Thursday, December 21, 2017

Drug-trafficking, Money Laundering, Chemical sales to Syria, Obama turned a blind eye to Hezbollah to procure the Iran Deal

posted by Chivis Martinez republished from Politico by Josh Meyer
click on to enlarge

The Secret Backstory of how Obama let Hezbollah off the hook


How Hezbollah turned to trafficking cocaine and laundering money through used cars to finance its expansion.

In its determination to secure a nuclear deal with Iran, the Obama administration derailed an ambitious law enforcement campaign targeting drug trafficking by the Iranian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah, even as it was funneling cocaine into the United States, according to a POLITICO investigation.

The campaign, dubbed Project Cassandra, was launched in 2008 after the Drug Enforcement Administration amassed evidence that Hezbollah had transformed itself from a Middle East-focused military and political organization into an international crime syndicate that some investigators believed was collecting $1 billion a year from drug and weapons trafficking, money laundering and other criminal activities.

Over the next eight years, agents working out of a top-secret DEA facility in Chantilly, Virginia, used wiretaps, undercover operations and informants to map Hezbollah’s illicit networks, with the help of 30 U.S. and foreign security agencies.

They followed cocaine shipments, some from Latin America to West Africa and on to Europe and the Middle East, and others through Venezuela and Mexico to the United States. They tracked the river of dirty cash as it was laundered by, among other tactics, buying American used cars and shipping them to Africa. And with the help of some key cooperating witnesses, the agents traced the conspiracy, they believed, to the innermost circle of Hezbollah and its state sponsors in Iran.

They followed cocaine shipments, tracked a river of dirty cash, and traced what they believed to be the innermost circle of Hezbollah and its state sponsors in Iran.

But as Project Cassandra reached higher into the hierarchy of the conspiracy, Obama administration officials threw an increasingly insurmountable series of roadblocks in its way, according to interviews with dozens of participants who in many cases spoke for the first time about events shrouded in secrecy, and a review of government documents and court records. When Project Cassandra leaders sought approval for some significant investigations, prosecutions, arrests and financial sanctions, officials at the Justice and Treasury departments delayed, hindered or rejected their requests.

The Justice Department declined requests by Project Cassandra and other authorities to file criminal charges against major players such as Hezbollah’s high-profile envoy to Iran, a Lebanese bank that allegedly laundered billions in alleged drug profits, and a central player in a U.S.-based cell of the Iranian paramilitary Quds force. And the State Department rejected requests to lure high-value targets to countries where they could be arrested.

December 15, 2011

Hezbollah is linked to a $483,142,568 laundering scheme

The money, allegedly laundered through the Lebanese Canadian Bank and two exchange houses, involved approximately 30 U.S. car buyers.

“This was a policy decision, it was a systematic decision,” said David Asher who helped establish and oversee Project Cassandra as a Defense Department illicit finance analyst. “They serially ripped apart this entire effort that was very well supported and resourced, and it was done from the top down.”

David Asher

Veteran U.S. illicit finance expert sent from Pentagon to Project Cassandra to attack the alleged Hezbollah criminal enterprise., who helped establish and oversee Project Cassandra as a Defense Department illicit finance analyst. “They serially ripped apart this entire effort that was very well supported and resourced, and it was done from the top down.”

“This was a policy decision, it was a systematic decision,” said David Asher

The untold story of Project Cassandra illustrates the immense difficulty in mapping and countering illicit networks in an age where global terrorism, drug trafficking and organized crime have merged, but also the extent to which competing agendas among government agencies — and shifting priorities at the highest levels — can set back years of progress.

And while the pursuit may be shadowed in secrecy, from Latin American luxury hotels to car parks in Africa to the banks and battlefields of the Middle East, the impact is not: In this case, multi-ton loads of cocaine entering the United States, and hundreds of millions of dollars going to a U.S.-designated terrorist organization with vast reach.

Obama had entered office in 2009 promising to improve relations with Iran as part of a broader rapprochement with the Muslim world. On the campaign trail, he had asserted repeatedly that the Bush administration’s policy of pressuring Iran to stop its illicit nuclear program wasn’t working, and that he would reach out to Tehran to reduce tensions.

The man who would become Obama’s top counter-terrorism adviser and then CIA director, John Brennan, went further. He recommended in a policy paper that “the next president has the opportunity to set a new course for relations between the two countries” through not only a direct dialogue, but “greater assimilation of Hezbollah into Lebanon’s political system.”

John Brennan

Obama's White House counter terrorism adviser, who became CIA director in 2013., went further. He recommended in a policy paper that “the next president has the opportunity to set a new course for relations between the two countries” through not only a direct dialogue, but “greater assimilation of Hezbollah into Lebanon’s political system.”

By May 2010, Brennan, then assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism, confirmed in a speech that the administration was looking for ways to build up “moderate elements” within Hezbollah.

“Hezbollah is a very interesting organization,” Brennan told a Washington conference, saying it had evolved from “purely a terrorist organization” to a militia and, ultimately, a political party with representatives in the Lebanese Parliament and Cabinet, according to a Reuters report.

“There is certainly the elements of Hezbollah that are truly a concern to us what they’re doing,” Brennan said. “And what we need to do is to find ways to diminish their influence within the organization and to try to build up the more moderate elements.”

In practice, the administration’s willingness to envision a new role for Hezbollah in the Middle East, combined with its desire for a negotiated settlement to Iran’s nuclear program, translated into a reluctance to move aggressively against the top Hezbollah operatives, according to Project Cassandra members and others.

Lebanese arms dealer Ali Fayad

Ali Fayad (aka Fayyad). a suspected top Hezbollah operative whom agents believed reported to Russian President Vladimir Putin as a key supplier of weapons to Syria and Iraq, was arrested in Prague in the spring of 2014. But for the nearly two years Fayad was in custody, top Obama administration officials declined to apply serious pressure on the Czech government to extradite him to the United States, even as Putin was lobbying aggressively against it.

Fayad, who had been indicted in U.S. courts on charges of planning the murders of U.S. government employees, attempting to provide material support to a terrorist organization and attempting to acquire, transfer and use anti-aircraft missiles, was ultimately sent to Beirut. He is now believed by U.S. officials to be back in business, and helping to arm militants in Syria and elsewhere with Russian heavy weapons.
Read full document by using this link

Project Cassandra members say administration officials also blocked or undermined their efforts to go after other top Hezbollah operatives including one nicknamed the ‘Ghost".

The Ghost-Chemical weapons sold to Syria, used against Sirians

One of the most mysterious alleged associates of Safieddine, secretly indicted by the U.S., linked to multi-ton U.S.-bound cocaine loads and weapons shipments to Middle East.,” allowing them to remain active despite being under sealed U.S. indictment for years. People familiar with his case say the Ghost has been one of the world’s biggest cocaine traffickers, including to the U.S., as well as a major supplier of conventional and chemical weapons for use by Syrian President Bashar Assad against his people.

And when Project Cassandra agents and other investigators sought repeatedly to investigate and prosecute Abdallah Safieddine, Hezbollah’s longtime envoy to Iran, whom they considered the linchpin of Hezbollah’s criminal network, the Justice Department refused, according to four former officials with direct knowledge of the cases.

Abdallah Safieddine

Hezbollah’s longtime envoy to Iran who allegedly oversaw the group's “Business Affairs Component” involved in international drug trafficking., Hezbollah’s longtime envoy to Iran, whom they considered the linchpin of Hezbollah’s criminal network, the Justice Department refused, according to four former officials with direct knowledge of the cases.

The administration also rejected repeated efforts by Project Cassandra members to charge Hezbollah’s military wing as an ongoing criminal enterprise under a federal Mafia-style racketeering statute, task force members say. And they allege that administration officials declined to designate Hezbollah a “significant transnational criminal organization” and blocked other strategic initiatives that would have given the task force additional legal tools, money and manpower to fight it.

Former Obama administration officials declined to comment on individual cases, but noted that the State Department condemned the Czech decision not to hand over Fayad. Several of them, speaking on condition of anonymity, said they were guided by broader policy objectives, including de-escalating the conflict with Iran, curbing its nuclear weapons program and freeing at least four American prisoners held by Tehran, and that some law enforcement efforts were undoubtedly constrained by those concerns.

But the former officials denied that they derailed any actions against Hezbollah or its Iranian allies for political reasons.

“There has been a consistent pattern of actions taken against Hezbollah, both through tough sanctions and law enforcement actions before and after the Iran deal,” said Kevin Lewis, an Obama spokesman who worked at both the White House and Justice Department in the administration.

Lewis, speaking for the Obama administration, provided a list of eight arrests and prosecutions as proof. He made special note of a February 2016 operation in which European authorities arrested an undisclosed number of alleged members of a special Hezbollah business affairs unit that the DEA says oversees its drug trafficking and other criminal money-making enterprises.

Project Cassandra officials, however, noted that the European arrests occurred after the negotiations with Iran were over, and said the task force initiated the multinational partnerships on its own, after years of seeing their cases shot down by the Justice and State departments and other U.S. agencies.

The Justice Department, they pointed out, never filed corresponding U.S. criminal charges against the suspects arrested in Europe, including one prominent Lebanese businessman formally designated by the Treasury Department for using his “direct ties to Hezbollah commercial and terrorist elements” to launder bulk shipments of illicit cash for the organization throughout Asia, Europe and the Middle East.

A former senior national security official of the Obama administration, who played a role in the Iran nuclear negotiations, suggested that Project Cassandra members were merely speculating that their cases were being blocked for political reasons. Other factors, including a lack of evidence or concerns about interfering with intelligence operations could have been in play.

“What if the CIA or the Mossad had an intelligence operation ongoing inside Hezbollah and they were trying to pursue someone . . . against whom we had impeccable [intelligence] collection and the DEA is not going to know that?” the official said. “I get the feeling people who don’t know what’s going on in the broader universe are grasping at straws.”

The official added: “The world is a lot more complicated than viewed through the narrow lens of drug trafficking. So you’re not going to let CIA rule the roost, but you’re also certainly not going to let DEA do it either. Your approach to anything as complicated as Hezbollah is going to have to involve the interagency [process], because the State Department has a piece of the pie, the intelligence community does, Treasury does, DOD does.”

Nonetheless, other sources independent of Project Cassandra confirmed many of the allegations in interviews with POLITICO, and in some cases, in public comments.

One Obama-era Treasury official, Katherine Bauer, in little-noticed written testimony presented last February to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, acknowledged that “under the Obama administration … these [Hezbollah-related] investigations were tamped down for fear of rocking the boat with Iran and jeopardizing the nuclear deal.”

As a result, some Hezbollah operatives were not pursued via arrests, indictments, or Treasury designations that would have blocked their access to U.S. financial markets, according to Bauer, a career Treasury official, who served briefly in its Office of Terrorist Financing as a senior policy adviser for Iran before leaving in late 2015. And other “Hezbollah facilitators” arrested in France, Colombia, Lithuania have not been extradited — or indicted — in the U.S., she wrote.

Bauer, in an interview, declined to elaborate on her testimony.

Asher, for one, said Obama administration officials expressed concerns to him about alienating Tehran before, during and after the Iran nuclear deal negotiations. This was, he said, part of an effort to “defang, defund and undermine the investigations that were involving Iran and Hezbollah,” he said.

“The closer we got to the [Iran deal], the more these activities went away,” Asher said. “So much of the capability, whether it was special operations, whether it was law enforcement, whether it was [Treasury] designations — even the capacity, the personnel assigned to this mission — it was assiduously drained, almost to the last drop, by the end of the Obama administration.”

With much fanfare, Obama announced the final agreement on implementation of the Iran deal on Jan. 17, 2016, in which Tehran promised to shelve efforts to build a nuclear weapons program in exchange for being released from crippling international economic sanctions.

Within months, task force officials said, Project Cassandra was all but dead. Some of its most senior officials, including Jack Kelly who created and led the task force, were transferred to other assignments. And Asher himself left the task force long before that, after the Defense Department said his contract would not be renewed.

As a result, the U.S. government lost insight into not only drug trafficking and other criminal activity worldwide, but also into Hezbollah’s illicit conspiracies with top officials in the Iranian, Syrian, Venezuelan and Russian governments — all the way up to presidents Nicolas Maduro, Assad and Putin, according to former task force members and other current and former U.S. officials.

The derailment of Project Cassandra also has undermined U.S. efforts to determine how much cocaine from the various Hezbollah-affiliated networks is coming into the United States, especially from Venezuela, where dozens of top civilian and military officials have been under investigation for more than a decade. Recently, the Trump administration designated the country’s vice president, a close ally of Hezbollah and of Lebanese-Syrian descent, as a global narcotics kingpin.

Meanwhile, Hezbollah — in league with Iran — continues to undermine U.S. interests in Iraq, Syria and throughout wide swaths of Latin America and Africa, including providing weapons and training to anti-American Shiite militias. And Safieddine, the Ghost and other associates continue to play central roles in the trafficking of drugs and weapons, current and former U.S. officials believe.

“They were a paramilitary organization with strategic importance in the Middle East, and we watched them become an international criminal conglomerate generating billions of dollars for the world’s most dangerous activities, including chemical and nuclear weapons programs and armies that believe America is their sworn enemy,” said Kelly, the supervisory DEA agent and lead coordinator of its Hezbollah cases.

“If they are violating U.S. statutes,” he asked, “why can’t we bring them to justice?”

click to enlarge

Kelly and Asher are among the officials involved in Project Cassandra who have been quietly contacted by the Trump administration and congressional Republicans, who said a special POLITICO report April 24 on Barack Obama’s hidden Iran deal concessions raised urgent questions about the need to resurrect key law enforcement programs to counter Iran.

That won’t be easy, according to former Project Cassandra members, even with President Donald Trump’s recent vow to crack down on Iran and Hezbollah. They said they tried to keep the project on life support, in hopes that it would be revived by the next administration, but the loss of key personnel, budget cuts and dropped investigations are only a few of many challenges made worse by the passage of nearly a year since Trump took office.

“You can’t let these things disintegrate,” said Kelly. “Sources evaporate. Who knows if we can find all of the people willing to testify?”

Derek Maltz, who oversaw Project Cassandra as the head of the DEA’s Special Operations Division for nine years ending in July 2014, put it this way: “Certainly there are targets that people feel that could have been indicted and weren’t. There is certainly an argument to be made that if tomorrow all the agencies were ordered to come together and sit in a room and put all the evidence on the table against all these bad guys, that there could be a hell of a lot of indictments.

But Maltz said the damage wrought by years of political interference will be hard to repair.

“There’s no doubt in my mind now that the focus was this Iran deal and our initiative was kind of like a fly in the soup,” Maltz said. “We were the train that went off the tracks.”

Project Cassandra had its origins in a series of investigations launched in the years after the 9/11 attacks which all led, via their own twisted paths, to Hezbollah as a suspected global criminal enterprise.

Operation Titan global alliance includes Drug Trafficking

Operation Titan, in which the DEA worked with Colombian authorities to explore a global alliance between Lebanese money launderers and Colombian drug trafficking conglomerates, was one. Operation Perseus, targeting Venezuelan syndicates, was another. At the same time, DEA agents in West Africa were investigating the suspicious flow of thousands of used cars from U.S. dealerships to car parks in Benin.

Meanwhile, in Iraq, the U.S. military was probing the role of Iran in outfitting Shiite militias with high-tech improvised explosive devices known as Explosively Formed Penetrators, or EFPs, that had already killed hundreds of U.S. soldiers.

All of these paths eventually converged on Hezbollah.

This wasn’t entirely a surprise, agents say. For decades, Hezbollah — in close cooperation with Iranian intelligence and Revolutionary Guard — had worked with supporters in Lebanese communities around the world to create a web of businesses that were long suspected of being fronts for black-market trading. Along the same routes that carried frozen chicken and consumer electronics, these businesses moved weapons, laundered money and even procured parts for Iran’s illicit nuclear and ballistic missile programs.

As they pursued their investigations, the DEA agents found that Hezbollah was redoubling all of these efforts, working urgently to raise cash, and lots of it, to rebuild its south Lebanon stronghold after a 2006 war with Israel had reduced it to rubble.

Dating back to its inception in the early 1980s, Hezbollah, which translates to “Party of God,” had also engaged in “narcoterrorism,” collecting a tariff from drug dealers and other black-market suppliers who operated in territory it controlled in Lebanon and elsewhere. Now, based on the DEA’s extensive network of informants, undercover operatives and wiretaps, it looked like Hezbollah had shifted tactics, and gotten directly involved in the global cocaine trade, according to interviews and documents, including a confidential DEA assessment.

Operating like an organized crime family, Hezbollah operatives would identify businesses that might be profitable and useful as covers for cocaine trafficking and buy financial stakes in them, Kelly and others said. “And if the business was successful and suited their current needs,” Kelly said, “they went from partial owners to majority owners to full partnership or takeover.”

Hezbollah even created a special financial unit that, translated into English, means “Business Affairs Component,” to oversee the sprawling criminal operation, and it was run by the world’s most wanted terrorist after Osama bin Laden, a notoriously vicious Hezbollah military commander named Imad Mughniyeh.

Mughniyeh had for decades been the public face of terrorism for Americans, orchestrating the infamous attack that killed 241 U.S. Marines in 1983 in their barracks in Lebanon, and dozens more Americans in attacks on the U.S. Embassy in Beirut that year and an annex the year after. When President Ronald Reagan responded to the attacks by withdrawing peacekeeping troops from Lebanon, Hezbollah claimed a major victory and vaulted to the forefront of the Islamist resistance movement against the West.

Over the next 25 years, Iran’s financial and military support for Hezbollah enabled it to amass an army with tens of thousands of foot soldiers, more heavy armaments than most nation-states and approximately 120,000 rockets and ballistic missiles that could strike Israel and U.S. interests in the region with devastating precision.

Hezbollah became an expert in soft power, as well. It provided food, medical care and other social services for starving refugees in war-torn Lebanon, winning credibility on the ground. It then evolved further into a powerful political party, casting itself as the defender of poor, mostly Shiite Lebanese against Christian and Sunni Muslim elites. But even as Hezbollah was moving into the mainstream of Lebanese politics, Mughniyeh was overseeing a secret expansion of its terrorist wing, the Islamic Jihad Organization. Working with Iranian intelligence agents, Islamic Jihad continued to attack Western, Israeli and Jewish targets around the world, and to conduct surveillance on others — including in the United States — in preparation for future attacks.

Hezbollah mostly left the United States alone, in what was clearly a strategic decision to avoid U.S. retaliation. But by 2008, the Bush administration came to believe that Islamic Jihad was the most dangerous terrorist organization in the world, capable of launching instantaneous attacks, possibly with chemical, biological or low-grade nuclear weapons, that would dwarf those on 9/11.

Funding Terrorism through Global Drug Trafficking

By funding terrorism and military operations through global drug trafficking and organized crime, Mughniyeh’s business affairs unit within Islamic Jihad had become the embodiment of the kind of threat the United States was struggling to address in the post-9/11 world.

The DEA believed that it was the logical U.S. national security agency to lead the interagency effort to go after Mughniyeh’s drug trafficking networks. But within the multipronged U.S. national security apparatus, this was both a questionable and problematic assertion.

Established by President Richard Nixon in 1973 to bring together the various anti-drug programs under the Department of Justice, the DEA was among the youngest of the U.S. national security agencies.

And while the DEA had quickly proven itself adept at working on the global stage — especially in partnerships with drug-infested countries desperate for U.S. help like Colombia — few people within the U.S. government thought of it as a legitimate counter-terrorism force.

Cocaine networking with ZETAS Cartel

Investigators were also homing in on several dozen key players underneath them who acted as “superfacilitators” for the various criminal operations benefitting Hezbollah, Iran and, at times, their allies in Iraq, Syria, Venezuela and Russia.

But it was Safieddine, a low-key, bespectacled man with a diplomatic bearing, who was their key point of connection from his base in Tehran, investigators believed.

The Colombia and Venezuela investigations linked him to numerous international drug smuggling and money laundering networks, and especially to one of the biggest the DEA had ever seen, led by Medellin-based Lebanese businessman Ayman Joumaa.

Ayman Saied Joumaa

Accused drug kingpin and financier whose vast network allegedly smuggled tons of cocaine into the U.S. with Mexico’s Zetas cartel and laundered money.’s network rang alarm bells in Washington when agents discovered he was working with Mexico’s brutal Los Zetas cartel to move multi-ton loads of cocaine directly into the United States, and washing $200 million a month in criminal proceeds with the help of 300 or so used car dealerships. The network would funnel huge amounts of money to the dealerships to purchase used cars, which would then be shipped to Benin, on Africa’s west coast.


  1. At first I discounted out of hand...then I read it and it has a tremendous amount of documentation. It was so very long. but I put up most, including drug trafficking and zetas and you can link to the remainder.

    1. Thank you Chivis for all your hard work.

    2. Thank Chivis for posting this article. Borderland Beat commentators needed a good political argument for readers to get both old and new and even idealistic stances of the issues people are experiencing around the world

    3. Chivis, it can only get worse. 80 year old man and 83 year old woman on their way from California to visit family in Vermont for Christmas get pulled over and arrested with 60 lbs of marijuana:
      No grinch

  2. Damn these folks are dirtier than drug cartels and thats saying alot!

    1. Since the opium smuggling and then theft oil became an endemic government supported effort the USA has made the process of supporting unethical practices on behalf of business in return for money being funneled to the politicians in power.

  3. Fuck Obama the traitor, and Clinton cartel. Glad trump won, yeah you al think he’s a huge racist because of mainstream media, but he’s just looking out for America, which no one was doing, so Americans had to support that clown, better that Hillary

    1. You think Trump will support efforts to track the other USD 49 billion of the annual 50 billion drugs trade???

      Judging by this case it seems as if the DEA/CIA/FBI could find out where all the big drug money in the world goes.

      Do you think Trump will put all these agencies to find out who is behind the global drug trade and name names?
      Or do you think Trump will cherry pick those which fit his political agenda?
      Or do you think Trump will simply continue the WoD which has resulted in unpaprallelled violence AND drugs bei CHEAPER, STRONGER and more PLENTIFUL than EVER?
      Please let us know what you think Trump will do with these awesome resources to find out the truth which undoubtedly are at Trumps disposal.

    2. This happens all the time with all US administrations, and just wait to Trump's term ends. You'll see.

  4. This is just like fast and furious that Obama's administration permitted. The worst president in history.

    1. F&F was the brainchild of Eric Holder and he served both the RepubliCripps and the DemoBloods

    2. Fast and Furious was an operation started under W, named "Wide Receiver" to help his good buddies move merchandise to Mexico for a good chunk of narco-dineros...
      Under Obama it went on steroids, but I doubt anybody was watching, the ATF was left without directkr, on purpose, nobody wanted to answer why, abd holder and Obama found out later they owned the scandal created by rightist weapons dealers with influences like the NRA.

  5. The obama administration really messed up the Middle East. I know bush started it but obama didn't have to continue it, much less take it up a notch. Now he's ruined Europe as a result of the mass exodus of the the Middle East and Africa.

    1. Middle east ruined itself. Bush was just the spark that lit the fire. Take that to the bank!

    2. Global financial criminals have had it for the muslim countries' oil since it was discovered.
      --dragging US presidents to war may take a while but they get with the program,
      --lately it is private military forces executives pushing for a contract fighting wars of their own creation on countries of their own cboosing, like Blackwater founder erik prince with a list of customers that include syria, yemen, Saudi arabia, the US, russia, ukarainia,iran, qatar, Mexico, SouthAmerica and europe, now with his own private intelligence services and air force to drone the shit off anyone "mister prince" targets...
      Frontier Services will drone anybody you want for a reason let amount of billions of dollars, cash, on some foreign bank, plis.

  6. I read the entire story and it’s hard to write this off as Right Wing story.

    If you consider the previous administrations transparency on Fast and Furious, this comes as no shock. Congressional hearings are expected to be scheduled.

  7. Oh this must be true .. cause Obama is a Muslim terrorist right Chivas ??
    Why would you even post this BS ?

    1. Do you actually think the US government doesn't get up to shit like this,just like many others?
      Everyone's favorite racist demon was saying this months ago and no one believed it

    2. Pendejo are you in denial, the facts are correct. Stop being a sheep and open your eyes to all aspects of what occurs. Republican and liberals alike then make a concuss decision.

    3. @6:29PM, You realize that Politico (the source of the article) is a big left-wing and Obama supporter, yes? Has nothing to do with that silly "Obama is a secret Muslim" conspiracy theory.


    4. Because Obama is a terrorist supporter who let Muslim Brotherhood members into the white house. He supported Iran. Obama is the biggest traitor to the USA. He has set race relations in America back to the 60's. Obama destroyed American culture. I hope he goes to jail for his crimes against America. It's not about Republican or Democrat it's about protecting your country which he did a terrible job. I bet you are a CNN watcher lol

    5. Such a stupud comment.

  8. Iran has tons of oil and America wants itl.

    1. Same mantra used by the Code Pink hippies in the Iraq war..."No war for oil,"they said. Well, what happened? Did we take their oil? HELL NO...Same tune throughout hippiedom.

    2. @6:41 Nah, the problem is that Iran is as close to a modern and liberal democracy that you get in the arab ME (Iran is not arab though). Our best friend Saudi-Arabia is the worst and most gruesome dictatorship in the world after (Chins's) North Korea.

      The dictators in Saudi-Arabia realise the their own general population which is suffering tremendously is slowly finding out that life in Iran is so much better (like it also was in Iraq before we fucked it up of course).

      Now since Saudi-Arabia belongs to us we need to make sure to help the dictators we have put in charge by trying to combat their enemies.

      It is really that simple :-)

    3. 7:45 well, "we didn't take their oil", but halliburton sure manages to steal almost all of it, helped by the US military paid for by the US citizens the US government supplies...we don't steal the oil, the usurpers steal almost all the profits

  9. Time and time again, it is Z this and Z that allowing the Gulf to slither by like the Black not White snakes they are. Is the gang in Columbia named also gulf the reason of this? If so, all the ones calling coward really need to get their shoes out of their mouths and quit targeting innocents in the name of fear. The Black Market Biz is way too big already...Making it darker does not cut it for any corporation, hence for anybody with a piece of mind

    1. In this case, if there is one snitch, there is dozens more following no matter how dark

  10. Off topic: Mencho's daughter have autism?

    1. Based on what? did you read an article? How Old is she?

  11. None of this sis surprising . I don't think Obama like the Clintons but I think he is just as criminal . Look at Obamas life objectively without being for him or against him . Many fishy things about his life and acquaintances . Bill Ayers for example . Bill Ayers help begin Obamas political career . Bill Ayers was part of a leftist terrorist organization in the 60's responsible for bombings and deaths . His "only regret is I couldn't do more . Everything Obama did was fucked . Right down to all the lying and promises he made to get votes . "My first Year in Office will be focused on getting a comprehensive immigration bill passed . Obamas first year in office the democrats had control . He had no opposition . What did he do ?

    1. Just what we need; another fuckin conspiracy rant of sorts. B.S. you all make it sound that one man alone in the white house is capable of negotiating deals that compromise the security of this country and does it intentional simply because of some articles like this. Governments around the world have allowed drugs and weapons to cross international boundaries for decades without so much as a stutter and this includes the U.S. under all presidents Democrat or Republican.

    2. Lol speaking of conspiracies you say one right after him . What a clown

    3. 10:11 LOL . Yea he did many things alone . One of the reasons so much of his work is so easy to undo . Barry was a crack head himself . Lazy like one also . Look at his history as a senator. was a lazy fuck always

    4. Chivis . c'mon . Let me do my conspiracy rant . Hell you might even believe it . Its basicly politics and drugs . Some of it is probably true . IF YOU DONT , I will still like you anyways .

    5. @10:08 might of mentioned a conspiracy but no way did I, state or believe that one person alone is responsible for anything dumbfuck. There are also countless reasons why governments will allow drugs and weapons to be purchased not saying its planned.

  12. I live in beirut ,Lebanon .. there’s a valley here 2 hour drive from the capital and the villages there under hezbollah protection , all the houses and families sell drugs for cheap and there are poppy and hashish fields ..the government forces are barred from enetering these villages.

    1. Wish things were better for you brother,but you and i both know jewish interest comes first in this particular time.
      The state we left Iraq in is shameful much shady dealings with I.S is going to come out,trying regime change in Syria,Russia is wholly demonized in the media yet they helped Bassad and Syria,the people of Syria did not want this madness with 1000s of foreign fighters flooding in with the latest weapons available,where did they get these weapons?Yes Obama and the US caused much madness all in the name of" we are right " No we are wrong.

    2. @10:28 what you describe happens in many places.

      There are many countries with villages where the drug trade is thriving and government forces cannot/do not want to enter in, like:
      - Pakistan
      - Nepal
      - India
      - Mexico
      - Honduras
      - Colombia
      - Peru
      - Morocco

      I am sure there are further places than that.

    3. Assad terrorized lebanon for 30 years while aiding and helping the transfer of hundreds of thousands of rockets to hezbollah in lebanon.

      Obama should have bombed syria right after assad used chemical weapons 4 years ago.

      Now our streets r flodded with syrian refugees ,our population 3.5 mil and we have harbored 1.5 mil syrian refugees ...

  13. cartel De Hezbollah

  14. Doubt it's the zetas that's making a ton of money sending those cars filled with drugs, Sinaola most likely shipping 90% of the drugs hidden in the cars, as long as Hezbollah’s isn't using that money to attack,hurt Americans, then its not america problem

    1. 1106. Horses are a sign of freedom, power, and endurance. The horse was a significant symbol during the Great Depression in the U.S. Just like History repeating itself, and although the Zetas invested in horses too quickly with too much money, making themselves visible, they invested in horses for a reason.

      The history of the horse goes back many years prior to the Great Depression, serving a purpose in the world. Even Hitler had his interest in horses. The book, The perfect horse: the daring U.S. mission to rescue the priceless stallions kidnapped by the Nazis, might interest you and help you understand that there is more to what is thought.

      What does this have to do with your comment, if you are referring to the U.S.A. and not the Americas, then you have to know the U.S.A. government peoples always involve themselves in other countries business in the name of and for the safety and benefit of themselves by which they believe will trickle down to their citizens. The IDEAL actions of the people of governments from all countries commence within the sign of peace

    2. 9:52 the American Military/Industrial complex President Eisenhower warned the US about on his farewell speech needed a little war once in a while, then it was a bigger war here and there, but now they need a lot of wars all over the place, because of all that money...

    3. 437. The United States has a job not a revolution, and in that job the United States opens doors to stay on top of things in the hopes peoples will make the best of choices. However, the United States will never surpass Europe

  15. world legal drug trade and deaths:
    alcohol 1500 billion$ and 4 million dead
    nikotine 600 billion$ and 7 million deaths every year

    stupid governments around the world

  16. What is more important getting Iran to stop developing nuclear weapons or another so-called drug arrest and its importance exaggerated by the DEA that will actually do nothing to stop the supply and demand of drugs.

  17. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. Thanks be to God you removed your comment


    1. Not necessary to shout at me...

    2. One thing about Mexicans, you're always demanding respect but so often not extending it.

    3. 4:05
      Where you disrespected here in BB?

    4. rstevenpage? One thing about Blacks, you're always telling White people their nasty and yet so often not realizing the truth

    5. @4:05. You certainly are not Obama nor Martin Luther King nor are you doing a favor for Columbia. SO DON'T TRY AND TURN AROUND AND PUT YOUR OWN PERSONAL BULLSHIT IN THE WORLD ON MEXICANS!!

    6. r steven page
      Nah not yelling at you, unless you are one of those people making this into a hillary-trumo-bush-obama personal war. This post has a potential of provoking a good discussion. as for "one thing about Mexicans", you should know how racist your comment is. and you should know better because of your skin color. We are not a group , we are individuals. and as such should be judged accordingly.

      Should have I typed all caps? no. I admit I was at my limit. You did not see the more than 50 comments I had to delete. the worse were personal attacks against Obama. I may not agree with his politics or with the Iran agreement but there is much to like personally about our first bi-racial president.

      I am weary of personal attacks. and you need to know more Mexicans. Paz

    7. Ok, my apologies to all Mexicans if offended and I'll strive harder to stay on topic. However I thought the point could have been made by simply not posting my comment instead of raking me with a high-decibel broadside. Sorry for my ad hominem remarks, I love the blog and the Mexican people.

    8. 7:18. Read Chivis' comment at least 2 times if you could not understand what she wrote the first time you read it. She "DELETED" more than 50 posts. Your post was posted. What does that mean? It was Not referring to YOU in general. And once again you are referring to the "Mexican people," adding sarcasm and threats to your racism. If you have a problem with ONE or even 2 persons, so be it

    9. @rstevenpage
      Lead by example. I asked you a question and I had hoped you would have extended me that respect you talk about by answering it. Were you disrespected here in BB?

    10. rstevenpage

      Hey, I am sorry for the disgusting behavior of a racist asshole whose graphics and comment slipped through. we are thinking of going to registration to keep these idiots out.... Paz, Chivis

    11. 1:42 It's a dead issue. Let's move on.

    12. Hola! Well sir I will say I deleted a half dozen more comments from angry readers, however when one feels racism only he/she can say when it is over. This could be a teaching moment but honestly I don't think you are there. For example I I were to say t you "You" blacks,have such a chip on your shoulder". Then I say "I apologize to you "IF" I offended." that would not touch you in a great way.

      Of course you offended Mexicans. You refuse to answer readers questions, ignored my heartfelt apology, and then you come in saying "Let's move on" just when the comments came down to only one this morning. That call is not yours to make.

      As a black American, you should know better. You should offer better.. You are a smart man, but ignorant to race relations perhaps outside your own personal interests. We share a similar path confronting racism. We should be on the same team. I never understood why it isn't so. Historically, It is our children who have been mostly impacted by street drugs, low standard of education, and few life choices. We are similar in many ways.

      Remember when you offend a group by racism, it is not only them you offend but each and every person disgusted by racism and bigotry.


    13. Chivis,

      It is Christmas Day, and you are wasting precious time counseling a Black man who obviously prefers keeping prejudice and racism at its best alive. He may never understand that others without his skin color can mentally and physically function without issues.

      Having over 10 years of college, it is safe to write his self-less acts are quite different than most, especially during this time of year. He presents himself as a very angry and sad man to gain attention from those who he may think may take away his anger, sadness, and even guilt. Sad but true with his words in or out of character.

      Life is too precious Chivis to waste time on people who pull the race card or downplay another race at their convenience.

      Merry Christmas!

      Citizen of Germany

    14. @rstevenpage
      When you were dishing it out it wasn't a dead issue and I immediately asked you abou it but now all of a sudden you declare it a dead issue. More like an inconvenient issue for you.

    15. Citizen of Germany...
      I hope your holiday was as terrific as mine.
      I did not feel I wasted any of my Christmas my sending a message to this reader. It was from my heart and needed to be expressed. It did not nag at me during my Christmas.

      Sadly, it fell on deaf ears, evident by his comments still trickling in, still ignorant, still offensive.

      Me thinks we had a big fat ol Willito Troll... :)

      Paz & Salud

    16. Chivis,

      Thank you. Christmas Day was quiet and peaceful and enjoyable, thanks be to God.

      You are a Saint Chivis. You seen hope in that gentleman when most did not, could not by his words. The thought of an "acting" 1%er acting like that is not desirable to consumers and yet you took that step down to address his ungratefulness with kindness and...he still turned a blind eye

      "Sadly, it fell on deaf ears, evident by his comments still trickling in, still ignorant, still offensive.

      By his own admission(s) of enmities outside of any true reasoning or meaning, much less to a sincere admittance of being wrong

      "Me thinks we had a big fat ol Willito Troll... :)"

      What else could he be? Sad. Question is did he do anybody a favor? Hardly not so.

      Africa is both a free and slave country, it has been for years. If he represents Africa, yet was not born there, then his mindset is clear as day

      There is no place like home


      Time to welcome in the New Year with good health, good spirits and prosperities!!

      May you and yours always be blessed with happiness and good fortune every day. As a wise Irish man once said, may you always be with a coin in your pocket.

    17. At times, I do think that often we humans make a bad first impression. and the Black-Brown relationships has always puzzled me, we share many similarities. I was hoping to engage in an honest dialog with him. I still don't think he is a bad person. But concede going further would be pointless. BUT I am NO saint. ask my husband.

      Happy New Year to you and yours!

    18. His Miata will nickle and dime him

      Agreeably first impressions are not always good, and given a chance has the potential to change those awful first impressions

      However, there cannot be many similarities within any group when it comes to statistically wanting and not wanting to work hard and do the job right no matter how many times it may take

      No saint, eh? (wink*).
      Tis is going to be a fun year!

    19. Oops!

      The thought of an "acting" 1%er acting like that is desirable to consumers.


  19. Apparently El Pirata de Culiacan is more popular than Hezbollah

  20. Hard to believe people who are as informed as you all on the goings on in Mexico could buy the whole war on Syria, hate and fear Iran, "Assad is killing his own civilians" propaganda pack of lies. Even seeing the comments where people just take the 4 chemical false flags as fact, unbelievable. You do know that the last so called chemical attack was in a town completely controlled by HTS (formally known as Al Nusra, which was formally called Al Qaeda). Thats a fact. Thats who made the video that you take for a fact to be a chemical attack by Syrian Army. I don't even know where to begin.. So I won't. I guess outside of here you guys must just only look at mainstream media corporate news... still surprising to see an article and comments like this like I'm reading CNN or Fox or MSNBC.

  21. Remember past President had open borders. This took jobs from the people of color. Not surprised that they did benefit from the drug business. Remember the president is from Chicago. And the connection to Chapo And Lopez brothers. The mayor Chicago does not to clean up the crime because he makes $$$$. Chapo knows to mucho and be released. I do not vote just observer

  22. This story went public in 2011. Obama didnt cover it up. Arrests were made in 2013. The only sheep are those who blindly follow. Grow up.

    1. If you are going to lie, lie where it isn't so easily proven so. I voted for Obama first term, but this story in its entirety and documented has not been told and ignored by the press. back to the basement with you.

  23. Great reporting! This site is the greatest! Keep up the good work!


  25. Iran is our natural partner in the region not the Saudi's....if we were smart


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