Dark Alliances Redux: The Globalization of the Narcotics Trade a.k.a. the “War on Drugs”

by Scott Creighton

In memory of Gary Webb. The courage he possessed is far too rare in this country.

At the North American Leaders’ Summit which just took place last week President Obama, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto met in Ottawa to discuss the future of economic prosperity (for a few) in this North American Union of ours. It’s being called the Three Amigos summit.

In the press conference, President Obama addressed what he called “serious concerns” being held by a number of citizens across the world about the impact of globalization and how unfair it is to so many people. He said folks have “legitimate” grievances because, in the past, free trade agreements, like the one they were there to discuss, NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement), haven’t always worked out so well for the workers, small business people and the quickly dwindling middle class in Mexico, Canada and the U.S.

Of course, his response to how to “fix” it involved signing bigger and better “free trade” agreements, that way they can dictate conditions on more countries across the world. He’s speaking of the TPP and TTIP of course.

Fix the problems created by unfair “free trade” agreements by signing bigger and more oppressive “free trade” agreements. That’s the solution from our glorious leader. Not “end NAFTA” and negotiate new unilateral “fair trade” agreements that put U.S. workers and businesses first. No, fix NAFTA by signing the TPP and the TTIP. Bigger, more oppressive NAFTA.

Around the same time, a couple barely noticed articles popped up over at Telesur which I thought needed a little more attention.

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The information war in Mexico: journalists murdered, citizens monitored

by Kade Crockford and Paola Villarreal, Privacy SOS

On July 31, 2015, assassins broke into an apartment in Mexico City and executed five people: photojournalist Ruben Espinosa, 31, community organizer and human rights activist Nadia Vera, 32, student Yesenia Quiróz, 18, and two unnamed women. Their bodies showed signs of torture.

Espinosa and Vera had fled to Mexico City from the state of Veracruz, 200 miles east the capital, on the Gulf of Mexico. According to the Committee to Project Journalists (CPJ), Veracruz is not only one of the most dangerous states in Mexico for journalists, but one of the most dangerous regions in the world.

At the time of their murders, Espinosa and Vera were living in Mexico City because their criticism of Veracruz’ governor, Javier Duarte, was met with threats, surveillance, and harassment, forcing them into exile in their own country. During Duarte’s governorship, at least twelve journalists have been murdered in suspicious circumstances that activists and fellow reporters call political assassinations.

Espinosa arrived in Mexico City in June, and was very vocal about his experience, speaking out against the culture of corruption and violence that drove him from his home. On July 1, 2015, he told a fellow reporter why he left Veracruz for what he thought would be a safe haven in the nation’s capital.

[read more here]

Dark Alliances: How the DEA, Big Banking and Death Squads Made Sinaloa the Last Cartel Standing in Mexico

by Scott Creighton

(The title of this article pays tribute to one of the most courageous and dedicated journalists of our time, Gary Webb. There have been many others who have covered this issue, notably Alexander Cockburn, Jeffrey St. Clair Alfred W. McCoy , Michael Levine and Michael Ruppert just to name a few.)

It is said they operate more like a corporation than a drug gang. There’s good reason for that. It’s what they are.

The Sinaloa Cartel (a.k.a. “Guzmán-Loera Organization”, “The Federation” and “The Blood Alliance”) ships more harmful illegal drugs into this country by far than any other single group in the world.

According to the National Drug Intelligence Center, within the U.S. the Sinaloa Cartel is primarily involved in the manufacture and distribution of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, marijuana and MDMA.[20]

The Sinaloa Cartel is also the #1 importer of all those trendy, tasty flavors of high-end pot a few of you can buy legally in a couple states. So as the push to legalize continues, the Sinaloa corporate brand (and all those who essentially have stock in it) sits back and smiles.

And now, according to Tomás Zerón, the director of the Criminal Investigation Agency (AIC) within Mexico’s Attorney General’s Office (PGR), Sinaloa stands almost alone atop a pile of rotting corpses of what used to be a myriad of drug gangs in Mexico.

That’s because we made them that way.

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“Gun Walking” In Mexico and the ATF Spin to “Fix” the Story

The ATF allows weapons to flow into Mexico and land in the hands of certain drug cartels.

The ATF sent out a memo informing their spin doctors that they needed a wave of positive ATF stories to counter this bad publicity.

“Please make every effort for the next two weeks to maximize coverage of ATF operations/enforcement actions/arrests at the local and regional level. Given the negative coverage by CBS Evening News last week and upcoming events this week, the bureau should look for every opportunity to push coverage of good stories. Fortunately, the CBS story has not sparked any follow up coverage by mainstream media and seems to have fizzled.”  ATF memo

Meanwhile, 13 Mexican Army soldiers are going to be charged with transporting one ton of crystal meth and 66 pounds of cocaine into the U.S.  Of course, they will be tried in a military court, so who knows what will really happen to them.

“The Mexican army has ordered three junior officers and 10 soldiers to stand trial on drug trafficking and organized crime charges after they were allegedly caught with more than a ton of methamphetamines and 66 pounds (30 kilograms) of cocaine.”  NPR

You don’t make a ton of crystal meth in a bath-tub of a trailer out in the woods. That meth is probably professionally manufactured. I have speculated for some time that the Mexican government has been making meth and exporting to the U.S. with the full complicity of the U.S. government, and now we see some real tangible evidence that is the case. Just like back in the crack and heroin days, it seems the military is the import vehicle of choice since they are not searched while crossing the border.

So Why Not Legalize? “There is just too much money in it”

by Scott Creighton

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, nearly let the cat out of the bag  in an interview with Denise Maerker of Televisa on Jan. 24th of this year. When asked why we shouldn’t go ahead and legalize drug use, Hillary quipped “There is just too much money in it”. She tried her best to right the ship after it by saying something basically in line with “Won’t someone think of the Children!?”, but the damage was already done.

“QUESTION: In Mexico, there are those who propose not keeping going with this battle and legalize drug trafficking and consumption. What is your opinion?

SECRETARY CLINTON: I don’t think that will work. I mean, I hear the same debate. I hear it in my country. It is not likely to work. There is just too much money in it, and I don’t think that – you can legalize small amounts for possession, but those who are making so much money selling, they have to be stopped. They can’t be given an even easier road to take, because they will then find it in their interest to addict even more young people. Mexico didn’t have much of a drug problem before the last 10 years, and you want to keep it that way. So you don’t want to give any excuse to the drug traffickers to be able legally to addict young people.”  America.gov website

She’s absolutely correct. There is way too much money in it.  But what makes that money even more compelling, is that for the most part, that money is completely off the books, unaccounted for cash… the kind that every banker, corporate prison complex CEO, and CIA executive craves.

As Hillary was trying to fix her little slip-up, she went on and on about how the dealers make this unaccounted for cash, and that if we were to legalize it, they would just make more money, selling their product to kids.

This argument would have been ridiculed as horribly stupid and out of touch were it to have come from Sarah Palin or John McCain, but since it came from Hillary Clinton, everyone seems to be giving her a pass. The reason that low to mid level drug dealers make money at all is because of the current prohibition on drugs. In fact, it makes it easier for kids to get cocaine and other narcotics, since there is no regulation at your local crack-house.

But of course, the most widely abused narcotic in the under 18 age group is prescription pain medication made largely from all that poppy that our troops are protecting over in Afghanistan.

Obviously if there was an end to the prohibition then these drug dealers that Hillary was speaking about wouldn’t be able to just go out and sell more smack to children in their local kindergarten.  Why the obfuscation?  Perhaps the secretary of state was more concerned about the implications of yet another Kerry Commission report were the American public to start seriously looking at the real results of America’s War on Drugs, ie. who is being harmed and who is really profiting from the global drug racket.

“The Kerry Committee report were hearings chaired by Senator John Kerry which found the United States Department of State had paid drug traffickers. Some of these payments were after the traffickers had been indicted by federal law enforcement agencies on drug charges or while traffickers were under active investigation by these same agencies.”   Wikipedia

So let’s you and I take a look at it since Hillary and the rest of the press don’t seem to be inclined to do so.

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Money Laundering and the Global Drug Trade Fueled by Capitalist Elites

by Tom Burghardt, Global Research

When investigative journalist Daniel Hopsicker broke the story four years ago that a DC-9 (N900SA) “registered to a company which once used as its address the hangar of Huffman Aviation, the flight school at the Venice, Florida Airport which trained both terrorist pilots who crashed planes into the World Trade Center, was caught in Campeche by the Mexican military … carrying 5.5 tons of cocaine destined for the U.S.,” it elicited a collective yawn from corporate media.

And when authorities searched the plane and found its cargo consisted solely of 128 identical black suitcases marked “private,” packed with cocaine valued at more than $100 million, the silence was deafening.

But now a Bloomberg Markets magazine report, “Wachovia’s Drug Habit,” reveals that drug traffickers bought that plane, and perhaps fifty others, “with laundered funds they transferred through two of the biggest banks in the U.S.,” Wachovia and Bank of America.

The Justice Department charge sheet against the bank tells us that between 2003 and 2008, Wachovia handled $378.4 billion for Mexican currency exchanges, “the largest violation of the Bank Secrecy Act, an anti-money-laundering law, in U.S. history.”

“A sum” Bloomberg averred, equal to one-third of Mexico’s current gross domestic product.”

Since 2006, some 22,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence. Thousands more have been wounded, countless others “disappeared,” torture and illegal imprisonment is rampant.

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