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Border Security, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Policing

Iranian Police Brutally Murdered Mahsa Amini; Her Death Remains a Rallying Cry

by Michael Scollon and Fereshteh Ghazi Sharmin Habibi recalls the circumstances of her husband’s killing at the hands of Iran’s security forces. But she could be talking about any number of the protesters who died across the country during a brutal state crackdown on dissent over the past year. “I was …

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How The KGB Caught America’s ‘Volkswagen Spy’: A Story of Cold War Espionage

by Amos Chapple A photo album sitting on the shelves of Ukraine’s KGB archives reveals how an amateur U.S. spy was captured more than 60 years ago.  In the summer of 1961, a quiet, serious American student named Marvin Makinen pulled up to the Soviet border in a Volkswagen car. The …

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White House Says Iran Hostage Deal Is ‘Not Ransom’

The United States pledged to monitor how Iran spends $6 billion in funds unfrozen as part of a prisoner swap deal, after Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said it was up to Tehran to decide how the money would be used. “If Iran tries to divert the funds, we’ll take action, …

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Air National Guardsman Applied for Fake Hitman Job on Parody Website

by Susan Katz Keating Another member of the Air National Guard has been hit with criminal charges – this time, not for leaking classified documents. It has to do with murder-for-hire. A Tennessee man who serves in the Air National Guard agreed to kill someone for a client who actually …

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Drug Mules Hate Submarines, But Chapitos Insist on Using Them to Smuggle Fentanyl

by Susan Katz Keating Smugglers for the Chapitos branch of the Sinaloa Cartel balk when ordered to pull “submarine duty” along the group’s fentanyl trafficking routes, a security official told Soldier of Fortune. “They hate the submarines,” the official said. “They don’t want to go near them. But the Chapitos …

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Chemists Recruited at Gunpoint: Inside the World of Underground Drug Labs

by Sara Garcia, Insight Crime Juan Manuel Delgado Cárdenas was months away from completing his studies in pharmaceutical chemistry and biology at the Autonomous University of Baja California when, on April 30, 2021, three men entered his family home in Tijuana and opened fire. Delgado Cárdenas was killed while two …

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Prigozhin Funeral a ‘Special Burial Operation,’ Held in Secret

by Mike Eckel The cloak-and-dagger uncertainty surrounding the funeral prompted a popular quip to circulate among Russian journalists: just as the Ukraine war has been euphemized by the Kremlin as a “special military operation,” Prigozhin’s funeral should be considered a “special burial operation.” For two months after launching the greatest challenge to …

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Putin, Prigozhin, and a Fiery Plane Crash: What to Watch Next as the Wagner Group Saga Unfolds

by Mike Eckel Three days after an Embraer 600 passenger jet linked to Yevgeny Prigozhin broke up and slammed into the ground north of Moscow, there is still no final clarity on the fate of the Wagner Group founder. President Vladimir Putin suggested Prigozhin was dead in comments on August …

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Callsign ‘Wagner’: Dmitry Utkin Gave His Name to Mercenary Group, Was Passenger Aboard Fatal Plane Crash

by Robert Coalson “Wagner is a cruel fellow,” a Wagner officer told RFE/RL in 2018, speaking of senior mercenary field commander Dmitry Utkin, whose call sign was Wagner. “He’s no fool.” When a private jet that Russian aviation authorities said was carrying Wagner head Yevgeny Prigozhin crashed on August 23 en route …

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Poisoned, Shot, Beaten, Blown Up: These Russians Died After Running Afoul of the Kremlin

by Steve Gutterman One was a dogged reporter determined to expose corruption, malfeasance, and abuse from the halls of power in Moscow to the killing fields of Chechnya. Another was a fiery politician who led chants at peaceful protests against President Vladimir Putin, election fraud, and Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. …

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