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Friday, 26 June 2015

Taking Stock Of The Global Illegal Drug Trade

Not so good, according to the UN Office of Drugs and Crime’s most recent World Drugs report, which tracks overall trends as well as more granular data on the trafficking and use of specific illicit substances.

Specifically, one out of every 20 people the world over used illegal drugs in 2013, for a total of 246 million but, as the UN cheerfully notes, “because of the increase in the global population, illicit drug use has in fact remained stable.” Here’s more:



According to the most recent data available, there has been little change in the overall global situation regarding the production, use and health consequences of illicit drugs. 


Furthermore, the increase in global opium poppy cultivation and opium production to record levels has yet to have major repercussions on the global market for opiates. This raises concerns about the size of the challenge to law enforcement posed by increasingly sophisticated and versatile organized criminal groups.

First, a look at the big picture, which shows that not only has nothing changed, but if anything, the number of drug users and prevalance of drug use has risen over the last decade.

Meanwhile, 2014 was the second 'best' year for opium production since "the late 1930s", and as you can see from the chart below, "this was mainly attributable to the fact that opium poppy cultivation reached historically high levels in the main country in which opium poppy is cultivated, Afghanistan," which means that the trend we highlighted last August (namely that poppy cultivation has risen sharply since the beginning of the US occupation) has continued unabated. 

And as a morbid reminder:

Finally, here's a look at trafficking flows for opiates, coke, and meth:

Time to legalize it? 

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Bonus chart: Is this what happens when you replace all the carbon based traders on Wall Street with machines?

ISIL: Made in Langley and propped up by Tel Aviv and Riyadh

It is becoming more and more apparent that the Islamic State for Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), or “Daesh” as it is known in Arabic, or ISIS – the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham — preferred by Israel supporters because of the uncomforting similarity between “Israel” and “ISIL” – is part of another Central Intelligence Agency operation to artificially create a new “strategy of tensions” for the Eurasian and African land masses.

Yet another example of ISIL’s non-Islamic nature has been witnessed in the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra – the blowing up of the tomb of Mohammad Bin Ali, a descendant of the Prophet Mohammed’s cousin Imam Ali, by the brigands and mercenaries of ISIL. ISIL’s true goal is to eradicate the Arab and pre-Arab history of the Middle East with one major exception. There have been virtually no reports of important antiquities sacred to the Zionists having been destroyed by ISIL in either Syria or Iraq. The major targets for the ISIL demolition teams have been Sumerian, Akkadian, Babylonian, Roman, Assyrian, Persian, Alawite, Druze, Turkmen, Yazidi, Parthian, Christian, Shi’a, and Sufi (the other major tomb destroyed in Palmyra was the tomb of Nizar Abu Bahaa Eddine, a Sufi scholar who lived 500 years ago). ISIL destroyed the Tomb of Yunus (Jonah) Mosque in Iraq not because it honored the Jewish patriarch Jonah but because it was a mosque.

The alleged tomb of the Jewish prophet Daniel destroyed by ISIL in Mosul is but one of six Daniel tombs located in Iraq, Iran, and Uzbekistan. The Talmud, the Jewish book from which the Zionists obtain most of their geo-political inspiration, strictly prohibits any images of faces, but permits owning images of faces created by non-Jews. Although ISIL and Talmudists are on the same page on destroying sculptures, tiles, and paintings depicting people, the Talmud’s exception that allows Jews to own images created by non-Jews has resulted in a lucrative black market for antiquities stolen by ISIL and sold through brokers in Tel Aviv, Amsterdam, and Geneva.

It is becoming clear that ISIL, from the very beginning, was a construct of the CIA and its pro-Saudi and pro-Israeli director, John Brennan; Israel’s Mossad, which has ensured that Israeli targets are exempt from ISIL attack; and Saudi Arabia, which actually permitted ISIL attacks against two Shi’a mosques, one in the village of al-Qadeeh and the other in Dammam, in the Eastern Province, where Shi’as have a majority over Wahhabist Sunnis. In Iraq and Syria, U.S. and Israeli weapons have been seen by eyewitnesses being transferred to ISIL and forces of its allies, including the Al Nusra Front in Syria. Saudi bank cash receipts have been found in abandoned ISIL headquarters in both Syria and Iraq. The ISIL attacks on the Shi’as of Saudi Arabia are believed by many to be warnings by the unholy alliance of Washington, Tel Aviv, and Riyadh against predominantly Shi’a Iran.

From the terrorist Gladio “stay behind” network of fascists, which carried out terrorist attacks in Europe in the 1970s and 80s that were blamed on leftist irregulars, to the grand alliance of terrorists from Angola’s UNITA, the Afghan mujaheddin, the Nicaraguan contras, Laotian Hmongs who, under American auspices, met in 1985 in Jamba, Angola, the CIA has historically found that terrorist groups make advantageous allies. The CIA clandestinely and illegally violated two U.S. laws, the Clark and Boland Amendments, respectively, to support Angolan and Nicaraguan terrorists.

ISIL now serves as an important CIA, Saudi, and Israeli asset against common foes like Iran. ISIL has made no secret of its desire to bring the death and destruction it has visited upon Syria and Iraq into the heart of Iran. The destabilization of Iran by sponsoring terrorist attacks in Iran and against Iranian targets abroad has long been the modus operandi of the U.S., Israel, and Saudi Arabia, acting mostly through the anti-Tehran Mojahedin-e-Khalq (MEK) and Baluchi separatists based in Pakistan. ISIL refers to Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Tibet, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Turkmenistan as “Wilayat Khorasan” or Korasan State. An ISIL affiliate, known as the Khorasan Group, has been fighting in Syria and is believed to be made up of central Asian ISIL recruits and commanders.

It was recently announced that Colonel Gulmurod Khalimov, the one-time head of the Tajikistan elite anti-terrorism police force, known as OMON, defected to ISIL and is now one its top field commanders in Syria. Khalimov, who was trained by U.S. Special Operations, Blackwater, and CIA officers during a number of official visits to the United States, has vowed to return to the Tajikistan to “slaughter” Tajik President Emomali Rakhmonov, recruit Tajiks working in Russia to launch terrorist attacks inside Russia itself and Tajiks in Tajikistan to attack Russian military troops stationed in Tajikistan (which makes Khalimov an ally of NATO top military commander General Philip Breedlove and U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, who want to increase military pressure on Russia to Cold War levels). ISIL guerrillas, mostly Chechens, fresh from combat in Syria and Iraq, have been discovered fighting for Ihor Kolomoisky’s Israeli- and neo-Nazi-led mercenary battalions against the pro-Russian forces of Donetsk and Lugansk in Eastern Ukraine.

ISIL has, conveniently for the West, attacked Taliban forces in Afghanistan. The Taliban declared ISIL’s self-declared caliphate as illegitimate, and its caliph leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who may be an artificial product of the CIA’s and Mossad’s psychological warfare units, to be a fraud. The Taliban became alarmed as some of its members broke ranks with the jihadist movement and joined ISIL in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Moreover, ISIL declared the Taliban to be “kafirs”, or unbelievers of Islam. In April, Al-Baghadi declared the Taliban’s Mullah Omar to be “a fool and illiterate warlord.” It is no coincidence that ISIL’s rhetoric about the enigmatic Taliban leader matches nicely with that issued forth by the U.S. military psy-ops units in Afghanistan at the height of the U.S. military intervention in that country. In mid-June, ISIL released a video tape showing its forces decapitating a Taliban prisoner in Afghanistan.

ISIL has, also, in concert with increasing U.S. military pressure on China and North Korea, declared jihad or holy war on the two Asian nations. In May, a North Korean couple, who worked as doctors at the local hospital in Zallah, Libya, were taken captive by ISIL in Libya. No word has been received on the fate of the North Korean husband and wife medical duo. In January, ISIL computer hackers, known as the “Cyber Caliphate”, claimed credit for altering the Facebook page of Air Koryo, North Korea’s state-owned airline. ISIL’s black and white flag was pasted on the Facebook page with a statement calling North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un “a crying pig.” The ISIL hackers also had a warning for both North Korea and China: “North Korea, the communist thug nation, and the Chinese communist thugs will pay a price for their collaboration with the enemies of the mujahideen”.

ISIL propaganda rhetoric about China and North Korea also coincide with pronouncements emanating from the U.S. Pacific Command in Hawaii about the military threats posed by Beijing and Pyongyang. North Korea has responded to the ISIL threats by providing the Type 73 machine gun, manufactured by the First Machine Industry Bureau of North Korea to Iraqi government and Kurdish forces fighting against ISIL in Iraq. North Korean military advisers are also believed to be assisting Syrian government and Lebanese Hezbollah forces battling ISIL in Syria. South Korea, which never misses an opportunity to confront North Korea militarily, permitted a South Korean citizen, known only by the very common Korean name “Kim”, to join ISIL ranks in Syria in February. It is more likely that “Kim” is a South Korean intelligence agent who is responsible for coordinating ISIL attacks on North Korean assets in the region, including the North Korean medical couple in Libya.

Venezuela’s president Nicolas Maduro, who the CIA is busy trying to overthrow, called ISIL a “Frankenstein, a monster nursed by the West itself” in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly in 2014. Not coincidentally, as President Barack Obama declared that Venezuela posed a “national security threat” to the United States in March, there were reports of nascent ISIL activity in Venezuela. The U.S. Army War College, including Professor Robert Bunker, began issuing statements that increased ISIL activity in Venezuela would be good for U.S. national security because ISIL is the natural enemy of Hezbollah, which the U.S. neocons are claiming has gained a strategic toehold in Venezuela. The links between ISIL and the West in Latin America have not been lost on the Western Hemisphere’s sage senior statesman, former Cuban president Fidel Castro. In September 2014, Castro accused Israel’s Mossad, in league with Senator McCain, of helping to create ISIL.

The ultimate perpetrators of ISIL’s ravaging of the Middle East are not to be found in the deserts of the Middle East and the mountains of Afghanistan but in the seventh floor director’s suite at CIA headquarters in Langley. In 1985, the same year the CIA sponsored the summit of right-wing terrorist groups in Jamba, Angola, the CIA tried to kill Lebanon’s Shi’a Grand Ayatollah Muhammad Hussein Fadl-Allah with a car bomb in Beirut. The CIA missed the ayatollah but killed 80 innocent people and wounded 256. Today, the CIA allows ISIL to get its fingers dirty in carrying out such terrorist attacks from Iraq and Syria to Yemen and Libya. ISIL cannot be brought to its knees without dealing harshly with Mr. Brennan and his top advisers.

IRS Deleted Backups Of 24,000 Lois Lerner Emails Months After Subpoena

Back in 2013 when the IRS' scandalous targeting of "teaparty" organizations was first disclosed and when then IRS-official Lois Lerner pleaded the Fifth while the IRS' defense was that all her emails in the period under question were destroyed due to a local hard disk "failure" (which was then shredded to destroy all evidence) everyone who was not an utter idiot asked a simple question: where are the backup servers? After all, every email not only leaves a permanent trail, it can always be tracked down to a host server.

Today during a testimony by the Treasury's Inspector General for tax administration, J. Russell George, before Jason Chaffetz, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, the IRS finally closed that gaping loophole. In the most idiotic way possible.

Treasury Inspector General J. Russell George

As AP reports, according to the IG's deputy Timothy Camus, two "lower-graded" employees at the IRS center in Martinsburg, West Virginia, erased 422 computer backup tapes that contained as many as 24,000 emails to and from former IRS official Lois Lerner.

It gets better: the tapes were erased in March 2014, months after congressional investigators requested all of Lerner's emails, and months after Zero Hedge, among many others, said to simply track down the server backups.

And the punchline: according to George, who before "investigating" IRS cimes, was a page for the 1980 Democratic National Convention and a founder of the Howard University College Democrats, the workers might be incompetent, a lead investigator said Thursday, but there is no evidence they were part of a criminal conspiracy to destroy evidence.

Funny: remember the conversation the guy who was overseeing the Deutsche Bank Libor riggers had with a member of the Brither Bankers Association shortly before all hell broke loose?

Mr. Nicholls repeatedly dismissed concerns that Libor could be manipulated. “Banks do not collude to try to set a Libor rating,” he told John Ewan, the BBA official in charge of running Libor.


“I think I am just hearing a lot of hysteria about Libor that is just misinformed,” Mr. Nicholls added.


When the Deutsche Bank official argued that an individual bank wouldn’t be able to improperly influence Libor, which at the time was set by a group of 16 banks, Mr. Ewan responded: “A cabal of them could.”


“What’s a cabal?” Mr. Nicholls asked.


“A group together could,” Mr. Ewan said.


“That’s an interesting conspiracy theory,” Mr. Nicholls responded.

It was interesting. It was also a fact, and it was playing out right under Nicholls' nose for years. All the while he had not the faintest idea.

Same thing with the IRS, only much, much worse: the guy who just informed a committee that two IRS employees purposefully deleted 422 computer backup tapes, containing tens of thousands of Lois Lerner emails, said they did so by accident. Because it would be a "conspiracy theory" to suggest they could have possibly done so maliciously, and hence criminally. Ignore the fact that they had clear Congressional orders to preserve all emails relating to Lois Lerner!

In a statement, the IRS said it repeatedly alerted employees starting in May 2013 that they must save all emails, computer tapes and other records related to investigations by Congress and the Justice Department.

"The IRS recognizes there was a clear breakdown of communication in one part of the organization regarding the need to preserve and retain the backup tapes and information, although (the inspector general) concluded this wasn't intentional," the statement said.

And while the usual idiots will once again rise up and say George is being sincere and not grossly colluding with a criminal cartel engaging in epic malfeasance at the highest level of government, not everyone was utterly lobotomized to the banana republicanization of America.

"It just defies any sense of logic," said Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. "It gets to the point where it truly gets to be unbelievable. Somebody has to be held accountable."

Well, somebody is: two "lower-graded" IRS employees. Better known as scapegoats. At least they didn't also flash crash the market.

Camus said the workers did not fully understand an IRS directive not to destroy email backup tapes. He did not name the workers.

"When interviewed, those employees said, `Our job is to put these pieces of plastic into that machine and magnetically obliterate them. We had no idea that there was any type of preservation (order) from the chief technology officer,'" Camus told the committee.

And the hits just keep on coming: Camus said interviews, sworn statements and a review of the employees' emails turned up no evidence that they were trying to destroy evidence. Well, let's see: if everyone at the IRS is lying under oath, why not two of its lowliest employees desperate to avoid prison time. And as for emails not exposing an IRS crime implicating the IRS with destroying emails, well... it is not even worth bothering to joke about that.

Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., asked Camus if incompetence was to blame for the tapes being erased.

"One could come to that conclusion," Camus said.

Which is ironic, because moments ago the following statement hit:

One can surely blame incompetence for those emails being deleted too. In fact, why not just blame the US submergence into third world banana republic status on the grossest incompetence ever conceivable by an administration.

Actually, that would be more or less accurate.

Decapitated Head Found Pinned To Gate in French "Terrorist Attack"

Six months after the massacre at Charlie Hebdo that left 12 dead in Paris, France was hit by what looks to be another terrorist attack on Friday.

According to multiple reports, two men drove a car into the entrance of an Air Products factory in southeastern France triggering multiple explosions. A decapitated head covered in Arabic writing was pinned to the factory’s gate. 

One suspect is now in custody. Some reports suggest he was carrying an ISIS false flag.

Francois Hollande will take a break from the Greek drama and fly back to France from Brussels to address the media and assess the situation. “The attack bears the hallmarks of a terrorist attack,” the French President said.

CNN has more:

Police told French news agency AFP that a suspected Islamist attacker pinned a decapitated head covered with Arabic writing to the gates of a gas factory in eastern France on Friday, before being arrested.


One person has been killed in a suspected terror attack at a factory near Lyon in southeastern France, a local government official said Friday.


Another person is currently in police custody and is suspected of involvement in the attack, Joelle Huillier, a local politician, told CNN's French affiliate BFMTV. He is being questioned by police, she said.


A man described as a witness, whose name was given as Patrice, also told BFMTV that a group of men carrying Islamic flags forced their way into the factory, beheaded a person and targeted gas tanks.


Le Monde newspaper cited unidentified sources as saying that two individuals rammed a vehicle into the building, causing the explosion. Banners in Arabic that haven't yet been examined were found at the scene, the paper added.


The Paris prosecutor's office said its anti-terrorist section was opening an investigation into crimes related to a terrorist enterprise.


A spokeswoman for the company concerned, Air Products, confirmed there had been "an incident" on site at its Grenoble location.


Spokeswoman Nicola Long said the emergency services were at the scene. There was an explosion, she said, a a fire that has been put out.


And more color from The Daily Mail:

Witnesses at the scene claimed there more than one man was involved in the attack and that the perpetrators were carrying Islamist flags. 


Two men were seen driving into the main gate soon after 10am, before driving around in circles throwing gas cylinders around the main yard. One of the men then jumped out of the car, according to local prosecuting sources, and then 'decapitated a man'.


Before the attack a man was seen driving back and forth outside the factory, according to Dauphiné Libéré. 


An Islamic flag – possibly that of Islamic State – was found next to the dead body. The man's head was found some 30 feet from the corpse.


French journalist Stefan Vries told Sky News: 'There was an explosion at a gas factory. Several people were wounded and there has  been one person decapitated on the premises.


'His head was found a couple of yards from his body. A man has been arrested. He was allegedly carrying a flag of the Islamic State. Police fear there may be more attacks.'


Within an hour of the attack, French President Francois Hollande was to return home early from an EU summit


'He will return early this afternoon and is in constant contact with Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve and the security services,' the official said, adding that he would make a statement to the press in Brussels before 1100 GMT.



And from AFP:

The suspect entered the factory and set off several small explosive devices, the source said.


Police said it was unclear whether the attacker was acting alone, or had accomplices.


“According to the initial findings of the enquiry, one or several individuals on board a vehicle, drove into the factory. An explosion then took place,” said one of the sources.


“The decapitated body of a person was found nearby the factory but we do not yet know whether the body was transported to the place or not,” added this source, adding that a “flag with Arabic writing on it was found at the scene”.


A man thought to be the person who carried out the attack has been arrested, according to sources close to the inquiry, who said he was known to the security services.


French prime minister Manuel Valls ordered increased security measures at all sensitive sites in the area.