June 21st, 2002

emu

The search for some Canadian travellers

In Tegucigalpa, the capital of Honduras, I found a travel log/diary in a cheap and dirty pension. It had been there for a while, the guy who worked there told us. I decided to take it home and somehow find its owner to send it. Up until now, I have not really searched. I have resisted the urge to read it, but had to flip through to get some clues. There are some bus tickets in there:

Jamie Ryckman and Elizabeth Record (from Tapachula to Guatemala, march 1, 2001)
These are hand-written tickets, the second name seems a bit weird to me, but it could be me.

Another bus ticket for Elizabeth Record (from Monterrey to Tampico, 28 Feb 2000)

A ticket from changing money on the name of Jamie Anne Riedman (also in Guatemala)

The first entry in her diary (the writing seems feminine, the names above suggest the same), is from February 17 1999 (She forgot the last nine, but the second day, same page has the complete year)

In the back of the hardcover book are provisional calendars and many budget calculations. In between are some names from, I assume, people she/they met on the road:

Jasan Harvath (St. Patrick st W.)
Klaas Nijenhuis (Rockwood)
Gerardo Salinas Ganza

The second name is Dutch, the address isn't. The last name is Spanish, but it only has a telephone number with it, no country code.

I lost a parcel myself while on the road, I gave it to some travellers who were nearly on their way home to sent it to me from there, they never did, or it never arrived. I know I would be happy if someday the books, maps and pictures showed up again. I guess Elizabeth or Jamie (or who else lost their journal) would like this book back. I just don't know where to send it. So, with LJ being such an international community of helpful people, with plenty of travellers among them, who knows, I might find them. So, please help me find them. Crosspost or link this entry wherever it could possibly be of any use.

Elizabeth/Jamie where are you?
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emu

Conspiracy

I just love conspiracy theories, I wish I was smart enough to make them up myself. However, with a bit of deduction and debate, one could come up with some good ones.

After September 11 president Bush' approval rates have gone up. Many democratic values have gone missing; the government is fighting a war on terrorism, though that last word can't be defined easily. Not only Bush has become stronger, also the army and everyone around there. The need to be protected is big again, after the cold war finally a new common enemy has been found. The secret services saw that they needed to cooperate, needed more funding, more attention. And by the time criticism on them grew too strong, suddenly there was this mysterious American Muslim who had been arrested because he possibly might have been considering of trying to attempt to build a dirty bomb (for those who aren't sure: yes I am sarcastic). On the other side the strong Jewish community has more evidence than ever that Islam is bad, their influence in the states has grown again.

Completely on the other side, Al Queda's name awareness has grown hugely over the last three quarters of a year. The people of Afghanistan have finally got rid of the Taliban, though Bin Laden hasn't been caught. This last one has shown his power, he was behind the attack (everyone assumes) but can't be linked directly, nor can he be found. His position is unique.

Up until now, everyone has benefited from the major disaster. Is it very cynical to assume there is a big plot behind all this? Would all people and organisations that have come out stronger really sacrifice thousands of lives? Call me whatever you like, but I think they would. History has taught us quite often that in search for power and direct gain, sacrifices are easily made. We probably will never find out the truth behind all this.

Second case: The murder of Fortuyn. Probably not as high profile as the previous case, as one political murder in a small country will never draw as much attention. Nevertheless, for those on this side of the ocean who know what I'm talking about it must be understandable. This supposed killer came from an environmental organisation. He has still to make a statement, though it seems fairly obvious he did it. The weapon on him is the weapon that killed Fortuyn. Just a few random points to prove that this case stinks as much as the previous ones.
1. Fortuyn was shot six times. From close range, that's true. Still being hit five times in essential places would qualify Van der G. as an Olympian immediately. Yet he has no licence for a weapon, nor is he a member of a shooting club. Where did he learn to shoot like this?
2. The calibre of the weapon was heavier than most 'normal' weapons. How did he manage to get his hands on this?
3. Even though he hasn't made a statement, the first thing he told the police was the name of his lawyer, a firm that in the past has defended members of the Roter Armee Fraction. It does show that he knew what he was doing.
4. How often does the phrase 'Where are the police when you need them?" come up? Not now. Within 8 minutes of the shooting five police cars were there to arrest Van der G. Some of them even wearing extra strong bulletproof vests. How the hell is that possible, unless they knew in advance where they should have been?
5. The traditional power outside politics (clergy, top companies, and ministries) has a tendency towards right wing politics. At the time of the killing, the elections threatened to go to the small left wing parties and one independent brilliant politician. All this at the expense of the traditional big parties. Then a lefty (environmentalist!) kills the brilliant politician and both supposed winners did not win as expected. Instead the Christian democrats profited and snatched the victory.
6. We are not supposed to know names of suspects in any normal case, yet within hours of the murder, the name of the suspect was all over the Internet. Some foreign channels even named him with his full family name within the first 24 hours.
7. Now, a month and a half after the murder, we still know very little about the investigation. Some mistakes have been made, shouts of cover-ups within a week seem exaggerated to me, it is weird that we get very little information.

Third conspiracy: how come I got a new contract, but not a pay rise?
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