Archives by month

The Mexican Diplomat, Stratfor and Wikileaks part two.

On the heels of our last show with Narco News’ Bill Conroy about revelations that came to light through a Wikileaks document dump,  Bill has released another piece detailing alleged collusion between the U.S. & Mexican Governments and Mexican drug cartels.

This week, Mike and Mark talk with Bill about the latest story, and do a fair amount of ranting all on their own.

Bill’s latest story:
US, Mexican Officials Brokering Deals with Drug “Cartels,” WikiLeaks Documents Show
Revelation Exposed in Email Correspondence Between
Private Intelligence Firm and Mexican Diplomat

The New Yorker article “Throwaways” that Mike referenced.

About the guest:

Bill Conroy has worked as a reporter or editor for the past eighteen years at newspapers in Wisconsin, Arizona, Minnesota and Texas.

His investigative reporting over the past five years has focused on corruption and discrimination within federal law enforcement agencies.

He is also a journalist for Narco News. His investigative pieces, particularly those on the House of Death, have made him our most-favored guest.

 

 

Extra news – Mike’s legendary book The Big White Lie is now available in e-book format.

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Cocaine Death Squads and the War On Terror

Regular listeners to our broadcast know – we have repeatedly made the point that the war on drugs doesn’t work – nor has it ever.  Tonight, Mike and Mark speak with Dr. Oliver Villar, co-author of “Cocaine, Death Squads, and the War on Terror: U.S. Imperialism and Class Struggle in Colombia”, who has spent over a decade researching the subject, and has some eye-opening observations on not only why it doesn’t work, but also on why it’s supposed to work that way.

About the guest:

Dr. Oliver Villar is a lecturer in Politics at Charles Sturt University. For the past decade his research has been devoted to this book. Much of the research is based on his PhD dissertation on the political economy of contemporary Colombia in the context of the cocaine drug trade. He has published broadly on the Inter-American cocaine drug trade, the U.S. War on Drugs and Terror in Colombia, and U.S.-Colombian relations.

Oliver was born in Mendoza, Argentina and has lived in Sydney for most of his life. In 2008 he completed his PhD on the political economy of contemporary Colombia in the context of the cocaine drug trade at the then UWS Latin American Research Group (LARG). Whilst completing his PhD, Oliver’s research interests in political economy, Latin America and the global drug trade followed teaching positions in politics at UWS and Macquarie University. His academic interests have involved an engagement with the sizeable Latin American immigrant community in Sydney and Melbourne and international concerns, such as with political and policy concerns over the ‘globalisation’ of crime and terrorism and the underlying causes of the processes involved.

At CSU Oliver’s research interests continue to focus on the vast and dynamic reservoir of political economy and the study of class analysis and class relations. This abiding interest extends across economic thought, economic development and the development of social and political relationships between the First World and Third World (in particular between the United States and Latin America) and the impact of neoliberal economic globalisation.

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Fast and Furious / House of Death update from Bill Conroy – and more.

Those who have been listening to us for any length of time have heard our broadcasts on Fast and Furious and the House of Death. Well… Mike’s on a crusade to get someone thrown in jail – and who can blame him?  Here are a couple of headlines:

U.S. troops deployed to the US/Mexican border last week may well be there, in part, to deal with the blowback from ATF’s botched Fast and Furious gambit.

PLUS

A new voice from the past has emerged in the House of Death mass-murder case — in which a US government informant is accused of assisting with up to a dozen murders, the bodies of the victims later found buried, covered in lime, in the backyard of a house in Juarez, Mexico.

Tonight, we delve into these subjects and more with Bill Conroy.

About the Guests:

Bill Conroy has worked as a reporter or editor for the past eighteen years at newspapers in Wisconsin, Arizona, Minnesota and Texas.

His investigative reporting over the past five years has focused on corruption and discrimination within federal law enforcement agencies.

He is also a journalist for Narco News. His investigative pieces, particularly those on the House of Death, have made him our most-favored guest.

Show links:

http://narcosphere.narconews.com/notebook/bill-conroy/2012/02/us-troops-may-now-be-coping-fast-and-furious-fallout

http://narcosphere.narconews.com/notebook/bill-conroy/2012/01/new-lead-surfaces-cold-house-death-drug-war-case

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More Fast and Furious / Did Cele Call it?

Those who have been listening to us for any length of time have heard our broadcasts on Fast and Furious and the House of Death. What we increasingly run into is the fact that, no matter who’s in office, the same kind of boneheaded policies stay in place – that result in death and mayhem. Why?

Iran/Contra-Era Whistleblower Cele Castillo Alleged in 2008 That Federal Agents Were Helping to Smuggle Guns into Mexico

Cele Castillo, a former DEA agent who blew the whistle on the CIA-backed arms-for-drugs trade used to prop up the 1980s Contra counter-insurgency in Nicaragua, is now sitting in a federal prison for what may well be another act of whistleblowing in this century.

Plus: The criminal case of accused Sinaloa drug organization leader Jesus Vicente Zambada Niebla is straying even further into the path of a cover-up under the guise of national security, if pleadings filed by his attorneys are to be believed.

Tonight, we delve into these subjects and more with Bill Conroy.

About the Guests:

Bill Conroy has worked as a reporter or editor for the past eighteen years at newspapers in Wisconsin, Arizona, Minnesota and Texas.

His investigative reporting over the past five years has focused on corruption and discrimination within federal law enforcement agencies.

He is also a journalist for Narco News. His investigative pieces, particularly those on the House of Death, have made him our most-favored guest.

Show links:

http://narcosphere.narconews.com/notebook/bill-conroy/2011/11/was-former-dea-agent-jailed-exposing-atf-arms-trafficking

http://narcosphere.narconews.com/notebook/bill-conroy/2011/11/us-prosecutors-seeking-prevent-dirty-secrets-drug-war-surfacing-cartel-

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Where is Justice?

Is the Iranian assassination plot against a Saudi Diplomat a legitimate threat to national security, or yet another case of messy informant handling, or something else altogether? Plus – those who have been listening to us for any length of time have heard our broadcasts on Fast and Furious and the House of Death.  What we increasingly run into is the fact that, no matter who’s in office, the same kind of boneheaded policies stay in place – that result in death and mayhem.  Why?  Tonight, we delve into the subject with Bill Conroy and Sandalio Gonzalez.

About the Guests:

Bill Conroy has worked as a reporter or editor for the past eighteen years at newspapers in Wisconsin, Arizona, Minnesota and Texas.

His investigative reporting over the past five years has focused on corruption and discrimination within federal law enforcement agencies.

He is also a journalist for Narco News. His investigative pieces, particularly those on the House of Death, have made him our most-favored guest.

In 1978 Sandalio Gonzalez joined the DEA as a Special Agent in the Los Angeles Field Division. In 1983 he was transferred to San Jose, Costa Rica where he served as Assistant Country Attaché. In 1989 he was assigned to the Inspection Division at DEA Headquarters in Washington, D.C., where he served as a Unit Chief in the Office of Security Programs and later as an Inspector in the Office of Professional Responsibility. In 1992 he was promoted as the DEA Advisor to the Commander in Chief of the U.S. Southern Command in Panama where he served until 1994. Mr. Gonzalez returned to Washington as Chief of the Drug Suppression Section in the Office of Cocaine Investigations, and in 1995 took over as Chief of the South America Section in the Office of International Operations, where he was in charge of DEA operations in South America. In January 1998 he reported to the Miami Field Division as an Assistant Special Agent in Charge, and later that year he was promoted to the Senior Executive Service of the United States as Associate Special Agent in Charge. On January 18, 2001, Mr. Gonzalez was reassigned as the Special Agent in Charge of the El Paso Field Division, El Paso, Texas.

Mr. Gonzalez has received several performance awards while assigned to foreign and domestic DEA offices. He has participated in numerous undercover assignments and complex criminal investigations involving domestic and international drug trafficking organizations. As Advisor to the Southern Command and as a Headquarters Section Chief he provided direction and supervision to implement DEA policy in Latin America.

As a Senior Executive Service management official in the DEA, Mr. Gonzalez reported serious allegations of wrongdoing and cover-ups by federal agents and prosecutors in Miami, Florida and El Paso, Texas. He became the target of an internal investigation and was involuntarily transferred and retaliated against by the Department of Justice and the DEA.

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This Week – Support WBAI

Since 1996, we’ve been doing this for nothing.  We couldn’t have done it without WBAI.

Tonight, we feature some of our favorite guests and topics from over the past year.  While you may only listen to our show via the web – the show itself would not be possible were it not for WBAI-FM – Part of the Pacifica Radio network.

So please show your support for WBAI by sending them a donation below, or by visiting their website.  During the broadcast, you can also call 212-209-2950.

Info on the guests can be found below.

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Tonight’s guests:

Bill Conroy has worked as a reporter or editor for the past eighteen years at newspapers in Wisconsin, Arizona, Minnesota and Texas.

His investigative reporting over the past five years has focused on corruption and discrimination within federal law enforcement agencies.

He is also a journalist for Narco News. His investigative pieces, particularly those on the House of Death, have made him our most-favored guest.


Stephan Salisbury is the senior cultural writer for the Philadelphia Inquirer, where he has been a reporter for three decades.

He has won numerous awards for his work and was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize as part of an Inquirer investigative team looking into local election fraud.

He is author of the recently published Mohamed’s Ghosts: An American Story of Love and Fear in the Homeland published by Nation Books.


Howard Bloom, a Visiting Scholar at New York University, is founder of the International Paleopsychology Project, executive editor of the New Paradigm book series, a founding board member of the Epic of Evolution Society, and a member of the New York Academy of Sciences, the National Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Psychological Society, the Human Behavior and Evolution Society, The International Society of Human Ethology, and the Academy of Political Science. He has been featured in every edition of Who’s Who in Science and Engineering since the publication’s inception.


Dr. Mark M. Lowenthal, an internationally recognized expert on intelligence, is the President and CEO of the Intelligence & Security Academy, LLC, a national security education, training and consulting company.

From 2002-2005, Dr. Lowenthal served as the Assistant Director of Central Intelligence for Analysis and Production and also as the Vice Chairman for Evaluation on the National Intelligence Council. Prior to these duties, he served as Counselor to the Director of Central Intelligence. Dr. Lowenthal was the staff director of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in the 104th Congress (1995-97), where he directed the committee’s study on the future of the Intelligence Community, IC21: The Intelligence Community in the 21st Century. He also served in the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR), as both an office director and a Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, and has been the Senior Specialist in U.S. Foreign Policy at the Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress.

Dr. Lowenthal has written extensively on intelligence and national security issues, including five books and over 90 articles or studies. His most recent book, Intelligence: From Secrets to Policy (Congressional Quarterly Press, 4th ed., 2009), has become the standard college and graduate school textbook on the subject. He has also written a fantasy novel, Crispan Magicker, published in 1978. Dr. Lowenthal is a frequent public commentator on intelligence issues. He has appeared on each of the major networks, the Lehrer Newshour and Charlie Rose; his op-eds have appeared in The New York Times and The Washington Post.

Dr. Lowenthal received his B.A. from Brooklyn College and his Ph.D. in history from Harvard University. He joined the adjunct faculty of the Johns Hopkins University in 2008, after 14 years as an adjunct at Columbia University. He is the Executive Director of the International Association for Intelligence Education and a Chairman Emeritus of the Intelligence Committee for AFCEA.

In 2005, Dr. Lowenthal was awarded the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal, the Intelligence Community’s highest award. In 2006, he received AFCEA’s Distinguished Service Award for service to the Intelligence Community. In 1988, Dr. Lowenthal was the Grand Champion on Jeopardy!, the television quiz show.


Photo by Charles Miller

LESLIE KEAN is an independent investigative journalist with a background in freelance writing and radio broadcasting. She has contributed articles to dozens of publications here and abroad including the Boston Globe, Philadelphia Inquirer, Atlanta-Journal Constitution, Providence Journal, International Herald Tribune, Globe and Mail, Sydney Morning Herald, Bangkok Post, The Nation, and The Journal for Scientific Exploration. Her stories have been syndicated through Knight Ridder/Tribune, Scripps-Howard, New York Times wire service, Pacific News Service, and the National Publishers Association. While spending many years reporting on Burma, she co-authored Burma’s Revolution of the Spirit: The Struggle for Democratic Freedom and Dignity (Aperture, 1994) and she has contributed essays for a number of anthologies published between 1998 and 2009. Her freelance journalism has been supported by grants from numerous foundations including the Open Society Institute of the Soros Foundation, The Fund for Investigative Journalism, and the Nation Institute.

Kean was also a producer and on-air host for a daily investigative news program on KPFA radio, a Pacifica station in California. She began covering the UFO subject in 2000 with a feature story in the Boston Globe, and followed with additional mainstream stories. In 2002, she co-founded the Coalition for Freedom of Information (CFi), an independent alliance advocating for greater government openness on information about UFOs, and for responsible coverage by the media based on a rational and credible approach. As director of the CFi, she was the plaintiff in a successful, five-year Freedom of Information Act federal lawsuit against NASA. In 2007, she co-organized a landmark Washington DC international press conference on official UFO investigations, which received media coverage around the world.

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The Fence

If you listen regularly, you know we’ve spent a great deal of time covering Mexico and the U.S. Border.

The killing along the northern border of Mexico now rivals the statistics in any war.  Our leaders have decided on the building of a wall, almost 2,000 miles long, that has already cost our taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars (and still climbing.)

The border patrol –a no win brutal job–is our largest federal law enforcement agency with over 22,000 officers in the field.

All signs indicate that none of this is making any difference – nor will it ever.

Tonight, Mike and Mark speak with author and professor Lee Maril about the fence we’ve been building – both physical and virtual, along that border… its’ history, its’ effect (and lack thereof), and its’ future. Lee brings a wealth of both life experience and heavy-duty research to the subject.

Lee’s blog – leemaril.com – is a great resource for more information on the subject.

About the guest:
Lee Maril has been studying the U.S.-Mexico borderlands since moving there in 1975. His focus is the people who live along the border, their history, and the public problems they face on a daily basis. Most recently he is the author of The Fence: National Security, Public Safety, and Illegal Immigration along the U.S.-Mexico Border (Texas Tech University Press). He is also the author of Patrolling Chaos: The U.S. Border Patrol in Deep South Texas, a related examination of the Border Patrol based upon two years of access to this federal law enforcement organization. He has authored six other books, all of which focus on some aspect of inequality, including race, class, and gender in the Southwest and the borderlands.

Lee has testified three times before the United States Congress. Most recently he testified at the Immigration field hearings in Dubuque, Iowa, based upon his border research. His research to date has been reflected in two bills initiated in the House of Representatives and one in the Senate. He has been interviewed on national television, on major market radio stations throughout the country, and his work has been cited in a variety of publications including The New York Times, Newsweek, and The Christian Science Monitor. Lee has also served as a consultant in both the public and the private sector.

Born and raised in Oklahoma, Lee Maril received a B.A. from Grinnell College, his M.A. at Indiana Univeristy-Bloomington, and his Ph.D. from Washington University (St. Louis). He taught at two borderland public universities and a borderland public vocational school for a total of 17 years. He currently is the Founding Director of the Center for Diversity and Inequality Research and Professor of Sociology at the Thomas Hariott School of Arts and Sciences, East Carolina University.

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What We’ve Wrought…

Mike has been talking about the failed War on Drugs forEVER. It has wrought havoc not just in the states, but around the world. The ATF “Fast and Furious” program and the House of Death are just the latest in a long string.

Tonight, we’re joined by Terry Nelson – Executive Director of LEAPLaw Enforcement Against Prohibition – for a freewheeling conversation about the war on drugs, legalization, decriminalization – and the current administration’s reaction to subpoenas issued to the ATF in the Fast and Furious case.

About the guest:

Terry Nelson‘s law-enforcement career spanned three decades. It included service in the US Border Patrol, the US Customs Service, and the Department of Homeland Security, taking him beyond the US borders into Mexico, Central America, and South America. In various capacities, he acquired first-hand knowledge of the war on drugs through his direct involvement with counter-narcotics missions. He labored with distinction, even receiving special Congressional recognition for his work.

“But,” he says, “as the ‘War on Drugs’ went on and on, I never saw any visible progress – and only limited discussion about the lack of progress. Something was wrong with this picture.” Terry came to understand drug prohibition was doing more harm than good, and that the United States needed a major policy change. He had thought a lot about decriminalization and legalization for years. But the obvious lack of progress toward winning the war and the continued congratulatory backslapping unrelated to even incremental successes made him conclude that enough was enough. He was ready to speak out. Terry has decided the only solution is a policy of legalized regulation of all drugs. That decision led to his joining LEAP – the first group he has ever joined. “We must remove the criminal element from the drug trade, because it is destroying our society and crippling governments to the south of us. We must change the rules to win the real war.”

Terry retired in 2005 as a GS-14 air/marine group supervisor. He is a veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard, having served as a communications specialist in Vietnam, Thailand, and the Philippines. He served nine years in the U.S. Border Patrol including a stint as instructor at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, three years in marine operations in the Florida Keys, one year as a customs inspector at DFW Airport, seven years as an air interdiction officer/criminal investigator, two years as staff officer to the director of foreign operations, and five years on the staff for the Field Director, Surveillance Support Branch East. During this period the SSBE team participated in the seizure of over 230,000 pounds of cocaine and received the United States Interdiction Committee award for interdictions.

“But to what avail?” Terry asks. “Today drugs are cheaper, more potent, and far easier for our children to get than at the beginning of the war. We need a policy of legalized regulation.”

Links:

LEAP

 

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Fast and Furious III – the bizarko continues.

As we’ve been reporting on previous episodes…”As part of an operation dubbed Fast and Furious, an ATF whistleblower contends at least 1,800 firearms illegally purchased in the U.S. were allowed to “walk” across the border…”

 

Well tonight, Mike has issued a “ten-thirteen” – a police radio call signifying that an officer is in serious trouble.  And Mike is close to a meltdown over this story.

Tonight, we’re rejoined by Bill Conroy from Narco News to go over the latest in the story, and to cover his latest:

US-Backed Programs Supplying the Firepower for Mexico’s Soaring Murder Rate

Felipe Calderón’s Drug War Has Become a Hot Market for US Arms Trade

We also cover this story, provided by Barbara – one of our intrepid listeners – on our Facebook page.

Sinaloa Drug Cartel Controlled and Protected by Both Mexican and U.S. Governments

 

About the Guest:

Bill Conroy has worked as a reporter or editor for the past eighteen years at newspapers in Wisconsin, Arizona, Minnesota and Texas.

His investigative reporting over the past five years has focused on corruption and discrimination within federal law enforcement agencies.

He is also a journalist for Narco News. His investigative pieces, particularly those on the House of Death, have made him our most-favored guest.

 

Previous shows on the topic:

Fast and Furious I

Fast and Furious II

Closing music:

“Glide”, from Mark’s ongoing album project. Buy all 9 tracks here for as little as 2 smackers, and help the project continue:

<a href=”http://markmarshall.bandcamp.com/album/the-four-for-4-project” _mce_href=”http://markmarshall.bandcamp.com/album/the-four-for-4-project”>The Four For 4 Project by Mark Marshall</a>

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Narco Americano

Tonight, we interview Author T.J. English about his devastating article that details the horrendous drug-related violence that plagues the U.S. / Mexican border.  The article is in the February 2011 issue of Playboy magazine.

“If there was doubt before, there is no longer: The killings represent a tipping point.  What was viewed by some U.S. citizens and public officials as mostly a Mexican problem is now an American problem, with American victims.  No one is immune. And no one is safe.”

About the guest:

Thomas Joseph “T.J.” English comes from a large Irish Catholic family of ten brothers and sisters. Early in his writing career, English worked as a freelance journalist in New York City during the day and drove a taxi at night. He often refers to cab driving as a metaphor for what he does as a writer – cruising the streets, interviewing strangers, exploring the unknown, reporting on what he sees and hears from his sojourns in and around the underworld.

In 1990, English published his first book, The Westies, an account of the last of the Irish Mob in the infamous Manhattan neighborhood known as “Hell’s Kitchen.” The book was the result of a series of reports English wrote for a weekly Irish American newspaper based in New York…
His second book, Born to Kill (1995), was an unprecedented inside account of a violent Vietnamese gang based in New York’s Chinatown, that operated up and down the East Coast. In 2005, English published Paddy Whacked, a sweeping history of the Irish American gangster in New York, Chicago, Boston, New Orleans, and other U.S. cities. Most recently, English published Havana Nocturne (2008), an investigative account of U.S. mobster infiltration of Havana, Cuba, in the years before the Revolution swept Fidel Castro into power.

As a journalist, English has written for many magazines and newspapers including: Esquire, Playboy, Irish America, The Village Voice, The Los Angeles Times, and The New York Times…

In the mid-1990s, he wrote a three-part series for Playboy entitled “The New Mob” that explored the changing face of organized crime in America. His work as a writer has taken him to Cuba, Jamaica, Hong Kong, Mexico, Ireland, and all around the U.S… Most of his articles are on the subject of crime and criminal justice, though English writes on a wide variety of subjects including music, politics, and movies. He has published full-length interviews with Chicago mayor Richard J. Daley, actor Bill Murray, director Martin Scorsese, and comedy legend George Carlin, to name a few.

In addition, English is a screenwriter and has penned episodes for the television crime dramas “NYPD Blue” and “Homicide,” for which he was awarded the prestigious Humanitas Prize.

His next book, THE SAVAGE CITY – Race, Murder, and a Generation on the Edge, is coming out this March.

He lives in New York City.

You can find out more about him at his website.

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Some Prior Guests

David Moorhouse

Ray McGovern

Dr. Rick Nuccio

Renee Boje

Daniel Ellsberg

Richard Stratton

Gerard Colby

Greg Palast

Dennis Dayle

Ralph McGeehee

Stan Goff

Mark Levine

Vincent Bugliosi

J.H. Hatfield

Siobhan Reynolds

Charles Bowden

Katherine Gun

Bob Parry

Sandy Gonzalez

Sibel Edmonds

Ellen Mariani

Peter Lance

Senator Bob Graham

Cele Castillo

Tosh Plumlee

Donald Bains

Will Northrop

Aukai Collin

John Loftus

Joyce Reilly Von Kliest

Kelly O' Meara

John P. Flannery

Bill Conroy

Sander Hicks

Paul Williams