Vilma Vargas Uncensored: the Caricaturist drawing circles around Ecuador´s attacks on freedom of expression

What happens to a democracy when its journalists and artists are too afraid to criticise those in power and express themselves freely?

This is one of the questions we ask Vilma Vargas – a rising talent in the Ecuadorian art scene who was twice selected for the “World Press Cartoon” in Portugal and awarded first prize at RESET 11.11.11 in Mexico for best caricaturist.

Sin censura: Vilma Vargas sin rodeos en torno a la libertad de expresión en Ecuador

“¿Qué pasa con una democracia cuando los periodistas y artistas tienen miedo de expresar libremente sus críticas a quienes están en el poder?”, es una de las preguntas que hacemos a Vilma Vargas, un talento en ascenso en el mundo del arte ecuatoriano. Fue seleccionada dos veces para el “World Press Cartoon” en Portugal y ganadora en RESET 11.11.11 en México como mejor caricaturista

Luis Xavier Solis on the 55,140 refugees in Ecuador less famous than Julian Assange

Today on Chekhov’s Kalashnikov we are going to talk with Luis Xavier Solis Tenesaca who works for the Comittee of Human Rights of Orellana in the Ecuadorian Amazon. This organization which works closely with UNHCR is in charge of protecting and defending some of the worlds most vulnerable and forgotten people – refugees that have fled Colombians civil war in search for asylum and a better life in Ecuador.

The Guerrilla Movement Waging War Against Deforestation

In the dense cloud forests that cover the western ridge of the Ecuadorian Andes an active guerrilla movement called the Pachamama Army roams.

Unlike other guerrilla armies further north inside this biodiversity hotspot biologists call the Tumbes-Chocó-Magdalena, this movement believes in non-violent struggle over violent subversion.

Their revolution is one of consciousness via connection with nature and they are armed to the teeth with seeds, saplings, and shovels instead of guns and shells.

The Shitty State of Human Sanitation (Part 2: The Solution)

How did the new design for a sustainable human waste disposal system come into being?

In the 1950s, before the regrettable Vietnam War, a team of Vietnamese doctors analyzed why so many people were sick and how to control this. They found a great number of people were collecting “night soil” in buckets that were emptied in the morning directly in agricultural fields, where people worked largely barefoot.

The Shitty State of Human Sanitation (Part 1: The Problem)

For Chekhovs Kalashnikovs very first interview on Change Makers we will be talking with environmental activist Chris Canaday from California about the broken and dangerous state of human and water sanitation systems and the solution to this problem that is damaging our environment and health.

The Modern Black Market for Antiques

By the look of the place you’d never guess half a million dollars of pre-Colombian art was buried beneath the mess. Stored on the bottom floor of a nondescript apartment, beneath uncurled moldy mattresses and boxes of broken electronics, are artifacts spanning the rise and fall of civilizations.