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by Peter Moskos

May 24, 2010

Oh, Jamaica

Gun battles seem to be the order of the day. Police officers have been killed. There's also looting. But a police spokesman says about the business district, "There was some shootings last night but some amount of calm has returned." Phew.

A state of emergency has been declared that basically give police carte blanche to do what they want. Prime Minister Golding says, "These are necessary measures to restore order to a community that is now threatened.... This will be a turning point for us as a nation to confront the powers of evil that have penalised the society."

Turning point in the drug war? Why do I not believe him?

Meanwhile one newspaper says the police have taken a "soft-handed approach." In the same paper the police commissioner is quoted as saying, "Do not hesitate to respond quickly and take decisive action when attacked by these criminals.... Police personnel have the full backing of the High Command to any response to protect themselves."

I wonder if they'll get Dudas. And I wonder if they'll get him alive. I'm sure many in government would much prefer him dead and silent than alive and talking.

My quote of the day comes from Deejay Mavado: "Ask them if me ever bring a rifle come give them, but at the same time me nah tell them not to defend themselves." That was at a peace meeting.

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