Unholy Relationship

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los_zetasHezbollah cooperating with Mexican drug cartels

Lieutenant General Kenneth E. Tovo, deputy commander of the U.S. Southern Command, said in his address to the Congress Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, that Hezbollah is working with Mexican cartels.

According to the Yucatan Times Tovo explained during the hearing that Hezbollah, “which has long viewed the region as a potential attack venue against Israeli or other Western targets, has supporters and sympathizers in the Lebanese Diaspora communities in Latin America, some of whom are involved in lucrative illicit activities like money laundering and trafficking in counterfeit goods and drugs.”

“I think it is fair to say that there is a good amount of profit that Lebanese Hezbollah makes off of illegal trafficking,” Tovo added.

The Yucatan Times article tells of a meeting taking place in May 2011 between an Iranian-American car salesman, Manssor Arbabsiar, from Corpus Christi, Texas, and a man he believed to be a member of the Mexican cartel Los Zetas. Arbabsiar offered the man US$1.5 million to murder the Saudi ambassador to the United States.

Over the next four months in 2011, Arbabsiar, a spy for the Royal Forces, which is a special operations unit of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards of Iran, and another person presented as his “cousin”, met in Mexico with an undercover agent of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) whom they thought to be a member of Los Zetas.

The DEA agent asked that they deposit the money in a bank controlled by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Soon after, in September 2011, Arbabsiar was captured with the help of Mexican authorities, and charges were brought against him for trying to assassinate a diplomat.

Also relating to this unholy relationship, in October 2014 U.S. Marine General John Kelly, commander of the Southern Command, said in a speech at the National Defense University in Washington: “we know that some of the [cocaine] money that comes out of the United States is laundered into the coffers of Hezbollah.”