Colombia Calling - The English Voice in Colombia

It has become clear that the kind of coverage we can now expect from the mainstream media regarding protests is one which serves to highlight protestors' violence, weaken support for the strike and delegitimise grassroots perspectives because, even when ordinary citizens are given a voice, they will unlikely openly criticise their government.

This is the "protest paradigm."

It is all too common to find an overwhelming number of quotes in a report or article from government officials and the like, and a lack of perspectives explaining the root cause of the protests.

So, this week, Richard McColl of Colombia Calling teams up with Adriaan Alsema of Colombia Reports in Medellin and Joshua Collins of Pirate Wire Services to discuss this phenomenon in the press and media world, citing concrete examples from the 2019 and 2021 Paro Nacional in Colombia and making comparisons with what is being seen during the protests at US universities such as Columbia in NY at this present moment.

The Colombia Briefing is reported by Emily Hart.

Direct download: RCC_516.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EDT

Medellin and Colombia are hitting the headlines for all the wrong reasons, due to sexual exploitation of children by foreign visitors.

In April, a US citizen was caught bringing two girls, ages 12 and 13, into the Hotel Gotham, in the exclusive sector of El Poblado in Medellin. There was all sorts of paraphernalia in this individual's room, to suggest his guilt but since he wasn't "caught in the act," he was held by the police for 12 hours and later fled the country.

The Hotel Gotham has since closed its doors for good.

So, on this week's Colombia Calling podcast, we talk to Tyler Schwab of the NGO, Libertas International, which is involved in care for the victims of these sexual predators. They have more than 100 people in their care and are on the front lines in the battle against this scourge.

We talk about the measures being taken in Medellin by the politicians, who are these people that come down to exploit children, how can this be stopped and more? Schwab has even been present at the raid on a pedophile's house in Medellin.

Tune in and check out:


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Direct download: RCC-515.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EDT

On this week's Colombia Calling podcast, we sit down and chat with Gary Murray, a former hotelier in Colombia and compare notes on the business.

Murray's experiences, on the whole, have been incredibly negative, mine on the other hand have been positive and so we look at some of the socio cultural nuances to running a business in Colombia, hear some outrageous and horrendous stories which occurred in Murray's hotel in an exclusive part of Bogota and reflect on what may have been.

We cover stories and anecdotes on unfaithfulness in a relationship, petty theft in the business, dodgy dealings, money laundering and so much more.

The Colombia Briefing is reported by Mathew Di Salvo.

If you would like to support the podcast:

Direct download: RCC_514.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EDT

"Get the most from your time in Colombia by adjusting your expectations with regard to what you probably take for granted: Punctuality [never], Predictability [rarely], Promiscuity [frequently], and Passion [always]."

And so it goes as we explore Colombia by way of Barry Max Wills' writing in his debut novel, a memoir entitled: "Better than Cocaine: Learning to Grow Coffee, and Live, in Colombia," published by Fuller Vigil.

Enjoy a far-reaching conversation with a master story-teller.

It's competition time too! Tune in and hear how you can win a copy of Barry's book.

The Colombia Briefing is reported by Emily Hart.

Buy the book here:

Direct download: RCC_513.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EDT

Journalist Emily Hart sat with Frank Wynne, tracing his incredible career from the start of his linguistic journey (a breakup and a bookshop in Paris) to his award-winning translation of writers across Latin America and the francophone world – particularly his work on cult Colombian author and ‘Enemy Number 1 of Macondo’ - Andrés Caicedo and his novel “Liveforever!”.

Tune in for a literary episode exploring one of Colombia's least known and cult authors recounted in such an erudite fashion.

Support the Colombia Calling podcast:

Direct download: RCC_512.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:30am EDT