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Drug Kingpin El Chapo's "Horrifying" Comments

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La Prensa, Jan. 11, 2015

"Horrified!" Monday's front page of Mexican daily La Prensareads,quoting White House reaction to the Rolling Stone"s interview — by actor Sean Penn — with the world's most prominent drug trafficker, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman.

Mexican authorities started U.S. extradition proceedings late Sunday against the Mexican drug kingpin, who was recaptured Friday in northwestern Mexico after a manhunt lasting several months. Guzman had escaped last July from a maximum-security prison in Mexico.

White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough said he was "horrified" by El Chapo's comments to the Rolling Stone, in which he boasted of supplying "more heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine and marijuana than anybody else in the world" and having "a fleet of submarines, airplanes, trucks and boats." McDonough called the arrest "very good news."

Penn said the interview, which took place in October, was coordinated by Mexican actress Kate del Castillo. Mexican authorities, who want El Chapo to face U.S. justice for the tons of drugs he has exported across the border, say they also helped plan the meeting, Reuters reports.

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FOCUS: Israel-Palestine War

NYC Postcard: My Arab-American Friends And The Shame Of India's Foreign Policy

The author's native country, India, is both a burgeoning world power and part of the Global South. And yet, its ambitious Prime Minister Narendra Modi hasn't dared to say a single word against Israel's actions in Gaza and the West Bank, even when countries in South America and Africa have severed their diplomatic relationships with Israel.

Photo of pro-Palestinian protesters marching in New York on Oct. 8

Pro-Palestinian protest in New York on Oct. 8

Shikhar Goel


NEW YORK — The three years since coming to New York as a graduate student have been the most demanding and stimulating period of my academic life. One of the most exciting and joyous accidents of this journey has been my close friendship with Arab students in this city.

I have shared a house with a Syrian and a Palestinian here in Brooklyn, which I have grown to call home. I now make makloubeh with lal mirch and garam masala. Pita bread with zaatar and olive oil has become my go-to midnight snack. I have gotten drunk on arak and unsuccessfully danced dabke at parties. The Delhi boy in me has also now learned to cuss in Arabic.

These friendships have made me realize how similar we are to each other as people. My best friend in the city happens to be a Palestinian Christian whose family was displaced from Jerusalem in 1948 and has lived in exile ever since.

My roommate is from the West Bank, where she and her family have to face the everyday humiliation of crossing Israeli checkpoints to travel in their own country.

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