The Transnational Crime Organizations Chasing the Transnational Crime Organizations

William Arkin has a post on the proliferation of what he calls the “counter-everything” trend–organizations targeting transnational organizations that sell drugs or people or whatever. He ends it by wondering why this is all getting worse–why borders are more porous after 10 years of purportedly combating transnational whatevers.

Finally, one has to ask, with all of the enhanced intelligence collection and sharing and border control that is part of the post 9/11 world, why is this problem getting worse?  How is that possible, that borders are more porous?  So much for the war against terrorism.

You might start with the fact that in response to a threat posed by unprivileged enemy combatants (AKA terrorists) we sent out a bunch of men, not wearing uniforms, to engage in warfare that mirrors those other unprivileged combatants.

But the problem becomes even more apparent when you read Arkin’s list of contractors getting rich of the pursuit of transnational criminal organizations.

Other contractors providing intelligence support to the trafficking empire include: BAE Systems, Celestar, Delex Systems, Duer Advanced Technology & Aerospace (DATA), FedSys, Inc., General Dynamics Information Technology, L-3 STRATIS, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Prosync Technology Group, and SAIC.  Parsons Corporation is working on the methamphetamine/precursor chemicals problem set for the DIA.

My favorite among these is BAE, which almost caught money laundering to set up a slush fund for covert ops, until the Saudis threatened to stop partnering with us to combat the terrorism that Saudis citizens were then and probably are still funding.

I guess DOD wanted to bring in experts on transnational crime.

Then Tim Shorrock got into the laugh, and pointed out that SAIC recently got caught running a giant kickback scheme to defraud NYC. Lucky for SAIC the Obama Administration hasn’t ended the fetish for Deferred Prosecution Agreements that let companies like this continue chasing transnational thieves.

And then there’s the really seedy pick: of Parsons Corporation–they were literally deemed the “most wasteful” Iraq contractor, making them a bit of a poster child for corruption–“working on the methamphetamine/precursor chemicals problem set for the DIA.” Mind you, when Parsons was last robbing federal taxpayers and even now, they billed themselves primarily as a construction company (they’re famous for schools in Iraq that started crumbling before they were finished)–though they have branched out into the spook business. And yet they’ve sold themselves as drug experts to the Defense Intelligence Agency.

I simply can’t imagine why the transnational crime problem continues to grow.

7 replies
  1. prostratedragon says:

    You don’t know what a temptation this is, Arkin being an expert in decoding acronyms from the military and intelligence worlds and all, and the absolute truth, I would never steal anything this good from life, Mingus’s “Music for Todo Modo” on the box, wrapping up just now.


  2. Ken_Muldrew says:

    All the transnational crime is bad and everything, but at least the rest of the world will start to realize how badly they need to build more prisons. And soon. And to fill them up with baddies who desperately need to be incarcerated.

  3. scribe says:

    And, of course, if these problems were ever to be solved (any of them), the bountiful flow of contracts to these contractors would have to end.

    So the problems will never be solved.

  4. orionATL says:

    then there is the really big problem that many criminal organizations – drugs, arms, nukes, medicines, cigarettes – have been infiltrated by american paramilitary/spies and can’t be dealt with in a “normal” national legal manner because that would expose sources and methods (not to mention american gov’t incompetence and corruption).

  5. earlofhuntingdon says:

    American policy is to “transnational crime” as night soil is to cabbage and peas. It creates much of the crime, then immunizes it, then “tracks” its growth (while avoiding real, white-collar crimes at home), so as to justify those absurd policies and the vast, scarce taxpayer revenues shoveled all round their base and roots. An economist would call that a cycle; only one working or funded inside the Beltway would call it a virtuous one.

  6. shekissesfrogs says:

    Finally, one has to ask, with all of the enhanced intelligence collection and sharing and border control that is part of the post 9/11 world, why is this problem getting worse? How is that possible, that borders are more porous?

    Maybe the government should hire Los Zetas.

    It was a brutal massacre even by the gruesome standards of Mexico’s drug war: 72 migrant workers gunned down by the “Zetas” – arguably the country’s most violent cartel – and left rotting in a pile outside a ranch in Tamaulipas state near the US border in late August.

    The Zetas have a fearsome reputation, but the real surprise comes not in their ruthless use of violence, but in the origins of where they learned the tricks of their bloody trade.

    Some of the cartel’s initial members were elite Mexican troops, trained in the early 1990s by America’s 7th Special Forces Group or “snake eaters” at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina, a former US special operations commander has told Al Jazeera.

    “They were given map reading courses, communications, standard special forces training, light to heavy weapons, machine guns and automatic weapons,” says Craig Deare, the former special forces commander who is now a professor at the US National Defence University.

    The Mexican personnel who received US training and later formed the Zetas came from the Airmobile Special Forces Group (GAFE), which is considered an elite division of the Mexican military.

    Their US training was designed to prepare them for counter-insurgency and, ironically, counter-narcotics operations..

    The US military already gave them skills to do counter narcotics. Think of the money they could save.

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