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Guatemala: Peaceful Protests Face Violent Reprisals

By Rob October 18, 2023 No Comments

During the past two weeks in Guatemala I have witnessed many marches, protests, and blockades. The petition of the Guatemalan people is a profoundly serious and grave one: corrupt government officials must resign. Now. Yet the mood of the protests has been anything but somber. How would I describe them? Festive. Creative. Musical. Communal. Passionate. Patriotic. Peaceful.  Friends, families, coworkers – entire communities – have joined their voices in demanding…

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Guatemala’s Fight Against Corruption: A Moment of Hope

By Rob October 12, 2023 No Comments

I last visited Guatemala six months ago. It was a depressing experience. I encountered a country mired in despair and desperation. The outlook for human rights defenders appeared bleak. The electoral panorama seemed to offer little possibility for positive change. The “pact of the corrupt,” a nefarious coalition of economic elites, corrupt politicians, state security officials, narcos, and extreme right-wing militants, had undermined Guatemala’s democratic institutions to the point of…

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Guatemala in Crisis: the Death of Justice

By Rob March 23, 2023 1 Comment

I’ve been back in Guatemala for only a short while, but it’s already become abundantly clear to me that the country is in crisis. Terrible crisis. Failed-state-kinda crisis. Visitors to Guatemala’s lovely, touristy hot spots -Antigua, Tikal, Lake Atitlan, etc.- might spend their perfectly wonderful vacation here without ever realizing just how dire the situation has become. That’s because this crisis is internal: a sickness, a rotting, a cancer. Its…

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El comedor – finding great food in Guatemala

By Rob March 14, 2023 No Comments

This isn’t a food blog. (Although you wouldn’t know that by these first couple of posts.) But one aspect of Guatemalan life that I most missed while in NY was the food. I’m not talking about the super-gourmet stuff served in the “nicer” parts of town or the tourist destinations. I mean the family-run places that serve delicious dishes on the cheap: ‘el comedor’ (the eatery.)  Some might say that…

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We’re back… and there’s pepián!

By Rob March 13, 2023 1 Comment

After three years of absence from Guatemala due to COVID (pinche COVID) and family responsibilities in NY, I’ve finally returned… albeit for a quick visit. Hopefully there will be abundant stories to tell and photos to share in the upcoming days. But for now I wanted to leave you with a photo of a meal that was prepared to welcome me back to the office: pepián! Made with chicken, potatoes,…

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