By AZAM AHMED and PAULINA VILLEGAS
APRIL 22, 2016
New York Times now focuses on corruption and impunity at the center of the federal Mexican government and within its military.
A relevant passage states:
Although the government’s own investigation focused on the complicity of the local authorities, the expert panel uncovered evidence that state and federal officials and even military personnel were present on the night of the students’ disappearance.
“It was clear in the government’s investigation and the official account that there was an intention to keep this case at a municipal level, in terms of responsibility,” said Carlos Beristain, another expert in the investigation. “But we revealed the presence of state and federal agents at the crime scenes, and furthermore that their participation implied responsibility.”
“She’s Baldly Lying”: Dana Frank Responds to Hillary Clinton’s Defense of Her Role in Honduras Coup http://www.democracynow.org/2016/4/13/shes_baldly_lying_dana_frank_responds
In previous interview, Hillary Clinton explicitly calls for a Plan Colombia for Central America.
How to Hack an Election
By Jordan Robertson, Michael Riley, and Andrew Willis | March 31, 2016
Photographs by Juan Arredondo
Remember when Physicians for Human Rights released their report pointing to government-backed paramilitaries as the likely culprits in Brad’s murder. And then Senator Leahy decided that he would wait for results of another ‘independent’ report before taking action for accountability. We smelled a rat then (Apparently Senator Leahy didn’t; maybe he can make up for his lapse in judgment now by opposing ALL of Plan Mexico and similar militarization programs). Sure enough the ‘independent’ report echoed the Mexican government ‘theory’ that a protestor killed Brad.
So we looked into how ‘independent’ that report was. Well, turns out not very . Missing from the otherwise excellent Committee to Protect Journalists article at the previous link is the fact that the former Royal Canadian Mountain Police officers were recommended to the Mexican authorities as ‘independent’ experts. Quite convenient.
The reasons for Canadian government complicity are not so complicated: Canadian firms have 50% of the mining concessions in Latin America. That puts them in league with corrupt governments and parties that are destroying the patrimony – natural and cultural – of Latin American countries from Columbia to Honduras, from Guatemala (see below) to Mexico.
Claims of Rape and Abuse Echo to Canada
By SUZANNE DALEY
Accusations of negligence and rape made by Guatemalan women against Canadian mining firms could lead to new scrutiny of the overseas subsidiaries that have long acted as a shield. published in the NY Times on April 2, 2016 here.
From newsletter distributed by El Enemigo Común.
By Scott Campbell
On January 11, five young people returning home from a weekend birthday gathering were detained by police in Tierra Blanca, Veracruz, Mexico, where they had stopped to get something to eat. Susana Tapia Garibo, 16; José Benítez de la O, 24; Mario Orozco Sánchez, 27; José Alfredo González Díaz, 25; and Bernardo Benítez Arróniz, 25, can be seen on surveillance footage being taken into custody by members of the Veracruz State Police. Following their detention, nothing more was heard of them until Monday, February 8, when the burned remains of two of them, José Alfredo González Díaz and Bernardo Benítez Arróniz, were found on a ranch in Tlalixcoyan, 40 miles from Tierra Blanca. Continue Reading »
To the Editor:
Re “Mexico’s New Blood Politics” (Sunday Review, Jan. 17):
Ioan Grillo’s conclusion that the United States (and American taxpayers) “should use its drug-war aid to push harder” for anti-corruption and judicial reforms is off base.
As a political analyst living and working in Mexico for the last three decades, I have watched with horror how the United States-Mexico drug war strategy has led to the explosion of violence and criminal activity here. The deep-rooted complicity between government officials and security forces on the one hand and cartels on the other means that the training, equipment and firepower given in aid and sold to the Mexican government fuel violence on both sides.
The lines blur. The cartels are not fighting the state for political power; they are seeking to protect a $40 billion drug-trafficking business that has been converted into a war for control of territory, a war against the people.
Victim organizations that have organized throughout the country demand that the United States stop funding the drug war under any guise. They are the ones who have lost the most, and have the most at stake. We should finally listen to them.
Director, Americas Program
Center for International Policy
published in the New Yorker
by Francisco Goldman
January 14, 2016
Quote: The weakening of the Sinaloa cartel would only become a reality, he said, if El Chapo’s capture was followed by the arrests of corrupt politicians and functionaries at all levels who permitted and aided the Sinaloa cartel’s operation and expansion, and so on. As long as the chains of complicity between politicians and cartel capos remain intact, he said, “then the war against the narco-traffickers can be considered lost. Continue Reading »
Happy solstice, Merry Xmas, and a Happy Gregorian New Year,
Peace and justice to all.
Friends of Brad Will continues to support demands of the parents of the Ayotzinapa students, who participated this week in a hunger strike at the Mexican Consulate in New York City. Antonio Tizapa, the father of Jorge Antonio Tizapa Legideño, who was taken by the Mexican police in view of the Mexican military along with the other students on the night of September 26, 2014, ended his 48-hour hunger strike today to draw attention to his son’s disappearance by the Mexican State.
The Mexican government and the U.S. government have worked together to minimize the scandal which adds to the many outrages by the Mexican security forces and corrupt civil administration against the Mexican people. The disappearances have created increased demands from around the world that President Obama’s failed ‘drug war’ program, Plan Mexico (aka the Merida Initiative), be ended.
Here’s an interview which Robert from Friends of Brad Will gave on Christmas night at the Mexican Consulate hunger strike.
By Laura Carlsen
12 / November / 2015
Excerpt: “Evidence that the armed forces approve of the practice of extrajudicial executions from the highest levels should be a watershed in the drug war. It should shock society into demanding a return to constitutional rule and respect for human rights.
Moreover, Tlatlaya is not an isolated incident. There are serious questions about the role of the army in Iguala. Its presence at the scene of the crimes. . .”
For the rest of this intense bulletin, click here.
One person in jail. Not clear he was culpable but there were others identified and pictured shooting into the crowd. Also, there was the cover-up and scapegoating by the civil administration at the Mexican State and Federal level.
Our government is bent on sending lethal aid under the guise of law enforcement reforms and administration of justice. They should be pressured to account for the lack of pressure to resolve the murder of a U.S. journalist as well as at least 17 Oaxaqen@s murdered in 2006.
Let’s work this year to insist our government – which is arming the Mexican government which is (in league with) the narcos – publicly demand accountability for these murders before 10 years elapse.
If they can kill Brad and cover up his murder, what are they doing to those without networks of friends in the U.S. that provides political cover for this thuggery? We know. And we can help stop it.
Brad Will Presente
Q&A: A look at Mexico’s armed conflict through a lens of Drug War Capitalism
In this concise and powerful interview, DAWN PALEY, author of must-read “Drug War Capitalism,” explains how drug cartels in Mexico are actually paramilitaries, working with security forces and reinforcing state power.
How Obama’s expansion of Bush’s “war on drugs” under Plan Mexico and CARCI is predictably increasing corruption at the highest levels of Mexican (and Latin American) civil administration/government, police and military.
Quote from piece: Espinosa and Vera, like many people throughout Mexico these days, would have feared turning to the police for protection because of the possibility that law enforcement would be complicit with organized crime. As the renowned Mexican writer and journalist Juan Villoro told the Spanish newspaper El Mundo, on August 12th, “In Mexico, the police and the army cause as much fear as organized crime . . . the majority of journalists killed in Mexico have been murdered by people tied to government.”
Exclusive from Democracy Now here.
Excerpt: “As parents who have traveled from Mexico cross the United States in three protest caravans, we speak with two relatives of the missing students who live here in New York City: Antonio Tizapa is the father of Jorge Antonio Tizapa Legideño; and Amado Tlatempa is the cousin of Jesús Jovany Rodríguez Tlatempa. Tizapa, who believes his son is still alive, calls on the Obama administration to stop the Mérida Initiative, the multibillion-dollar U.S. aid program used to fund the war on drugs in Mexico.”
For spirited demonstrations against the disappearance of our fallen comrades!
We will never forget and we will keep on fighting for justice in your memory.
AVISO EN ESPAÑOL ABAJO
IT’S BEEN FIVE MONTHS AFTER THE AYOTZINAPA MASSACRE
February 26th will mark five months of the Ayotzinapa students’ massacre. The organized crime embedded in the Mexican government keeps providing false and contradictory versions of these facts that we cannot and should not forgive. They wanted to bury the truth and turn it into ashes along with the bodies, but sowed seeds of indignation and solidarity worldwide instead.
Join us in our non-violent protest outside the Mexican Consulate this Thursday starting at 5 pm. Help us tell the survivors and relatives of victims that are not alone and we will not rest until justice is done for them and for our crying country.
Come join us to remember them and to show your solidarity. We hope seeing you there! Bring your rage and your creativity to tell the Mexican Consulate employees they work for a criminal government. Tell all your friends and family. Here is the Facebook Event page:
ALSO, we the group Somos los Otros NY will be gathering for a Cultural Event for Ayotzinapa this Sunday back to Union Square at 3p.m. There will be dance, poetry and indignation. Come join us!
CINCO MESES HAN PASADO Y EL GOBIERNO NOS SIGUE MINTIENDO
Este 26 de febrero se cumplen cinco meses de la masacre de los estudiantes de Ayotzinapa. El narcogobierno continúa dando versiones falsas y contradictorias de estos hechos que no podemos ni debemos perdonar. Quisieron enterrar la verdad y calcinarla junto con los cadáveres, pero sembraron semillas de indignación y solidaridad por todo el mundo.
Súmate a nuestra protesta pacífica frente al consulado de México este jueves a partir de las 5 de la tarde. Ayúdanos a decirles a los sobrevivientes y a los familiares de las víctimas que no están solos y que no descansaremos hasta que se haga justicia para ellos y para nuestro sufrido país.
Ven a recordarlos y a solidarizarte. ¡Te esperamos! Invita a todos tus familiares y amigos.
by NICK ALEXANDROV
Nearly a decade ago, a keen observer of Honduras produced a damning analysis of the country. “In a very real sense, Honduras is a captured state,” he began. “Elite manipulation of the public sector, particularly the weak legal system, has turned it into a tool to protect the powerful,” and “voters choose mainly between the two major entrenched political parties, both beholden to the interests of individuals from the same economic elite.” The situation required a “strategy that will give people the means to influence public policy,” the report concluded.
Read more about President Obama militarizing Latin American authoritarian and narco-tied governments at the expense of democracy and human rights here.
“And I would say to anyone watching this, you know, it’s so easy to feel daunted by the big political challenges we’ve got. It’s so easy, especially with something as huge as the drug war. You are so much more powerful than you know. Bud (Osborne) was a homeless street addict, and he started a movement that has transformed Vancouver, transformed Canada, and saved thousands of people’s lives. If he can do it, we can do it. This war has been going for a hundred years. We can end it now if we choose to.”
Sorry for last minute notice. Here is the message below.
We are everywhere!
There is still time for you to invite friends in Washington today Saturday for Tuesday rally!
Also, our 20+ people delegation from New York supporting Ayotzinapa will be traveling and rallying all day long. We don’t have any resources except our salaries to support this trip and food is expensive for Mexican workers in that area surrounding the White House. Bringing some food and water for some will be highly appreciated!
CORRECTION: 6th at 10 am is Tuesday (not Monday). Lafayette Square in front of the White House (1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20500) Look for us with Somos los Otros NY signs and Zapatista buttons.
(MENSAJE EN ESPAÑOL MÁS ABAJO)
MEXICAN PRESIDENT PEÑA NIETO NOT WELCOME IN WASHINGTON DC
Do you have a friend in Washington? Invite her/him to join us to what we need to be a huge rally against Mexican President with YOUR help.
Mexican President Peña Nieto does not represent the people of Mexico – we will be there to tell him that. Continue Reading »
Excellent piece in Al Jazeera about the US exporting a failed and brutal policing method abroad, which you need to know in order to oppose these policies and their liberal boosters (in NYC and DC) effectively.
Wednesday, December 10th – International Human Rights Day – demonstrations will be held (again) nationwide challenging the lawlessness of the USG in not holding Bush and Co. accountable for torture, thereby signaling that it may continue with impunity. In NYC members of our network will do our part to challenge the USG militarization of Latin America under the ‘drug war’ and the devastation it has caused. Plan Mexico and other militarization/lethal aid schemes targeting Latin America have come under fire.
So we can expect more distortions of Plan Mexico’s value by inside the beltway pundits. Continue Reading »
Good piece here too.
And this one too below.
These are the people who fund Plan Mexico and they’ve ignored us. Call them and tell them what you think. Stop Obama and the Democratic Party’s 7 year policy of support for Plan Mexico (and other USG militarization) projects targeting Mexico and Latin America.
Senator Gillibrand: Tel. (202) 224-4451
Senator Durbin: Tel. (202) 224-2152
Senator Leahy: Tel. (202) 224-4242
Make these calls to end the carnage!
By Andrew O’Reilly
Published December 03, 2014
Fox News Latino
New York – A group of over a hundred academics, activists and students gathered Wednesday afternoon in New York City to protest the U.S. government’s funding of the Mexican military in the midst of the unrest engulfing that country following the disappearance 43 students from a rural teachers’ college.
Congregating in a cold rain outside the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building in Lower Manhattan, demonstrators from as far away as Santa Fe, New Mexico – some holding signs with messages like, “Mexico is family,” in Spanish and the hashtag #USTired2 – are part of a group of more than 43 protests and vigils taking place across the U.S. on Wednesday to demand the end of U.S. government anti-drug funding to Mexico.
“The Mexican government has received more than $2 billion,” said Maria Heyaca, a professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, told Fox News Latino. “What we’re seeing with the disappearance of these 43 students is that it’s not an isolated case. We’re talking about more than 30,000 people who are disappeared in Mexico, more than 100,000 people have been murdered.”
Continue Reading »
Important petition. Please sign and share.
Go here to sign.
“The depth of the Mexican crisis, the state and drug cartel violence, and the perception that the electoral route is closed because of widespread fraud, manipulation and corruption, means that Mexican popular movements have to work in the middle of a boiling cauldron of repression and violence. The United States is deeply involved in this cauldron through military agreements with the Mexican armed forces in carrying out this repression in Mexico under the cover of the drug war. And Canadian mining companies are also deeply involved as they seize and despoil the waters and lands of Mexican peasants and carry out brutal repression through private armies aided by various levels of the Mexican government against many Mexican communities. The giant oil corporations welcomed in by the privatization of Mexican oil will be protected from popular protests by the Mexican armed forces with the ongoing massive military assistance from the United States. U.S. and Canadian companies and their governments are involved in direct and indirect ways alongside the Mexican state in the repression of the Mexican people and the despoliation of their society.”
Join us in New York or wherever you are.
In New York, at 5 pm until we leave, on Monday, October 27th, we will gather in front of US Senator Gillibrand’s and Senator Schumer’s offices, at 780 Third Avenue (between 48th and 49th street) to urge they show leadership in meeting Friends of Brad Will’s demands.
We will draw attention to the impunity Brad’s murderers and those who covered up his murder enjoy. We will also urge the Senators’s effective attention to
* Tlatlaya, where 22 youth were killed and the government has admitted that most were executed by the 102nd army battalion, whose members were trained in the US;
* the 43 disappeared students of Ayotzinapa and Iguala in Guerrero state (where people “do not trust any of the professional police“; did the USG train them too? the US State Dpt isn’t saying);
* the targeting of Dr. Mireles and the repression of grassroots self-defense organizations faced with corrupt (US-backed Mexican federal government and local state governments) in the states of Michoacan and Guerrero, and
* the many thousands of victims of the ‘war on drugs’ in which the Mexican state and the US Government and its friends in money-laundering banking circles collude.
Join us and spread the word. Urge your organizations to support our calls. And urge elected officials to recognize these demands. (for more, go to “Take Action” on this website)
An important piece on the US government colluding with narco-trafficking, a story still relevant today.
Read this devastating piece on the San Fernando massacre of demonstrating students.
The article describes a pattern of ‘predictable and thus preventable’ results of Mexican government actions and omissions that was “responsible for systematic, egregious and recurrent human rights violations”. We warned Amnesty International and the Washington Office on Latin America as well as Human Rights Watch about the ‘drug war’ military aid package known at Plan Mexico (which the article refers to by its official name, “the Merida Initiative” in 2006 and 2007 precisely for these predictable results. These organizations nevertheless refused to oppose and even praised the package despite our warnings. Only Human Rights Watch has since taken an official position against the ‘drug war’ although we have not seen forceful and effective advocacy by them to oppose the Obama expansion of it.
155,000 dead not counting tens of thousands disappeared. Narco-trafficking organizations as powerful as ever with profits relatively untouched.
Why would Hillary Clinton and Patrick Leahy call this a successful policy?
Other good piece here:
The Mexican drug war is the most deadly conflict in Latin America other than Guatemala’s 30 year civil war: http://t.co/zp68K43izV
— The Takeaway (@TheTakeaway) June 19, 2014
Global Drug Report: Don’t Just Decriminalize, Demilitarize
“The drug war is a pretext for the militarization of resource rich areas in Mexico and Central America, as happened with Plan Colombia in Colombia,” said Dawn Paley, author of the forthcoming book “Drug War Capitalism.”
A report released earlier this month by former heads of state and other global political figures made headlines across the world for calling the drug war a failure and for its endorsement of the decriminalization of drugs, including heroin and cocaine.
However, one of the report’s major criticisms, its critique of the militarization of the drug war, was largely neglected by the media.
Rest of article here.
Important new developments in the “War on Drugs”!
The tide has turned.
by LAURA CARLSEN
Published on Countpunch Weekend Edition July 25-27 (go to Counterpunch site for the version with important hotlinks).
* Laura Carlsen is the Director of the Americas Program.
After three years of relative silence, the U.S. press has finally “discovered” the crisis of tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors piling up on the U.S. border. Although the coverage often began with moving stories of the hardships these young migrants faced, it soon turned ugly. For right-wing pundits and politicians, the “humanitarian crisis” has become a crackdown on kids.
The dominant narrative has been that foolish parents, perhaps duped by scheming criminal bands, are sending hapless children north to take advantage of loopholes in U.S. immigration practices.
This is just plain wrong. On every count.
Knowing the Risks
Continue Reading »