Plan Mérida

According Gustavo Gil, director of political analysis at Integralia, a Mexico City consultancy firm, the rule of law should replace military aid as the central pillar of the Mérida Initiative.

“As long as Mexico’s institutions are unable to impose the rule of law,” he says, “the routine violation of human rights will continue.”

Gil cites a 2013 study by Mexico’s National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), which indicates that 94 percent of all crimes committed in Mexico go unpunished —  “a damning indictment” of the country’s security policies, he says.

Mexico’s failure to hold its own security forces to account is costing lives — but so, too, is the failure of the U.S. policy-makers to ask quite where Mérida Initiative money is going.

Despite reports from Mexico’s National Secretary on Security that 10,000 people died violently in the first half of 2015, President Obama has requested a further $116 million in spending from Congress, for handover in 2016.

The bill for the Mérida Initiative —in terms of U.S. spending and lost human lives— looks set to rise, with no upward limit in sight.

Tout lire.


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Xanadu II

But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted
Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover!
A savage place! as holy and enchanted
As e’er beneath a waning moon was haunted
By woman wailing for her demon-lover!
And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething,
As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,
A mighty fountain momently was forced:
Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst
Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail,
Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher’s flail:
And mid these dancing rocks at once and ever
It flung up momently the sacred river.



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Frank Furedi

Throughout most of the 20th century, therapy was advertised as both a cure and as an instrument for the construction of a happy society. It was promoted as a positive way of exploring and expanding the individual’s personality. From the perspective of today’s therapeutic ethos, therapy is much more a means of survival than an instrument through which enlightenment can be gained. Individuals are not so much cured as placed in a state of recovery. They are far more likely to be instructed to acknowledge their problems than to conquer them.

Therapy today, like the wider culture of which it is a part, teaches people to know their place.

This book on a key aspect of Reeducation is over twelve years old. I would have done well to read it when it was new.


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On language and geosecurity

That many of the ISIS members were trained by Western military and were supplied weapons by the US and UK is a key point that remains missing from the symbolic representations of the attacks. In Libya, Egypt, and Syria, the US and UK offered at various points vital resources to actors that would coalesce around the structure of ISIS. The US and UK funded and trained religious sectarian groups with the broader goal of toppling the Assad regime in Syria. ISIS thus is very much a product of the imperial strategy of divide-and-rule perpetuated by Western imperialism, couched in the language of freedom.

Read the whole post, it is important.


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La bien pagá



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Xanadu I

In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure-dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
    Down to a sunless sea.
So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers were girdled round;
And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forests ancient as the hills,
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.



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CIA field manual on sabotage

XI) General Interference with Organizations and Production

(a) Organizations and Conferences

(1) Insist on doing everything through “channels.” Never permit short-cuts to be taken in order to expedite decisions.

(2) Make “speeches,” Talk as frequently as possible and at great length., Illustrate your. “points” by long anecdotes and accounts of personal experiences. Never hesitate to make a few appropriate “patriotic” comments.

(3) When possible, refer all matters to committees, for “further study and consideration.” Attempt to make the committees as large as possible never less than five.

(4) Bring up irrelevant issues as frequently as possible.

(5) Haggle over precise wordings of communications, minutes, resolutions.

(6) Refer back to matters decided upon at the last meeting and attempt to re-open the question of the advisability of that decision.

(7) Advocate “caution.” Be “reasonable” and urge your fellow-conferees to be “reasonable” and avoid haste which might result in embarrassments or difficulties later on.

(8) Be worried about the propriety of any decision — raise the question of whether such action as is contemplated lies within the jurisdiction of the group or whether it might conflict with the policy of some higher echelon.

Published 1944; declassified 2008; read the whole thing.


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