Adam Klasfeld | International
With datelines in Cuba, Ecuador, and U.N. headquarters in New York City, these stories showcase where my reporting has taken an international focus.
The biggest money laundering scheme to Iran ever charged in U.S. history played out in a federal courthouse in New York and involved a gold trader named Reza Zarrab, whose playboy lifestyle earned him the nickname the "Turkish Gatsby." At the time that I covered this case, Turkey became the world's leading press jailer, and I helped break through a media blackout in that country with uncensored live coverage of a case that had been a thorn in the side of Turkish strongman Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Trump administration insiders like former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani and ex-attorney general Michael Mukasey came to Zarrab's defense. Along the way, I interviewed presiding U.S. District Judge Richard Berman about the case, and Turkish NBA star Enes Kanter about the Interpol red notice against him by Erdoğan's government.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau surprised many observers at the U.N. General Assembly by using the world stage to talk about his country's domestic shame: the "cultural genocide" that its Truth and Reconciliation Commission found that it perpetrated against it indigenous population.
At a press conference, I asked Trudeau about whether Canada's experience could serve as a model to confront the legacies of slavery and racism in the United States, where a suspected white supremacist terror attack left one dead and wounded others a little more than a month earlier. The article linked below details his answer, and includes a video of the exchange.
In this dispatch for The Village Voice, I traveled to Havana days before Donald Trump's inauguration, amid uncertainty for what this would mean for two-year-old normalization of relations between the United States and Cuba. I interviewed a U.N.-award winning political cartoonist who memorialized Obama's historic visit, a CEO of a Cuban tech company who paid a recent visit to Silicon Valley, and others in a story that begins: "If the moral arc of the universe bends toward justice, Donald Trump’s orange mug will one day be caricatured on 'The Corner of the Cretins' that visitors must pass to exit Cuba’s Museo de la Revolución."
In March 2014, I went to Ecuador for a two-week series of articles investigating a major development in a more than $9 billion legal battle against Chevron for its predecessor Texaco's oil contamination of the Amazon rainforest. A New York federal judge had just ruled that an Ecuadorean judge's verdict against the oil giant was fraudulent, and I traveled to Ecuador to get reactions from government officials and people still living on top of oil pits. This series ended with an exclusive interview with Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa in New York, and NPR's flagship program "All Things Considered" invited me on air to speak about my observations for a segment coinciding with the 25th anniversary of the Exxon Valdez oil spill.
Click on the titles below to access the articles: