Argentina claims it seized weapons, drugs onboard US Air Force cargo plane

By Agence France-Presse
Monday, February 21, 2011 15:14 EDT
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This report was originally filed Feb. 15, 2011, but has been republished today due to a general lack of US media coverage

Argentina and the United States are engaged in a diplomatic spat after Buenos Aires authorities seized what they say are undeclared weapons and drugs on a US military aircraft last week.

The Argentine government on Monday said it planned to lodge a formal protest with Washington, while the US State Department said it was “puzzled and disturbed” by the seizure of what it claimed was routine equipment for training the Argentine federal police.

Officials in Argentina said the US Air Force C-17 transport plane was searched and its cargo seized by customs officials on Thursday at Ezeiza International Airport after arriving with experts and material for a hostage rescue training exercise.

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In a statement late Sunday, President Cristina Kirchner’s government said it would lodge a protest with Washington and ask it to cooperate in a probe into the air force’s attempt “to violate Argentine laws by bringing in hidden material in an official shipment.”

Argentina has said it seized “sensitive material” that had not been declared in a manifest submitted by the US embassy.

“Among the material seized, which the State Department makes no reference to, are from weapons to different drugs, including various doses of morphine,” the foreign ministry said in Sunday’s statement.

State Department spokesman Philip Crowley said “we are puzzled and disturbed by the actions of Argentine officials,” adding they conducted what he called “an unusual and unannounced search of the aircraft’s cargo.”

But he said the material seized was routine for exercises in which US military experts train the Argentine federal police in “advanced hostage rescue and crisis management techniques.”

He said the “seized items include batteries, medicine, a rifle and communications equipment,” adding he had no information to “corroborate that rumour” that drugs were seized.

Crowley said he had heard the serial number of one item was not documented, but added that the whole matter could “easily have been resolved on the ground by customs officials” rather than “escalated.”

“We continue to call on the Argentine government to return our equipment,” he said, adding the United States regretted the training exercise was cancelled.

He said Assistant US Secretary of State Arturo Valenzuela at the weekend called Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman and other officials to register “our great concern” about the incident.

The Argentine foreign ministry statement said Valenzuela “refused to explain why they tried to pass this material.”

Argentine officials said Valenzuela had contacted Timerman hopes of resolving the situation, and was said to have expressed “concern on behalf of the US Defence Department over the seizure of items related to the security of the United States.”

The incident comes amid a chill in US-Argentine bilateral relations, and follows US President Barack Obama’s decision to exclude Argentina from his first scheduled trip in March to Latin America. Obama will travel to El Salvador, Brazil and Chile.

Timerman reacted to this decision by saying that the United States has “more interests than friends.”

He said Obama would not visit Argentina because “it won’t buy arms or even sign a defence agreement.”

Agence France-Presse
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  • https://twitter.com/DrMatthew Dr. Matt

    Sounds like a typical government employee mess-up…..right teabaggers? Teabaggers, aren’t all government employees completely lazy and incompetent…including our military?

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/L5PHKRPFHK3LLTRDNVH2ZBIWOA Cal

    Funny, if you just showed up at the US border with undeclared weapons and drugs, your butt would be cooling in the local jail for the rest of your life. I guess its OK when the government does it, you have no reason to question them in any way since they always tell the truth.

  • cannotvote

    The dog is deciding to wag it’s own tail! Training police force hey? Sounds a little dodgey to me, training mmmmm!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_FONW6K3ZWV4BU4ZTCDCSZHHH6E Mick Jagger

    So our military is still selling cocaine by the tonnage? And then busting people in the USA to fill their for-profit prisons? This is treason of the highest order. Im sure the Bush and Clinton families were in on it. They all need to be removed and prosecuted.

  • mick

    “Crashed drug plane owned by US Government?”
    Interesting story about the Gulfstream II jet filled with 3.7 tons of cocaine that crashed in the Yucatan a couple of weeks ago. According to the Austin American Statesman, this plane has previously flown to Guantanamo Bay, which has a highly restricted airspace:

    Some news reports have linked the plane to the transport of terrorist suspects to the U.S. detention center at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, but those reports cite logs that indicate only that the plane flew twice between Washington and Guantánamo and once between Oxford, Conn., and Guantánamo.

    No terrorist suspects are known to have been transferred to Guantánamo directly from the United States.

    The jet, with the tail number N987SA, changed hands twice in recent weeks. But how it ended up in the hands of suspected drug traffickers remains a mystery.

    The Mexican attorney general’s office said the blue and white Gulfstream II crashed Monday in a remote jungle area on the Yucatán Peninsula. Authorities seized 132 bags of cocaine weighing four tons.


    Mexico,CIA,Guantanamo Rendition Plane, Cocaine, Homeland ‘Security’

    In April,2006 it was revealed that a plane owned by Skyway Communications of Lakeland,Florida and Royal Sons holding company using Huffman Aviation(where Mohamed Atta trained before 9/11),as its address and paradoxically rented by the Howard Dean’s Democrat presidential campaign of 2004 had been busted by the Mexican army at the Ciudad Del Carmen,Campeche airport on the Yucatan Peninsula with over 5.5 tons of cocaine on board.
    Now yet another plane,(a Gulfstream II),that crashed in the Yucatan on Sept 24th this year with 4 tons of cocaine on board has connections to the Skyway Communications DC-9,(confiscated by the Mexican army and now used by the Mexican Attorney General’s office),as well as to Guantanamo ‘rendition’ flights that may have taken place from or through Europe.Skyway Communications,a penny stock ‘pump and dump’ is,according to Daniel Hopsicker of madcowprod and SEC filings,connected to Titan Corporation(torturors at Abu Ghraibe,etc.),a subsidiary of Level-3 Corporation of San Diego,California that has done very well for itself financially in the ‘war on terror’. Titan in San Diego strangely enough has been employer to a mysterious Lebanese-American,Makram Chams, who owned a Kwik Check cashing business in Venice,Florida that cashed a $70,000 check for Mr. Atta that was sent from Dubai,(now the official home of Halliburton),shortly before 9/11.
    American-Israeli attorney Michael Farkas, founder of Skyway Communications,has both U.S. intelligence connections as well as far right Israeli connections including to Israel’s largest defense or military corporation.He supports Israeli West Bank settlements or occupation of Palestinian land as well.
    Company executives include the Kovars,Glenn and Brent,father and son.


  • Anonymous

    The problem is that those “Tools” were not declared by the US as they are suppouse to do:


  • http://twitter.com/btmfdrsheaven rebecca meritt

    Don’t they know we’re the USofA? O yeah, I forgot, it was probably written on the plane. Argentina’s good at soccer,too!

  • Anonymous

    They know if they try to take the Falklands again, they will get their head handed to them a second time. And it’s not them the US will be helping.

  • Arlo J. Thudpucker

    Weapons and drugs being run to South America?

    I’m shocked, I tell you! SHOCKED.

    These creeps have been running drugs for decades. ( Yes, decades.)

    If you’d like the downlow, see: http://www.madcowprod.com Hopsicker does thorough research.

  • ghostof911

    Busted! If they need a C-17 to haul dope, it must be a lot of dope!

    State Department spokesman Philip Crowley said “we are puzzled and disturbed by the actions of Argentine officials,” adding they conducted what he called “an unusual and unannounced search of the aircraft’s cargo.”

    Keep your hands off my stash!

    But he said the material seized was routine for exercises in which US military experts train the Argentine federal police in “advanced hostage rescue and crisis management techniques.”

    Next time you get pulled over by the man when you’re holding, give him that line. See where it gets you.

  • Anonymous

    This is actually nothing new and has been going on for decades. And yes, since Iran Contra if you follow Bush you follow the drugs. There is a great book by, hell I forgot his name right now, it’s called ‘Compromised’ which gives you and agents-eye view of how this shit operates. There are others of course; Peter Dale Scott and Gary Webb (who after outing the CIA in this stuff happened to commit suicide by shooting himself in the head TWICE, No that’s the truth).

  • Anonymous

    The crew need to spend some time at the theofascist…er, “christian” AF Academy where “christian” upperclass males are allowed to rape underclass females. Or, to quote the AF “chaplain,” their getting caught “must have been God’s will.”

  • Anonymous

    Wow. “the US State Department said it was “puzzled and disturbed” by the seizure of what it claimed was routine equipment for training the Argentine federal police.” REALLY? Puzzled and disturbed? Why State Dept? You have known for years that there are elements within the military and the CIA involved in drug dealing, from the coca fields of Bolivia to the poppy fields of Afghanistan. Nothing has changed. The Iran Contra affair was just another instance where you got CAUGHT. I guess you have to raise money for weapons, bribery, blackmail, etc. from SOME source because you already know we taxpayers would be PISSED if we knew what you were doing. Let me give you all a clue. We are sick of these shenanigans and someday, hopefully soon, it will stop.

  • Anonymous

    Makes perfect sense. Americans just got polled on the greatest american president:

    Poll: Americans say Reagan the best president, favor George W. Bush to Thomas Jefferson


    To celebrate this exciting event we are going to “reenact” the Iran Contra era.

  • Anonymous

    This isn’t FAUX NEWS. Take your manure pile elsewhere. Asswipe.

  • Anonymous

    It was morphine used by Army medics…the point is why are we wasting that money when our states are broke? They can train themselves.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_FONW6K3ZWV4BU4ZTCDCSZHHH6E Mick Jagger

    I read Dark Alliance and Ive been hearing about this since The Village Voice exposed Daddy Bush as a cocaine dealer in 1987. Of course, the corporate media is owned by the same a-holes so they are the enemy too. But now we have a faster way to spread awareness and they are afraid of us for it. They cant label us as liars or crazy anymore. HuffPost disgusts me for trying to neutralize all criminal conspiracy media reports. They are a bigger problem. Inundate them.

  • mick

    Hey Denny ,go Cheney yourself ,thanks in advance for for co-operation .
    Read ,just ,read .

  • Anonymous

    I had a feeling that Zsa Zsa Huffungton was a fucking plant from DAY 1.
    Hey at least she started as an honest ho’, you know fellatin’ that Michael Huffington dude….wait a minute, then again probably not, cuzz he’s a republican and as we all know…ALL republicans are Gah-gah-GAY. I think he’s one finally admitted it, didn’t'he?

  • http://bigdanblogger.blogspot.com/ Big Dan

    Shocker: the U.S. govt runs drugs for profits off the books.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5Z4JRNXBCO4ZYSUY3WGC3S554I nathan

    time for these people to be locked up for the same crimes they lock up our youth for.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_FONW6K3ZWV4BU4ZTCDCSZHHH6E Mick Jagger

    Its the military and the corporations selling drugs to your kids…all others involved are simply middlemen.

  • Anonymous

    It is time that we clean out our Military Industrial Complex. They are responsible for every single crime since JFK. Eisenhower warned us. They have been dealing drugs since Kenneth Starr’s uncle brought the Chinese drug laundering bank AIG from China in the fifties. The military is used for drug transport.

  • NadePaulKuciGravMcKi

    USAF and CIA have been merged into one

  • Anonymous

    I’ve seen that shit “pasted” on different tory sites all over the net. The only legs it had are the ones that ran straight up your ass.

  • Anonymous

    And here I thought Air America (the operation, not the radio netwok) was long gone, but I guess they’re still in business. A US military/CIA tradition going all the way back to Vietnam. I guess it got too hot in SE Asia for them.

  • Anonymous

    And don’t forget the immortal words of Richard Nixon, “when the president does it, it’s not illegal”. And what is the state dept, but an arm of the executive branch? The gov’t has proved on every possible opportunity that they are the biggest crooks around. I hope EVERY country starts searching EVERY plane we send them. ESPECIALLY the military ones. Every time we get into a conflict somewhere, it’s the drugs from that part of the world that we suddenly see tons of on OUR shores. When we were in Nam, we had heroin everywhere. When we were fucking around in South America, suddenly cocaine made a resurgence all over the country. Now that we are back in the east, heroin is back. Who is surprised by this, REALLY?

  • Anonymous

    Sounds to me like their police training is working. They FOUND the contraband, what is the problem?

  • http://www.rawstory.com/ hounddogg

    I thought Oliver North worked for Fox now?….

  • YeaSayer

    This is what HRC meant when she said “there’s too much money in it.”

  • cannotvote

    None whatsoever – it’s just that the war on drugs is a crock, a front for US meddling in other countries – finally the shackles of us involvement are beginning to crumble! In other words a problem is only a big as it’s wanted to be!

  • Sandi

    Hmmmm. . . Argentina touches Uraguay, Paraguay, Brazil, Bolivia, and Chile. This is an ideal position to stage a set-up of those countries who have joined in the Bolivarian Revolution. Claim they are running drugs and promoting terrorism and it gives NATO and the U.S. a reason to get “involved”.

    No sir, I don’t like the implications.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PCHLMPBJKYTW3LJBHZEZMO3TXQ What Ever

    Air America flies again!

  • Anonymous

    Yes because the US would NEVER violate the rules of a client state…just like we don’t torture.

  • http://voxxrocks.com/blog/ HIStory Indeed

    We had to know someone was going to pick up where Ollie North left off right?

    Let’s not pretend we don’t know this is going on while they sell us lies about drug prohibition and gun control.

    This whole social game we play is make believe. They make it up and the chuckle heads believe it.

  • Johnny Warbucks

    Drugs, weapons and money. The US trademarks of chaos, mayhem and destruction all packed in one single plane.

  • Anonymous

    Anothe rgross example of how the US MSM keeps Americans ignorant. Instead of doing their job of informing Americans of what is really going on, they would rather cover up the dirty laundry. The problem is however that the laundry has already been hung out to dry in the world’s communication and press networks, so that it is only the poor proviincial Americans who are left clueless as usual.