Exclusive Interview with Brig. Gen. Jorge Alberto Chevalier, Argentina

first_img Diálogo: With regard to a conference like this one, what are the lessons that you take away from here? Diálogo: Does the country act so quickly because the Argentine Armed Forces are already prepared for this kind of aid? Brig. Gen. Chevalier: It’s a hospital that was born from an initiative of the Argentine forces and has now had another kind of experience, because it was in Mozambique, in Kosovo; it’s been in our country on humanitarian-support missions also. It carried out its first mission when we had the conflict with England, but just as a hospital that supplemented or complemented the hospitals that we have in Patagonia. So this is not its first trip abroad, but it’s true that it’s been in Haiti for quite a while. We’ve also put together a second hospital, which is deployed in the Republic of Chile at the moment. So we have two hospitals of practically the same model, deployed on two different missions, one as part of military peace-keeping operations in Haiti and one that is for humanitarian support or civil defense, in the case of the Chilean earthquake. Diálogo: When we were in Haiti, we saw the fantastic work that the Argentine hospital was doing there. Even on the day after the earthquake, they were taking care of people outside; there were more than four hundred patients in one night, something impressive. Could you talk to us about this model of hospital? Are there similar projects for other countries? Diálogo: Besides the hospital, what other kind of humanitarian aid does Argentina offer in the region? During the conference, it was evident that Argentina is always the first country to arrive bringing aid. How do you succeed in doing this? Brig. Gen. Chevalier: They’re very important, and I believe that we, humbly, are offering ourselves as part of this thing that is seeking to be born on the continental level. To some extent, I believe that it can serve the purpose, as a foundation that can be perfected, like everything, no? There should also be other countries that have this; we shouldn’t be the only ones, but we do have something functioning already. Also, we can take advantage of the structure of the “Southern Cross” combined joint peace-keeping force, since the mission of this combined joint peace-keeping force, as its name well says, is to offer it to the United Nations in response to situations like those that can occur anywhere in the world, the need for a peace-keeping force. The Argentine Air Force has two rapid-deployment mobile military hospitals. It carried out its first peace-keeping mission in Mozambique, for two years, after which came another two years in Kosovo, and finally, it has been in Haiti for almost six years now. At the deepest point of the crisis, that is, the days following the earthquake, the hospital had more than 15,000 potential patients, due to the new contingents who arrived or came to join those previously there. Brig. Gen. Chevalier: I believe that we’re going away with some homework to do. Here what’s important is that some things are being made concrete. For example, as it happens, my Chilean counterpart and I put the finishing touches on something that we already had underway, because Argentina has bilateral humanitarian-aid agreements with Chile, agreements with Peru, and agreements with Bolivia, in bilateral form, and as it happens, we’ve proposed that we’re now going to carry out the first three-party exercise with Peru, Bolivia, and us. It will be a tabletop exercise, because up to now, they’ve all been bilateral. In this case, now it’s going to be trilateral. We already have an organization; we function jointly. Everything goes through the Joint Chiefs of Staff, that is, the requisitions and the offers are not specific to each of the military branches, but rather everything is handled through the Civil Defense Agency, which is an agency that functions within the Operational Command, with a specific task, Civil Defense. Brig. Gen. Chevalier: We succeed in doing this because we have it incorporated as a secondary or subsidiary mission of the military forces in Argentina. It’s a responsibility that we have. For example, in the case of Chile, beyond the hospital itself, there’s a small engineering unit that supplies potable water and electrical generation. We’re also doing things the same way in Haiti, and we also did and are still doing this in peace-keeping operations in Cyprus. By Dialogo August 16, 2010 Brig. Gen. Chevalier: Yes, it’s not a separate function. It’s, I would say, a complementary function. Taking advantage of the armed forces’ resources and the personal capabilities that match the needs, both those of our own country and those of other countries, we come together to provide humanitarian aid. We’re not authorized to acquire resources exclusively for this mission; instead, resources are acquired as a function of the principal mission, which is national defense. If these resources perhaps serve for these other purposes, well, that’s great, and we take advantage of them and carry out humanitarian-aid missions, as we are doing in the cases that you’re familiar with or that I mentioned. Diálogo: Then, you agree that these preparatory exercises, as General Fraser commented during the conference, are very important for preparing countries? Diálogo: Have other countries in the region provided any aid to Argentina in a natural or other disaster? In order to talk about this and other humanitarian-aid initiatives offered to other countries by Argentina, Diálogo spoke with Brig. Gen. Jorge Alberto Chevalier, Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Argentine Republic, during the 2d Annual South American Defense Chiefs (SOUTHDEC) Conference, held in Lima, Peru, on 3 and 4 August. Brig. Gen. Chevalier: We’ve had that happen. At that time, I was Air Operations Commander, and we had a flood in the city of Santa Fe. I had a unit in place, from the Second Air Brigade, that acted as the distribution center, shall we say, for the aid that came. I remember receiving planes from Italy, from Chile, with humanitarian aid. I believe that we’re part of this world, and we should give one another a hand. We’re here to give, and also to receive, why not?last_img read more

Lambert defends Villa owner Lerner

first_img Although Lambert has been forced to operate on a tighter financial budget than his predecessors since his arrival in the summer of 2012, arguably Lerner cannot be faulted for the money he has spent. So far Lerner has splashed out £250million on players, whilst his cash has also provided a new state-of-the-art training ground and upgrades to Villa Park, whilst there has also been a level of unseen funding for local community projects. The only criticism that could be levelled at Lerner is he is rarely seen at matches, apparently only attending three this season. Despite Lerner’s lack of communication with supporters, Lambert said: “I think the fans really appreciate what they have – the stadium, everything. “Anybody who decides to have a shot at him or criticises him is way off the mark. “He is a private guy, which he is totally entitled to be, and you have to respect that. “There’s no great issue for the fans if Randy is here or not here, and with what he has done. “If you look at all the facts, the money he has put in and what he has done for the local community, let alone anything else, he is entitled to his way of doing things and you have to respect that.” Given the honest relationship Lambert enjoys with Lerner, he believes he would be in the know if the former owner of American football’s Cleveland Browns was also preparing to sell Villa. “It’s well documented I’m always in contact with Randy and he’s never spoken about anything like that whatsoever, we speak about football,” added Lambert. “I don’t really buy into too much of that. I don’t get involved in it, and I’m pretty sure I’d be one of the first to know. “But he’s every right to decide what he wants to do. He is the main person at this club. “But as I’ve said before, nobody should ever criticise Randy for what he has done at this club. “Right now we get on well and we are planning to drive the club forward. I know the remit here. “As manager and chairman we get on really well. Our relationship is like that. It’s no problem. “He has been great, really supportive. When things were ropey last year he was really supportive, and this year he has been excellent with me.” On the pitch Villa find themselves in a lofty 10th position in the Barclays Premier League. The reality is, however, given the tight-knit nature of the lower half of the table they are only five points off the relegation zone, spearheaded by Saturday’s visitors to Villa Park in West Ham. Exactly a year ago Villa beat the Hammers 2-1 on home soil, a result that helped the club kick on for survival. Twelve months on and Lambert claims the difference within the club is “night and day…totally different”. With five of Villa’s last seven home matches against teams in the bottom half of the table, Lambert is hoping this latest match with West Ham provides another watershed moment. “We’re hoping to push on again,” said Lambert. “If we go into the game with the same form we’ve been in of late then we will certainly be right in it, that’s for sure. “The main thing for me is we’re playing well enough at this moment in time to win games.” Lambert has Gabriel Agbonlahor available after the striker missed the last two matches with a foot injury, but centre-back Ron Vlaar is out with a hamstring problem. Chief executive Paul Faulkner issued a categorical denial, insisting Villa had not been put up for sale and Lerner was “not actively looking to sell”. Despite that, the speculation raised questions about the 51-year-old’s involvement in Villa, and what he has done for the club since his £62.6million purchase in 2006. Press Association Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert has launched a vigorous defence of owner Randy Lerner following rumours this week the American tycoon was considering selling the club.last_img read more

Clippers welcome pressure of must-win Game 5 against Warriors

first_img Kristaps Porzingis ruled out as Clippers, Mavericks set for Game 5; Follow for game updates Clippers vs. Mavericks Game 5 playoff updates from NBA beat reporters Asked what it feels like to enter a game with no margin for error, postseason newbie Gilgeous-Alexander shrugged: “We’ve been doubted all season, so this game won’t be anything new for us. We know what we need to do and we’re gonna try to go out there and do it. Don’t matter if it’s an elimination game, you look at every game the same, try to win, try to play the best to our ability.“Personally, it is just another game for me.”On the contrary, said Rivers, the veteran coach who’s participating in the playoffs for the 15th time.“They’re never another game when you’re in an elimination game,” Rivers said. “It’s not another game, because all the other games during the season, it was guaranteed not to be your last game. This game, if you don’t play well, it will be your last game and I think there is pressure to that.“But I don’t think that’s bad pressure, I think that’s healthy, good pressure.” What’s more, the Clippers led with 2:44 to go in the third quarter, pushing Golden State despite missing 10 of their 15 “wide-open” 3-point attempts (or those with a defender 6 feet or farther away, according to nba.com/stats).“That was the most intense game we played throughout,” Rivers said. “Film-wise, (players will) see we missed a lot of wide-open, great shots and we just gotta keep getting that.“Analytically, it was our best offensive game … as far as the shots we were getting, but one of our worst as far as making them. We have to just make those shots. It’ll be good for them to see that those shots were there and that they’re available.“There are things that I really liked about the last game,” Rivers added. “And I’m sure there’s things (the Warriors) liked as well.”Count Klay Thompson getting going with 32 points and Kevin Durant keeping it going with 33 among a few of the Warriors’ favorite things about the Game 4 victory, which backed the Clippers into a corner.Related Articles PLAYA VISTA — Coach Doc Rivers frequently says this season’s Clippers make him think of cockroaches.He means that in the most complimentary way, of course.“We’ve been down a lot, traded, we’ve broken up our team, and we just keep coming back,” he said on the eve of their first-round Western Conference playoff series against the two-time defending champion Golden State Warriors.“We’re the roach after the atomic bomb. We just keep coming back.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img Now, after a season of exceeded expectations and a first-round playoff series that’s included a hair-raising historical comeback and a spirited Easter Sunday defeat, Rivers’ squad faces elimination Wednesday night at Oracle Arena, down 3-1 in the best-of-seven series.Rivers said this is the kind of group capable of scurrying out of this predicament, too.“Our team has felt their backs have been against the wall all year,” Rivers insisted before practice Tuesday. “So I don’t see this is as anything different. Now, I can’t guarantee you that we’re going to play great or not, but we’ll be ready.”The Clippers are taking heart in their effort on Sunday, when they played their best defense of the postseason so far and held top-seeded Golden State to 113 points. They also had their fewest turnovers (10), were called for their fewest fouls (21) and finally capitalized on forced turnovers, scoring 18 points on the Warriors’ 13 giveaways.Clippers rookies Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Jerome Robinson took the game by the collar and let the basketball world know they can play at the highest of levels: Gilgeous-Alexander scored a career-high 25 points – also a franchise rookie playoff record – and Robinson lent a surprise spark with seven points, two steals and an assist in 11 minutes. Clippers hope they can play to their capabilities, quell Mavericks’ momentum What the Clippers are saying the day after Luka Doncic’s game-winner tied series, 2-2 For Lakers’ LeBron James, Jacob Blake’s shooting is bigger issue than a big Game 4 victory last_img read more

4-year-old found in woods after being missing for 2 days

first_imgA 4-year-old girl who had been missing for two days in a wooded area in east Alabama was found by officials on Friday.Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones said rescuers found Vadie Sides after she had disappeared from her babysitter’s sight Wednesday afternoon while they were walking in a backyard with a hound dog.She was found after one of the members from the search team heard a dog bark in the woods. Vadie Sides was found in good condition with the dog by her side.last_img

Bomber juniors strike silver at Chilliwack Fieldhockey tourney

first_imgAs keeper Tara Yowek goes, so does the L.V. Rogers Junior Bombers Fieldhockey squad.Yowek was once again outstanding guarding the cage to power the Bombers to a silver medal showing at the Chilliwack High School Junior Girl’s Fieldhockey Tournament Saturday in the Fraser Valley City.The Bombers finished with a 3-1 mark at the tourney, which featured teams from Fraser Valley and Lower Mainland Schools.The lone loss of the weekend came against Delta.“Tara (Yowek) only had two goals against the entire weekend,” said Bomber coach Val Gibson. “She also added three shutouts to her record.”Yowek was outstanding during a 2-0 win over host G.W. Graham.Allie Zondervan and Chiara Chirico scored for LVR.Sydney Ednie scored the only goal of the game as the Bombers edged Rosedale 1-0.LVR then bounced Maple Ridge 7-0 as Naomi Perkins and Anna Goeppner each scored twice. Chirico, Zondervan and Ednie added singles.Game stars included Allie Zondervan, Naomi Perkins, Sydney (Baby Syd) Ednie and keeper Tara Yowek.last_img read more

DeGale v Mohoumadi: Watch the pre-fight press conference

first_imgThe pre-fight press conference ahead of Saturday’s European super-middleweight title clash between defending champion James DeGale of Harlesden and French challenger Hadillah Mohoumadi.(Video courtesy of iFilm London and Hennessy Sports)See also:Upbeat DeGale eyeing title showdownMohoumadi out to cause an upset in title clash with DeGaleJames DeGale and Hadillah Mohoumadi go head-to-headDeGale discusses Saturday’s fight and his spat with Eubank JnrDeGale and Harrison weigh in ahead of Saturday’s title fightsDeGale keen to produce sharper displayDeGale aiming to end the year in styleFollow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img

San Jose Sharks clean house, fire Pete DeBoer, three assistants

first_imgSAN JOSE — Frustrated by a lack of consistency and seeing a need for a new direction, Sharks general manager Doug Wilson cleaned house Wednesday, firing Pete DeBoer and naming Bob Boughner interim coach in an effort to spark the team back into a playoff position.Assistant coaches Steve Spott, Dave Barr and Johan Hedberg were also let go amid a rare and sweeping midseason purge by the Sharks, who are in danger of missing the playoffs for just the second time in the last 16 seasons.The Sharks …last_img

Anti-abuse campaign hits SA

first_imgWomen often use make-up to hide facialscarring sustained from physical abuse.(Image:Osocio.org) South Africa has alarmingly high levelsof women and child abuse.(Image:Joburg.org) Khanyi Magubane A host of activities are expected to take place in the month of November 2008, as South Africa embarks on its annual 16 Days of Activism, a campaign that focuses on violence against women and children.The campaign, which is endorsed by the United Nations, takes place from 25 November – which is the international day of no violence against women – to 10 December – international human rights day.This will be the ninth time that South Africa is observing the annual event. The 2008 theme for the campaign is, “Don’t look away, act against abuse”.The event operates within South Africa’s national policy on the Women’s Empowerment and Gender Equality Act, which was passed in 2002.The Gender Policy Framework outlines South Africa’s vision for gender equality and its overarching principles when it comes to treating both men and women equally.Government departments who support the initiative include the department of provincial and local government, the justice department and the department of social development.Government involvement in the campaign includes events taking place at both provincial and local government structures. Past events have included rallies and music festivals.Government has also formed strategic partnerships with civil society groups and various businesses in a bid to expand the scope of reach that the campaign has.The core objectives of the campaign are to:Create awareness of the plight and negative impact on abuse against women and children in society.The campaign also aims to challenge perpetrators of abuse to change their behaviour by educating themselves about the affects that physical or emotional abuse have on their victims.During the 16 days, a number of high profile events are held to lobby government to increase its support to victims. During this time, funds are also raised to enable organisations offering help to victims of abuse to continue with their work.South Africans are encouraged to wear white ribbons as a symbol of solidarity with those who’ve been affected by abuse.The ribbons provide a visually effective tool of highlighting the campaign, which in turn, it’s hoped, will elicit increased support.Other sectors of society who also get involved in the campaign include workers’ unions, who are encouraged to garner support within their ranks alongside members and representatives from the sporting fraternity.Disturbing SA statisticsSpeaking at an event during the campaign in 2006, then deputy minister of social development, Dr Jean Benjamin, said that it was crucial for South Africa to have an event of this type, as the country’s abuse statistics were shocking, “South Africa has one of the highest per capita rates of reported rapes in the world. This is despite the fact that most of rape cases are not reported.”According to non-governmental organisation Childline South Africa, there has been a 400% increase in the number of reported cases of child abuse in South Africa over a period of 10 years.The number of cases reported by child welfare societies also increased from 62% from 2000 to 2002.Benjamin also noted that statistics, which state that more than 51% of all cases fell into the category of sexual abuse, are disturbing.Other violence-related statistics show that more than 69% of the victims of abuse are female. The stats were drawn from a large-scale community-based prevalence study, conducted by the social department in three provinces.Other findings of the study showed that in some instances, the abuse on women and children are committed against them in their homes, by people who are supposed to protect them.One of the glaring by-products of violence against women and children, when the abuse is sexual in nature, is its contribution to the escalating HIV-infection rates amongst women.Women’s vulnerability to HIV infection and other sexually transmitted diseases is particularly heightened, when they are wholly dependent on their abusive spouse, and have no means of escaping.A report by UNAids, indicates that on a global scale, women make up the largest percentage of people living with HIV and Aids.The vulnerability of women and under aged girls to HIV/Aids is further aggravated by the fact that a large number of those victims live in dire poverty.Women’sNet, a South African based non-governmental organisation that works to advance gender equality, is aiming for the campaign against the abuse of women and children to become a daily matter of urgency.2008 eventsThis year, a South African radio station Ligwalagwala FM, will host the first-ever strictly hip-hop music festival in Mpumalanga, east of the country.The proceeds of the concert will go towards the 16 Days of Activism campaign.The station’s publicity officer Christinah Mazibuko, says she hopes the proceeds will make a difference in the lives of those who need them.“This will also be an opportunity for us to help those in need. There are a lot of disadvantaged people out there and the proceeds of the event will go towards helping them.”Organisers believed that, in addition to encouraging local hip-hop musicians in Mpumalanga, the music genre speaks to the youth and will go a long way in carrying the message.The event will bring together some of South Africa’s finest hip-hop musicians such as Tuks Senganga, Zulu boy, Sliquor, Proverb and ProKid.The South African non-governmental organisation coalition will this year, as part of the One-in-Nine Campaign, feature an exhibition at Constitution Hill, showcasing the struggle to end violence against women.The One-in-Nine campaign was established in 2006 during the rape trial of ANC president Jacob Zuma. He was found innocent in a court of law.The campaign operates on the findings of the Medical Research Council (MRC) study on sexual violence (2005) which indicate that only one out of every nine rape survivors report the attack to the police.Furthermore, statistics from the report also indicate that of the cases that do reach the courts, less than 5% of the alleged rapists are convicted.Other activities around the campaign will be announced closer to the date. This includes the official national event hosted by the department of provincial and local government.Do you have any queries or comments about this article? Email khanyi Magubane on: [email protected] links16 days of activismDepartment of social developmentUnaidsSangocoOne-in-Nine campaignWomensnetlast_img read more

The farm bill stalemate

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Jonathan Coppess, Gary Schnitkey, Nick Paulson with the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics at the University of Illinois, and Carl Zulauf, Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics at The Ohio State UniversityBoth the House and Senate have passed versions of a farm bill this year, but they remain stuck in conference negotiations due to a stalemate over key provisions in the bills. The stalemate is caused by three intersecting issues: commodity assistance, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and conservation. Commodity assistanceLower crop prices have been the defining concern in the debate over the farm support system in Title I (commodities) and crop insurance. Specifically, one hurdle going into the 2018 debate was the demand by the cotton industry to return its base acres to farm payment programs after having been removed in 2014 in response to the Brazilian World Trade Organization dispute. Adding back cotton was expected to come with political challenges because it would have required offsets to stay within budget rules, complicating already-difficult politics under lower prices by moving funds among commodities or titles. Congress, however, added seed cotton outside of the farm bill and USDA has delivered two different payments to cotton farmers for the 2018 crop.For conference, these initial concerns appear to have been reversed. The concern is now whether the 2018 payments to cotton have freed cotton supporters in Congress to pursue controversial changes to SNAP and conservation programs. There are also questions about whether an unusual yield update and its offset are adding further complications. Finally, the promise of payments from USDA could be a hindrance as well. Billions of dollars in Market Facilitation Payments and the potential for billions more could dampen farmer demand for a farm bill. SNAPThe partisan dispute over changes to food assistance for low-income families is the most contentious and difficult of the issues. Among the issues for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) in the 2018 farm bill debate has been whether SNAP participation has decreased enough given an improving economy and near-historic low unemployment rate. Participation remains above the pre-recession level of 25.9 million. Many people lost their jobs during the Great Recession, causing an increase in the number of Americans who fell into poverty and thus were able to participate in the program. There were 37 million Americans in poverty in 2007 and poverty peaked in 2014 at 47 million; SNAP participation in 2007 was 26 million but peaked in 2013 at 48 million. Additionally, SNAP participation demonstrates a “lagged relationship” with the unemployment rate that can be potentially as long as two years.Chairman Conaway recently insisted on a farm bill conference report that can receive a majority of Republican votes in the House. This may be an even more troubling development for the farm bill — both the current stalemate and possibly for the long run — because it establishes a very partisan threshold for the traditionally bipartisan farm bill, especially a conference report. It is especially concerning given the political reality in the Senate where 68 Senators voted to defeat an amendment that would have added the House’s SNAP provisions and 86 Senators voted to pass a farm bill without them. ConservationThe conservation title is traditionally one of the least controversial and partisan of the major, mandatory funding titles in a farm bill debate; that the conservation title is part of the current stalemate adds to the concerns about the 2018 farm bill. The House version of the farm bill eliminates the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP).The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and the CSP are the primary working-lands conservation programs in the farm bill. Working-lands program refer to providing conservation assistance on productive farmland rather than taking acres or fields out of production for conservation purposes.Eliminating CSP is arguably the key difference between the House and Senate farm bills. The House farm bill does not eliminate stewardship contracting authority completely, rather shifts the authority to EQIP and reduces its funding. A comparison of the significant differences in funding for multi-year stewardship contracting authority helps illustrate the different vision for conservation policy. It is not, however, the only disagreement or concern with provisions in Title II of the House and Senate farm bills. As the conference stalemate drags on, the interactions among these three issues also cannot be overlooked. Successful farm bills have long been built on a large coalition that is bipartisan, spans different production regions of the country and bridges between rural and non-rural interests; much of it a balance among farm programs, conservation and nutrition. The House farm bill in particular challenges this coalition in unprecedented ways by upsetting this balance. Cotton, rice and peanuts — crops grown almost exclusively in the southern states and Republican Congressional districts — stand to benefit disproportionately from the Title I program changes.The irrigated regions of the Southwestern states are also likely to benefit the most from changes to conservation policy and spending, especially elimination of CSP and allowing irrigation districts to compete for funding. This shift in benefits is likely at the expense of the Midwestern and Eastern regions and as compared to water quality conservation important to drinking water concerns for rural communities and urban areas alike.This is a notable concentration of the farm bill’s benefits to one region of the country with an overwhelming partisan affiliation. It represents a significant narrowing of the coalition, exacerbated by the partisan dispute over low-income food assistance in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). This is a troubling situation for the current stalemate that might have long-term implications for future farm bills.This is a summary from a “Farm Bill Stalemate” series posted at farmdocdaily.illinois.edu.last_img read more