by David Downs
Sometimes truth is stranger than Oliver Stone’s films.
For the last ten years the US government secretly armed and coordinated with a blood-thirsty Mexican drug cartel in exchange for information on rival drug trafficking organizations, major media outlets are reporting.
The publication El Universal reported Monday that between 2000 and 2012, the Drug Enforcement Administration worked with Mexico's Sinaloa drug cartel, allowing the murderers to smuggle billions of dollars of drugs in exchange for tips on rivals.
El Universal published court documents from the case against a top Sinaloa cartel "logistics coordinator.” The documents include DEA agents admitting they met with top Sinaloa officials. Those officials say the DEA met with them more than fifty times and offered to have charges against cartel members dropped in the United States, among other promises.
The explosive news could fuel calls for ending the international war on drugs, which has claimed the lives of at least 60,000 Mexicans since since 2006.
Captured cartel boss Jesus Vicente Zambada-Niebla also alleges that Operation Fast and Furious was part of an agreement to finance and arm the cartel in exchange for information used to take down its rivals.
Edgardo Buscaglia, a senior research scholar in law and economics at Columbia University, told El Universal that the tactic has been previously used in Colombia, Cambodia, Thailand and Afghanistan. “Of course, this modus operandi involves a violation of public international law, besides adding more fuel to the violence, violations of due process and of human rights."
The Washington Post is less sanguine, saying essentially that America works with treacherous murderers all the time, so what’s the big deal?
“The evidence is thin and [Jesus Vicente Zambada-Niebla] claims just happen to serve the argument that he shouldn't go to jail for allegedly trafficking more than $1 billion dollars worth of cocaine and heroin.”