In April 2012, authorities in the prosperous and generally peaceful Caribbean nation of Belize intercepted a shipment of precursor chemicals sent from China and apparently bound for representatives of the Mexican cartel “Los Zetas.” The shipment—sufficient to produce an estimated $10 billion in methamphetamines—highlights growing criminal ties between China and Latin America that have accompanied, but, to date, have lagged behind the exponential growth of trade and investment between the two regions (7 Belize News, April 11).Doesn't bode well for the future....
The limited amount of publicly available evidence suggests that criminal activity spanning the two regions is concentrated in five current or emerging domains: (1) extortion of Chinese communities in Latin America by groups with ties to China; (2) trafficking in persons from China, through Latin America, to ultimately smuggle Chinese into the United States or Canada; (3) trafficking in narcotics and precursor chemicals; (4) trafficking in contraband goods; and (5) money laundering.
- J Michael Cole on Taiwan's upcoming shortage of fighter aircraft.
- Jamestown Brief on Taiwanese intelligence official briefing
- State Dept finally puts some restrictions on Beijing's intelligence and propaganda organs in US universities, The Confucius Institutes.
- Russia is also pivoting Eastward, with greater investment into Siberia.
- DGBAS downgrades growth forecast.
- Charges against Jacqueline Liu dropped. What a surprise.
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