politics

It Was Meant For Terrorists, But Mexico’s Government Allegedly Used It On Its Journalists

Ivan Rigamonti / FLICKR

Strong evidence suggests that between 2015 and 2016, Mexico’s government used Israeli spyware — known as “Pegasus” — to monitor the phones of journalists, human rights lawyers, and anti-corruption activists, The New York Times reported. Among those targeted were lawyers investigating the missing 43 students in Ayotzinapa, as well as family members of those investigating Mexico’s corruption. Juan E. Pardinas, who has fought for anti-corruption legislation, described being the target of Mexico’s government, saying, “We are the new enemies of the state.”

Since 2011, Mexico’s government purchased more than $80 million in software from Israel-based NSO Group Technologies.


The Israel-based NSO Group sold their highly advanced cyber weapon to Mexico on the condition that its government restrict its target to threats against public safety, like terrorists, cartels, and kidnappers. But Mexico’s government, which bought more than $80 million worth of software from NSO, began to target its own citizens. Those targeted by the hacking received personalized messages with links. Recipients that clicked on the link would unknowingly install the spyware on their devices, allowing the hacker complete access.

The New York Times has an extremely in-depth write up on the developments of this scandal. Check it out here.

(MORE: NYT)

READ: Authorities Violated Mexico’s Constitution Gathering Evidence In Case Of Missing 43 Students

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US Med School Grad Blacked Out While Kidnapped In Mexico And Can’t Recall What Happened

Things That Matter

US Med School Grad Blacked Out While Kidnapped In Mexico And Can’t Recall What Happened

NBC News / YouTube

There are multiple questions surrounding an Arkansas man who disappeared in Mexico following his graduation from medical school earlier this month. Jessy Pacheco, 29, was out celebrating with a friend in Guadalajara when officials say they were attacked and his friend killed. Officials presumed Pacheco was kidnapped after going missing for over a week back on June 15th. But according to CNN, he was seen last Friday on airport surveillance cameras leaving Mexico with his mother. The next day, his family didn’t say much about how he was found.

Jessy Pacheco says he doesn’t remember a thing about vanishing or what happened to his friend.

Pacheco arrived safe and returned to the U.S. over the weekend. Joined with his parents, he gave a press conference Sunday that raised many questions as to what happened in Mexico. According to Pacheco, he doesn’t have a clue how he went missing besides the celebration beforehand.

“I can’t recall anything,” Pacheco said at the press conference back home. “I mean, it was just a complete blackout. Graduation was amazing, all my family and friends were there. Next thing you know (I) blacked out and then ended up showing up back home.”

The celebration happened just hours after he graduated from medical school at Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara. That’s when things took a turn for the worse.

Pacheco’s close friend, Carlos Alejandro Delgadillo Romero, was found beaten, shot, and killed a block away from the bar where they were last seen.

Credit:@_americaG/Twitter

Authorities found Romero’s body two days later near the bar where both he and Pacheco were last seen together. Romero, who was also a medical school student and U.S. citizen, was reportedly attacked and fatally shot by a group equipped with an AK-47, according to the Jalisco attorney general’s office, NBC News reports.

“Carlos was a close friend of mine and I’m sorry it happened to him,” Pacheco said. “I would have taken his place, he didn’t deserve it.”

To this point, Pacheco says he didn’t know how many days he went missing or what happened to him after leaving the bar. He has also yet to speak with Mexican authorities since returning to back home to Arkansas.

“There are things that we don’t know, and that’s what they [authorities] are trying to figure out because we just don’t know,” Pacheco said.

There are still so many questions behind this disappearance and how Pacheco returned home.

Credit:@fashndiva/Twitter

Many are wondering how Pacheco was found or if some information is being withheld from him or his family. On Sunday, his family would not elaborate or discuss how Pacheco was found after being presumed kidnapped.

“We don’t know who he was with, who had him,” Vilma Franco, Pacheco’s mother, said at the press conference. “We don’t know nothing.”

There are currently no suspects at this time but Jalisco Attorney General Gerardo Octavio Solís Gómez told NBC News that investigators had believed Pacheco was kidnapped by the same group that killed his friend. But there has yet to be any arrests in connection with Romero’s death. The FBI is also being involved in the investigation of the case.

While there are still details to be sorted out, at this time, Pacheco’s family is just happy to have their son back home.

“I didn’t think I was going to be back home. I thought my life was over, but I’m home,” Pacheco said. “I’m just glad I’m home. A lot of people who are in these kinds of situations don’t get this opportunity. I thank God.”

READ: Mexico Is Putting Luxury Cars, Condos, And Land Seized From Real Life Narcos Up For Auction, Here’s What You Could Buy

Just Another Reminder That The Most Popular Salad In The World Is Actually Mexican

Culture

Just Another Reminder That The Most Popular Salad In The World Is Actually Mexican

Taste.com

Those who don’t know any better give Mexican food a bad rap for being cheap and greasy. However, the Mexican culinary world expands far past Taco Bell and Taco Cabana. Authentic Mexican food is fresh, bold, delicious and versatile.

In fact, Mexico is responsible for one of the biggest fine dining staples there is.

Mexico is, in fact, the birthplace of the creamy and crisp Caesar salad.

Twitter / @oucrimsongirl

As the story goes, the Caesar salad was created in Tijuana, Mexico by an Italian restaurateur named Caesar Cardini. It was 1924 when Cardini established his restaurant in the tourist destination to cater to American guests escaping prohibition. While no one really knows the true story, most agree the salad was created over 4th of July holiday weekend.

Supposedly, the dish was completely improvised. Cardini is said to have thrown together several ingredients he had at his disposal and it created the fresh, delicious gourmet salad.

Twitter / @ladelandleaf

According to What’s Cooking America, the original recipe used a base of romain lettuce leafs. Additionally, garlic, parmesan cheese, croutons, boiled eggs, olive oil and Worcestershire sauce were added.

Rumor has it that it was Cardini’s brother, Alex, that added anchovies in 1926. He named his remix the “Aviator’s Salad.” Still, this anchovy-filled dish was so popular that it became known as the official Caesar salad.

Parts of this story is hard to prove, but it comes with a famous witness to offer some legitimacy to it.

Twitter / @keatonkildebell

The famous English chef, Julia Child, shared her first encounter with the iconic salad. In her book, “From Julia Child’s Kitchen,” the chef recounted her experience in a Tijuana restaurant. She wrote:

“My parents, of course, ordered the salad. Caesar himself rolled the big cart up to the table, tossed the romaine in a great wooden bowl, and I wish I could say I remembered his every move, but I don’t. They only thing I see again clearly is the eggs. I can see him break 2 eggs over that romaine and roll them in, the greens going all creamy as the eggs flowed over them. Two eggs in a salad? Two one-minute coddled eggs? And garlic-flavored croutons, and grated Parmesan cheese? It was a sensation of a salad from coast to coast, and there were even rumblings of its success in Europe.”

It’s popularity in Europe cause people to mistakenly think the Caesar salad is Italian.

Twitter / @Kylie_greenlee
Twitter / @2FlyT

However, the dish is 100% authentically Mexican cuisine. To recognize the delectable salad, in 1953, it was declared “the greatest recipe to originate from the Americas in 50 years” by the International Society of Epicure. We wouldn’t expect anything less from this Mexican classic.

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