Tuesday, 14 January 2014 19:00

U.S. Government and Top Mexican Drug Cartel Exposed as Partners

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For over a decade, under multiple administrations, the U.S. government had a secret agreement with the ruthless Mexican Sinaloa drug cartel that allowed it to operate with impunity, an in-depth investigation by a leading Mexican newspaper confirmed this week. In exchange for information and assistance in quashing competing criminal syndicates, the Bush and Obama administrations let the Sinaloa cartel import tons of drugs into the United States while wiping out Sinaloa competitors and ensuring that its leaders would not be prosecuted for their long list of major crimes. Other revelations also point strongly to massive but clandestine U.S. government involvement in drug trafficking.

Relying on over 100 interviews with current and former government functionaries on both sides of the border, as well as official documents from the U.S. and Mexican governments, Mexico’s El Universal concluded that the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the U.S. Justice Department had secretly worked with Mexican drug lords. The controversial conspiring led to increased violence across Mexico, where many tens of thousands have been murdered in recent years, the newspaper found after its year-long probe. The U.S. agents and their shady deals with Mexican drug lords even sparked what the paper called a “secret war” inside Mexico.

The newspaper’s investigation also confirmed long-held suspicions that U.S. authorities were signing secret agreements with Mexican drug cartels — especially Sinaloa, which CIA operatives have said was a favorite for use in achieving geo-political objectives. Supposedly without the knowledge or approval of officials in Mexico, ICE and DEA, with a green light from Washington, D.C., made deals with criminal bosses allowing them to avoid prosecution for a vast crime spree that has included mass murder, corruption, bribery, drug trafficking, extortion, and more. In exchange, cartel leaders simply had to help U.S. officials eliminate their competitors — certainly a win-win scenario for crime bosses who prefer to operate without competition or fear of prosecution.

As The New American first reported in early 2011, a high-ranking operative with the Sinaloa cartel had outlined elements of the criminal agreements with U.S. authorities in official court documents. “The government of the United States and its various agencies have a long history of providing benefits, permission, and immunity to criminals and their organizations to commit crimes, including murder, in exchange for receiving information against other criminals and other organizations,” trafficker Jesus Vicente “El Vicentillo” Zambada-Niebla argued in U.S. court filings cited by El Universal. The New American has also reported extensively on the Zambada-Niebla case and what it reveals.

Experts quoted in the Mexican paper echoed other analysts who have spoken out in recent years, saying that the U.S. government scheming handed the Sinaloa cartel de facto status as the primary powerhouse. In fact, during the period when El Universal says the relationship between American officials and Sinaloa chieftains was most active — 2006 through 2012 — drug war-fueled violence in Mexico surged to unprecedented levels. There are numerous indications that despite official denials, top Mexican officials may have been aware of the schemes, or even involved in them.

Also part of the U.S. government deal with Sinaloa, analysts and Zambada-Niebla have said, was the Obama administration’s “Fast and Furious” gun-running program to arm Mexican cartels at U.S. taxpayer expense. Most recently, a whistleblower from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) said that U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry, killed with a Fast and Furious gun, was murdered by criminals working for the FBI. “It is clear that some of the weapons were deliberately allowed by the FBI and other government representatives to end up in the hands of the Sinaloa Cartel,” stated a motion filed in U.S. court by Zambada-Niebla’s defense team, adding that the U.S. government has documents showing that the weapons were provided by authorities pursuant to the agreement with Sinaloa.

According to former officials and drug kingpins, the agreements between Sinaloa and Washington also allowed the criminal empire to ship multi-ton quantities of hard drugs across the border into the United States. In all, El Universal said there had been at least 50 meetings in Mexico between U.S. government agents and senior Sinaloa bosses, along with many more phone calls and e-mails. The criminal syndicate’s leaders “were given carte blanche to continue to smuggle tons of illicit drugs into Chicago and the rest of the United States and were also protected by the United States government from arrest and prosecution,” Zambada-Niebla’s court filings state, adding that the U.S. government has the documents proving it. “Indeed, United States government agents aided the leaders of the Sinaloa Cartel.”

Unsurprisingly, none of the American federal agencies implicated in the machinations would comment on the revelations. However, citing court documents and official records it published online — as well as numerous interviews with federal agents, convicts, and analysts — the paper was able to conclusively confirm what experts and even officials have been arguing for years: The U.S. government is deeply intertwined with the drug trade. It was not clear what statutory or constitutional authority Washington, D.C., believes would authorize its functionaries to participate in, protect, and facilitate wanton criminal activity.

Mexican authorities, meanwhile, were reportedly kept largely out of the loop surrounding DEA meetings and agreements with top leaders in Mexico’s most notorious criminal syndicates. Officials in Mexico also claimed to be in the dark about the Obama administration's program to arm the cartels with U.S. weapons. According to analysts quoted in the El Universal report, if it is true that Mexico City was unaware, that only adds to the troubling implications of the unlawful scheming between U.S. officials and criminal bosses from Mexico and Colombia to Afghanistan and Southeast Asia.

Among other concerns, experts highlighted violations of human rights, infringements on the sovereignty of other nations, and more. It also helped fuel the devastating violence that has plagued the nation and claimed the lives of between 50,000 and 100,000 people in less than a decade. If Mexican authorities in fact approved the U.S. government’s drug-running schemes in Mexico, they broke the law, too, legal experts told the paper, saying the Mexican Constitution could not be trumped by bilateral agreements or anything else.

The latest revelations in the El Universal report came just days after the emergence of more explosive information implicating the CIA in drug-trafficking yet again. In an investigative article for Narco News entitled “DEA Case Threatens to Expose US Government-Sanctioned Drug-Running,” veteran drug-war journalist Bill Conroy highlights another U.S. government investigation that, perhaps inadvertently, ended up implicating the infamous American intelligence agency in major cocaine trafficking operations once more. Citing official documents and numerous U.S. officials, the piece also notes that CIA-sponsored drug running has been a persistent and ongoing problem.  

In fact, it would not be the first time that the DEA has stumbled on major CIA drug-running operations. Even former DEA chief Robert Bonner, during an explosive interview with CBS, revealed that his agency had learned that the U.S. intelligence outfit unlawfully imported a ton of cocaine into the United States in cooperation with the Venezuelan government. According to the agency’s inspector general, the CIA was indeed working with traffickers but received a “waiver” from the Justice Department purporting to allow the government crime spree to remain secret. More recently, a Mexican official accused the CIA of “managing” the global drug trade.         

The Mexican investigation follows decades of explosive revelations and accusations, many documented by The New American, suggesting that Washington, D.C., plays a crucial role in facilitating the international drug trade. In fact, more than a few officials, drug lords, and analysts have even said that the CIA and other secretive U.S. and foreign agencies actually run the global trade in narcotics, laundering the profits, and more. The DEA was even investigated by Congress last year for helping to launder drug money, while the ATF was exposed supplying U.S. weapons to Mexican cartels. ICE has reportedly been allowing cartel hit men into the United States to murder. So far, none of the high-ranking officials responsible for the lawlessness have truly been held accountable.

Photo shows alleged hit men working for Sinaloa drug cartel along with grenades, automatic weapons, and body armor: AP Images

Alex Newman, a foreign correspondent for The New American, is normally based in Europe after growing up in Latin America, including seven years in Mexico. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Related articles:

CIA “Manages” Drug Trade, Mexican Official Says

Reports: CIA Working with Mexican Drug Cartels

Trafficker: U.S. Feds Aided Mexican Drug Cartel

Mexican Drug Trafficker Says He Worked With Feds

Stratfor Sources: U.S. Troops in Mexico as Feds Aid Cartels

Congress Probes DEA Drug Money Laundering Scheme

Feds Let Mexican Cartel Hit Men Kill in U.S., Senior Lawman Told Stratfor

Fast and Furious: FBI Now Linked to Murder of U.S. Border Agent

U.S. Judge: Obama Homeland Security Aiding Criminal Conspiracies

Impeachment Support Soars as Voters Say Feds “Out of Control”


  • Comment Link John Wednesday, 15 January 2014 14:17 posted by John

    We have here yet more evidence that our political class have become a society unto themselves. Think about it for a minute; who do your Senator, Representative, etc. have lunch with? You, or the Russian ambassador, the CEO of Chase, and the CIA official who arranges their 'extra income'? Who do their kids go to school with? Not yours. Who do they get together with on weekends? Their constituents, or their neighbors, who happen to be the heads of international corporations, banks, and other heads of state?

    Internationally, the political class have much closer social and economic ties to their counterparts in other countries, than they do with us, the people they supposedly represent. When you realize that they operate essentially as loosely allied criminal cartels, who view us as nothing more than the ignorant herd which must be tolerated, manipulated and pacified in order to keep the money and goods flowing, their behavior becomes easily understandable.

    It also becomes obvious that we're well beyond the point of fixing this with the ballot box. Nationalism has become an antiquated concept. Thanks to our criminal political class, the world is no longer divided by national borders. The divide is ideology. Libertarianism vs. Authoritarianism. The political class is frightened now, because the herd is catching on to their games. If we take a lesson from Iceland, we see that advances in communication technology can render the political class obsolete. We don't need them anymore, and have no reason to tolerate their parasitic depredations. When the majority of the public catches up and realizes this, all hell is going to break loose. Keep some powder dry.

  • Comment Link Thomas J Faddis Wednesday, 15 January 2014 12:07 posted by Thomas J Faddis

    Agreed Tionico! My first reaction is: maybe we should just swap all of our nonviolent drug offenders in prison with all the current DEA & CIA employees!

  • Comment Link Joyce Tuesday, 14 January 2014 23:20 posted by Joyce

    Anyone else remember a decade or two ago when the largest cocaine shipment ever was apprehended on the way to the US? It was being brought in by the CIA!

    When it became public knowledge the CIA cried it was a sting gone bad, it was never intended to let it come in. Wonder where all the money from this drug trafficking has been going? Perhaps to the one world global government, aka the new world order to finance all their criminal activity and genocide????? Past time to rein a criminal government in and start imprisoning the criminals behind it.

  • Comment Link Nora Tuesday, 14 January 2014 22:13 posted by Nora

    Now you can put those VIPR and DHS checkpoints into proper perspective. The goons are trying to protect their turf, not keep illegal drugs out of the U.S. They hate competition.
    We are not without an effective means to put a stop to it, however. The first step is to file criminal charges against those members of congress who knew about these crimes yet did nothing, or facilitated it. Hold them accountable. Put Holder and the agency heads in prison for life and de-fund any agency created by executive fiat--which is pretty much all of them. Use the indictment engine at AmericaAgainNow to remove the bad dogs from the congressional body and seize their assets. It's time to let your congressman or representative know that the day of reckoning has arrived. The most important thing we can do is to stop funding for these rogue agencies. Without paychecks, there is no way they can operate for long. I am meeting more and more people who are awake and aware of what is going on in our unelected government, thanks to publications like this one. It won't be overnight, but we will clean out these criminals and get control of the government again.

    The globalists have spent over two hundred years scheming to destroy this country from within; not only will they not achieve their goal, they are headed for prison and they know it. The righteous will stand against them and win, and there are way more of us. We are more determined because our children and grandchildren are entitled to a better world and we will fight to get it for them. Keep talking to your friends and neighbors. Spread the truth, and buy more guns. Next time you are instructed to pull over at a checkpoint, refuse and stand your ground. Sue them on an individual basis if they violate your rights. The War On Drugs is a fraud.

  • Comment Link Ian Tuesday, 14 January 2014 21:39 posted by Ian

    It's been clear for a LONG time now that the biggest criminal organization in America is the American government. And THAT finally makes the attempts to squelch the Second Amendment make sense: the LAST thing a criminal organization wants is the the ability to defend themselves in the hands of honest citizens - we're supposed to be VICTIMS! One of the biggest parts of the problem is that the government has access to - Hell, it OWNS - all the mind-control/propaganda techniques built off the Nazi experiments now in the hands of DARPA, meaning the CIA, NSA and everyone and his cousin has access to it as long as it's government - or "elites". The slave/victim status of the U.S. citizen is just being made more obvious and out in the open now. Why should the government care? It also owns the military. It's only a matter of time before the government gets tired of catering at ALL to all the "useless eaters" in it's own yard and turns the military loose to take care of the problem, which would be playing right along with the "elites" plans. Again. An obscenity like MK Ultra should have been investigated right down to the socks of the last person in it and they should have been held accountable for the suffering of all of its victims. Instead, it just gets more and more funding. That right there told me that the "government" was a hollow zombie being operated by someone offstage and the REAL government no longer existed. Obama has just confirmed that right down the line.

    It's Evil, it's heart-breaking, frustrating - and We the People, such as we are, are the ONLY POSSIBLE REMEDY. Until we stand up on our hind legs and DO SOMETHING about it all, it's only going to get worse until we're the last target they have left, and we're right up to that line now. No matter what happens, it's going to be a sad, sorry, and totally unnecessary MESS. Probably it's going to be the kind war that nobody really wins because everyone loses so much. We've just waited too long to simply fix ANYTHING. There's 'way too much cleanup that has to be done first.

    Good fortune to us all; we're going to need it!


  • Comment Link DONALD W Tuesday, 14 January 2014 20:28 posted by DONALD W

    Ever wonder who was behind the assasinations of the Hell's Angels membes about a year ago.

  • Comment Link Tionico Tuesday, 14 January 2014 19:39 posted by Tionico

    Much of this came to light as Fast and Furious, early on known as Project Gunwalker, began to break about three years ago. Personally, I seriously doubt the Mexican Government are truly ignorant and innocent. I heard Presidents Vicente Fox as he addressed our Senate, berating them for failiing to control our guns, accusing our bad laws of allowing the "ninety percent of crime guns seized in Mexico come from US gun stores".. and calling on our government to enact a firearms ban to preserve his country alive. If it hadn't been for his using the same figure our own government had been pushing, I'd have been able to let it pass. That ninety percent figure indicates he was then a part of the problem. My guess is he was somehow bought off to make those remarks, as the current adminsitration was working desparately to use that 90% figure to enact bans and controls. In reality its about seventeen percent, half of which are F&F operation's guns.....

    I thought as I heard Fox berate us for his problem that a good part of why he HAS that problem is he insists on continuing the disarmed status of his own people, thus leaving them defenseless against the cartels and corrupt Federales when they want to come in and take over a town or valley. Let Mexican citizens arm themselves, as is now happening in some areas despite the law, and watch the corruption get cleaned out.

    But to learn our own government have been promoting the drug trade, and other crimes sich as murder, bombings, terrorism, kidnapping, is not surprising. Seems we've for a long time held ourselves up on some imaginary pedestal, high and lofty above all others, all knowing and all wise and all benevolent, to run other parts of the world the way WE see fit. Opium growing in Afghanistan ("to support the Teliban as they fight against the Russians") Iran-Contra (to support the resistance to the goverment formed after the overthrow of our US Puppet Dicatator, Somoza, who ruled with a rod of terror, the third such of the same name to do so... WE installed and propped him up. The Shah of Iran, put in place by our own, after a local guy was deposed. Noriega, Allende, the list is long. And we wonder why people round the world hate us and want us gone out of their lives? NO ONE wants the bully to travel freely in their own neighbourhood.

    What will it take to bring down the corrupt US Government agencies, destroy them, put their slimey operatives out to pasture somewhere cold and barren, a LONG ways from anywhere else? To think of the hundreds of billions of MY money spent to perpetrate this insanity, and the hundred thousand lives it has already cost our dear neighbour to the south.... for what?

    No wonder FedGov are wanting to protract the War on Drugs, will not rein in the DEA, CIA, FBI, refuse to deal with our border, refuse to de-criminalise cannabis, imnpose ridiculous regulations on banking (jailing folks for simply managing their personal and business finances for their own safety), wanting to give "amnesty" to twelve, or twenty, or two hundred million foreigners now living here..... sometimes the only cure for a bad dog is to take him out into the woods and administer about thirty six grains of lead. And we got a BUNCH of bad dogs.

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