Monthly Archives: September 2015

The military assets necessary to disrupt the illicit trades

The Eastern Caribbean pipeline is rapidly evolving and given T&T’s strategic position in this pipeline the choice is now simple: surrender to the MTOs and be transformed into a social order informed by what is happening in Guatemala and Honduras or to engage with the trades. Engagement is an expensive, long term exercise and success is not guaranteed given the lengthy free pass the MTOs enjoy but the choice is graphically clear. I have listed pictorial depictions of trafficking instruments followed by those of the vitally necessary military assets. The pictures of vessels were all interdicted trafficking in the Caribbean. The must acquire military assets indicate succinctly the nature of the threat T&T faces. At this juncture I offer my expertise to  the government of T&T led by Dr Keith Rowley in keeping with my past actions. Click on the link and read glimpses of the reality:

http://curacaochronicle.com/local/homeland-security-taking-to-the-sky-in-drug-smuggling-fight/

Primary trafficking method: shipping containers

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Ocean going vessels including semi-submersibles. Growth area: submarines

MARTILLO rollup copy

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In this undated image released by Britain's Ministry of Defense Sunday, Sept. 27, 2009, a U.S. Coast Guard boarding party approach a fishing boat prior to finding more than 200 26-kilogram (57-pound) bales of cocaine. Britain's Royal Navy said Monday it had made a record seizure of cocaine after a frigate operating off the coast of South America captured drugs with an estimated street value of more than 240 million pounds ($384 million). (AP Photo/Ministry of Defense) ** EDITORIAL USE ONLY **

In this undated image released by Britain’s Ministry of Defense Sunday, Sept. 27, 2009, a U.S. Coast Guard boarding party approach a fishing boat prior to finding more than 200 26-kilogram (57-pound) bales of cocaine. Britain’s Royal Navy said Monday it had made a record seizure of cocaine after a frigate operating off the coast of South America captured drugs with an estimated street value of more than 240 million pounds ($384 million). (AP Photo/Ministry of Defense) ** EDITORIAL USE ONLY **

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Aircraft

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Necessary military assets

Off shore patrol vessels

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Air interceptors

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Airborne surveillance

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Is Trinidad and Tobago serious about dealing with the illicit trades?

Trinidad and Tobago (T&T) is a member nation of the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative (CBSI) created by the US in 2009. The core objectives of the CBSI involve: reducing the flow of illicit drugs through the region, reducing the flow of illicit arms through the region and improving public safety and security. To attain these core objectives US SOUTHCOM created the Technical Assistance Field Team (TAFT) whose task it is to assist CBSI member states in improving maritime asset operational readiness which is most crucial to attacking the illicit drug and gun trades that impact T&T. Why then is T&T not a signatory to the TAFT agreement? Why has T&T refused the military expertise on offer under the TAFT agreement? T&T has refused to access the expertise on offer but is willing to attend TAFT programs as an observer. Why did the PP government refuse to be a signatory to TAFT and what is the reason for this decision? The newly installed PNM government has now to act as an explanation to the nation is necessary.

http://dialogo-americas.com/en_GB/articles/rmisa/features/2015/09/04/feature-04

US Virgin Islands: State of Emergency declared

On September 7, 2015 the acting Governor of the US Virgin Islands (USVI) declared a state of emergency in reaction to the escalating gun violence on St Croix. Clearly the Mexican trafficking organisations (MTOs) by flooding the USVI with illicit product and smuggled humans have not only triggered a feeding frenzy but more importantly a new illicit order is being erected on the ground in the USVI. Another member/territory of the Eastern Caribbean smuggling pipeline is therefore showing the symptoms of MTOs hegemony over their illicit order. The same is now becoming apparent for other member territories of the pipeline as Guadeloupe and Barbados. As the pipeline evolves rapidly the salient question deals with the strategy of the MTOs to exercise hegemony over Trinidad and Tobago (T&T) given the fact that T&T geographically straddles several supply lines as they enter the southern/supply entrance of the pipeline. Having been given a free pass through the territorial waters of T&T for over 5 years by the outgoing government who then purchased a naval fleet that cannot adequately respond to the threats posed by the MTOs. T&T is faced with a grave threat that will need extensive investment and rigorous engagement with to mitigate and the question now is can T&T answer this threat adequately within the shortest time frame possible because the outgoing government enhanced the threat to T&T rather than attempting to mitigate the threat. I am now weary of speaking to deaf ears and persons wielding state power enmeshed in denial. Failure to act effectively this time will reveal the apocalypse. Just read the link on the USVI.

http://stthomassource.com/content/news/local-news/2015/09/05/state-emergency-government-reacts-violence-st-croix

Myths and Reality of Caribbean gangland

Texas Gang Threat Assessment 2015

Executive Summary
The key analytic judgments of this assessment are:
• Gangs continue to represent a significant public safety threat to Texas due to their propensity for
violence and heightened level of criminal activity. Of the incarcerated gang members within
Texas Department of Criminal Justice prisons, over 60 percent are serving a sentence for violent
crimes, including robbery (24 percent), homicide (16 percent), and assault/terroristic threat (15
percent). We assess there are likely more than 100,000 gang members in Texas.
• The Tier 1 gangs in Texas for 2015 are Tango Blast and Tango cliques (estimated 15,000
members), Texas Syndicate (estimated 3,400 members), Texas Mexican Mafia (estimated 4,700
members), Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) (estimated 800 members), and Latin Kings (estimated
2,100 members). These groups pose the greatest gang threat to Texas due to their relationships
with Mexican cartels, high levels of transnational criminal activity, level of violence, and overall
statewide presence.
• Gangs in Texas remain active in both human smuggling and human trafficking operations. Gang
members associated with human smuggling have direct relationships with alien smuggling
organizations (ASOs) and Mexican cartels. These organizations were involved in and profited
from the recent influx of illegal aliens crossing the border in the Rio Grande Valley in 2014.
Gang members involved in human trafficking, including commercial sex trafficking and
compelling prostitution of adults and minors, exploit their victims through force, fraud or
coercion, including recruiting and grooming them with false promises of affection, employment,
or a better life. Gangs identified as being involved in human trafficking in Texas in 2014 include
Tango Blast, Texas Syndicate, Bloods, Crips, Gangster Disciples, and MS-13.
• Mexican cartels regularly use Texas gangs for the purposes of illicit cross-border smuggling.
Members of Tier 1, Tier 2, and other gangs are sometimes recruited and tasked by cartels to
carry out acts of violence in both Texas and Mexico. The relationships between certain gangs
and cartels fluctuate based on cartel structures and cell alignments, gang alignment with specific
cartels, threats or coercion, and familial ties.

• Traditional rivalries between gangs continue to diminish as members take advantage of
opportunities to collaborate and achieve common criminal objectives, typically for financial gain.
Members of gangs such as the Bloods, Texas Syndicate, and Texas Mexican Mafia are working
together to smuggle and sell drugs and weapons, among other crimes. In addition, law
enforcement continues to observe gang members with hybrid memberships, where gang members
claim multiple affiliations, which presents challenges in identifying and investigating gang
activity.

I have presented above the executive summary of the  Texas USA Gang threat assessment 2015 to illustrate the dramatic changes taking place in Gangland Texas the result of the strategy of the Mexican cartels. Mexican affiliated gangland in Texas are  now illicit drug traffickers, human smugglers and human traffickers which have placed these groups at the apex of gangland in Texas. Much more important is the fact that these affiliates are now transnational trafficking organisations which most potently illustrates the revolution in gangland unleashed by Mexican trafficking organisations (MTOs). What must be noted is the discipline the MTOs demand of their gangland affiliates as their affiliates are now crossing gang borders in their bid to maximise their profit from illicit enterprises. Affiliates are then combining to create a poly identity gangland individual that serves the MTOs. What must be grasped is that the same process of change in Caribbean gangland is presently in operation. The assault on Tivoli Gardens, Jamaica in search of Dudus Coke was resisted by members of various groups of gangland Jamaica supposedly at war with each other. Grave myth. Jamaican transnational gangland already affiliates of the MTOs at the time of the Tivoli assault mobilised members of their organisations and those of satellite groups to engage militarily with the Jamaican state thereby sending a message of their power. The creation of illicit enterprises across gang borders in Jamaica has also been noted and the mythic explanation is that prison is uniting gangland. Another cruel joke. Jamaican gangland affiliates of the MTOs are now transnational players especially those who were never before major transnational players. The Texas reality then is being replicated in the Caribbean because the active agent is the same: MTOs. But there is no mention of this reality as mainstream depictions of Caribbean gangland are framed by denial. In T&T the changes are apparent as a new gangland order is being erected on the ground especially in areas traditionally by-passed by the retail drug trade. The affiliates of the MTOs are involved in illicit enterprises just as those of gangland Jamaica and Texas and it is only a matter of time before the changes become manifest publicly. A government’s  failure to act upon this reality grants space to the MTOs and their affiliates that will never be closed down by the state. To fail to act for over 5 years is a fatal blow to the security of the state.