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COUSIN OF COLMBIAN PRESIDENT ARRESTED IN DEATH SQUAD PROBE

Story of investigation into links between members of Congress, paramilitary Death Squads and Narco-trafficking…and we arent talking about FARC here. We’re talking about the Colmbian elite and its killers. There’s a book, apparently called “Parapolitics”, cooauthored by a Claudia Lopez. Death squads go back as far as the 1980s.
So let me see…according tho the Washingto Post, the US has been paying people who traffic cocaine to the US to kill people who may be involved with FARC, who the administration accuses of trafficking in cocaine. Hm…Sounds like capitalism to me. Pay someone to expand their market share. Are there any good guys in all this?

FROM MEXICO, DRUG VIOLENCE SPILLS OVER INTO US

This article would have been written for the Washington Post before news broke of today’s gun battles in Tijuana. Real “state within a state” stuff. Also introduces a displacement argument. Someone has recently argued that you have to work out where crime is going to be displaced to before you start to intervene and provide the resources there too.

HIZBOLLAH BUILDS UP FIGHTING FORCE

Again, the headline in this Guardian/Observer article is misleading. Everyone expects a new round of fighting between Hizbollah and Israel. This piece offers an insight into the fact. It also gives evidence that there were far fewer fighters than previous estimates, but there will now be a whole generation trained in camps in other countries. The article is based on a chat with a single person, it needs to be said. An untitled “US military study” describes the military wing as autonomous and completely decentralised. Intriguing piece, though to be treated with caution.

GANG FIXERS “PICKED OVER POLICE”

“community fixers” being chosen to deliver justice rather than the police, says the Chief constable of Leicester:
“I do recognise that you get a limited number of people at a more criminal level who seek to build a power base in communities by intimidation, by controlling the drugs, by being seen, if you like, almost to bring a sense of peace.

“In my experience the people that are criminal fixers are actually feathering their own nest.”

HACKERS WARN HIGH STREET CHAINS

BBC report on the “Hackers’ Panel” at the InfoSecurity Conference. Interesting argument about role for ISPs in policing botnets and claims that neither China nor Russia responsible for recent attacks. Both private individuals and murky Western agencies routing their attacks through those countries to disguise the origin of attacks. Sounds like trouble in cyberspace. Commercial companies good targets because their security is so poor.

FBI WANTS TO MOVE HUNT FOR CRIMINALS INTO INTERNET BACKBONE

Thanks Monty for this link to an important article. One quote:

“The current debate over who gets to do what and how with network hubs is akin to the foundational debates over property and taxes with which we started America, so it’s important that we have it in the light of day and that we all participate.”

You’d better all go look at this and think about it! Today’s three hour essay question.”What is the optimum balance between the threat to individual liberties from terrorism and organised crime and the threat from the government and security service response to it?”

Get setting that for your final year students. A three hour one question essay.

TERROR TALK: NO MORE ISLAMIST JIHADS

Oh dear. The neo-cons don’t even seem to understand that their use of the terms actually causes offence and diminishes them in the eyes of the Muslim world. So what terms are we allowed to use in this Orwellian world? The term “terrorist” isnt very helpful either. All it means is “people the US government doesnt like.”
An interesting challenge for academics here. Perhaps a competition for some new concepts?

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