the Guatemalan government have contributed to the fight against drug trafficking,” Escobar said. “Both countries have a very good relationship of cooperation, trust, and exchange of information on security to combat transnational crime.” Following his capture, Lorenzana Cordón pleaded not guilty in the Supreme Court of Justice of Guatemala (SCJ) and stated that “he only has a working relationship with ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán,” according to published reports.last_img read more

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The Original of Laura

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York The Original of Laura: A Novel in FragmentsBy Vladimir NabokovJust before his death, Russian-American novelist Vladimir Nabokov ordered that his final work, The Original of Laura, be burned if he died before its completion. When the Lolita writer passed away in 1977, his wife couldn’t bring herself to do it. Their son Dmitri eventually inherited the collection of 138 hand-written index cards his terminally ill father slaved over during his final days, and after decades of internal debate, he published his father’s unfinished work. “Should I be damned or thanked?” Dmitri asks in the introduction to the novel. Originally titled Dying is Fun in Nabokov’s initial notes, The Original of Laura focuses on Dr. Philip Wild, who is married to the promiscuous Flora—the subject of a salacious novel written by an ex-lover—and enjoys killing himself slowly through meditation, from the toes up. “The process of dying by auto-dissolution afforded the greatest ecstasy known to man,” Wild says. “Would it not be a brilliant move, thought I, to get rid of my toes by sacrificing them to an experiment that only cowardness kept preventing?” Don’t expect a continuous story line here. This is a “novel in fragments” after all, and the reason the author intended it to be destroyed upon his death. For fans of Nabokov’s previous work, the novel is a peek inside the writer’s mind and process. The handwritten cards, scribbles, cross-outs, edits, and notes meant to be elaborated on at a later date, are photocopied into the pages of the book, with the words transcribed below. This process of writing in pencil on index cards, allowing the order of fragments to be easily changed, was the same way the author composed his most famous novel, Lolita. In the hardcover edition of The Original of Laura, the pages are perforated, so the index cards can be removed from the book, and the reader can move around the cards the way Nabokov would have. Certain cards near the end of the book seem to fit perfectly within the context of the first pages, with the final card aptly reading: “efface—expunge, erase, delete, rub out, wipe out, obliterate,” the author’s intent for the book. The Original of Laura requires multiple reads to do it justice. Upon doing so, maybe even mixing up the cards a little each time, an outline of what would have been a true Nabokov novel filled with beautiful prose begins to take form, but it’s up to you to fill in the blanks.[colored_box color=”blue”]Click to purchase The Original of Laura[/colored_box]last_img read more

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The power of credit union brand storytelling

first_img 11SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr In the earliest days of civilization, before the advent of alphabets and written languages, stories important to a group of people (a family, tribe, etc.) were handed down by storytellers. These people, often held in the highest regard within their social groups, were directly responsible for saving, sharing and passing on the important history of their people.This continued even with the coming of alphabets and the written word. Oral storytellers became historians that, with chisel and stone, papyrus and later paper and ink, collected, archived and shared important stories. And the trend continues in our digital age. When you think about it, many aspects of social media are simply storytelling that reside on digital platforms like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.The power of storytelling is alive and well. Is your credit union taking advantage of this art when it comes to sharing its own unique story? If not, you are missing out on a powerful marketing and branding tool. continue reading »last_img read more

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German car sales slashed in half in May: Official data

first_imgChancellor Angela Merkel and ministers unveiled late Wednesday details of a 130-billion-euro (US$146 billion) stimulus package aimed at getting Europe’s top economy moving again.But aside from increased subsidies of up to 6,000 euros for electric car purchases, there was no direct aid for carmakers – reflecting opposition from both economists and environmentalists to a repeat of 2009’s post-financial crisis “cash for clunkers” scheme.Some politicians pointed to slashed value-added tax as a potential boost to auto manufacturers.May’s data showed that “reopening car showrooms at the end of April had next to no positive effect on demand,” said Reinhard Zirpel, president of the VDIK car importers’ federation.”The sector now hopes that the measures announced in the stimulus package will end buyers’ restraint and bring about an improvement in the second half of the year.”Topics : German new car registrations plummeted by almost 50 percent year-on-year in May, official data showed Thursday, with virus lockdowns hitting the vital industry hard ahead of a massive new economic stimulus package.Just over 168,000 cars were registered last month, the KBA transport authority said, down 49.5 percent compared with May 2019 and following a 37.7-percent drop in March and 61.1 percent in April.The May figures showed “some reduction in tensions on the new car market,” EY analysts commented, but “the car sector remains in a deep crisis”.last_img read more

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Administración Wolf: Se aprobaron más de 200 nuevos proyectos de mejora de la infraestructura hidráulica en todo el estado

first_imgAdministración Wolf: Se aprobaron más de 200 nuevos proyectos de mejora de la infraestructura hidráulica en todo el estado Infrastructure,  Press Release El Gobernador Tom Wolf anunció hoy 276 nuevas aprobaciones de proyectos del Programa de Pequeños Sistemas de Agua Potable y Alcantarillado de Pennsylvania a través de la Autoridad de Financiamiento del Estado (CFA, por sus siglas en inglés) para proteger y mejorar los sistemas relativos al agua de los municipios.“Este programa vital de subvenciones permite mejoras costosas pero necesarias a la infraestructura hidráulica que de otro modo no serían posibles para las comunidades más pequeñas de Pennsylvania”, dijo el Gobernador Wolf. “Cuando invertimos en nuestras comunidades ahora, se benefician en los próximos años, y los proyectos aprobados hoy mejorarán significativamente la calidad de vida en estas comunidades”.Los proyectos de pequeños sistemas de agua potable y alcantarillado aprobados hoy incluyen reemplazar la red de abastecimiento de agua potable de Troy Street en el condado de Bradford; mejorar la planta de tratamiento de aguas residuales en el condado de Huntingdon; mejorar la rehabilitación del reservorio sobre el nivel del suelo en el condado de Lehigh; expandir el sistema de agua del municipio de Pine Grove en el condado de Schuylkill; y la extensión de la línea de flotación de Alexander Spring Road en el condado de Cumberland. Otros proyectos incluyen mejoras y reemplazos de las redes de abastecimiento de agua potable, plantas de tratamiento de agua, sistemas de alcantarillado y extensiones de tuberías de agua en cientos de municipios en 49 condados en todo el estado. El monto total de la financiación supera los $61 millones de dólares.Se puede encontrar una lista completa de los proyectos de Pequeños sistemas de agua potable y alcantarillado aprobados ayer en la reunión de la CFA aquí.El Programa de Pequeños Sistemas de Agua Potable y Alcantarillado de Pennsylvania ofrece subvenciones para ayudar a los municipios con la construcción, la mejora, la expansión o la reparación de sus suministros de agua o sistemas de alcantarillado sanitario. Los municipios y las autoridades municipales son elegibles para solicitar hasta $500,000 dólares en subvenciones. Para obtener más información sobre el Programa de Pequeños Sistemas de Agua Potable y Alcantarillado de Pennsylvania, haga clic aquí.Para obtener más información sobre el DCED y la CFA, visite dced.pa.gov.View this information in English. SHARE Email Facebook Twittercenter_img August 18, 2020last_img read more

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ConocoPhillips gets consent to begin Ekofisk platform removals

first_imgNorwegian offshore safety body, the Petroleum Safety Authority (PSA), has given ConocoPhillips consent to prepare and begin the removal of minor structures from the Ekofisk field in the North Sea.The PSA said on Thursday that the consent also includes the installation of a temporary crane on Ekofisk 2/4 field terminal platform (FTP).The safety watchdog added that ConocoPhillips applied for consent to dispose of the Ekofisk 2/4 H, Ekofisk 2/4 A, Ekofisk 2/4 FTP, and Ekofisk 2/4 Q platforms.According to the statement, the PSA gave the company consent for parts of the work.For now, the consent covers the initiation of preparatory work offshore and the start of the removal of minor structures and installation of the crane on the FTP. The remainder of ConocoPhillips’ consent application will be dealt separately by the PSA.Regarding the removal itself, Offshore Energy Today reported in April that ConocoPhillips was set to award a contract for the removal of Ekofisk field platforms to Heerema Marine Contractors.At the time, AF Gruppen, one of the largest civil engineering and construction companies in Norway, claimed that it received notice that ConocoPhillips Skandinavia AS intended to enter into a contract with HMC for the removal and disposal of platforms connected to the Ekofisk field.AF Gruppen, a key subcontractor to HMC, said that the contract included engineering, preparation, removal & disposal (EPRD) of four platforms with a total tonnage of approximately 36,000 tonnes. The removal is part of ConocoPhillips’ Ekofisk I Cessation plan which should begin in 2017 and end in 2022.EkofiskOn December 23, 1969, Phillips Petroleum – now ConocoPhillips – informed the Norwegian government that it had discovered Ekofisk – one of the largest offshore oil fields ever found.The field, located some 200 kilometers south of Stavanger, started production in 1971 via the Gulftide platform, and is in production even today, more than four decades after the original discovery.The Greater Ekofisk Area today comprises four poducing fields: Ekofisk, Eldfisk, Embla and Tor. Crude oil is exported to Teesside, England, and the natural gas is exported to Emden, Germany.last_img read more

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Phil Goff: Parental leave takes priority over pandas

first_imgStuff co.nz 1 November 2015OPINION: New Zealand’s fertility rate of over four per cent in the early 1960s has more than halved today to be under 2 per cent.  Even since 2008 there has been a significant drop in the number of new-born babies.Meanwhile our population is aging as baby boomers live longer and are retiring in large numbers.Changing lifestyles are part of the explanation.  So, too, is the cost of having children, with young people needing to meet high rent or mortgage costs when house prices in Auckland are approaching 10 times the median household income.Other developed countries have responded by providing generous paid parental leave.  Labour introduced paid parental leave for 12 weeks in 2002 and increased it to 14 weeks.Since then, however, New Zealand has fallen behind to become the second least generous paid parental leave provider of 34 developed countries.Labour MP Sue Moroney introduced a Paid Parental Leave Bill in 2013 to increase the period of payment to 26 weeks.  This was defeated by one vote when National and Act opposed it.  National was however embarrassed into agreeing to increase the period of payment over time to 18 weeks.http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/politics/73456073/Phil-Goff-Parental-leave-takes-priority-over-pandaslast_img read more

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Army foils ‘NPA attack’ in Igbaras

first_img“The eyes and ears from the community reported thecommunist-terrorists’ presence in Igcabugao who are planning to sabotage andburn the equipment of Century Peak Energy Corporation (CPEC) and itshydro-power plant in the area,” he said.  Batara also underscored CPEC’s cooperation to the AFP’s campaign against insurgency by nor giving in to the extortion demands of the CNTs./PN No casualties on government side. Batara added that his troops are conducting pursuitoperations against the group of communist-terrorists they encountered inBarangay Ongyod, Miagao, Iloilo last Sept. 23 when they received a reliableinformation about the presence of the terrorists in Igcabugao. Lieutenant Joel Benedict Batara, Philippine Army’s 61stInfantry Battalion commander, said they have managed to repel the communistrebels’ plan of sabotaging a hydro-power company’s equipment in the saidvillage. Military forces thwarted an attack, which was carried out bya group of armed men believed to be New People’s Army fighters, in BarangayIgcabugao, Igbaras, Iloilo Wednesday morning. The troops recovered from the encounter site 3 Molotovebombs; 1 Rifle grenade; 1 Hand grenade; 1 Blasting cap; 2 Packs ammoniumnitrate; 2 Dynamites and 1 CNT shirt. last_img read more

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