26 August 2008
22 August 2008
Jason Burke has written a background piece for the Guardian, spelling out just how complex the picture is in Afghanistan, including "criminal gangs" as well as insurgents. A thoughtful piece of writing.
at 9:30 am
21 August 2008
They're not mad, they're not bad, they're not particularly religious and they arent demographically identifiable either. There is no profile. The red tops, surprise surprise, are wrong. Guardian article, summarising report. keep an eye open for the full text.
at 8:46 am
20 August 2008
What on earth is a graft czar? Ah. The head of anti-corruption who fled the country after exposing the Anglo-Leasing scandal which involved several ministers [allegedly]. We will hear more from John Githongo now he has returned to Kenya under a new government.
at 4:55 pm
15 August 2008
Cocaine and ecstasy up, cannabis down and heroin and crack stable with user population ageing. Department of Health resarch with comments from Drugscope and Transform. Cocaine will probably come down if there are job losses in the City as the "recession" bites: that's my prediction, not the report's!
at 10:31 am
Report from the American Centre for Progress [ http://www.americanprogress.org/] working with the Centre for Democracy and Technology [http://www.cdt.org/]. Few people being prosecuted for online fraud. Paedophilia a bigger priority.
The problem's in the headline. Its a tool for insurance companies and estate agents. There isn't actually very much you can do about it yourself. It will raise fear of crime and is unlikely to prevent crime...But we shall see if anything changes. Truth is, there arent all that many resources available to shuffle around. Policing is responsive, not proactive and will continue to be until someone works out how to change the relationship between control room and constable.
at 9:58 am
14 August 2008
11 August 2008
More boxes to tick for all you bankers out there!
at 12:46 pm
Thanks Monty, I missed this. This is Sequoia National Forest, California and again illustrates the complexity of illicit business. This time Mexican cartels are alleged to be using illegal immigrants to cultivate the plants. But closer reading reveals these people are family or close family friends, brought in illegally, not just any old illegal immigrant. Which fits in with the van Duyne von Lampe picture of "organised" crime.
at 12:40 pm
All this going on in Yakima Valley. Sounds like a double bonus for them: money laundering through property and double cropping marijuana plants among the vines.
at 12:36 pm
08 August 2008
06 August 2008
04 August 2008
Good Lord! Is there something the Times can't hold Gordon Brown responsible for?? Massive oversimplification as usual, but one for Americans to read. The enemy of my enemy isnt always my friend! Supporting jihadists in the name of overthrowing "Communism" [remember it?] was never a great policy, wherever it was tried. But a nice argument here that bin Laden and Karadzic were effectively an unholy alliance. Robin Harris squares some fascinating circles in this piece. but read it critically, my children.
at 12:08 pm
Story from the local Liverpool papers. Apparently the gang caused a "spike" in gun crime figures, selling Russian Baikal pistols converted from firing blanks to firing bullets.
at 12:02 pm
Sorry, having trouble with blogging because have fallen over and broken glasses. Can read the headlines, but not much of the text. This seemed to be a relevant article, though, even if only to wonder how these guys get grants for this sort of research. Apologies for spelling mistakes too. No opticians appointments til Thursday! So it will be a couple of weeks before normal interaction is resumed.
at 11:33 am
03 August 2008
Hmmm. I would like to see the full interview with Colonel Iron. They will be discussing this deal in Staff Colleges for years to come. Same as the deal over Musa Qala.
at 11:30 am