February 23rd, 2008

Chris Keeley

Today kids buy three lines of cocaine for 10 reals,” or about $6. For about $1 in Brazil and about $

An addict sells individual doses of paco so that she can afford to consume it herself. For about $1.50, users can buy enough of this type of cocaine for a 15-minute high.

Today kids buy three lines of cocaine for 10 reals,” or about $6. For about $1 in Brazil and about $1.50 in Argentina, users can buy enough of the cocaine for a 15-minute high.

Photo: Joao Pina for The New York Times

February 23, 2008
Cheap Cocaine Floods Argentina, Devouring Lives

BUENOS AIRES — Bilma Acuña has two drug-addicted sons and roams the streets of the Ciudad Oculta slum here with a purpose: to save others from the same fate.

She and the group of mothers she helps organize have become the only bulwark, it seems, against the irrepressible spread of paco, a highly addictive, smokable cocaine residue that has destroyed thousands of lives in Argentina and caused a cycle of drug-induced street violence never seen before in this country.

The scourge underscores a significant shift in both Argentina and its larger neighbor, Brazil, which in just a few years have become sizable cocaine consumers. Brazil now ranks as the second largest consumer of cocaine in the world after the United States, the State Department says.

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Chris Keeley

Dissolve the Palestinian Authority

From: Chas Freeman
Date: Wed, Feb 20, 2008 at 12:02 PM
Subject: [Salon] Dissolve the Palestinian Authority


Dissolve the Palestinian Authority


By Rami G. Khouri

Wednesday, February 20, 2008



The Annapolis process is moving in slow gear, and on the ground Israelis and Palestinians are back to the routine of daily clashes, the firing of rockets, assassinations and threats of more to come. Few people seem to have any idea about how to break out of this stalemate and move toward a permanent, comprehensive, fair resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict.


One man who offers some intriguing fresh thinking, though, is Adnan Abu Odeh, a Jordanian-Palestinian who has remained loyal to both sides of his Palestinian and Jordanian identity. Abu Odeh, a former minister, ambassador and chief of the royal court in Jordan, is among the smartest and most insightful analysts in the Arab world. I always make it a point to sound him out when I am in Amman, as I did a few days ago.


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Chris Keeley

Graham Allison: "After Musharraf: And Now the Deluge" (IHT)

TO: Distinguished Recipients
FM: John Whitbeck
The article transmitted below, by Harvard professor Graham Allison, is well worth reading -- particularly for the public opinion statistics which he cites.
However, by now, no one should be surprised that any "democratic" government -- that is, any government which accurately reflects the views of its citizens -- in the Muslim "Broader Middle East" would be fiercely anti-American. The virulently anti-Muslim policies pursued by American governments in recent decades have ensured this. Furthermore, since American politicians will never be permitted by those who pull their strings to change these policies to any material degree, the situation will not change. It would both wiser and more honest for Americans to accept that the only congenial governments which they will have in this part of the world (aside from those under American military occupation) are those run by monarchs or dictators -- and to abandon the laughable pretense of seeking to spread "democracy".
P.S. -- As a Harvard graduate, I find it slightly embarrassing that a famous Harvard professor would confuse Pakistan's North West Frontier Province with Canada's Northwest Territories. As someone who lives in the Middle East, I, unlike Professor Allison, do not find it at all hard to believe that "Osama bin Laden is four times as popular among Pakistanis as President George W. Bush". However, aside from these minor flaws, his analysis looks sound and, to the extent that it may surprise (and enlighten) Americans, worthwhile.

And now the deluge

By Graham Allison

Published: February 22, 2008




CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts:


President Pervez Musharraf's stunning defeat in Monday's elections in Pakistan represents a decisive rejection of what his opponents called his policies of "subservience" to the United States.


An American press that has been virtually unanimous in opposing Musharraf will now predictably call for his resignation in favor of "genuine democracy." Since this outcome is a possibility, it is essential to ask where a government that accurately reflects the views of Pakistani citizens would stand on issues that matter most to America.


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Chris Keeley

Eisenhower's Farewell Address to the Nation

From: John E Marsh
Date: Wed, Feb 20, 2008 at 10:40 PM
Subject: Eisenhower's Farewell Address to the Nation

It strikes me that in this period of American pre-election gymnastics it is appropriate to recall and to review closely the text of Dwight Eisenhower's farewell address on January 17th 1961, commonly known as the Military-Industrial Complex speech.  This url gives the full text.
QUOTED EXCERPTS:    In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.    We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together. . . . Down the long lane of the history yet to be written America knows that this world of ours, ever growing smaller, must avoid becoming a community of dreadful fear and hate, and be, instead, a proud confederation of mutual trust and respect.   Such a confederation must be one of equals. The weakest must come to the conference table with the same confidence as do we, protected as we are by our moral, economic, and military strength. That table, though scarred by many past frustrations, cannot be abandoned for the certain agony of the battlefield.   Disarmament, with mutual honor and confidence, is a continuing imperative. Together we must learn how to compose differences, not with arms, but with intellect and decent purpose.    END QUOTE
Regards,  John
Chris Keeley

(c) Maria Fortiz-Morse : Carlitos and Romina --as they struggle to overcome an addiction to paco.



Documentary profile of two teens -- Carlitos and Romina --as they struggle to overcome an addiction to paco.

© Maria Fortiz-Morse

Paco is a highly addictive drug made from the toxic refuse of cocaine production. Known as 'the poor man's drug', single dose or 'hit' of paco is USD 30 cents.

Smoked in a pipe, paco's physiological affect on the lungs and brain are immediate. The effects of continual consumption include malnutrition, pulmonary edema and heart attacks. Addicts, especially children, can die from consumption in as little as three months.

Many addicted teens pay for their addiction by engaging in armed robbery and sex work.

Health officials estimate that tens of thousands of teens have already become addicted to paco, and their numbers are steadily increasing.

Hi [info]drugaddict,

[info]naserien sent you a message on LiveJournal: Documentary on drug addiction, paco in Argentina..



Documentary profile of two teens -- Carlitos and Romina --as they struggle to overcome an addiction to paco.

© Maria Fortiz-Morse