The Colony Of Puerto Rico, A Round Deal For The US: Since 1898 They Have Stole $6 Billion From The Island Economy…

The United States will not cut the umbilical cord to Puerto Rico for a simple reason: How productive it is in financial and geopolitical terms.

In 1898, Spain gave Puerto Rico to The United States as spoils of war. And since then, Uncle Sam has increased his coffers at the expense of production of capital that emigrates to the North, for the control of cabotage law in ports and airports; for contributions and taxes, for the exploitation of our natural resources, for the capitalization of the changes to the provisions on land reclassification and land use, for the imposition of unilateral trades in a corporation of consumption that generates millions that goes to the United States.

In short, because of the disastrous way we’ve been treated, which detonates in a process of gentrification and displacement without precedent in recent history.

According to (Economist) Jose Alameda, the profits are in the billions, not counting the damage to the Puerto Rican psyche”. It is only the economic question; “to get rid of Puerto Rican companies and replace them with foreign companies” said Martha Quiñones Dominguez, Ph.D. in Economics and Planning, professor at the Arecibo Campus of the University of Puerto Rico and former president of the Puerto Rico Association of Economists, when asked in an interview.

“This is without considering the exploitation of our natural resources and the human being as well. How much do the soldiers cost; mental colonialism and not counting corruption.

Only the use of land and expropriation of land and the displacement or change to Puerto Rican companies,” explained Dr. Quiñones.

Thus, what PR receives in federal funds such as Nutrition Assistance Programs or budget allocations for health, housing and education, in addition to the contribution from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for disasters such as the Hurricane Maria or earthquakes are NOT gifts, offerings or handouts… It is only part of the billions of dollars that have been stolen from PR since 1898, around $6 billion, according to estimates by economist Jose Alameda.


*Colonialism is not free of cost to the citizens who are colonized.

*The difference In the case of Puerto Rico, with other schemes of metropolis-colony, is because in 1917, The US Congress granted US Citizenship unilaterally.

*The cost results in the expropriation by force of the economic, social, political, and strategic location for the Military and Commercial value.

*The cost reaches $6,106,579,641,085 or $6.107 x 10. This amount is 59.9 times the current value of the nominal GOP of PR.

Let see if changes are in the horizon…

Free Association: the political option that can save Puerto Rico?

The political status of Puerto Rico is a long-standing problem that requires urgent action. The island, an unincorporated territory of the United States, is not a sovereign nation or state of the United States. This ambiguity must be addressed by both Americans and Puerto Ricans. The future well-being and prosperity of all Puerto Ricans depend on it.

The Puerto Rican economy has been in decline for decades, mainly because the political future of the island remains undetermined, with disastrous social, political, and economic consequences. This issue has been a dominant debate on the island, dividing and paralyzing Puerto Ricans for more than a century.

The absence of US leadership on this issue has encouraged and intensified Puerto Rico’s endless debate, declaring on several occasions that the future of the island will depend solely on the will of its people. This hands-off attitude has led to a political stalemate, which has led to an economic catastrophe.

Historically, the debate over Puerto Rico’s future has centered on three options: statehood, independence, and commonwealth (the status quo)

The Future of Puerto Rico

Of the three options, statehood has received the most media attention. However, given the political, economic and cultural conditions, making Puerto Rico a US state had absolutely no future.

This is a well-known fact to most, except for U.S. and Puerto Rican politicians, who have made a career out of promising that their concession is just around the corner. What kind of statehood can be granted to a territory that half the population neither wants nor feels American, while the other half favors it only as a guarantee of perpetual welfare assistance? (Nanny State)

As for independence, the second option, popular support has been low among the population of Puerto Rico during the last decades. Independence has been scapegoated and demonized as the worst of the available options.

The Commonwealth option, given its dramatic failure and its electoral rejection by more than half of the population of Puerto Rico, cannot be a viable option either.

I remember what my dad used to say. “If the elections were on a Friday night, La Independencia would win”

Free Association

This reality leads us to another status option that is not well understood in Puerto Rico, but is recognized by U.S. and international law

Such an agreement would imply the end of Puerto Rico’s territorial status and the birth of a new sovereign country in the Caribbean, fully integrated into the international community and the UN system. Under a free association pact, the United States would continue its financial assistance to Puerto Rico and help the island develop a productive economy. As a sovereign state, Puerto Rico would delegate specific responsibilities to the United States, such as defense and currency matters, while retaining sovereignty over all other matters not included or delegated in the pact.

Due to the Spanish term used to describe the current Commonwealth (Estado Libre Asociado or “estado asociado libre”), the formula of free association has been confused and sometimes misrepresented as identical to the current state.

However, genuine free association has the potential to become a state of consensus in which supporters of all alternatives can get what is most important to them, while considering U.S. national interests.

Free association is the only path available to Puerto Rico and the only way to foster its prosperity while maintaining a non-territorial relationship with the United States that can bring countries closer together.


The 1960 UN resolution that established free association as a decolonizing alternative did not combine free association with independence. Both must be understood as two different types of self-government.

The resolution did not establish any size or population requirements for a territory to achieve free association. It only requires that “it be the result of a free and voluntary choice of the peoples of the territory in question, expressed through informed and democratic processes.” The exact form of the partnership is left to the parties to negotiate. Free association is a state of “middle ground” whereby the interests of all parties can be reconciled, and each can become a winner.
The most important and relevant examples of the political status of free association are detailed in the Compact of Free Association, which has been in force between the United States and the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, and the Republic of Palau. The pacts were implemented more than 30 years ago and have been renewed ever since.

The accords transferred complete internal self-government to the new nation states, as well as authority in foreign affairs that led to their membership in the United Nations. The Pact retains full authority in matters of defense and security in the United States and obliges Washington to provide economic assistance.

Road to Free Association

Negotiations to establish a free association agreement between Puerto Rico and the United States must be carried out by the Executive Branch of the United States government, with the active participation of Congress. Puerto Rican negotiators must be chosen from among the most capable defenders and non-partisans of the island’s interests.

Before negotiations begin, the principles for free association will be agreed as a general outline of the terms under negotiation. The final negotiated document must be approved by Congress and by the people of Puerto Rico through a democratic referendum.

A free association status for Puerto Rico concludes a seemingly endless, divisive, and sometimes vicious debate. It offered the people of Puerto Rico a new opportunity to build a truly democratic country, create a much-needed productive economy, and ultimately become a self-sufficient society.

The Supreme Court Has a Chance to Bring Constitutional Equality to Puerto Rico

The Supreme Court can bring constitutional equality to Puerto Rico.

A century ago, the court denied rights to territorial residents because they are an “alien race.” It’s time to end this vestige of “separate but equal.”

The Roberts Court, November 30, 2018. Seated, from left to right: Justices Stephen G. Breyer and Clarence Thomas, Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., and Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Samuel A. Alito. Standing, from left to right: Justices Neil M. Gorsuch, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, and Brett M. Kavanaugh. Photograph by Fred Schilling, Supreme Court Curator’s Office.

The Supreme Court can bring constitutional equality to Puerto Rico.

On Tuesday, the Supreme Court will hear argument in Financial Oversight and Management Board for Puerto Rico v. Aurelius Investment LLC. On the surface, the case concerns a constitutional challenge to the board overseeing Puerto Rico’s debt restructuring. But deep questions going to the heart of the long relationship between the United States and Puerto Rico lurk just beneath. And the Supreme Court’s past reliance on offensive racial assumptions to answer those questions will again be on display.

I was born in Puerto Rico. That makes me a U.S. citizen and a Puerto Rican. I now live in the mainland United States, where I enjoy full constitutional rights just like all other U.S. mainland residents. But some of those rights apply differently when I return. The constitutional right to a trial by jury, for example, applies not at all. That’s because 120 years ago, the Supreme Court ruled that Puerto Ricans (and residents of other island territories not on the path to statehood) were not entitled to the Constitution’s full protections. The reason? Puerto Ricans were an “uncivilized” and “alien race.”

The Supreme Court can bring constitutional equality to Puerto Rico.

More than geography or distance, Supreme Court case law has framed Puerto Rico’s relationship with the United States—and the second-class constitutional status of Puerto Ricans—for more than a century. As long as U.S. territories were populated principally by white citizens, the court commonly treated the Constitution as “following the flag.” It governed in the territories just as it did in the states.

At the turn of the 20th century, however—around the same time that it upheld “separate but equal” in Plessy v. Ferguson—the court created an unprecedented rule in decisions known as the Insular Cases. Going forward, the Constitution would not fully follow the flag to newly acquired overseas territories. Some of its protections—including the fundamental right to jury trial—did not apply.

The Supreme Court can bring constitutional equality to Puerto Rico.

Today, Puerto Rico still owes much of its bizarre intermediate status to the Insular Cases. The island’s native-born inhabitants have been U.S. citizens since 1917, and federal law (other than the Constitution itself) applies there with full force. Yet Puerto Rico remains a so-called unincorporated territory. In the words of the Insular Cases, it “belongs to, but is not a part of, the United States.” Now, parties in Aurelius have relied on the Insular Casesto argue that the “territorial incorporation doctrine” allows Congress, when it regulates Puerto Rico, to ignore the appointments clause, which requires that some federal officers be appointed by presidential nomination with the advice and consent of the Senate.

Puerto Rico’s second-class constitutional status was then and now a kindred spirit to Plessy and Jim Crow segregation. It was only once the United States annexed island nations inhabited by nonwhite peoples that the Supreme Court held that the Constitution would not fully protect certain residents of territory under U.S. control. And in doing so, the Supreme Court relied explicitly on the belief that the new territories’ inhabitants were racially inferior.

The Supreme Court can bring constitutional equality to Puerto Rico.

In Downes v. Bidwell, the leading Insular Cases decision, Justice Henry Billings Brown cautioned against extending the Constitution to “possessions … inhabited by alien races.” “Grave questions,” he reasoned, would otherwise force Congress to act in ways it would not in “territory inhabited only by people of the same race.” Justice Edward Douglass White warned against admitting “unknown island[s], peopled with an uncivilized race” whose inhabitants were “absolutely unfit” for U.S. citizenship. And in Balzac v. Porto Rico, Puerto Ricans were deemed not entitled to jury trials because they lived in “ancient communities” with “customs and political conceptions” alien to “institution[s] of Anglo-Saxon origin.”

The racist assumptions that undergird the Insular Caseswere widely shared at the time. Just five years before Downes, in Plessy, Brown alsoruled that the Constitution permitted laws keeping white and black Americans “separate but equal.” There, too, the court reasoned that if “one race be inferior to the other,” the Constitution could not “put them upon the same plane.”

But less than 60 years later, in Brown v. Board of Education,the court rejected Plessy and“segregation with the sanction of the law.” More recently, in Trump v. Hawaii, the court overturned Korematsu v. United States, a World War II decision that allowed the “morally repugnant” internment of more than 100,000 U.S. citizens of Japanese ancestry. Acknowledging that internment was imposed “explicitly on the basis of race,” Chief Justice John Roberts announced in 2017 that it had “been overruled in the court of history” and had “no place in law under the Constitution.”

The Supreme Court can bring constitutional equality to Puerto Rico.

Unlike Plessy and Korematsu, the Insular Casesremain “good law,” even though they rest on similarly repugnant views about the inferiority of certain races. The ACLU and other “friends of the court” have urged the Supreme Court to reject the troubling double standard it created long ago and affirm that Puerto Ricans have full constitutional membership. I co-authored the ACLU’s amicus brief.

The Supreme Court can easily do this: The Constitution says nothing of “incorporated” or “unincorporated” territories; only the court’s own cases that stand in the way. And stare decisis—respect for precedent—is at its weakest when the court erroneously interprets the Constitution, since only the court “can alter” its own holdings.

Overruling the Insular Casesand their doctrine would not solve Aurelius one way or another. It wouldn’t even compel the court to apply its appointments clause doctrine, because the court can still hold that members of the board are territorial officers, not “of the United States.” Importantly, it wouldn’t force the issue on the complex question of statehood. Puerto Rico would remain a territory within the original meaning of the Constitution—any change on that score, when it comes, must respect the views of Puerto Rico residents. And it would not, as some have suggested, open the door for greater federal control over U.S. territories and the District of Columbia—or threaten self-governance in either. Under settled law, Congress already has its most sweeping, or “plenary,” power over both. And it is well within that power to afford them meaningful home rule.

But it would still matter—deeply. The Insular Cases cast a 120-year-old shadow on the rights of the residents of Puerto Rico. That they do so for racist and troubling reasons adds insult to (constitutional) injury. The Supreme Court may not be able to solve Puerto Rico’s debt problems, but it can affirm that residents of Puerto Rico—including more than 3 million U.S. citizens living under U.S. sovereignty—have the same constitutional protections as the rest of us.

Why the British Should Apologise to India (Genocide, Depopulation)

The centenary of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre is the right occasion for Britain to apologise for the evils of colonialism.

Two years ago, on the UK publication of my book Inglorious Empire: What The British Did to India, I took the unusual step of demanding an apology from Britain to India. It was suggested – the centenary, on April 13, 2019, of the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre in Amritsar. This single event was in many ways emblematic of the worst of the “Raj”, the British Empire in India.

The background to the massacre lay in the British betrayal of promises to reward India for its services in the First World War. After making enormous sacrifices, and an immense contribution in men and materiel, blood and treasure, to the British war effort, Indian leaders expected to be rewarded with some measure of self-government. Those hopes were belied.

Screenshot from film Gandhi (1982)
When protests broke out, the British responded with force. They arrested nationalist leaders in the city of Amritsar and opened fire on protestors, killing ten. In the riot that ensued, five Englishmen were killed and an Englishwoman assaulted (though she was rescued, and carried to safety, by Indians).

Brigadier General Reginald Dyer was sent to Amritsar to restore order; he forbade demonstrations or processions, or even gathering in groups of more than three.

The thousands of people who had gathered in the walled garden of Jallianwala Bagh to celebrate the major religious festival of Baisakhi were unaware of this order. Dyer did not seek to find out what they were doing. 

He took a detachment of soldiers in armoured cars, equipped with machine-guns, and without ordering the crowd to disperse or issuing so much as a warning, ordered his troops to open fire from close quarters. 

They used 1,650 rounds, killed at least 379 people (the number the British were prepared to admit to; the Indian figures are considerably higher) and wounded 1,137. Barely a bullet, Dyer noted with satisfaction, was wasted.

Dyer did not order his men to fire in the air, or at the feet of their targets. They fired, on his orders, into the chests, the faces, and the wombs of the unarmed, screaming, defenceless crowd.

After it was over, he refused permission for families to tend to the dead and the dying, leaving them to rot for hours in the hot sun, and inflicted numerous other humiliations on Indians, from forcing them to crawl on their bellies on a street, where an Englishwoman had been assaulted (and beating them with rifle butts if they lifted their heads), to pettier indignities like confiscating electric fans from their homes.

Dyer never showed the slightest remorse or self-doubt.

This was a “rebel meeting,” he claimed, an act of defiance of his authority that had to be punished. “It was no longer a question of merely dispersing the crowd” but one of producing a ‘moral effect’ that would ensure the Indians’ submission. He noted that he had personally directed the firing towards the five narrow exits because that was where the crowd was most dense:“the targets,” he declared, “were good.”

News of Dyer’s barbarism was suppressed by the British for six months, and when outrage at reports of his excesses mounted, an attempt was made to whitewash his sins by an official commission of enquiry, which only found him guilty of ‘grave error’. 

Finally, as details emerged of the horror, Dyer was relieved of his command and censured by the House of Commons, but promptly exonerated by the House of Lords and allowed to retire. Rudyard Kipling, the flatulent poetic voice of British imperialism, hailed him as ‘The Man Who Saved India’.

Even this did not strike his fellow Britons as adequate recompense for his glorious act of mass murder. They ran a public campaign for funds to honour his cruelty and collected the quite stupendous sum of £26,317, 1s 10d, worth over a quarter of a million pounds today. It was presented to him together with a jewelled sword of honour.

The Jallianwala Bagh massacre was no act of insane frenzy but a conscious, deliberate imposition of colonial will. Dyer was an efficient killer rather than a crazed maniac; his was merely the evil of the unimaginative, the brutality of the military bureaucrat. But his action that Baisakhi day came to symbolize the evil of the system on whose behalf, and in whose defence, he was acting.

Everything about the incident – the betrayal of promises made to India, the cruelty of the killings, the brutality and racism that followed, the self-justification, exoneration and reward – collectively symbolized everything that was wrong about the Raj.

It represented the worst that colonialism could become, and by letting it occur, the British crossed that point of no return that exists only in the minds of men – that point which, in any unequal relationship, both ruler and subject must instinctively respect if their relationship is to survive.

The massacre made Indians out of millions of people who had not thought consciously of their political identity before that grim Sunday. It turned loyalists into nationalists and constitutionalists into agitators, led the Nobel Prize-winning poet Rabindranath Tagore to return his knighthood and a host of Indian appointees to British offices to turn in their commissions.

And above all it entrenched in Mahatma Gandhi a firm and unshakable faith in the moral righteousness of the cause of Indian independence from an empire he saw as irremediably evil, even satanic.

It is getting late for atonement, but not too late. Neither the Queen nor Theresa May were alive when the atrocity was committed, and certainly no British government of 2019 bears a shred of responsibility for that tragedy, but the nation that once allowed it to happen should atone for its past sins.

That is what German Chancellor Willy Brandt did by going onto his knees in the Warsaw Ghetto in 1970, even though as a Social Democrat he was himself a victim of Nazi persecution and innocent of any complicity in it. 

It is why Prime Minister Justin Trudeau apologised in 2016 on behalf of Canada for the actions of his country’s authorities a century earlier in denying permission for the Indian immigrants on the Komagata Maru to land in Vancouver, thereby sending many of them to their deaths.

Brandt’s and Trudeau’s gracious apologies need to find their British echo. Former Prime Minister David Cameron’s rather mealy-mouthed description of the massacre in 2013 as a “deeply shameful event” is hardly an apology. Nor is the ceremonial visit to the site in 1997 by Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh, who merely left their signatures in the visitors’ book, without even a redeeming comment.

My call is for a British minister or a member of the Royal Family to find the heart, and the spirit, to get on his or her knees at Jallianwala Bagh in 2019 and apologise to the Indian people for the unforgivable massacre that was perpetrated at that site a century earlier. 

Along with such an apology, the British could start teaching unromanticized colonial history in their schools and decolonise their museums, which are full of looted artefacts from other countries.

The British public is woefully ignorant of the realities of the British empire, and what it meant to its subject peoples. These Brexit days have rekindled in the UK a yearning for the Raj, in gauzy romanticised television soap operas and overblown fantasies about reviving the Empire as an alternative to Europe. 

If British schoolchildren can learn how those dreams of the English turned out to be nightmares for their subject peoples, true atonement – of the purely moral kind, involving a serious consideration of historical responsibility rather than mere admission of guilt – might be achieved. An apology for, and at, Jallianwala Bagh would be the best place to start, and its centenary the best time to do so.

Did You Know About The Many Presidents Before Washington?

As of November 2017, the United States of America had 45 presidents – well technically 44 people as Grover Cleveland was president twice – but there have been 45 presidencies since 1789. But have you ever thought about who ‘ran’ the United States before George Washington took office in 1789? The US called for Independence from Great Britain in 1776. Doing the math, there were 13 years between the Declaration of Independence and George Washington’s term as president, although the early ‘presidents’ began even earlier…

The Start of a New Nation

For many American colonists, declaring Independence from Great Britain was a surprise. Due to treason laws, the men who became known as the Founding Fathers, met in secret while determining how they would fight for independence from the Mother Country. And they knew that once independence was declared, it would be a fight to the finish. Therefore, there was a lot that transpired after the Declaration of Independence, namely the American Revolutionary War. However, even with the US at war with Great Britain, someone still needed to oversee the newly formed United States. So, who could that be? Step forward, the President of the Continental Congress.

Before we get too far into who the presidents before George Washington were, it is important to note that the Presidents of the Continental Congress and the Presidents of the USA ended up with different responsibilities. One reason for this is America, at war with Britain, was not truly independent until the 1780s. Even during the different presidencies of the Continental Congress, responsibilities changed. And one of the biggest differences was the term in office. There were many presidents for short periods before George Washington. The Continental Presidents could stay in office until they resigned or Congress felt a new president was necessary – at least before the Articles of Confederation were agreed.

The Early Continental Presidents

Payton Randolph

Peyton Randolph is known as the first President of the Continental Congress, or Continental President. He was given this title in September 1774 when everyone in Congress voted for him to be so.

Henry Middleton

However, in October 1774, Henry Hanson Middleton became the second Continental President for about a week, after which Peyton Randolph took over again, this time for a little under a month due to poor health. Once Randolph resigned a second-time due to his health and headed back to Virginia to be with his family, one of the most famous Founding Fathers took over,

John Hancock

Hancock stayed on as president until October 1777. John Hancock did not even step down as Continental President when Peyton Randolph came back for a period of time, though many felt Hancock should have in order to let Randolph assume his responsibilities. Unfortunately, all this debate ended when Peyton Randolph passed away suddenly of a stroke in October 1775. This means that John Hancock was the first President of the Continental Congress to preside under the US after the Revolutionary War broke out and after independence was declared.

Henry Laurens

Henry Laurens was the fifth Continental President and served from the time Hancock stepped down until December 1778.

John Jay

Laurens was succeeded by John Jay, who served until September 28, 1779. The seventh Continental Congress President was Samuel Huntington, who served from the date John Jay stepped down until a couple months after the Articles of Confederation were ratified in 1781.

Samuel Huntington

Continental Presidents Under the Articles of Confederation

Once the Articles of Confederation were ratified by all of America’s 13 states, the responsibilities of the Presidents of the Continental Congress began to extend.

Thomas McKean

Thomas McKean was the first Continental President to hold his full term under the Articles of Confederation, lasting from July 1781 to November of that year.

John Hanson

John Hanson was the ninth and lasted a year in office, from November 5, 1781 to November 4, 1782. Then it was the turn of Elias Boudinot from New Jersey, who was in place until November 3, 1783.

Thomas Mifflin

The eleventh Continental President was Thomas Mifflin, who served as president until June 1784. Unfortunately for Mifflin, he had a tough short term as Continental President as General George Washington resigned in December 1783 and then Mifflin had the challenge of trying to get enough delegates from the states so Congress could ratify the Treaty of Paris.

Richard Henry Lee

Richard Henry Lee of Virginia was the twelfth and resided in office from November 30, 1784 to November 4, 1785. The thirteenth was once again John Hancock, who filled the position from November 1785 to June 1786.

Nathaniel Gorham

After Hancock’s second term as Continental President, Nathaniel Gorham took over from June 6, 1786 until November of that same year. The last two Continental Presidents were Arthur St. Clair, who was in office from February to November 1787, and Cyrus Griffin who was president until November 1788.

Arthur St Clair

Cyrus Griffin

George Washington becomes President

The famous first President, and truly first president with the title and responsibilities of the President of the USA, took office in 1789 and served two terms as president, until 1797. As the majority of Americans know, George Washington is one of the most famous and heavily researched of all the United States’ presidents. However, Washington was in many ways not truly the first president of United States of America as an independent country.

Are Puerto Ricans really American citizens?



In a recent poll, 41 percent of respondents said they did not believe that Puerto Ricans were U.S. citizens, and 15 percent were not sure. Only 43 percent answered that Puerto Ricans were U.S. citizens. Today, being born in Puerto Rico is tantamount to being born in the United States. But it wasn’t always that way, and a lot of ambiguity still remains.

Contrary to what many people believe, the Jones Act, which Congress passed 100 years ago, was neither the first nor last citizenship statute for Puerto Ricans. Since 1898, Congress has debated 101 bills related to citizenship in Puerto Rico and enacted 11 overlapping citizenship laws. Over time, these bills have conferred three different types of citizenship to persons born in Puerto Rico.

I’m part of an ongoing collaborative project that seeks to document and clarify the laws around citizenship for Puerto Ricans. For the first time, we’re making available to the public all citizenship legislation that has been debated between 1898 and today in a web-based archive.

These archives show that U.S. law still describes Puerto Rico as an unincorporated territory that can be selectively treated as a foreign country in a constitutional sense. This contradiction is at the heart of a range of discriminatory laws and policies used to govern Puerto Rico and the more than 3.5 million U.S. citizens living on the island.

The state of Puerto Rico

Debates over the citizenship status of persons born in Puerto Rico are usually centered around the territorial status of Puerto Rico.

The United States annexed Puerto Rico during the Spanish-American War of 1898. Between 1898 and 1901, U.S. academics, lawmakers and other government officials began to invent a new tradition of territorial expansionism. It enabled them to strategically annex territories throughout the world like Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the Mariana Islands, for military and economic purposes without binding Congress to grant them statehood. To support this effort, they also created interpretations of the Constitution that would allow them to govern Puerto Rico and the other territories annexed during the Spanish-American War.

U.S. warships under command of Rear Admiral Sampson bombarding San Juan, Puerto Rico, May 12, 1898. Library of Congress

As the Supreme Court first established in Downes v. Bidwell (1901), territories annexed after 1898, those mostly inhabited by nonwhite populations or so-called “alien races,” would be ruled as “unincorporated territories,” or territories that were not meant to become states.

In Downes, the court was asked to rule on the constitutionality of a tariff on goods trafficked between the island of Puerto Rico and the mainland imposed by the Foraker Act, a territorial law enacted to govern Puerto Rico in 1900. Opponents of the tariff argued it violated the Uniformity Clause of the Constitution, which barred tariffs on goods trafficked within the United States. A majority of the justices, however, concluded that Puerto Rico was not a part of the U.S. for the purposes of the Uniformity Clause and affirmed the tariff. In effect, the U.S. treated Puerto Rico as a foreign country.

A lingering question in this case was, how does the Constitution apply to unincorporated territories? Specifically, does the Citizenship Clause of the 14th Amendment apply?

Are Puerto Ricans constitutional citizens?

Supreme Court Justice Edward D. White attempted to answer this question when he wrote a concurring opinion in Downes v. Bidwell. His opinion is regarded by scholars as the source of the doctrine on territorial incorporation. The doctrine contains three basic elements.

First, it recognizes a difference between incorporated territories – those meant to become states – and unincorporated territories.

Second, Congress is granted absolute power to enact legislation extending or withholding constitutional provisions. In other words, only fundamental constitutional rights are guaranteed in unincorporated territories, not the full application of civil rights.

Third, unincorporated territories can be selectively governed as foreign locations in a constitutional sense. That means that so long as Congress is not violating the fundamental constitutional rights of Puerto Ricans, Congress can choose to treat Puerto Rico as a foreign country for legal purposes.

The prevailing consensus to this day is in line with White’s interpretation – that the Citizenship Clause of the 14th Amendment does not extend to Puerto Rico. Since the Downes ruling, for 116 years, Congress has governed Puerto Rico as a separate and unequal territory.

The Foraker Act at the heart of the Downes case had also imposed Puerto Rican citizenship on persons born in Puerto Rico. People who were born in Spain and residing in Puerto Rico were allowed to retain their Spanish citizenship, acquire Puerto Rican citizenship or U.S. citizenship. Island-born were barred from retaining their Spanish citizenship, the citizenship that they acquired while Puerto Rico was a province of Spain, and from acquiring a U.S. citizenship.

But there was a big problem. At the time, persons seeking to naturalize and become U.S. citizens were required to first renounce their allegiance to a sovereign state. For Puerto Rican citizens, this meant renouncing their allegiance to the U.S. in order to acquire U.S. citizenship. This contradiction effectively barred Puerto Ricans from acquiring U.S. citizenship.

In 1906, Congress added a section in the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization Act that waived the requirement to renounce an allegiance to a sovereign state. As my research shows, in 1906 Puerto Ricans began to naturalize in U.S. district courts throughout the mainland.

The Jones Act of 1917 included a collective citizenship provision. It enabled people living in Puerto Rico to choose between keeping their Puerto Rican or other citizenship, or acquiring a U.S. citizenship. Because the Jones Act did not change Puerto Rico’s territorial status, persons subsequently born on the island were considered U.S. citizens by way of “jus sanguinis” (blood right), a derivative form of U.S. citizenship. In other words, persons born in Puerto Rico were born outside of the United States but still considered U.S. citizens.

It wasn’t until 1940 that Congress enacted legislation conferring birthright, or “jus soli,” (right of soil) citizenship on persons born in Puerto Rico. Whereas persons born in Puerto Rico prior to 1940 could only acquire a naturalized citizenship if their parents were U.S. citizens, anyone born in Puerto Rico after 1940 acquired a U.S. citizenship as a direct result of being born on Puerto Rican soil. This legislation both amended and replaced the Jones Act. The Nationality Act of 1940 established that Puerto Rico was a part of the United States for citizenship purposes. Since Jan. 13, 1941, birth in Puerto Rico amounts to birth in the United States for citizenship purposes.

However, the prevailing consensus among scholars, lawmakers and policymakers is that Puerto Ricans are not entitled to a constitutional citizenship status. While Puerto Ricans are officially U.S. citizens, the territory remains unincorporated. This contradiction has enabled the governance of Puerto Rico as a separate and unequal territory that belongs to, but is not a part of, the United States.

On June 11 2017, Puerto Ricans voted in a nonbinding status plebiscite deciding whether Puerto Rico should become a state or a sovereign country.  a majority voted for statehood,  the question is whether Congress will grant 3.5 million U.S. citizens the ability to live in the 51st state.

23% of Puerto Ricans Voted in Referendum, 97% of Them for Statehood…

Interesting Facts About Puerto Rico

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By Luis Torres

Celebrating 127 years of our flag Puerto Rico: Did you know? Originally populated for centuries by indigenous aboriginal peoples known as Taino the island was claimed by Christopher Columbus for Spain during his second voyage to the Americas November 19, 1493. Puerto Rico is also popularly known in Spanish as ‘la isla del encanto’ meaning “the island of enchantment”. Puerto Ricans are commonly called “Boricuas” as they call the island Borinquen, from Borikén, its indigenous name, which means “Land of the Valiant Lord” Puerto Rico (Spanish for “Rich Port”) comprises an archipelago that includes the main island of Puerto Rico and a number of smaller islands, the largest of which are Vieques, Culebra, and Mona.

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Puerto Rico has won the Miss Universe beauty pageant crown 5 times in the last 43 years (1970,1985,1993,2001,2006)

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Wiflredo Benitez

Puerto Rico has more than 40 champions in the sport of Boxing, including the first world champion: Sixto Escobar and the youngest boxer to ever win a world championship: Wilfredo Benitez (1976) he was 17

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Puerto Rico has a larger population  3,978,702 (July 2010 est.)  than Jamaica, Bahamas, Panamá, Costa Rica, Belize, French Guyana, Guyana, Suriname, Uruguay and has an equal or greater population than 30 of the 50 states of the U.S. It has a greater population than 10 of the 13 provinces and territories of Canada. Given its population, it’s one of the most densely populated islands in the world (roughly the size of the State of Connecticut) According to the 2010 U.S. Census, there are now more Puerto Ricans living on the U.S. mainland than in Puerto Rico.

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WKAQ Radio, an AM radio station in San Juan was the second station to broadcast in latin america and the fifth in the world. First air day  December 3, 1922

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Puerto Rico is the country with more radio stations and TV stations per square mile in the world.

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In 1858, Samuel Morse sets up the first telegraph in Latin America, was located in the City of Arroyo.

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The ‘Puerto Rico Trench’ is the deepest point of the Atlantic Ocean and the second deepest in the world

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Rita Moreno, a Puerto Rican actress living in New York City, is the first person in the world to win an Oscar, a Grammy, a Tony Award.

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Puerto Rico’s coat of arms is the oldest in Latin America (1511)

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Puerto Rico has  more pharmaceutical companies per square mile than anywhere else in the world.

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Old San Juan is the second oldest city in the Americas

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El Morro is one of the biggest Fortress in the Americas

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The first scientific experiment in the Americas was done in the late 1500’s. An eclipse under the Puerto Rican sky.

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Playa Quique Bravo in Rincón is one of the top beaches in the world for surfing and windsurfing

A Puerto Rican helped in the writing of the Irish constitution when the Irish Free State was established, Dr. Albizu Campos.

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The Puerto Rican flag and the Cuban flag are identical but with inverted colors.

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Famous Puerto Rican baseball players in the Hall of Fame..Roberto Clemente, Orlando Cepeda and Roberto Alomar, Ivan Rodriguez.

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The only place in the world where the option ‘None of the Above’  has won an election was in Puerto Rico, during the 1998 referendum that option got over 50% of the votes.

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Today’s Puerto Rican flag was actually illegal in Puerto Rico during the first decades of the U.S. dominion over the Island.

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There are are more persons of Puerto Rican descent in the Greater New York City area than in Puerto Rico’s capital city San Juan.

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The second largest single-dish radio telescope in the world is located in Puerto Rico almost 20 acres. It’s the only radio telescope that can accurately predict when and where an asteroid might collide with Earth, and was responsible for the first asteroid images in history. (Now destroyed)😫

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The bats sound effects in the Batman Movies were recorded at Las Cuevas de Camuy in Puerto Rico.

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The Coqui frog is native to Puerto Rico and is considered a Puerto Rican Symbol, but recently they have invaded the Hawaiian Islands, where they are considered (ironically) a pest.

During the 18th and 19th centuries, Puerto Rican coffee was exported to Europe and still is one of the finest in the world. Today, Puerto Rican coffee is what is served at the Vatican.

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The central town of Jayuya was almost entirely destroyed by air raids when the U.S. Army went there to extinguish the Revolt of 1950, the latest attempt for Puerto Rican Independence.

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The University of Puerto Rico graduates more doctors and medical specialists per capita than does the United States.

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El Recinto Universitario de Mayaguez has approximately 300 engineers working for NASA.

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The hammock and  the cooking  “grill” were first invented and used in Puerto Rico by the Taino Indians. The English words canoe, hammock, barbecue, manatee and hurricane and others also came from Taino Indian words.

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Puerto Rico has 3 of the 5 bio-luminescence in the world.

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The Rio Camuy Cave system in Puerto Rico is the third largest cave system formed by water in the world.

El Yunque (The Caribbean National Forest) is the only tropical rainForest in the U.S. national park system.

The PIÑA COLADA was invented at the San Juan Caribe Hilton Hotel bar in 1963.

Two of the oldest churches in the Americas lie in Old San Juan Built in the 1530s, the Iglesia de San José which is the second oldest church in the western hemisphere, and the Catedral de San Juan.

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Puerto Rico has its own “Galapagos Island.” The Mona Island. 270 species of fish and endangered sea turtles and Iguanas.

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Puerto Rico has more than 270 miles of beaches including 8 beaches that have been listed under the prestigious Blue Flag Programme

San Juan is the second largest cruise port in the Western Hemisphere and one of the busiest commercial ports in the world.

The Island has 239 varieties of plants, 39 types of reptiles and amphibians, and 16 bird species that are endemic only to the area.

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Puerto Rico has more rivers per square mile than any other place in the world

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Almost every town has its own coliseum built for rooster fights. In Puerto Rico, cockfighting is considered to be a ‘gentleman’s sport’ and is legal, unlike other parts of the United States.

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Major General Luis R. Estevez, was the first Hispanic to graduate from West Point (1915).

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Lieutenant Colonel Teófilo Marxuach, (July 28, 1877 – November 8, 1939), was the person who ordered the first shots fired in World War I on behalf of the United States on an armed German supply ship trying to force its way out of the San Juan Bay  on March 21, 1915.

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La Fortaleza it’s the oldest executive mansion in the world (since 1533)


James Watson, co-discovered of the DNA, and winner of the Novel Price, published that the closest Perfect Human, was a Puerto Rican woman (Taina).

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The monster in Puerto Rico has been confirmed as the longest zip line cable in the world by Guinness World Records at the Toro Verde Adventure Park in Orocovis, Puerto Rico. The new exciting ride is 7,234 feet long, or 28 football fields, and about 1,200 feet high. Riders can reach speeds of up to 95 miles per hour.

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The Birth of the New World (colloquially known as La Estatua de Colón, literally meaning “The Statue of Columbus”) is a colossal sculpture located on the Atlantic coastline of Arecibo, Puerto Rico. In 2016, it became the tallest statue in the hemisphere, surpassing Mexico’s Guerrero Chimalli (which measures 60 metres including its base).

Puerto Rico is the country with the most churches per square mile in the world

Puerto Rico “US LAB”

By Luis Torres

To see where we at now, we have to go back in time and check what was the trigger for Puerto Ricans to be so submissive​ against the USA.  With the Foraker Act of April 2, 1900 signed by President Mackenley, the first civilian government in Puerto Rico was implemented, Section VII of the Foraker Act also established Puerto Rican citizenship (will touch on this later on) what the Foraker Act really did, was establishing Puerto Rico as a Colony of the USA. Then came the Jones-Shafroth Act of 1917- this was an act of Congress signed by President Woodrow Wilson, that gave Puerto Ricans born after April 25, 1898 US Citizenship.
This Act superseded The Foraker Act, The Jones Act separated the Executive, Judicial and Legislative branches of Puerto Rican government, provided civil rights to the individual, and created a locally elected bicameral legislature. Also, the United States Congress had the power to stop any action taken by the legislature of Puerto Rico. The U.S. maintained control over fiscal and economic matters and exercised authority over mail services, immigration, defense and other basic governmental matters. this as of today, has never changed.

Can you imagine the islanders waking up on March 3, 1917 as US citizens? What the hell they would have cared, they don’t know the language, don’t know what they are pledging allegiance to, don’t know the culture etc. My grandfather​ used to tell me that when he was in school (Central High) they had to said the pledge of allegiance before entering the classroom…this is brainwashing at the highest level.

What the Jones Act really accomplished, was to put in the minds of Puerto Ricans that we could not live without the US. From that point forward, they were mentally colonized and that has been what has ruled over us since then.

In 1920 came in as part of the Jones Act, The Merchant Marine Act of 1920 that prevents foreign-flagged ships from carrying cargo between two American ports (a practice known as cabotage) Because of the Jones Act, foreign ships inbound with goods from Central and South America, Western Europe, and Africa, cannot stop in Puerto Rico, offload Puerto Rico-bound goods, load mainland-bound Puerto Rico-manufactured goods, and continue to U.S. ports. Instead, they must proceed directly to U.S. ports, where distributors break bulk and send Puerto Rico-bound manufactured goods to Puerto Rico across the ocean by U.S.-flagged ships.

 Puerto Rican consumers ultimately bear the expense of transporting goods again across the Atlantic and Caribbean Sea on U.S.-flagged ships subject to the extremely high operating costs imposed by the Jones Act. This also makes Puerto Rico less competitive with Caribbean ports as a shopping destination for tourists from home countries with much higher taxes (like mainland states) even though prices for non-American manufactured goods in theory should be cheaper since Puerto Rico is much closer to Central and South America, Western Europe, and Africa.

Ultimately, the island couldn’t get afloat with this cabotage law that has strangled the citizens​ of the island for 93 years, this is ridiculous and abusive​.

You could think that Puerto Rico has the Cabotage laws applied because it hasn’t defined their political status, but this in not true because other US territories like the US Virgin Islands don’t have to comply with these laws. Another fact is that the Puerto Rican trade produces 25% of The U.S. Merchant Marine’s income.

Agent Orange was manufactured by Monsanto, Dow Chemicals (manufacturers of napalm), Uniroyal, Hercules, Diamond Shamrock, Thompson Chemical and TH Agriculture. Monsanto were the main supplier. The Agent Orange produced by Monsanto had dioxin levels many times higher than that produced by Dow Chemicals, the other major supplier of Agent Orange to Vietnam.

Test trials of Agent Orange were carried out in Puerto Rico.

Dioxins are one of the most toxic chemicals known to man. Permissible levels are measured in parts per trillion, the ideal level is zero. The Agent Orange manufactured by Monsanto contained 2,3,7,8-tetrachlordibenzo-para-dioxin (TCDD), extremely deadly even when measured against other dioxins. The levels found in domestic 2,4,5-T were around 0.05 ppm, that shipped to Vietnam peaked at 50 ppm, ie 1,000 times higher than the norm.

Monsanto’s involvement with the production of dioxin contaminated 2,4,5-T dates back to the late 1940s. ‘Almost immediately workers started getting sick with skin rashes, inexplicable pains in the limbs, joints and other parts of the body, weakness, irritability, nervousness and loss of libido,’ to quote Peter Sills, author of a forthcoming book on dioxins. Internal Monsanto memos show that Monsanto knew of the problems but once again a cover-up was the order of the day.

Many Puerto Ricans soldiers in the island, were exposed to Agent Orange without their knowledge prior to this been dropped in Vietnam.

Eventually, a large majority of this same soldiers developed some type of cancer later in life.

This I can attest personally since my father (he was in the reserve from 1966 till 1972) was diagnosed with non hodgkin lymphoma back in 1999, a biopsy was sent to the mainland and the results concluded (this was a letter by the ARMY) that this type of cancer was cause because the subject (My Father) was exposed to Agent Orange at some point back in the 60’s. He died on June 27, 2000. Thanks Army!

The Sterilization of Puerto Rican Women

220Px-Gregory Pincus
Dr. Pincus

In the early 1950s the Puerto Rican women were used for experimentation in the making of the first birth control pill. The Pill was invented by Dr. Gregory Goodwin Pincus but strict laws in the U.S. didn’t permit full scale experimentation. In 1955 Dr. Pincus and his colleague, Harvard obstetrician and gynecologist Dr. John Rock visited Puerto Rico and then decided it was a perfect place to test out their pill due to the lack of anti-birth control laws.

The trials began in Rio Piedras but quickly moved throughout the poor sectors in the island. The experiments was based on poor and working class women; these women were not told the pill was experimental and were not told the negative effects the pill could have on them. Three young women died during these experiments and no investigations were conducted to determine cause of death.

Dr. Cornelius Rhoades

It is inconceivable that experiments similar to this are still being condoned all over the world. Governments are polluting not only the atmosphere but our bodies as well.

The above entry notes a case of actual “human experimentation in Puerto Rico” with concern to the injection of cancer cells into human subjects who were unaware of the “experiment”. This is not the first time “human experimantaion” has been conducted on the People of Puerto Rico.

Considering that indigenous Taino ancestry is traditionally traced via the mother’s linage, it is important to note that Puerto Rican women have specifically been targeted within population control policies. Beginning in the late thirties, privately funded foundations based in the United States, and later, the Puerto Rican government, with U.S. government funds, promoted sterilization programs developed by the ‘Eugenics Board” under the guise of “limiting population growth”.

By the the 1950s, large numbers of Puerto Rican women were forcibly sterilized unknowingly or thinking they were undertaking a simple reversible procedure. Women factory workers were given time off to attend appointments in clinics, which were located within the very factories where they were employed. Social workers were encouraged to promote this program “door to door” by making home visits. By 1974, 35 percent of Puerto Rican women of child-bearing age – some 200,000 women – were permanently sterilized. By 1980, Puerto Rico had the highest per-capita rate of sterilization among women in the world. From the 1950s through 1980, Puerto Rico was also used as a testing ground for birth control pills while they were under development. Pills twenty times stronger than the ones used today were tested on Puerto Rican women.

Today, “human experimentation” in Puerto Rico continues as daily experiments are conducted on genetically modified plants where there is little regulation, oversight or accountability. Puerto Rico is host to more GM food experiments per square mile than any U.S. state except Hawaii ( ). Located on a small island with a civilian population, the U.S. military bases on Vieques, which were used as a testing site for weapons should also be considered within the context of “human

experimentation” on the Puerto Rican People

HAARP in Puerto Rico

“HAARP”, an acronym for “High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program”, is a project having the goal of studying fundamental physical principles which govern the region of the earth’s atmosphere known as the ionosphere. It is through this region that earth-based communications and radar transmissions must travel to reach satellites or to probe solar and planetary bodies; and conversely, for radio signals from outside the immediate environment of the earth to reach its surface. It also is from these ionized layers that radio waves reflect to achieve over-the-horizon communication and radar systems. The proposed research will be undertaken using high power radio transmitters to probe the overhead ionosphere, combined with a complement of modern scientific diagnostic instruments to investigate the results of the interactions.

HAARP research facility is a high power high- frequency radio transmitter with the capability of rapidly steering a narrow beam of energy toward a designated region of the sky. Similar, though less capable, research facilities exist today at many locations throughout the world and are operated routinely for the purpose of scientific investigation of the ionosphere. In the US such systems are located at ARECIBO, PUERTO RICO (NATIONAL ASTRONOMY AND IONOSPHERE CENTER) and Fairbanks, Alaska. Other installations are at Tromso, Norway; Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod and Apatity, Russia; Kharkov, Ukraine and Dushanbe, Tadzhikistan. None of these existing systems, however, have the combination of frequency capability and beam steering agility required to perform the experiments planned for HAARP

Can create earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, tsunamis, jam all global communications, disrupt weather systems, interfere with migration patterns, disrupt human mental processes, negatively affect your health and disrupt the upper atmosphere.

Puerto Rico Invisible Health Crisis

The island of Vieques has some of the highest sickness rates in the Caribbean. Is the U.S. Navy responsible?

Fire burns a pile of military vehicle parts and disabled and non-live artillery and mortar shells on what was once the former U.S. Naval training range on Vieques Island off Puerto Rico, Saturday, May 4, 2013. For decades, warships and planes hammered the facility before it was closed in 2003, leaving behind thousands of unexploded bombs, rockets, and other munitions which are now being painstakingly cleared. The clean up is expected to take another decade. (AP Photo)

The US imposed a military government on Puerto Rico a century ago when it was seized from the Spanish. The island of Vieques (40 miles off the coast, population 5,500) has been used for target practice by the US military for the last 60 years from 1941 until 2003 . Since 1980 it has been used for test firing of depleted uranium munitions, chemical contaminants have found their way into ground water, local crabs have 20 times the normal levels of heavy metals, cancer rates amongst the island’s population is twice the national average.

For over 60 years, the U.S. Navy used the small island of Vieques, Puerto Rico, as a bombing range and site for military-training exercises. Then the island got sick. Thousands of residents have alleged that the military’s activities caused illnesses. With a population around 9,000, Vieques is home to some of the highest sickness rates in the Caribbean. According to Cruz María Nazario, an epidemiologist at the University of Puerto Rico’s Graduate School of Public Health, people who live in Vieques are eight times more likely to die of cardiovascular disease and seven times more likely to die of diabetes than others in Puerto Rico, where the prevalence of those diseases rivals U.S. rates. Cancer rates on the island are higher than those in any other Puerto Rican municipality.

The Navy eventually conceded to using heavy metals and toxic chemicals like depleted uranium and Agent Orange on the island, but denied any link between their presence and the health conditions of the people who live there. To this day, it is unclear what exactly caused the current conditions in Vieques. It’s a health crisis with a cause that’s almost impossible to prove: The government requires a particular standard of causal evidence before it will administer relief. Yet independent groups cannot necessarily provide that proof because the federal government still owns the land previously occupied by the military and controls access to it.

Conflicting studies by local scientists and the U.S. government have offered different explanations for Vieques’s sickness. Until 1997, data on the matter was scarce. That year, Nazario and a nonprofit civic organization noticed a high incidence of cancer cases in Vieques and filed a public grievance against the Department of Health. Soon after, the agency published a studyshowing that the prevalence of cancer in Vieques was 27 percent higher than in the rest of Puerto Rico. “For the first time, the excess of cancer in Vieques was acknowledged,” said Jorge Colón, a chemistry professor at the University of Puerto Rico known for his work advising several grassroots organizations in Vieques. The study recommended that the Department of Health carry out a public-health assessment of environmental conditions on the island.

The report went essentially unrecognized until waves of protests pressured the Clinton and Bush administrations to withdraw military presence from the island. While the Navy left Vieques from 2001 to 2003, the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, or ATSDR, released reports that found no causal link between the high rates of sickness and decades of weapons use on the island. The government sought proof of cause as its evidentiary standard. In their evaluations, the ATSDR looked at four “exposure pathways”—air, seafood, soil, and water—and found them to have “no apparent public-health hazard.”


In the global debate regarding genetically modified (GM) foods and organisms (GMO’s), the little-known role of the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico in testing and propagating GM crops has gone largely unnoticed and unexamined. The agricultural biotechnology activity in this tropical US colony is simply massive.

“Puerto Rico attracts agricultural biotechnology companies because of the tropical climate that permits up to four harvests yearly and the willingness of the government to fast-track permits”, according to professors Margarita Irizarry and José Rodríguez Orengo, of the University of Puerto Rico’s Medical Sciences Campus. “Furthermore, the opposition to GM foods is almost non-existent on the island and no particular environmental group is protesting the presence of Dow, Syngenta Seeds, Pioneer HiBred, Mycogen Seeds, Rice Tech, AgReliant Genetics, Bayer Croposcience, and Monsanto.”

Since 2004 we at the Puerto Rico Project on Biosafety have been trying to find out just what is going on in our land regarding GM crops. We have obtained very little information so far, but what little we have managed to get is quite worrying.

The most recent US Department of Agriculture Biotechnology Regulatory Services (BRS) data we have obtained show that as of January 2005 it had authorized 1,330 field releases for experimental GM crops in the island, which resulted in 3,483 field tests. Of the field releases, 944 were for corn, 262 for soy, 99 for cotton, 15 for rice, 8 for tomato, 1 for papaya and 1 for tobacco. According to the documentation, these releases were being authorized as early as 1987, almost a full decade before US authorities permitted GM foods for human consumption. Where in Puerto Rico exactly? What traits have been tested? The BRS says it’s all “confidential business information”.

With the sole exception of Hawai’i, no state in the USA has had so many GM crop experiments per square mile. The only ones that had more field tests than Puerto Rico’s 3,483 were Hawai’i (5,413), Illinois (5,092) and Iowa (4,659). Keep in mind that Puerto Rico has less than 4,000 square miles, whereas Illinois and Iowa each have over 50,000 square miles. Puerto Rico surpassed California by far, which had only 1,964 field tests, although California is 40 times larger.

These data, of course, must be updated. We have been walking around with these and showing them to everyone for four years now. But we do not see any reason to believe that the situation has significantly changed since 2005.

It must be pointed out that not all the GM crop activity in our territory is experimental. There is also commercial GM production, about which we know even less. Commercial GM crop production is exported to the US- and who knows where else- for use as seed.

Most of these crops are planted in the southern plains, between the municipalities of Juana Díaz and Guayama, and especially concentrated in the stretch of land between the towns of Santa Isabel and Salinas, south of expressway 52 and north of route 1. Various eyewitnesses have told us that security in these lands is extreme. You cannot even stop your car alongside these fields without having policemen show up and ask you what your business is. And no, you cannot film or even take photos. They claim to be concerned about theft of crops. While we acknowledge that theft- of both produce and machinery- is one of the most serious problems facing Puerto Rican agriculture today, we also note that no other farming operations in the island enjoy such dilligent police protection.

GM crops can also be found in the northwest town of Isabela, where Monsanto Caribbean has an experimental station right on the south side of highway #2. Plus, we would not be surprised at all to find more of these crops in the fertile and bountiful Lajas valley, in Puerto Rico’s southwest, possibly the very best farmland in the whole island.

Successive governments of both major political parties, the Popular Democratic Party (PDP) and the New Progressive Party (NPP), have put biotechnology at the center of their strategies for attracting investment. From the Cold War days of the manufacture boom, known as “Operation Bootstrap”, we have moved on to biotechnology, both agricultural and pharmaceutical, with pompous slogans like “The Knowledge Economy” and “Mentes a la Obra” (Operation Mindstrap?). The Puerto Rico Industrial Development Corporation markets Puerto Rico as the “Bio-Island” and agressively sells investors on the advantages and desirability of setting up biotech operations in the island.

The life sciences industry, which is how the biotech corporate giants like to call themselves, are very grateful for Puerto Rico’s fine investment climate. In 2006, then-governor Aníbal Acevedo-Vilá (PDP) was named “governor of the year” by the Biotechnology Industry Association in its annual convention in Chicago.

In January 2009 senator Berdiel Rivera (NPP) introduced bill #202, which aims to promote agricultural biotechnology. As if the biotech corporations needed any more support than they have already gotten from the PR government in the last 20+ years!

Mr. Rivera and his fellow senators who support Senate bill 202 should take notice of GM-related developments outside the island. Just in May, the American Academy of Environmental Medicine declared that GM foods pose a serious health risk. Referring to a number of studies, the Academy concluded that “there is more than a casual association between GM foods and adverse health effects” and that “GM foods pose a serious health risk in the areas of toxicology, allergy and immune function, reproductive health, and metabolic, physiologic and genetic health.”

And 2008 saw the release of the International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development report (IAASTD), a unique, unprecedented and definitive report on the state of world agriculture. It was authored by over 400 international experts, subjected to two independent peer reviews, and was the product of an inclusive and participatory process in which industry, governments and civil society participated as equal partners, with the support of UN agencies and the World Bank.

The report concluded, in a nutshell, that the model of industrial, corporate, globalized agriculture cannot continue, as it is unsustainable and is literally eating up the planet’s patrimony, and favors in its stead small-scale agroecological production that uses local resources and minimizes the use of fossil fuel-based inputs- precisely what environmentalists and organic farmers had been advocating for decades.

With regards to biotechnology and GM crops, the IAASTD report was cautious and unenthusiastic. Instead of the uncritical cheering one hears from governments and the mainstream media, the report counseled caution and called for further studies regarding GM foods’ safety.

And while all over the world the safety and necessity of GM crops and foods is increasingly questioned, over here in Puerto Rico our government is selling us this technology as if it were the last coke bottle in the desert.

Some well-intended folks have argued to us that Senate bill 202 will regulate GM crop activity in Puerto Rico and that this is preferrable to having these crops without any regulation or control. But this technology cannot be controled. Once planted outdoors, GM crops cannot be controlled or recalled. They proliferate and multiply, as living things will. No country that has allowed the entrance of GM crops has been able to control them. Therefore, bill #202 will only further legitimize and entrench this dangerous and unnecessary technology in Puerto Rico.

The media machine is ramping up coverage of the Zika virus in Brazil with the 2016 Summer Olympics looming, and everyone from tennis stars and golfers to BBC journalists are refusing to go for fear of contracting the virus. Golfer Jason Day for example decided not to go over of concerns that it may affect his wife’s future pregnancies.
But lost in the hoopla over Zika are major questions surrounding whether the virus itself, or a more surprising culprit, pesticides, is the major cause of microcephaly.
Most people don’t realize it, but World Health Organization Director-General Margaret Chan has come out against the type of media scare-mongering that has taken place in recent weeks. She says Zika is a suspect but much has yet to be learned.

Although a causal link between Zika infection in pregnancy and microcephaly has not, and I must emphasize, has not been established, the circumstantial evidence is suggestive and extremely worrisome,” she told Reuters.

“An increased occurrence of neurological symptoms, noted in some countries coincident with arrival of the virus, adds to the concern.”
While the link between Zika and microcephaly may not be as well established as the media would like us to believe, a surprising link between pesticides and the disease was established in a 2010 study, and could be the missing piece of the microcephaly mystery.

The Glyphosate-Birth Defects Connection
It’s well known that glyphosate, the main ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup, has been dubbed a probable human carcinogen by the WHO, but it has also been linked to microcephaly, a condition in which a newborn’s head is significantly undersized due to a lack of brain development.
The link was established in a study titled ‘Glyphosate-Based Herbicides Produce Teratogenic Effects on Vertebrates by Impairing Retinoic Acid Signaling.’
As the study reported:
“There has been ongoing controversy regarding the possible adverse effects of glyphosate on the environment and on human health…”
“Reports of neural defects and craniofacial malformations from regions where glyphosate-based herbicides (GBH) are used led us to undertake an embryological approach to explore the effects of low doses of glyphosate in development.”

In the study, glyphosate-based concentrations were injected into frog and chicken embryos and it was discovered that microcephaly was one of the side effects in both, along with the gradual loss of rhombomere domains and the reduction of the optic vesicles (the latter two are developing parts of the brain in an embryo).
The dilution used in this case was 1/5000. You can read the full study by clicking here.
Pesticides More Likely to Cause Microcephaly Than Zika?
According to a recent report on the situation by the Global Research Center, these pesticides, when used in large concentrations as they are in South America, especially Brazil, could very well be a much bigger factor in microcephaly causation than Zika.
As the article states:

Pesticides in Brazil and Pernambuco state are more likely to be the cause of microcephaly and birth defects than Zika virus and the links below speak for themselves…

The farmers of Brazil have become the world’s top exporters of sugar, orange juice, coffee, beef, poultry and soybeans. They’ve also earned a more dubious distinction: In 2012, Brazil passed the United States as the largest buyer of pesticides.

This rapid growth has made Brazil an enticing market for pesticides banned or phased out in richer nations because of health or environmental risks,” and it’s also an area where large amounts of glyphosate is sprayed.

For more on the Zika risk, and the pesticide-microcephaly link (including info on the amount of pesticides being used in the center of the Zika outbreak) you can click on the full article here.

Where Are Todays Patriots ?

by Luis Torres
With an oversight Board to help manage Puerto Rico’s debt stricken economy of over $70 billion dollars, while at the same time the island filling for the biggest municipal Bankruptcy in the history of the USA, Governor Ricky Rosello held a bad timed pointless and ridiculous plebiscite were only 23% of the registered voters actually went out and vote for the island to become part of the Union.

From this 23% of voters (mainly all from the New Progressive Party PNP) 97% choose statehood, now we have to see the puppet governor making a fool of himself by asking Congress to act on the will of just this 23% (good luck with that)

But to see where we are now, we have to go back in time and check what was the trigger for Puerto Ricans to be so submissive against the USA. With the Foraker Act of April 2, 1900 signed by President Mackenley, the first civilian government in Puerto Rico was implemented, Section VII of the Foraker Act also established Puerto Rican citizenship (will touch on this later on) what the Foraker Act really did, was establishing Puerto Rico as a Colony of the USA. Then came the Jones-Shafroth Act of 1917- this was an act of Congress signed by President Woodrow Wilson, that gave Puerto Ricans born after April 25, 1898 US Citizenship.

This Act superseded the Foraker Act, The Jones Act separated the Executive, Judicial and Legislative branches of Puerto Rican government, provided civil rights to the individual, and created a locally elected bicameral legislature. Also, the United States Congress had the power to stop any action taken by the legislature of Puerto Rico. The U.S. maintained control over fiscal and economic matters and exercised authority over mail services, immigration, defense and other basic governmental matters. this as of today, has never changed.

Can you imagine the islanders waking up on March 3, 1917 as US citizens? What the hell they would have cared, they don’t know the language, don’t know what they are pledging allegiance to, don’t know the culture etc. My grandfather used to tell me that when he was in school (Central High) they had to said the pledge of allegiance before entering the classroom…this is brainwashing at the highest level.

What the Jones Act really accomplished, was to put in the minds of Puerto Ricans that we could not live without the US. From that point forward, they were mentally colonized and that has been what has ruled over us since then.

The graphic below shows what we get from the US annually (around 13,530 Million) vs what we send to the US annually as well ( around 58,100 million)

Money Flow & Federal funds to Puerto Rico from United States


In 1920 came in as part of the Jones Act, The Merchant Marine Act of 1920 that prevents foreign-flagged ships from carrying cargo between two American ports (a practice known as cabotage Law) Because of the Jones Act, foreign ships inbound with goods from Central and South America, Western Europe, and Africa, cannot stop in Puerto Rico, offload Puerto Rico-bound goods, load mainland-bound Puerto Rico-manufactured goods, and continue to U.S. ports. Instead, they must proceed directly to U.S. ports, where distributors break bulk and send Puerto Rico-bound manufactured goods to Puerto Rico across the ocean by U.S.-flagged ships.
Puerto Rican consumers ultimately bear the expense of transporting goods again across the Atlantic and Caribbean Sea on U.S.-flagged ships subject to the extremely high operating costs imposed by the Jones Act. This also makes Puerto Rico less competitive with Caribbean ports as a shopping destination for tourists from home countries with much higher taxes (like mainland states) even though prices for non-American manufactured goods in theory should be cheaper since Puerto Rico is much closer to Central and South America, Western Europe, and Africa.

Ultimately, the island couldn’t get afloat with this cabotage law that has strangled the citizens of the island for 102 years, this is ridiculous and abusive.

Fast forward 1940’s we have the figure of Don Luis Muñoz Marín, a Well known and respected politician who believed in the independence of the Island, while been President of The Senate, Muñoz Marín helped past Operation Bootstrap to supposedly boost the economy, in those years sugar was the main source of income, well all the Sugar Mills pass to Americans hands ( just to give an example) by the end of the decade Muñoz Marín helped also pass Law 53 The Gag Law, which would restrain the rights of the independence and Nationalist movements in the island. ( A 180° change) one of the victims was Pedro Albizu Campos..

1948 The Popular Democratic Party of Muñoz Marín won the elections and became the first Puerto Rican governor, unfortunately his independence tendencies had long since disappeared, at this point the greatest nonsense the world has ever seen took place. The Free Associate State (ELA) Or a version of a Commonwealth in general terms that was implemented in 1952. By the way, the island is not free, it is not associated (association is a two-way street, not in our case) and we are not a State. In those years, we moved from poverty to misery seen how the island was been exploited from all it’s resources and moved to a complete dependency from the mainland turning Puerto Rico into a Nanny State. While all this was happening, the Independence movement in Puerto Rico decline from a 17% still in 1952 to receiving the least support, less than 4.5% of the vote, in the status referendums in 1967, 1993 and 1998..

Under Pedro Rosello administration ( father of Ricky Rosello) we saw the Island loosing section 936 which gives mainland United States companies an exemption from federal taxes on income earned in Puerto Rico, whether it comes from operations or interest on local bank deposits. On this, there were many opinions stating that loosing this section, the island wasn’t going to be affected well, it did. Puerto Rico had more pharmaceuticals per square mile than any other place in the world, now a lot of this pharmacies and other companies like 7-up and Motorola (just to name a few) have moved to Mexico and China.


In 1993 something very interesting happened, Mr. Fufi Santori a well known blogger, ex basketball player, and pro independence supporter Renounced his US Citizenship but in his case, he didn’t went thru the proper channels, since he didn’t recognized this, stating that been of Puerto Rican nationality was an inalienable right, he was among the ones that came up with a Puerto Rican Passport and he handed more than 1,500 of them.

Then on July 11, 1994 Juan Mari Brás also renounced his American citizenship at the American Embassy in Caracas, Venezuela. He did this to test a technicality in United States citizenship laws.”, according to writer Mary Hilaire Tavenner. Brás believed that a person holding United States citizenship and who subsequently renounces his citizenship would be deported to his country of origin. As Puerto Rico is a territory of the United States, Brás theorized the U.S Department of State would have to deport him or any Puerto Rican who renounced his or her U.S. Citizenship to Puerto Rico. The U.S. State Department approved Mari Brás’ renunciation of his American citizenship on November 22, 1995..

On November 18, 1997, Miriam J. Ramírez de Ferrer, a pro-statehood attorney then took Mari Brás before the Puerto Rico Supreme Court alleging that if he had renounced his United States citizenship, then he also had renounced his right to vote in the local Puerto Rican elections. The Puerto Rican Supreme Court sided with Mari Brás, finding that “as a citizen of Puerto Rico” Mari Brás was eligible to vote so his vote on the elections of 1996 was valid as a non US citizen.


1998, 14 Puerto Ricans from Aguadilla, went to the US Embassy in the Dominican Republic to renounce their Citizenship In the Lozada Colón v. U.S. Department of State position asserted that renunciation of U.S. citizenship must entail renunciation of Puerto Rican citizenship as well. The court does decide to not enter to the merits of the citizenship issue. After this debates In light of the Supreme Court’s decision, on June 4, 1998, the U.S. State Department reversed its November 22, 1995 decision and declared that Mari Brás was still a US citizen. The U.S. State Department argued that as Mari Brás had continued living in a US territory, he was still a US citizen. According to the State Department, US Immigration and Naturalization law stipulates that anyone who wants to give up their US citizenship must live in another Country.. With all this, the independence party (PIP) movement was nowhere to be found, they never supported this transcendent actions of this fellows Puerto Ricans trying to make sense of their true Nationality.

On June 15, 2016 we saw how the ELA was not a decolonization venue, it was clear that the island has always been a Colony of the USA, moreover it let us know that the mainland has never have the intention of including the island into the Union since we got invaded in 1898. An example of why the US will never let us become a State.We have to see the history of States like Alaska, Hawaii and others that were incorporated territories of the United States, Puerto Rico is a territory NOT incorporated. Now let me show you the true Puerto Rican, we are passionate about our culture regardless of our political opinions, we follow our athletes every time they are in the spotlight as we saw in the World Baseball Classic where we finished 2nd in the world or Monica Puig winning the first Gold Medal at the 2016 Olympics for the island, we did it as a NATION, not as a colony.


If Puerto Rico ever becomes a State (which I think will never happen) we are going to lose our Nationality.
In my opinion, the only way Puerto Rico will get out if this abyss, it’s by joining the international community, we cannot depend on a nation that has cripple us economically and mentally for 125 years, which have sale us the notion that we can’t survive without their help, it’s time to get up our asses and defend what’s ours instead of giving in like we have been, 6 million Puerto Ricans, one voice, one nation PUERTO RICO