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View Full Version : Molasses to rum to slaves?


CaliforniaLiberal
01-06-2010, 5:25 AM
I'm choosing to understand the publication of this novel as a sign that the 'Border town gun shops supplying weapons to Mexican drug lords' propaganda is past it's peak and starting to rot a bit. Poor timing, for maximum effect it should peak on election day.

Enthusiastic LA Times review of Iron River, 'A gripping thriller about illegal gun smuggling across the U.S.-Mexico border'

http://www.latimes.com/features/books/la-et-rutten6-2010jan06,0,2250156.story


'More weapons allow the rival cartels to operate with greater impunity across wider territories, which permits them to ship more drugs north of the border, which generates more cash, which makes possible the purchase of more and deadlier guns.

Not since the infamous triangle of sugar, rum and slaves that dominated the 18th century Caribbean has the New World seen quite so vicious an economic circle.'


Has anyone here read this? Is it as bad as it sounds in the book review?

CaliforniaLiberal
01-06-2010, 5:31 AM
And what about this?

'the manufacture of inexpensive, lethal firearms that has flourished with particular malignancy here in Southern California'

I'm not sure what this refers to. Can't be Ruger. Taurus is on the East Coast, right? I am all about inexpensive firearms and I haven't yet found these 'inexpensive, lethal firearms' for sale'

Is this more complete fantasy or is there someone making cheap guns in LA and I'm the last one to find out about it?

CL

Asmodai
01-06-2010, 5:39 AM
I finished my first AR build, I'm proud to be a malignant producer of lethal weapons in California!:D

vantec08
01-06-2010, 6:42 AM
not a WORD about the south american amories furnishing weapons.

TKM
01-06-2010, 6:52 AM
And what about this?

'the manufacture of inexpensive, lethal firearms that has flourished with particular malignancy here in Southern California'

I'm not sure what this refers to. Can't be Ruger. Taurus is on the East Coast, right? I am all about inexpensive firearms and I haven't yet found these 'inexpensive, lethal firearms' for sale'

Is this more complete fantasy or is there someone making cheap guns in LA and I'm the last one to find out about it?

CL
Lorcin and Davis, and a few others, used to be California businesses. The drop test part of the unsafe handgun law was aimed squarely at them, they promptly passed the tests. Go figure.

cdtx2001
01-06-2010, 8:54 AM
not a WORD about the south american amories furnishing weapons.

SSShhhhhhhhh!!!!!! That doesn't help the anti's case at all.

yellowfin
01-06-2010, 9:31 AM
It's interesting that they bring up the triangular trade, as it is a perfect model of what anti gun politicians are all about. A. They pass anti gun laws disarming people B. Crime goes up, making people scared because they're helpless because of the laws disarming them. C. They reelect anti gun politicians. That looks pretty triangular to me.

dfletcher
01-06-2010, 9:32 AM
Quick question, example.

Let's say the Policia find a stash of 1,000 weapons in Mexico. Full auto stuff, 50 cals, SAWs and such. And of those 1,000 guns found there are 10 Ruger Mini 14s, 2 of which have their serial numbers ground off - leaving 8 that can be traced back to a few Uvalde and Houston, TX gun stores.

Here's my lead line:

"A cache of 1,000 illegal guns including assault weapons, machine guns and large caliber sniping rifles was seized today by the Mexican military. Mexican officials stated that over 75% of the traced illegal guns were purchased in gun stores in Texas then smuggled into Mexico. Mexican officials are working with ATF and US Border Patrol to deterermine who purchased and brought the illegal weapons into Mexico"

Accurate?

jdberger
01-06-2010, 9:48 AM
Interesting review. Do you think that the reviewer reads his own newspaper?

Great detective fiction incorporates topicality, character and plot. When all three are present in equal measure, as they surely are in "Iron River," it's a reading experience that adds up to something more than engaging entertainment. (The timeliness of this novel is suggested by the fact that the author acknowledges, among others, the Times reporters who produced the paper's remarkable "Mexico Under Siege" series.)

From "Mexico Under Seige (http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-mexico-arms-race15-2009mar15,0,229992.story)"

Most of these weapons are being smuggled from Central American countries or by sea, eluding U.S. and Mexican monitors who are focused on the smuggling of semiauto- matic and conventional weapons purchased from dealers in the U.S. border states of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California.
...

These groups appear to be taking advantage of a robust global black market and porous borders, especially between Mexico and Guatemala. Some of the weapons are left over from the wars that the United States helped fight in Central America, U.S. officials said.

tiki
01-06-2010, 9:54 AM
"A cache of 1,000 illegal guns including assault weapons, machine guns and large caliber sniping rifles was seized today by the Mexican military. Mexican officials stated that over 75% of the traced illegal guns were purchased in gun stores in Texas then smuggled into Mexico. Mexican officials are working with ATF and US Border Patrol to deterermine who purchased and brought the illegal weapons into Mexico"

Accurate?

Accurate? That's exactly how it is.

jdberger
01-06-2010, 10:30 AM
Email is such a convenient form of communication:

Mr. Rutten,

In your review of "Iron River" by T. Jefferson Parker you state,

"Iron River is a metaphor for the chain of gun shops and dealers that runs along the U.S.-Mexican border from Tijuana to Corpus Christi, Texas. They serve as the headwaters for the torrent of military and civilian firearms that continue to flow from the United States into Mexico, where they're employed by drug-dealing cartels in what has become the narcos' war on that country's civil society."

You then go on to praise the author and LA Times reporters who reported on the Cartel Wars in Mexico back in the Spring of 2009.

"Great detective fiction incorporates topicality, character and plot. When all three are present in equal measure, as they surely are in "Iron River," it's a reading experience that adds up to something more than engaging entertainment. (The timeliness of this novel is suggested by the fact that the author acknowledges, among others, the Times reporters who produced the paper's remarkable "Mexico Under Siege" series.)"

All this lead me to wonder, do you actually read your own newspaper? In a March 15, 2009 "Mexico Under Seige" series article titled "Drug cartels' new weaponry means war", the authors clearly state:
"Most of these weapons are being smuggled from Central American countries or by sea, eluding U.S. and Mexican monitors who are focused on the smuggling of semiauto- matic and conventional weapons purchased from dealers in the U.S. border states of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California.
The article goes further to claim that, "These groups appear to be taking advantage of a robust global black market and porous borders, especially between Mexico and Guatemala."

Finally, it appears (according to the Times reporters you glowingly referenced above) that, "[t]he enhanced weaponry represents a wide sampling from the international arms bazaar, with grenades and launchers produced by U.S., South Korean, Israeli, Spanish or former Soviet bloc manufacturers. Many had been sold legally to governments, including Mexico's, and then were diverted onto the black market. Some may be sold directly to the traffickers by corrupt elements of national armies, authorities and experts say."

I realize that you were simply writing a book review and not actually reporting, however, I'd think that you'd at least partially acquaint yourself with the subject you're commenting upon. The ludicrous myth that billionaire drug cartels who regularly smuggle millions of tons of drugs into the United States would patiently pay retail prices for civilian guns, fill out paperwork and endure the waiting period before delivery has been soundly debunked. Did you also ask yourself why someone would buy a machine gun in the US at the price of $11,000 when they could get one on the black market south of the border for $500? Did you further wonder why someone would endure a thorough FBI background check, including being fingerprinted and paying a stiff tax to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives only to smuggle their machine gun to Mexico?

Please do your part to restore American's faith in the Fourth Estate. Check your facts. Doubt the words of the politicians who have agendas and are trying to get re-elected.

With best regards,

jdberger

GrizzlyGuy
01-06-2010, 11:22 AM
The last paragraph in the review says it all (almost, I have fixed it):

Parker has said elsewhere that, because of its [supposed] lax gun laws and indifference to their consequences south of the border, he considers the United States "complicit" in Mexico's current agonies. "Iron River" makes that point without a moment's descent into the didactic. This is gripping literary entertainment propaganda with a point an agenda.

If you like immersive novels with quasi-believable but not necessarily true pretexts, involving firearms, intrigue, heroes (a female one in this case) and domestic and international politics...I suggest the trilogy written by Matthew Bracken (http://matthewbracken.site.aplus.net/book.htm). You need to read them in order, but the 2nd one (Domestic Enemies: The Reconquista) (http://matthewbracken.site.aplus.net/bookde.htm) also deals with a scenario similar to this from the review you linked to:

Hood encounters a half-mad cartel patron who insists that his depredations are a revolution against Mexican inequality and U.S. oppression: "Americans are the enemy of Mexico. They have the appetites of Satan and the money and guns to satisfy their appetites. They are rotting with luxury and godlessness and they have spent themselves into ruin. They have nothing in common with us but a border. . . . [T]hat rotting America will help me drive this rotting government from our land. . . . It will finance the revolution as well as myself.... "

wildhawker
01-06-2010, 12:23 PM
Email is such a convenient form of communication:

Great email Josh - what a valuable example you've presented to the community!

:thumbsup:

jdberger
01-06-2010, 1:40 PM
Why thank you, Brandon. :)

bohoki
01-06-2010, 6:02 PM
wasnt that a song in the 1776 movie

lXsXej9FloA

Liberty Belle
01-06-2010, 7:06 PM
Great letter, jdberger! Well said!