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Tuesday :: July 21, 2015

Counter-theories on El Chapo's Escape and Past Non-Accountability

Veteran journalist Ginger Thompson has an article in Pro Publica about the theories floating around that the Mexican Government had a deal with Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman and the escape through the tunnel story doesn't ring true.

She recounts a breakfast she had last week with "a senior Mexican intelligence official", a "veteran American counternarcotics agent" and a guy who was in Mexican cartels for 30 years. His last cartel was the Zetas.

No one in this deeply sourced group was surprised. Nor were they particularly interested in the logistical details of the escape, although they clearly didn’t believe the version they’d heard from the Mexican government.... They were convinced it was all a deal cut at some link in the system’s chain.

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TX DPS Releases Video of Sandra Bland Traffic Stop

Here's the video of the Sandra Bland traffic stop released today on You Tube by the TX Dept of Public Safety.

CNN was all Sandra Bland all day in the car. I don't have anything to add, but I'm posting it for those who are interested.

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U.S. Kills Prominent AQ Operative in Drone Strike

The U.S. reports it has killed a long-sought AQ terrorist from "The Khorasan Group", Muhsin al-Fadhli, in a drone strike.

He was believed to have been killed in September, 2014, in the U.S. raid on Nusra and its members from Khorasan that killed sniper al Turki. But most denied it. Sometimes they fake their own death. Here's a long post I wrote about him back then.[More...]

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Tuesday Open Thread

Here's a new open thread, all topics welcome.

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Trump Has Double Digit Lead

Donald Trump has a double digit lead in the polls over his rivals.

According to a new ABC News/Washington Post national poll, Trump has the support of 24 percent of registered Republicans and Republican-leaning independents — 11 points higher than Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (13 percent) and 12 points ahead of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

When does the joke go too far? According to the Des Moines Register, which has called for him to drop out, it already has.

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Monday :: July 20, 2015

Extraditing El Chapo, Or Not

A few days ago, the Attorney General of Mexico announced that on June 25, 2015, less than two weeks before his escape, Mexico had received a diplomatic note requesting extradition of El Chapo to the Southern District of of California. Here is Mexico's official press release. Via Google translate, it says:

She informed senators and deputies, on 25 June this year was received from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a diplomatic note, through which the Government of the United States of America made the formal request for the extradition of Joaquin Guzman Loera, in order to be processed by the Federal District Court for the Southern District of California on charges of conspiring to import and possess with the intent to distribute cocaine.

She explained that she turned instructions to the areas of the PGR, to analyze the request and be attached to the legal requirements and of the international treaty on the subject signed between both countries, consideration of the Judicial power of the Federation, in accordance with the appropriate procedure.

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Monday Open Thread

Our last open thread is full, here's a new one. All topics welcome.

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Sunday :: July 19, 2015

China Deports 20 Tourists for Watching Terror Videos in Hotel Room

A group of 20 tourists, from Britain, South Africa, India and other places have been deported from China for watching video clips promoting terrorism in their hotel room. China says they were terrorism clips.

The group, which included a 68 and 74 year old couple from London were on day 30 of a 47 day tour. They had visited the Genghis Kahn mauseleum in Ordos, Inner Mongolia. The next day they went to the airport to fly to the next leg of their trip (Xian), when they were detained and ultimately deported.

"The group is a mixture of multi-faith men and women from Islamic, Christian and Hindu religions who knew each other well and had travelled the world together in the past, including Israel and the USA.

What they had actually watched (not that it should make a difference what they watch in the privacy of their hotel room): a documentary on Mongol emperor Genghis Khan. [More...]

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Friday :: July 17, 2015

Friday Open Thread

So glad it's Friday. I've got another jail day and am spending all my free hours trying to figure out why my new Dell desktop has a black screen. It's okay in safe mode but I can't even log into it in regular mode. Do they still have computer gurus who make house calls?

James Holmes was found guilty, no suprise there. A shooting of marines by someone born in Kuwait was all I heard on the car today.

El Chapo is still free.

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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Wednesday :: July 15, 2015

Wednesday Open Thread

I'll be at the jail the rest of the day. I'll have another El Chapo post up tonight. For those of you who are more interested in other topics, here's an open thread, all topics welcome.

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Senor de los Toneles

Here are some pictures of the inside of the tunnel that went between Chapo's prison shower and the house over a mile away.

Here's one with showing the light:

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El Chapo's Crummy Jail Cell

I'm sure everyone has seen this video by now of Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman pacing in his cell before disappearing while bending down over the hole in his shower floor.

Two questions: Why did they release this photo of him when he clearly has hair in the video?

The photos of his jail cell are very disturbing. It is a filthy horrid place. Who wouldn't want to escape from this hellhole prison? [More....]

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Monday :: July 13, 2015

Monday Open Thread

I'm busy at work, and in my spare moments, only following news about El Chapo. Here's an open thread, all topics welcome.

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Obama Commmutes 46 Drug Sentences

President Obama has issued 46 grants of clemency to drug offenders.

“These men and women were not hardened criminals. But the overwhelming majority had to be sentenced to at least 20 years,” he said, noting that in his letters to them he made sure they needed to make different choices now that they were free.”But I believe that at its heart, America’s a nation of second chances. And I believe these folks deserve their second chance.”

This isn't even on my front page of Google News, I had to search for it. Google needs a new algorythm or whatever they use to decide what's important enough for the front page and top stories.

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El Chapo: Post-Escape Photos on Airplane

Blog de Narco has received three photograghs purporting to show Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman-Loera after his escape from Altiplano prison in Almaloya de Juarez. While it cannot verify the photos, it did use software that established they were not edited or photo-shopped.

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