Targeted journalist hero, the late Gary Webb was further vindicated Wednesday with news parallelling Fast and Furious and California’s prison snitch or be tortured policy, that several tons of cocaine were brought into the United States by U.S. federal agents allowing asset Sinaloa drug cartel to traffic the haul, reportedly in exchange for information about rival cartels, according to court documents filed in a U.S. federal court.
"The latest allegations are part of the defense of Vicente Zambada-Niebla, who was extradited to the United States to face drug-trafficking charges in Chicago," according to El Paso Times.
It took a Chicago court holding a status hearing today to order the U.S. government to respond to Zambada-Niebla’s motion containing the allegations by Sept. 11.
Jesus Vicente Zambada Niebla, son of Ismael “El Mayo,” is a top leaders of the Sinaloa drug-trafficking organization.
In April, Zambada claimed to have been working with the U.S. government for years according to pleadings filed in federal court in Chicago.
“Zambada Niebla’s allegation of U.S. government complicity in his narco-trafficking activities is laid out in a two-page court pleading filed in late March with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in Chicago. The pleading asserts that Zambada Niebla was working with ‘public authority’ “on behalf of the U.S. Department of Justice, Drug Enforcement Administration (‘DEA’); and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (‘FBI’); and the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (‘ICE’).”
Niebla is also connected to the Gulfstream II jet that wrecked on September 4, 2007 with four tons of cocaine on board on.
European investigators linked the wrecked plane’s tail number, N987SA, to CIA “rendition” operations.
Niebla’s claim that he smuggled drugs from Mexico into the U.S. as an asset for the U.S. government adds further weight to evidence confirming that the CIA and U.S. banking giants are the top players in the transnational drug trade worth hundreds of billions of dollars a year.
“It is impossible within the political system in the United States to vote against the interests of Goldman Sachs or ExxonMobile. Political debate is dominated by opinion rather than fact. Lies are true.
The right-wing Heritage Foundation, for example, designed Obama’s healthcare bill. It was first put into practice by then-Governor Mitt Romney in 2006 in Massachusetts. Barack Obama adopted it, after corporate lobbyists for the pharmaceutical and insurance industries rewrote it to include $447 billion in subsidies. Romneycare is Obamacare. It forces consumers to buy a default corporate product. The insurance companies can raise co-payments and premiums, including for the elderly and those on fixed income. They are exempted from providing coverage to chronically ill children. Once you get sick you can be priced out of the market. Of the one million Americans who go bankrupt every year because they cannot pay their medical bills, 80 percent are insured. This abuse will remain untouched. The healthy will pay. The sick will be pushed aside.
The debate on the airwaves between Republicans and Democrats over the healthcare bill, now before the Supreme Court, is part of the vast dumb show. And this is true for every piece of legislation pushed through Congress. The corporate media exists not to illuminate but to perpetuate the mirage. Coke or Pepsi. Take your pick. As if there is a difference.”—Chris Hedges “What is left of the country?”, Adbusters July/August 2012
Image: A Turkish F-4 - manufactured by the US and last used in major combat operations in Iraq to destroy air defenses, Syria had every right to fire on this aircraft as it entered Syrian airspace. Even if claims by Turkey are true that it had retreated to a “mile” over international waters when it was destroyed, that would mean it was over international waters for a mere 2 seconds. This means whatever ordnance Syria used was already fired and airborne in Syrian airspace before the aircraft departed.
The F-4 fighter jet, the newest of which are already around 30 years old, has a top speed of mach 2.2, or 1,600 mph/2,500 kph. That means in one minute it can travel 26 miles - or nearly one mile ever 2 seconds.
Any anti-aircraft weapon fired against Turkey’s admittedly “off course” fighter aircraft would have certainly been fired while the aircraft was well within Syrian airspace with the fired ordnance airborne and on course to intercepting the aircraft before the aircraft traveled back over international waters. Turkey’s claim of being “a mile” within international airspace may seem reasonable to the average reader accustomed to traveling at speeds where a mile is relatively far, but in terms of air combat, a mile equates into seconds.
Turkey, acutely aware of the immense tensions it itself has cultivated with neighboring Syria, exercised reckless abandon by traveling so closely to Syrian airspace. What readers may also be unaware of is the role US-built F-4’s play in scouting out and neutralizing air defense systems. Designated “wild weasels,” F-4’s had been extensively used in the opening phases of war against Iraq in 1991, flying 2,596 sorties, firing more than 1,000 air-to-ground missiles, and destroying more than 200 targets in a campaign aimed at destroying Iraqi air defenses.
Perhaps hoping the average reader is profoundly ignorant to how speeds, trajectories, and weapons of modern warfare work, the press has attempted to portray the downing of the F-4 as a provocative act carried out entirely over international waters. In reality, Turkey’s jet was fired upon in Syrian airspace, by its own account, as it was supposedly in “international space” for only one or two seconds before finally being struck. Syria claims the entire event took place over Syrian waters - a claim NATO has been unable to refute with anything more substantial than mere rhetoric.
Perhaps this is what Russian President Vladimir Putin partially meant when he once called the collapse of the Soviet Union “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the century.” Although the momentous event triggered severe dislocations across Russia, it also gave the United States an opportunity to behave like a veritable beast on the human stage. Now, after some 20 years of snorting and licking the mirror of power, the world’s solitary superpower, saying no-no-no to rehab, continues to do what it does best: acting like an infantile Bam-Bam from the Flintstones. So where is the homegrown American opposition to rein in these military misadventures?
If you were planning to conquer the world, or at least a broad swath of it, the war would necessarily start at home. After all, no general worth his salt would rush into battle with his rear exposed. You’d have to muzzle the media, severely curtail political choice and dissent, while preaching to the world about democracy and human rights to cover your tracks. You’d have to construct the mother of all propaganda machines, which proclaims over every available wavelength that it’s the best darn civilization since Atlantis sunk to its watery grave thousands of years ago. It would be a bit like decorating the halls of a mental asylum with idyllic nature scenes. You’d also have to hire an army of loud-mouth talking heads to shout down any and all dissenters, accuse them of being conspiracy theorists and lunatics and commies, while keeping a paramilitary police force on the standby 24/7 should the bullying tactics fail.
You’d have to spoon-feed the populace with a liberal dose of anti-depressants, Jersey Shore, American Idol and 24-hour shopping channels with easy credit to prevent them from giving a moment’s thought to real-time, third-dimensional issues. You could also fuel battles over trifling cultural issues, like homosexuals in the military, Mel Gibson’s latest rant and Charlie Sheen’s complicated love life. What we are left with after the smoke has cleared bears no resemblance to a classic, text-book democracy. What we are left with is an obese, drug-addled Burlesque Empire, bursting at the seams with electronic circuses, cocaine and corn puffs, physically and mentally incapable of finding the remote control when the scenes of war become too unappetizing.
We are overstretched at home, and like despotic Rome, overstretched overseas. Now it is anybody’s guess where this depressing joyride will take us.
The US policy of using aerial drones to carry out targeted killings presents a major challenge to the system of international law that has endured since the second world war, a United Nations investigator has said.
Christof Heyns, the UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial killings, summary or arbitrary executions, told a conference in Geneva that President Obama’s attacks in Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere, carried out by the CIA, would encourage other states to flout long-established human rights standards.
In his strongest critique so far of drone strikes, Heyns suggested some may even constitute “war crimes”. His comments come amid rising international unease over the surge in killings by remotely piloted unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).