Hello from Tegucigalpa. We’re just back from a couple of days in the Honduras-Nicaragua border zone, in the department of El Paraíso. An extraordinary number of migrants are passing through this zone right now, most of them after passing through the Darién Gap and Nicaragua.
After passing through the Darién Gap, Panama, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua, some U.S.-bound migrants get stranded en route as they struggle to raise money to pay bus fares.
At the beginning of this century, Venezuela was one of Latin America’s wealthier countries. Back then, the idea of its citizens using an image of their flag to evoke pity in Honduras—the 2nd or 3rd poorest nation in the hemisphere—would’ve been ludicrous.
Great to see New Zealand’s The Beths, an indie-pop group at the height of their powers, at a sold-out 9:30 Club in Washington.
A much larger space than where I last saw them, in October 2018 at the Songbyrd Music Hall basement in Adams Morgan, which has since moved to a bigger and far better space. Here, my view of lead singer / guitarist Elizabeth Stokes was obscured by a post.
From El Salvador’s Gato Encerrado, reporting on the government’s encirclement of Soyapango, a poor San Salvador suburb, with 8,500 soldiers (about 1/3 of El Salvador’s military) and 1,500 police. The troops and cops are doing sweeps to arrest people whom they believe are gang members.
Translated caption of this photo, credited to Melissa Paises: “According to the human rights organization Cristosal, the majority of the more than 56,000 people detained under the emergency regime have been young men between the ages of 18 and 30, who were detained simply for their appearance or for living in stigmatized areas such as Soyapango.”
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has posted and shared, under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license, more than 65 photos of camera towers, aerostats, and other surveillance technologies deployed along the border. Some of this tech has “negative impacts for human rights or the civil liberties of those who live in the borderlands,” EFF notes.
Here’s one labeled “An extreme close-up shot of the lens of an Integrated Fixed Tower (IFT) camera on Coronado Peak, Cochise County, AZ”:
It was an honor to be in the audience at yesterday’s swearing-in of President Gustavo Petro and Vice President Francia Márquez. Here is a Flickr album of 40 photos taken with my little point-and-shoot camera, which has a decent zoom lens.
Some of them came out well. Feel free to use them with attribution.
Had a good day of meetings in San Diego yesterday with border rights and migration advocates, none of whom I’d seen in person since before the pandemic, and some whom I was very happy to meet for the first time.
No interesting photos of me sitting in meetings, so here’s a photo of the Pacific Ocean instead. It was also my first glimpse of the Pacific since before the pandemic.