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TOPIC: argentina

In The News

Poland Missile Strike Was Accident, Trump’s Back, NASA’s Moon Shot

👋 Ello!*

Welcome to Wednesday, where Poland says it has no indication the deadly missile near Ukraine's border was sent intentionally, Donald Trump announces he’s running in 2024, and NASA makes one not-so-small step toward returning to the Moon. In Buenos Aires-based daily Clarin, Mara Resio also looks at the recent legal landmark for the country’s multi-parental families, and what it means for parents and children.

[*Jamaican Patois]

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Three-Parent Families Emerging From Legal Limbo In Argentina

Multi-parent families or triple parenting are not yet enshrined in the law in Argentina, a continental pioneer of innovative social rights, but so far and in spite of legal challenges, court rulings have recognized the reality of children with "three parents."

BUENOS AIRES — A woman writes to her children before dying, unwilling to keep a painful secret any longer. On reading her letter, the children realize that the father who had raised them, wasn't their biological father.

Before such situations, Argentina's judiciary usually determines a state of "triple filiation," meaning that a person can have two mothers and a father or two fathers and a mother.

There are 25 such multi-parent families, found in and around Buenos Aires, as well as several provinces including Santa Fe, Tucumán and Córdoba. Each one is quite different.

The first two cases were from 2015, just before a reform to the Civil and Commercial Code went into effect. The adults in question did not take legal action to be recognized as multi-parent families, but the civil courts of the capital and the Buenos Aires province took decisions to resolve their situations.

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Good Ol' Lula? Brazil's Next President Must Utterly Reinvent Himself — With Moderation

Brazil's incoming president, Lula da Silva, is unlikely to govern the same way he did 20 years ago. Socio-economic conditions will likely push him toward moderation, which will benefit Brazil and the region.

-Analysis-

BUENOS AIRES — Political comebacks have become a habit in Latin America. It is a rarity in other parts of the world, but here there is always someone who is "back".

Chile had Michelle Bachelet, Peru had Alan García and Fernando Beláunde Terry, Bolivia had Goni Sánchez de Lozada and Venezuela had Carlos Andrés Pérez — all as presidential "apparitions". In Argentina, we have Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, though as vice-president this time after a previous presidential term.

Now Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (good ol' Lula) has returned as president in Brazil. But don't expect him to govern the same way he did last time.

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In Argentina, A Pet Custody Battle Leads To "Multi-Species Family" Legal Status

A Buenos Aires divorce court has set a legal precedent for animal rights by resolving a custody battle with a visiting routine for the dogs of a divorced couple. The ruling is helping fill a vacuum around the legal protection of animals and pets.

BUENOS AIRES — When divorces loom, so does the question of who gets the kids.

But in today's era of diverse forms and composition of families, that question is expanding to include those other much-loved family members — pets. For some couples, their pets are their de facto children. So much so that one couple in Argentina went to court to settle custody of their two dogs.

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Economy
Martin Redrado and Carlos Corach*

Brazil And Argentina, It's Time For A Single Market

Amid rising global tensions, Brazil and Argentina must form a strategic economic alliance that will help them interact with the world's chief powers.

-OpEd-

BUENOS AIRES — Humanity is facing some exceptional challenges and propositions that would have seemed implausible years ago. Every day we see a slight reconfiguration or axial shift in global power relations, specifically in the political, military, technological and socio-economic realms.

As a result, regionalism is replacing globalization, which, after decades of ascendancy, has being first threatened by a global pandemic and now with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

In this context, it is imperative to rethink inter-state relations in South America, especially between the region's two biggest states, Brazil and Argentina. Both countries need each other in order to face today's global challenges.

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Geopolitics
Alina Grytsenko

South Korea To South America, Putin’s Threats May Push New Countries To Go Nuclear

Beyond the already existing nuclear powers, at least eight countries could be poised to discard non-proliferation status quo and arm themselves with nuclear arsenals.

KYIV — Vladimir Putin's nuclear threats fundamentally undermine the basic principles of non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction developed in the post-War period. Indeed, signs show that several nations have recently been intensifying activities around acquiring a nuclear arsenal for national security.

As a non-nuclear power invaded by nuclear-armed Russia, Ukraine stands as an example to other countries around the world of the vulnerability inherent in not having an atomic arsenal.

Stay up-to-date with the latest on the Russia-Ukraine war, with our exclusive international coverage.

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But if Russia actually uses nuclear weapons, the risk of new countries seeking these weapons of mass destruction for the first time may quickly accelerate.

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food / travel
Mercedes Pérez Bergliaffa

Frida Kahlo, Capturing Her Pain In Painting And Photographs

The Costantini collection of Latin American art, on display in Buenos Aires, includes family photos of Mexico's Frida Kahlo, whose singular paintings and resilience in suffering made her, in death, a symbol of female strength and creativity.

BUENOS AIRES — The Tercer Ojo (Third Eye) exhibition in the MALBA museum in Buenos Aires, displaying one of Latin America's outstanding art collections, will give visitors a glimpse of the lives of two celebrated Mexican painters of the 20th century, Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera.

Kahlo turned to painting to escape years of acute back pain, and is often associated with the Surrealists of her time. The display includes pictures taken by her father among others, showing private moments in the life of a passionate woman who has become an icon of modern popular culture.

In 1929, Kahlo married Rivera, a towering figure of Mexican modern art and in particular, Muralism. Throughout her life as an artist, she remained in his shadow.

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Society
Rubens Valente

Why Brazil Is Excavating An Infamous Torture Center 40 Years Later

As the country gears up for a politically-charged run-off election, a team of archaeologists, historians and forensics experts are set to excavate the grounds and buildings of one of the worst torture centers in São Paulo, trying to recover the country's painful history of torture during the military regime.

In 1964, the Brazilian Armed Forces carried out a coup, with support from the United States government, and installed a dictatorship that lasted for over 20 years. Although free elections returned to the country in the 1980s and a new constitution was approved in 1988, Brazil has lagged other South American countries when it comes to reconciling itself with the aftermaths of the dictatorship.

Challenging the crimes of the military elites is portrayed as a “leftist” cause in Brazil. Right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro has even celebrated — on several occasions, including during the Congress session that voted to impeach former president Dilma Rousseff — the torture that was committed by the regime.

In contrast, countries like Argentina and Chile have made big strides in reckoning with their bloody past and prosecuting members of the military juntas.

SÂO PAULO — For the first time, an archaeological, historical and forensic project in Brazil intends to excavate the grounds and buildings of the former headquarters of a DOI-CODI (Department of Information Operations - Center for Internal Defense Operations), the much feared intelligence agency that carried out violent political repression during Brazil’s military dictatorship (1964-1985).

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Society
Claudio Andrade

Jehovah's Witnesses Translate The Bible In Indigenous Language — Is This Colonialism?

The Jehovah's Witnesses in Chile have launched a Bible version translated into the native Mapudungun language, evidently indifferent to the concerns of a nation striving to save its identity from the Western cultural juggernaut.

NEUQUÉN — The Bible can now be read in Mapuzugun, the language of the Mapuche, an ancestral nation living across Chile and Argentina. It took the Chilean branch of the Jehovah's Witnesses, a latter-day Protestant church often associated with door-to-door proselytizing and cold calling, three years to translate it into "21st-century Mapuzugun".

The church's Mapuche members in Chile welcomed the book when it was launched in Santiago last June, but some of their brethren see it rather as a cultural imposition. The Mapuche were historically a fighting nation, and fiercely resisted both the Spanish conquerors and subsequent waves of European settlers. They are still fighting for land rights in Chile.

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Geopolitics
Juan Gabriel Tokatlian

How South American Oceans Can Sway The U.S.-China Showdown

As global rivalries and over-fishing impact the seas around South America, countries there must find a common strategy to protect their maritime backyards.

-Analysis-

BUENOS AIRES — As the U.S.-China rivalry gathers pace, oceans matter more than ever. This is evident just looking at the declarations and initiatives enacted concerning the Indian and Pacific oceans.

Yet there is very little debate in South America on the Sino-American confrontation and its impact on seas around South America, specifically the South-Eastern Pacific (SEP) and South-Western Atlantic (SWA). These have long ceased to be empty spaces — and their importance to the world's superpowers can only grow.

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Society
Paula Galinsky

When Friends "Break Up" — The Psychological Damage After Friendships End

Society sees friendships as far less important than love and life partnerships. But psychologists warn that the end of a close friendship can leave the "grieving" side in need of therapy.

BUENOS AIRES — It was Wednesday and Sofía, a 31-year-old woman living in Buenos Aires, was having a good day. She'd had a productive work meeting in the morning and her usual gym class in the afternoon. But as she walked home listening to music in her earphones, she felt an acute pain, first in her chest, then throat.

It wasn't a heart attack, but she panicked and began to cry. What prompted the reaction, she realized later, was the music she had just heard: a song that brought back teenage memories of a former friend. Sofía told her therapist the next day that the end of the friendship had upset her greatly, and until that moment had suppressed the grief.

The friend hadn't died, there had been no fight or exchange of ugly words, but the two had drifted apart, irreversibly, Sofía felt. None of this, she told the psychologist, made it any less troubling or hurtful.

The song that had triggered her anxiety was 11 y 6 by Argentine Fito Páez. It took Sofía back to her 16th birthday, which she spent with her friend. That girl "was" her teenage years, she explained and without her "a big part of what we lived together now is gone."

The end of a strong friendship causes bona fide grief, even if it is often ignored. More and more specialists believe that it needs to be processed, and perhaps treated, like one would the end of a love affair or partnership.

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Society
Ignacio Pereyra*

Papá, Papá, On Repeat: Are We Men Ready For Fatherhood To Change Our Lives?

How many men are willing to change their lives when they become fathers? For Argentine journalist Ignacio Pereyra, becoming his son's main caregiver showed just how difficult caring for a child can be.

There is a moment on Saturday or Sunday, after having spent ten hours with my kids, that I get a little exasperated, I lose my patience. I find it hard to identify the emotion, I definitely feel some guilt too. I know that time alone with them improves our relationship... but I get bored! Yes, I feel bored. I want some time in the car for them to talk to each other while I can talk about the stupid things we adults talk about.

This is what a friend tells me. He tends to spend several weekends alone with his two children and prefers to make plans with other people instead of being alone with them. As I listened to him, I immediately remembered my long days with Lorenzo, my son, now three-and-a-half years old. I thought especially of the first two-and-a-half years of his life, when he hardly went to daycare (thanks, COVID!) and we’d spend the whole day together.

It also reminded me of a question I often ask myself in moments of boredom — which I had virtually ignored in my life before becoming a father: how willing are we men to let fatherhood change our lives?

It is clear that the routines and habits of a couple change completely when they have children, although we also know that this rarely happens equally.

With the arrival of a child, men continue to work as much or more than before, while women face a different reality: either they double their working day — maintaining a paid job but adding household and care tasks — or they are forced to abandon all or part of their paid work to devote themselves to caregiving.

In other words, "the arrival of a child tends to strengthen the role of economic provider in men (...), while women reinforce their role as caregivers," says an extensive Equimundo report on Latin America and the Caribbean, highlighting a trend that repeats itself in most Western countries.

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