Gold, wood, religion: Threats to Colombia’s isolated indigenous peoples

first_imgConflict, Environment, Gold Mining, Health, Indigenous Communities, Indigenous Peoples, Mercury, National Parks, Pollution, Protected Areas, Rainforest People, Rivers, Tropical Rivers, Uncontacted Tribes, Water Pollution The Yurí and the Passé are the two indigenous tribes identified as living in a natural state in the Colombian Amazon. There are indications that some 15 other such tribes exist in the region.Mercury from illegal gold mining contaminates the rivers surrounding the protected area where the Yurí and the Passé live in isolation.In addition to the contamination, mafia groups and attempts by evangelists at making contact threaten the isolated tribes. This story originally appeared on Mongabay Latam as part of a special series on threats facing isolated indigenous peoples in Ecuador, Peru, Colombia, and Venezuela. Other stories in the series available in English:Mercury poisoning chief among health problems facing Peru’s uncontacted tribesEcuador’s isolated indigenous tribes: Stuck between oil and state neglectVenezuela’s isolated indigenous groups under siege from miners, disease and guerrillasThe Yurí and the Passé are the two known isolated indigenous groups living in Colombia. They live in the department of Amazonas, in the southern part of the country, on 1 million hectares (2.5 million acres) of forestland that makes up Río Puré National Natural Park, a protected zone created in 2002 for the purpose of safeguarding them. As they move through the forest, illegal miners, indiscriminate loggers, groups on the fringes of the law, and even religious evangelists trying to convert them lurk not far away, putting the groups’ way of life at risk.Although it’s difficult to truly understand their problems, experts consulted by Mongabay Latam say they’re probably very similar to those faced by the majority of indigenous communities in the department of Amazonas, which borders Brazil to the east and Peru to the west. Robinson López, human rights coordinator for the National Organization for Indigenous People of the Colombian Amazon (OPIAC by its Spanish acronym), said the Witoto, an indigenous group in the area that is in contact with the outside world, “are slowly dying” from mercury pollution left by illegal mining. He fears the same is happening to the isolated tribes.The harm being done by illegal mining in Amazonas is immeasurable; little by little, it is cornering all the indigenous communities, including the Yurí and the Passé. Alexander Alfonso, head of Río Puré National Natural Park since 2011, said he mourns the fact that the authorities’ activities are concentrated on the edge of the Colombian Amazon in the departments of Guaviare and Caquetá, where deforestation is progressing at an alarming rate. “They don’t focus much on this side,” he said.He said he’s concerned, and with good reason. Together with 14 other civil servants, he aims to protect the million hectares of rainforest in the reserve from criminal mafias, comprised of Colombians, Brazilians and Peruvians, who journey deep into the rainforest, via the rivers, and steal the gold concealed by the Amazon.“In 2016, we built [just] one cabin along the entire border with Brazil in order to be able to detain illegal miners arriving in this country via the Puré River,” Alfonso said. “There are always three civil servants confronting this problem. It’s a risk, but we have no other option.” He said he has counted up to 35 gold rafts and dredgers in the river, which runs between the tributaries of the Caquetá River and Putumayo River basins and continues toward Brazil.Recent photographs of maloca houses from isolated Yurí and Passé indigenous villages and photographs of the community in 1969, the only time it made contact with the outside world. Images, clockwise from top-left, by Cristóbal von Rothkirch, courtesy of Anastasia Candre, by Cristóbal von Rothkirch, by Ives-Guy Bergès, and by Joaquín Molano Campuzano, from the book Cariba Malo (Universidad Nacional de Colombia, 2012).A problem foretoldThis is not a new issue. For more than 18 years, the intermittent presence of illegal miners has been reported in the area. Between 1999 and 2002, along the borders of Cahuinarí National Natural Park, which neighbors Río Puré National Natural Park, a spate of illegal mining was documented by government agencies such as the national parks authority and the national Ombudsman’s Office. In just one joint action those agencies reported 26 rafts extracting alluvial gold along a roughly 430-kilometer (270-mile) stretch of the Caquetá River, which marks Río Puré National Natural Park’s northern border, between the towns of Puerto Santander and La Pedrera. Although the intensity of the mining invasion subsequently dropped, occasional entries into Cahuinarí National Natural Park were again reported in 2012 [pdf].Almost two decades since the presence of this criminal activity was first reported, illegal miners continue their foray into the territory. Pollution from the mercury they use to extract gold from sediment is contaminating the water sources that supply all the indigenous communities, including the isolated villages. In 2015, a number of organizations, including the national parks authority, the Corporation for the Sustainable Development of the Southern Amazon (CorpoAmazonia), USAID, the Amazonas state government, the University of Cartagena and the University of Bogotá Jorge Tadeo Lozano, came together to assess the impact of illegal mining on the people living next to the Caquetá River.The study revealed that the inhabitants of various Caquetá River communities had mean concentrations of mercury in their systems of between 15.4 and 19.7 micrograms per gram, or parts per million — extremely high compared with international standards indicating that a normal concentration is just 1 part per million. “These concentrations indicate a definite widespread problem along the river … They are the highest readings reported for Colombia,” the study reads.If things aren’t looking great for the Caquetá River region, neither are they for the Putumayo River region, and in particular for the nine indigenous communities of the Cotuhé Putumayo Reserve there. A study carried out there by the Amazonas government’s Department of Health in 2016 determined that 75 percent of the subjects presented with higher-than-acceptable mercury concentrations in their hair. Of four women the researchers examined whose children had some form of mental impairment, three had excessive mercury in their systems, suggesting, albeit inconclusively because of the small sample size, that the pollution may be having severe consequences for the community’s health and well-being.López, of OPIAC, confirmed the report’s finding and added that there have been complaints indicating that some children from the populations living by the Putumayo River and in the lower section of the Caquetá River could be being born with malformations. He said the plight of these villages gives cause for concern about the isolated tribes, primarily because the rainforest that shelters them feeds off three rivers that are polluted with mercury: the Caquetá, the Putumayo and the Puré.Bora indigenous people live close to the isolated indigenous groups on the border of Río Puré National Natural Park. Image courtesy of Etnias del Mundo.The task of combatting illegal mining is not an easy one. The rivers are very large with many branches that are difficult to police. The Caquetá River is more than 2,200 kilometers (1,360 miles) long and the Putumayo exceeds 1,800 kilometers (1,100 miles).“The miners move around a lot at night, they look for specific times,” said César Parra, the general in charge of the National Army’s Sixth Division, which operates in the region. “Sometimes they go out to work when it’s raining, as they know the Air Force’s crafts can’t fly in those conditions. And they use small rafts to hide themselves easily.” The Army has formed alliances with the Marine Infantry and the Air Force to confront the problem, Parra said.In Amazonas, everyone does what they can. While the Armed Forces sporadically deploy operatives to deter illegal mining, Darío Silva, president of the Indigenous Authorities of Pedrera-Amazonas (AIPEA), said that his community, the 212,000-hectare (523,900-acre) Curare Los Ingleses Reserve neighboring Río Puré National Natural Park, installed a control point last year to prevent the influx of miners and any other persons not native to the protected area, with the purpose of safeguarding the isolated populations.“Some rafts wanted to enter the Caquetá River… but they were forbidden from doing so,” Silva said.  “The idea is that we are the first to make contact with the isolated tribes, should they decide to leave [the reserve].”Silva said he believes all reserves should include the isolated villages in their management plans, as his community did by way of a resolution in 2013. “We must set aside an area for them, not only for the Yurí and the Passé, but we know there are others throughout Mirití-Paraná township, the Chiribiquete [National Natural] Park and close to our Witoto friends throughout Araracuara, in Puerto Santander,” he said.Core problemWhile illegal miners pollute the water and the fish that the isolated indigenous populations consume, illegal loggers fell the trees that give them refuge. “There are Colombians and Peruvians who exit authorized places and enter the protected zones in order to cut down the forest without permission,” said Patricia Suárez, an indigenous Murui from Amazonas department who has been supporting the National Indigenous Organization of Colombia’s (ONIC) Office for Human Rights since 2016. Suarez served as a delegate to support the technical and political aspects of the creation of Decree 1232, passed in July 2018, which seeks to protect the country’s isolated populations.While all mining carried out in Amazonas is illegal, the extraction of wood is permitted to some extent. Since 2011, a forestry reserve of 424,000 hectares (over 1 million acres) between the Puré and Putumayo rivers has been defined by CorpoAmazonia, which has permitted two associations and three individuals to extract forest resources from 8,000 of these hectares (nearly 20,000 acres). The problem, as the area’s indigenous groups warn, is that some people are using these permits to simply dodge the authorities and gain access to prohibited areas. Suárez described reports of loggers arriving in areas used by the isolated populations. This, she said, is her greatest concern.Illegal mining in the Caquetá River. Image by Rodrigo Botero – FCDS.Alfonso, the manager of the Río Puré park, said he favors there being an area of the reserve where wood can be legally extracted but regrets that CorpoAmazonia is unable to exercise enough authority to control illegal logging. “It is difficult to exercise governance in these areas,” he said. The permits CorpoAmazonia grants last for five years and the area is difficult to access, so representatives of the environmental authority travel every six months to monitor licenses. Anything can happen during their absence.Luis Fernando Cueva, manager of CorpoAmazonia’s Amazonas territory, made it clear that his organization does carry out monitoring, but acknowledged that there is no shortage of illegal activity. “We are receiving reports advising that other people are illegally benefiting, unrelated to those who are authorized to do so,” he said. “This is happening in areas adjacent to these sites. When this occurs, what we do is coordinate with the Armed Forces to get to these places.” He added that he also knows of indigenous communities that allow illegal loggers to access the reserves to cut down trees.The days of the outsidersThis human barrier the indigenous communities have created around the isolated villages to fight those who come in search of gold and wood also tries to prevent the entry of evangelicals. Christian groups have tried to make contact with the isolated populations on several occasions since the 1970s, up to the present day.  For Suárez of ONIC, López of OPIAC, Silva of AIPEA and Alfonso of Río Puré park this is a significant risk — and it is perhaps the most difficult to control.Alfonso told how, since 2015, park authorities have been receiving solid reports of religious groups around the reserve areas’ sand bars, the limits of river travel. “For example, as far as we know, the Baptist Church continues with the idea of sharing God with the isolated people. They have not withdrawn,” Alfonso said.Members of the NGO Amazon Conservation Team’s (ACT) Colombia program and the indigenous communities came together on two occasions to prevent this potential intervention. “The interest of some groups in making contact with the isolated populations is a threat, especially if it is taken into consideration that the isolated are very susceptible to the illnesses that outsiders may bring in,” said Carolina Gil, ACT’s director. “A few evangelical groups are interested in contacting them, and we have worked hard with the different government agencies to prevent this from happening,” she said.A traditional house of the Yurí and Passé isolated indigenous peoples. Image by Donald Fanning, from the book Cariba Malo.The first missionary to arrive in this region was Donald Fanning, from the Baptist Church, who lived in the township of La Pedrera between 1974 and 1978. Fanning frequently traveled in his light aircraft over the forests of Amazonas to provide health care to the indigenous communities. According to the book Cariba Malo by the late political scientist Roberto Franco, in one of his flyovers Fanning noticed six isolated maloca houses, of different types, in the Puré and Bernardo river basins. From that moment on he was determined to convert the people who lived there to Christianity and to also teach them to use items useful to people living in the outside world, such as hammocks and mosquito nets. The information filtered through about what he was planning to do, and the Colombian Institute of Anthropology intervened and banned the expedition.Guaranteeing the right of the communities to remain in isolation is fundamental, especially to avoid repeating the story of the Nukak Makú, a nomadic people contacted by missionaries of the Nuevas Tribus Mission sect in 1981. The contact led to them contracting illnesses, and the arrival of the now-defunct FARC guerrilla group forced them to abandon their territory, which was then overrun with anti-personnel mines. Now they are on the brink of extinction.Corridors of violenceSilva of AIPEAand the Curare Los Ingleses Reserve told how on many occasions he heard ex-FARC guerrillas say they had seen the isolated indigenous people from afar. Despite the armed group seeming to have had a level of respect toward these populations, in Silva’s opinion it was still worrying that they were so close. With the signing of a peace agreement between the rebels and the government in November 2016, it was thought this matter would cease to be of concern. But that wasn’t the case. The Amazon become a battlefield in which groups on the fringes of the law fought over territory and corridors for taking drugs to other countries. The Yurí and Passé isolated indigenous populations were in the middle of all this fighting.“Although the Los Caqueteños criminal group principally operates in Amazonas, there is also the presence of the old First Front of the FARC. They profit from taking wood and coca paste out through the rivers, which is an unlawful activity,” said Parra.Rivers in Amazonas, such as the Apaporis and the Caquetá, are key to the armed groups as they enable them to access protected areas, move cocaine and weaponry, and provide a natural exit to Brazil, according to a report by the Bogotá-based Ideas for Peace Foundation (FIP by its Spanish acronym). The presence of the First Front in Amazonas is alarming, first and foremost because it was one of the parent structures of the FARC guerrillas and because it continued to commit violent acts after the peace agreement, between 2016 and 2018.In its investigation, FIP indicated that the First Front would be opening new drug-trafficking routes through the northern Amazonas department, specifically in a zone adjacent to Río Puré National Natural Park, home to the isolated indigenous people.The indigenous Witoto people live close to where there are indications of isolated indigenous populations. Image by León Darío Peláez courtesy of Semana magazine.Suárez of ONIC said the most worrying thing is that by hijacking the territory, the illegal armed groups may harm the isolated people. “The FARC guerrilla had an ideology, there was someone who told them what to do and what not to do. This can’t be done with the dissidents, it is very difficult to achieve a consensus,” she said with sorrow.Avoiding contact with outsiders is imperative. The isolated indigenous people know that the outside world is hostile. After all, the one time they associated with people from outside their community, there was death, violence and abduction. That episode occurred in 1969, when, in the middle of an expedition searching for animal skins, a hunter named Julián Gil chanced upon a Yurí maloca house.  He entered the sacred house and since then, according to accounts, his whereabouts remain unknown. Several days after his disappearance, his work team and the authorities went in search of him. This armed rescue operation had a fatal ending: five members of the isolated indigenous group were killed and another six were arrested, and had to be freed two months later. It was Franco, the late political scientist and author, who managed to unite all the testimonies that proved the existence of the Yurí.‘We’ll be killed defending what’s ours’The fight to defend the indigenous territory continues unrelentingly. Suárez, of the Murui, and other indigenous Amazon leaders claim they are being killed for defending their forest and seeking an end to these criminal structures.“Every day we report members of the communities who are dying to protect their territory, who are threatened and displaced, but nothing happens. This is a way of wiping us out. So, we decided if we are killed, we’ll be killed defending what’s ours,” Suárez said. She added that it feels as though Colombians haven’t understood that what is going on in the Amazon region and its villages affects the country’s entire population.Carolina Gil of ACT agreed. The region, known as a lung of the world, is a large sponge saturated with water into which people are dumping mercury. Sooner or later, it will have an impact on the communities, the fauna and flora of this ecosystem. “The Amazon plays a very important role in terms of balance — including the climate — and the production of water. What is happening over there may affect the moorland system of the Andean region, from where the majority of Colombians take their water. It is seen as a very distant area, like a green stain on the map, but people have to understand that we are able to have safe drinking water thanks to the health of the Amazon,” she said.While the authorities decide what action to take to stop the harm to the forest and the people living there, the communities are looking for a way to survive. Pollution is of such grave concern that, upon discovering the high levels of mercury in their bodies, some indigenous people are choosing to isolate themselves. Quite possibly, they noticed, the solution to their ills was to follow the example of the uncontacted isolated indigenous populations, like the Yurí. They decided to return to their own land as a way of persisting.They are hoping nobody finds them.Banner image by Cristóbal von Rothkirch, from the book Cariba Malo.This article was first published by Mongabay Latam. Edits by Rebecca Kessler. FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the editor of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Article published by Rebecca Kesslercenter_img Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredlast_img read more

The Timberwolves Might Have Too Many Stars

MINNEAPOLIS — It would take days to compile a full list of all the things the Timberwolves have done wrong during their 13-year span wandering the basketball wilderness.Management has had long stretches of gross ineptitude. That lack of direction partly explains why the Wolves have cycled through eight coaches in the 13 seasons since they last made the playoffs, including two different men who each held the job twice. Aside from the lack of continuity, there are also the mind-numbingly bad picks. The 2009 draft was especially awful: Minnesota selected two different point guards, Ricky Rubio and eventual washout Jonny Flynn, ahead of a guy named Steph Curry, who’d go on to win two MVPs while becoming the greatest jump shooter in NBA history.So it doesn’t take much to see why this season — with newly acquired All-Star Jimmy Butler, a handful of solid vets and some of the NBA’s best young talent — is one of the most anticipated campaigns in Timberwolves history. But look closer, and there may be slight cause for concern: Minnesota, owner of the NBA’s longest playoff drought, might suddenly have too much star power on its roster.The Wolves boast a ton of individual scoring but don’t necessarily have a surplus of players known for facilitating an offense. Consider the fact that the team’s Big Three is made up of Butler, Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins — a trio in which each player logged usage rates of 25 percent or higher last season.While it’s not unheard of for an offense to be this reliant on a set of three players — the Warriors and Cavaliers both did it last season en route to the Finals — it’s still unusual from a historical standpoint. Even as the notion of the superteam has spread throughout the league, there have been only six instances of three separate players logging 25 percent usage rates for the same team over the past 25 seasons,1While playing 30 minutes per game and at least 50 games that season. according to ESPN Stats & Information Group. 2016-17CavaliersLeBron JamesKyrie IrvingKevin Love SEASONTEAMPLAYER ONEPLAYER TWOPLAYER THREE 2008-09MavericksDirk NowitzkiJason TerryJosh Howard 1999-2000BucksRay AllenGlenn RobinsonSam Cassell 2001-02BucksRay AllenGlenn RobinsonSam Cassell 2016-17WarriorsKevin DurantStephen CurryKlay Thompson 2007-08SpursTim DuncanTony ParkerManu Ginobili Still, it’s hard to know whom, if anyone, the Wolves actually compare to — especially now, after having moved Rubio, a pass-first guard who managed to keep his high-scoring teammates fed most nights.“I get people involved, but he was a fan favorite, and I hear that every day. Seriously, I do,” said Jeff Teague, the Wolves’ new starting point guard, who gets in the paint and scores more than his predecessor. The 29-year-old, one season removed from a career-high 26.6 percent usage rate himself, said he’s been studying film to learn where his new teammates prefer the ball. Teague also cited his experience leading a highly balanced Atlanta Hawks’ offense as reason for optimism in Minnesota.Figuring out the proper pecking order won’t get a whole lot easier when Teague heads to the bench, either. Three-time Sixth Man of the Year winner Jamal Crawford, who led the NBA in percentage of time going 1-on-1 last season, figures to be a primary ballhandler when he enters the game as a reserve. All of which raises a question about how this team’s offense — which fell from a top-five team in assist rate with Rubio on the floor to a bottom-10 club with him off the court last season — will move the ball with so many scoring specialists sharing the court at once.There are a ton of kinks for this team to work through — all things considered, the Timberwolves’ defense could still be pretty bad — but to be fair, the Wolves also have a handful of factors that could play to their advantage. Unlike the LeBron James superteams that struggled out of the gate in Miami and Cleveland in 2010 and 2014, Butler is the only true star joining Minnesota this offseason. And because Towns and Wiggins have played alongside each other the past couple of seasons, the trio’s growing pains may not be as extreme to start.2Towns connected with Wiggins for seven outlet passes of 60 feet or farther last season, second in the NBA only to Kevin Love — the outlet-pass king — and LeBron James. Could Minnesota be the NBA’s next three-headed monster?Teams with three players who posted at least 25 percent usage over the season, since 1992 Among players with at least 30 minutes per game, minimum 50 gamesSource: ESPN Stats & Information Group Video Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Video Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Beyond that, Butler is already familiar with Tom Thibodeau’s highly tactical schemes, having played for him in Chicago for the first four seasons of his career. “We’re very fortunate, because everybody already knows the system, which expedites the process 10-fold,” Towns said.Thibodeau suggested that he wasn’t concerned about who would create looks for whom in this offense. Striking the balance among several talented scorers “is a challenge that all good teams face,” he said. Thibodeau thinks Butler (who, at 5.5 assists per game last season, has upped his assists per game every year) is one of the best playmaking shooting guards in the NBA, and that Crawford, for all his 1-on-1 tries, is a tough cover when defenses trap him in pick-and-rolls.3Crawford averaged more points per possession than any other NBA player when teams trapped him in pick-and-roll scenarios last year, according to Synergy Sports.Video Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Video Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.“Everyone has to play for each other, to sacrifice, and put the team first,” Thibodeau said. “So if you’re a primary scorer, and the second defender comes, without hesitation, you have to hit the open man. You have to trust each other.”And again, offense isn’t Minnesota’s chief concern. By all accounts, the Wolves should finish top 10 in the NBA on that side of the ball — but that’s a necessity for them to compete considering how bad their defense could be. The Wolves blew 22 double-digit leads and tied for fourth-worst in the association on that end last season. Butler and Taj Gibson could help the Timberwolves improve slightly on defense (though Rubio to Teague is a downgrade), but expecting a complete turnaround might be asking too much of Wiggins and Towns, who, despite being cornerstones, are still just 22 and 21 years old, respectively.This shoddy defense gives the Timberwolves’ offense very little margin, particularly late in games, when the club’s fourth-quarter offense goes stale and Minnesota becomes too reliant on perimeter jumpers with heavy, fatigued legs.The question of who will get the ball in crunch time looms large, especially for a team that somehow lost a whopping 30 games that were within 5 points during the final five minutes of play.“Obviously I think I’m a great scorer, and that I’m a great weapon. I think of myself as a No. 1 option,” Wiggins said. “We all think we’re the No. 1 option. Not in a selfish way. It’s more that we just know what we can do.” read more

Gerrard excited about UEL second round challenge

first_imgRangers manager Steven Gerrard has revealed his excitement about the challenge about leading the team to the knockout stages of the UEFA Europa League.The Ibrox club need four points from their final two games to make it past the group stages, and host Villarreal on Thursday before traveling to Vienna to face Rapid Vienna in two weeks.“I would have settled for going into the last game needing to win it at the very beginning,” Gerrard said, according to Evening Times.“The idea when it was drawn was that, we were the underdogs, but we go and give it our best shot to get out of the group.“If someone had said to me at the beginning it would go down to the wire I would have signed up for it. Hopefully we get the right result.Steven Gerrard, Michael OwenOwen reveals why Liverpool didn’t offer Gerrard a new contract Manuel R. Medina – September 6, 2019 According to Owen, the Reds wanted to sell Gerrard two years before he left the club and that’s why they didn’t offer him a contract renewal.“We are going to go for the win, we will be aggressive and positive and try and win the game. But, if that is not to be then it is very important that we take something out of it.“I think they have won five games from 18 and whilst there is huge respect there we know they are comfortable in a technical game.“The idea for us is to try and take them where they don’t want to go, make it uncomfortable, try and play at a tempo and speed that maybe they are not used to every week.“We know we are going to have 50,000 fans roaring us on, that will be a huge help. For us, this is a fantastic challenge and we can’t wait for us.”last_img read more

Candlelight vigil at Balboa Park

first_img Posted: March 17, 2019 March 17, 2019 Candlelight vigil at Balboa Park KUSI Newsroom, Updated: 6:20 PMcenter_img KUSI Newsroom 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – a Candlelight vigil is being held tonight in Balboa Park to commemorate the victims of the New Zealand mass shooting.KUSI’s John Soderman was live in Balboa with people paying their respect. Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

Jewish Family Service to provide immigration legal services at SDSU CSUSM

first_img SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – The California State University Chancellor’s Office announced Wednesday that Jewish Family Service of San Diego will provide immigration legal services to students, staff and faculty at Cal State San Marcos and San Diego State University.CSU announced partnerships with four immigrant-rights organizations around the state to roll out legal services to all but one of its 23 campuses over the next six months, the exception being the California State University Maritime Academy. CSU is funding the partnerships with $7 million in state money, according to the chancellor’s office.“I am delighted that we will be able to increase the availability of immigration legal services to the California State University community,” CSU Chancellor Timothy White said. “We remain committed to ensuring that all CSU students have the opportunity to pursue their higher education goals regardless of their country of origin.”Through the partnership, attorneys, paralegals and JFS representatives will regularly visit the CSUSM and SDSU campuses to provide services like general consultations, renewals of green cards and protected status under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and “know your rights” presentations.The campuses will provide private meeting areas for students and faculty, schedule appointments with legal consultants and inform students about the collaboration through workshops and outreach events.“Jewish Family Service of San Diego applauds California State University’s systemwide plan that provides immigration legal services to students and employees,” said JFS lead higher education legal services attorney Jairo Castaneda. “It’s especially important for everyone on campus to know they have this support, whenever they need it.”According to the chancellor’s office, roughly 9,500 CSU students are undocumented at the university system’s 23 campuses. Students without documentation will be prioritized for legal assistance over students with legal immigration issues and university staff and faculty.Students and faculty can also visit the CSU immigration resources website at students/pages/default.aspx. KUSI Newsroom KUSI Newsroom, Posted: August 28, 2019 August 28, 2019 Categories: California News, Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter Jewish Family Service to provide immigration legal services at SDSU, CSUSMlast_img read more