Podcast Show #4

The Boiling Frogs Presents Sandalio Gonzalez

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Sandalio Gonzalez, Retired Special Agent in Charge with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), discusses the Kent Memo Scandal, the House of Death cover up, our so-called War on Drugs, US Congress, and more.

For more relevant background read my special post on Sandy Gonzalez here.

In 1978 Sandalio Gonzalez joined the DEA as a Special Agent in the Los Angeles Field Division. In 1983 he was transferred to San Jose, Costa Rica where he served as Assistant Country Attaché. In 1989 he was assigned to the Inspection Division at DEA Headquarters in Washington, D.C., where he served as a Unit Chief in the Office of Security Programs and later as an Inspector in the Office of Professional Responsibility. In 1992 he was promoted as the DEA Advisor to the Commander in Chief of the U.S. Southern Command in Panama where he served until 1994. Mr. Gonzalez returned to Washington as Chief of the Drug Suppression Section in the Office of Cocaine Investigations, and in 1995 took over as Chief of the South America Section in the Office of International Operations, where he was in charge of DEA operations in South America. In January 1998 he reported to the Miami Field Division as an Assistant Special Agent in Charge, and later that year he was promoted to the Senior Executive Service of the United States as Associate Special Agent in Charge. On January 18, 2001, Mr. Gonzalez was reassigned as the Special Agent in Charge of the El Paso Field Division, El Paso, Texas.

Mr. Gonzalez has received several performance awards while assigned to foreign and domestic DEA offices. He has participated in numerous undercover assignments and complex criminal investigations involving domestic and international drug trafficking organizations. As Advisor to the Southern Command and as a Headquarters Section Chief he provided direction and supervision to implement DEA policy in Latin America.

As a Senior Executive Service management official in the DEA, Mr. Gonzalez reported serious allegations of wrongdoing and cover-ups by federal agents and prosecutors in Miami, Florida and El Paso, Texas. He became the target of an internal investigation and was involuntarily transferred and retaliated against by the Department of Justice and the DEA.

Here is our guest Sandalio Gonzalez unplugged!


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  1. Sibel Edmonds says:

    This is a great interview. The real explosive part comes towards the end (the last 20 minutes or so), when Sandy responds to my 'hot pressure points questions' very sincerely.He is considered a legend by everyone in DEA, and I certainly agree with their assessment.

    I'm looking forward to your feedback/comments!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the show. I wonder what Mr. Gonzalez thinks about the legalization of drugs in the U.S. as a goal/solution.

  3. Edit_Mommies says:

    Say counting every murder, everyone is getting the education.

  4. Anonymous says:

    At first I was not sure how to respond to this latest revelation of the drug wars in Mexico and Columbia, but I can make one positive contribution. Please reference the book 'Gaviotas' about a community in Columbia on the Rio de Orinoco. A group of engineers decided to choose the most impoverished, environmentally difficult terrain, and make a difference. With sieve pumps designed into seesaws, solar cookers, permaculture, and numerous alternative technologies with good engineering design they turned Gaviotas into a paradise. Further, they gained the admiration of the FARQ and were openly welcomed into over 80 villages. Quiet revolutions like this can counter the insane, economically driven wars of the parasitic culture. Nature clearly teaches us that we will all go extinct if the parasite destroys its host organism.


  5. Metemneurosis says:

    Sibel you mention Sen. Grassley during the interview. I posted this link in an earlier thread but I realize you're very busy and can't follow every link sent to you. However if you don't already know about Grassley's involvement with the Family and some third world dictators then you'll be interested in taking a look at this. The part that mentions Grassley specifically is about minute 39.

  6. Holy Crap, I've been reading NarcoNews for years.

    Sibel, you are quite the brave woman. I've lived my whole life in San Diego, I don't nose around with this shit at ALL. I avoid all law enforcement and drugs/druggies like the plague.

  7. Kingfisher says:

    If you like reading NarcoNews and are from San Diego, then pick up a copy of Don Winslow’s novel “The Power of the Dog”. You won’t regret it.

  8. Thanks, Kingfisher.

    I was pretty sleepy listening to this particular podcast, Sibel, did you mention this?

    Mexico decriminalizes small-scale drug possession
    By MARK STEVENSON Associated Press Writer
    Friday, Aug. 21, 2009


  9. Sibel Edmonds says:

    Metemneurosis: well-said. I have stopped responding to our Mr. Anon the Neocon for the same reason. He's been going around websites/blogs trashing me for who knows what reasons…I respect different view points, but I do not respect that kind of behavior…that kind of irrational and disrespectful manner.

    Also, I am with you re this anti-semite game. They have overused and exhausted that line. Enough is enough; I've had it with these people and their agenda!!

  10. Edit_Mommies says:

    I think I finally understand what "shit" is. Whether it is sunscreen or coffee the space is excessive. I'm on my second cup of coffee. Our war with our intestines identifies emotional retardation. My Grandmother antagonizes me with a suggestive production of senior citizenry. Exhaustion is extremely covert of an operation. If you intend to interrupt a lifespan do nothing to quarantine our children. Do not harm yourself and forecast emotional corruption. I guess this is why Israel pains us so much. Palestine, what's that? It is like the people we trust deal us bad medicine in an excess that corrupts us. I feel it is like Biology Professors advancing the class with only the lesson concerning animal dissection. It is an over done lust for carnage.

  11. Sibel Edmonds says:

    First Anon Re: Legalization- Good question. I will certainly have him back and ask the question. We ran out of time, and as you can tell, towards the end of the show I was pushing him too much…

    Metemneurosis: Right on re: Grassley. Also check Leahy's dining-wining and traveling via Turkish lobby here: http://foreignlobbying.org/client/Government%20of%20Turkey/


    This only covers two years, so I wonder how much 'gifts/travel/etc.' they got to keep quiet about the case?!

    Nunya: NarcoNews is a great site. Bill Conroy is a fantastic investigative journalist. They cover what the MSM, an in fact most if not all alternative media, dare not cover…

    King Fisher: I too will check it out. Thank you for the recom.

    Still on the road. After tomorrow I'll be in one place for 5 days, and will be able to write more…I understand the video will be out soon. I'll keep you posted.

  12. Mitesh Damania says:

    Charlie and Danny have fun with the police state at the Canary Wharf, UK.


  13. I would have liked to hear Mr. Gonzalez' comments on a little commented on piece of news from January of this year, when the UNODC chief said "interbank loans were funded by money that originated from drug trade and other illegal activities" and that there were "signs that some banks were rescued in that way."

    From Reuters. More here.

    Then the question is why would the US blacklist First Merchant Bank of the TRNC and yet allow other, unnamed, banks to profit by drug money? Would that be just because of al-Q? I doubt it very much given that al-Q is a CIA asset.

    Or does the blacklisting of First Merchant have more to do with North Korean activities than with al-Q or drug trafficking?

  14. Metemneurosis says:

    Thanks Mitesh that was hilarious.

  15. Kingfisher says:


    It’s an apples to oranges situation as to why First Merchant was blacklisted and others didn’t. First Merchant is a specific case – micro level; the UNODC quote is on a macro level. The illicit economy, the international drug trade in particular, provides liquidity for the global financial system. First Merchant is a drop in the bucket. Do you get what I’m saying in that you can’t really compare the two, do what ifs, why’s, and how comes, etc?

    I do agree though, I would love to hear him talk about the financial end; Operation Casablanca would seem like a good example to start with.

    Saying that AQ is a CIA asset is a broad stroke that lacks nuance, and completely overlooks the fact that nothing remains a constant.

  16. @ Kingfisher
    I'd love to read a more nuanced discussion of the Heraclitan relation between the CIA and AQ. More even than nuance, I'd like detail about who handles the reins in the links between various western intelligence agencies and that protean entity. Suggestions for collateral reading would be welcome.
    Hannah K. O'Luthon

  17. Anonymous says:

    Anon the Neocon-

    One question Mrs. Edmonds – why not just spill all the beans now?

    That's all I want to know.

    And I'll try not to get on your nerves or harass you. Sorry if you feel that way.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Anon the Neocon-

    Oh – now its the "Family".

    Please, do you know how many groups try to corner the US government?

    "the Family"

    The family I'm afraid of is MS13.

    Typical that you guys aren't. Until of course you hear of the "CIA" component!

    Someone somewhere writes a book, and like "Economic Hitman" it becomes big news, and suddenly, they know what America is about.

    Per NarcoNews. Guess what, I too have been reading them for years.


    But I read it with a pinch of salt, and I try not to over-attribute agency to America.

    By the way, like it or not, the bigger the drug war, the more potential for corruption, and the more Latin American societies succumb to cartels, the less probable that we are going to keep out of them. Nor does the Hispanisation of our country help.

    Now you may say – "racist" but let me assure you , that instead of wasting your time on the "Family" it is precisely the controversial issues, that you guys are scared to death of, which explain far more about our country, than silly obsessions like the Family, and DEA corruption.

    Let's go beyond the Democracy Now perimeter, let's talk about Mara Salvatrucha, about Los Angeles, and about the increasingly dysfunctional state. Instead of talking about "efficient" conspiracy, let's talk about inefficiency in governance which can't even control a border!

    Its precisely these kind of subjects – technical questions of governance, and ethnic issues, that explain why we are who we are – not the Family, or Douglas Feith. But you wont discuss them, because the former bores you – and the later, you can't step outside of your PC borders.

    That's why I say, the CIA is the greatest victim in America – because it is the scapegoat of the coward.

    By the way – I'll throw in another stick.

    You guys all disagree with the idea "he who wants peace, must prepare an army?" This is rather ancient as a saying, Roman in fact.

    If you agree with it – then what is wrong with someone who happens to be a board member of General Dynamics, also seconding as National Security Adviser?

    Thank you everyone for the opportunity to put my questions, and share my opinion.

  19. Kingfisher says:

    Unfortunately we used Islamic Fundamentalism to counter the spread of communism since the end of World War II. For an overview of this see Robert Dreyfuss’ Devil's Game: How the United States Helped Unleash Fundamentalist Islam.

    Additional reading:

  20. Kingfisher says:

    @Anon the Neocon,

    Actually MS13 is in part an unintended consequence of our policies. Douglas Feith is unfortunately tied technical questions of governance, and ethnic issues.

    I do agree with the idea that "he who wants peace, must prepare an army”, and would consider a board member of General Dynamics serving as a National Security Advisor to be a massive conflict of interest. A cursory examination of our weapons procurement system would tell you it is deeply flawed and ripe with waste; though I am sure you do not care as neoconservative defense policy seems to champion techno-crap we don’t need at fiscally irresponsible costs.

  21. Edit_Mommies says:

    Annette Funicello one of the Mouseketeers had Multiple Sclerosis. Those children were all manipulated and abused I hope someone has the guts to stand up to television.

  22. Metemneurosis says:

    @Anon the Neocon

    You're right as long as there are ethnic gangs in the world no one has any right to be interested in DEA corruption or to even talk about radical fundamentalists groups obsessed with fascism. I'd like to apologize to all red-blooded American patriots for my momentary lapse of patriotism. I'd I'd like to confess here and now that it was secretly motivated by crypto-anti-semitism (I'm not sure how but this is what I'm told and I shall not blaspheme any longer by questioning). I will now immolate myself.

  23. Sibel Edmonds says:

    Mizgin & KingFisher: Excellent point. I will definitely have him back (and others such as Mike Levine) and put forth that question. I have 3 more interviews (already done) to post: Peter Lance, Joe Trento, Richard Barlow…and for the next round will have Dr. Mel Goodman (CIA), David Armstrong (AQ Khan, Tinner, nuclear blackmarket…), Bunny Greenhouse and Steve Kohn, among others. Check out Mel Goodman's background (also Dave Armstrong), and let me know if you have any specific questions for them…

    I'll be on the road all day today, and after that stationary for 5 days.

    Anon the Neocon: We have so many beans spilled: torture, Blackwater, NSA illegal wiretap…and what have we gotten? Nothing. So many scandals, so many known issues/cover ups, and no one is lifting finger for accountability…In fact people are getting desensitized…You know much of what I know (except a few specifics/details) has been out already…More will be out through the deposition video…and unfortunately nothing will happen…until people get ready for pitch fork; stop casting votes for disgusting phoney politicians like Obama and 99% of those already in congress.

  24. It is quite common for a police officer/DEA agent/what have you to find someone dealing, and rather than taking them in demand a cut of the proceeds.

    This not only makes said agent money, but makes the eventual bust in a year or two that much much bigger, and glorious.

    Additionally, they have time to tip off the news to a major bust about to occur, and get the interview and the blondes in the bar later in the night.

    Pull enough of those and you might even get a book deal detailing the bullet-dodging, harrowing exploits of you and your fallen partner, may he rest in peace.

    Scale accordingly.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Anon the Neocon-

    MS13 has nothing to do with our policies, nor can it be blamed on LA county incarceration policies and a history of prison segregation. I didn't think you were an adherent of the Butterfly effect club, and hence we are all part of some mystic interconnectedness?

    MS13 is an organic process of social consolidation around resources in a third world country. We have to be vigilant, know the foe, and bent on beating him. For this, we have to deal with certain issues head on.

    General Dynamics/NSA. I wasn't precise. I did not mean simultaneously. If you would still find that problematic when its serial – find me one example of a country with a better, more transparent, procurement system?

    You can't.

    Nor is it intuitive, to have a market driven procurement system – we've been through this argument a thousand times – about waste at the Pentagon.

    No theoretician of public choice school can solve the riddle. But its one of monopsony. Both the industry and the government are captive a priori.

    Sorry, in the end, I prefer my NSA guy to have industrial experience and vice-versa, than leave my military capacity in the hands of politicians who pander to an electorate more interested in potato chips and hamburgers, than what happens in El Salvador or Mali. It prejudices the politician in the direction of Lindberg and/or good ol'Noam Chom.


    Amen .You have repented my son. A little more sincerity and your sins shall be absolved and the kingdom of heaven is yours.

    It's not me who reduces the world to some grand conspiracy theory of the DEA, and explains all drug traffic as magically dependent on CIA and US cargo-planes. That is a flawed view.

    I was throwing in your direction the idea, that our democracy is not threatened by the DEA, but by social trends, which we cannot discuss. I am glad you immediately bring in fundamentalists and the word fascists as this shows how advanced any discussion of such prickly questions could possibly be among certain groups. You'd rather obsesses over one DEA agent in Chile, than what happens to a society when its productivity is cramped and its expenditures blow through the roof! After all, the former is proof of corrupt elites, the latter, of racism.

    Go ahead, call it a "distortion".

  26. Anonymous says:

    Anon the Neocon

    @Mrs. Edmonds

    I thought about this as well, and thank you for sharing the thought.

    How to make the information hi-impact?

    Wouldn't that require transcending political parochialism? Going beyond Ghirardi and NarcoNews, and to the New Yorker, Atlantic, and yes – transcending boundaries – to Commentary and the Standard.


    I don't think it is feasible otherwise.

    Generally these sort of things are valuable only when you have leverage from the intelligence community, abroad or domestic.

    Look at all the incredible intelligence the Entente had during WWI. It was useless, couldn't place a dent in the Allied machines – except in Russia. That was an amazing intelligence success. But in the West? No luck. Yet "success" in Russia is qualified. Bolshevik's a success? For some.

    I think there is always a danger in instrumentalising the kind of knowledge you have. You have to lose control.

    If you try to sell the info via publicity, then you are selling a message, a story, and in that case you have to frame it in a way that civic society can effectively use it within our legal framework. I dare say, no one in America is ready for Byzantine intrigues. Too busy with Chicken and McNuggets. It is out of everyone's league. So selling it – good luck. It would be ten times more accurate than Greg Palast, precisely why no one will bother.

    Look at Abramov. Your story is smaller corruption wise, and even less interesting to most Americans. Did American's care about BEA and Yamamah? It directly involved Washington and they still can't be bothered!

    I'd say your info has impact abroad – but ultimately in whose favor?

    You may not like our occasional collaborations with people who go rotten, but hey, let's see who uses your info for what means – and then we can come back to the moral debate, with a fresh perspective?

    I think the idea of hi-impact is unrealistic, quite frankly. You can't maintain control over the info, indefinitely. It has an expiration date. I think Wikileaks has shown to be a hi-impact platform – even more than Vanity Fair. Obviously the foreign press will pick up on it – but that's where the moral dilemma will start.

    Anyway, I understand you have a book due out soon, and in that sense hopefully at least you will be compensated for all your troubles with the incompetent morons that staff our agencies.

    America has gone a long way from what it was prior to the seventies – when competence, integrity, and work, still had some value. It wasn't such a money-grubbing place, broken by self-hatred and lack of confidence. Back then, the best of your enemies would have used your info to defend the constitution – which is not to say that the rot hadn't already set in. We always had the mafia – but hey, back then you didn't have to be a lunatic to defend the constitution – there was an America. What's left of it now? Polarized society, with extremes who would rather have nothing to do with one another – both kookier than the next. People may chaff at old school America. Just enjoy the grub that's gonna come out of your melting pot. And that's coming from an old Jew, who at one stage could care less about the old Wasps!

    Boy, do I care now. More repentant than you Metempsychosis (sorry, neurosis)

  27. Hannah K. O'Luthon says:

    Thanks to Kingfisher for the reading list, in which I will now immerse myself. A quick glance at the links turns up some familiar names, and others less familiar. It is difficult for each of us who is "just a citizen" to remain sufficiently informed to exercise civic duties, all the more so in the face of what appears to be deliberate obfuscation and occultation on the part of our "public servants". One consequence is that probably justified suspicions can easily be dismissed by "certified experts" on the grounds of
    some demonstrably incorrect detail: just ask Dan Rather about that technique. Certainly the big picture is more "nuanced" than the blog rhetoric describing it, but without an eminently civil sense of righteous indignation, the U.S. electorate will never put an end to (or even significantly impede) the downright criminal culture which is documented daily in the dribs and drabs that make it through the well-kept gates of the mainstream media.

    That point aside, I would be interested in further detail on the "turning point", that is when the Western use of Islamic fundamentalism mutated from a substantially ancillary resource in the "war against communism", to the present situation in which that fundamentalism serves in itself to justify the very profitable war support system so well entrenched in and around Washington.

  28. Kingfisher says:

    So the 1996 law that expanded the deportation of felons, where had no coordination with the host nation for receiving of these gang members had absolutely no effect on the creation of MS13? Do you really think you can call me out on something and say “no it didn’t”, while offering zero argument as to why it doesn’t?
    These criminals were simply dumped back home rapidly creating a revolution in criminal structure. By the time we realized there was a problem and started coordinating with the HN the cat was out of the bag and it was being re-exported to America. It was stupid of us.

    Butterfly effect club? Yes, I am. What part of chaos theory and the law of unintended consequences don’t you understand?

    Switzerland has a better weapons procurement system. One only need to look at the tenure of Defense Secretary’s McNamara and Rumsfeld to see that quants, people with industrial experience and MBA’s doesn’t necessarily make for a good SecDef. They may be great in a border room, but they are worthless on military matters. Of course some experience with industry is necessary for the position, but it is not the right candidate pool to pick from.

    And our military “in the hands of politicians who pander to an electorate more interested in potato chips and hamburgers”. President Eisenhower originally used the term “military industrial congressional complex” for a reason, he was right then and he is still right today. What need is higher troop levels today, but what we get today for our defense budget is pork. Manned aircrafts and high-tech destroyers means jobs and pork for congressmen; more troops just means more letters of condolences.

  29. Kingfisher says:

    The above is directed to Anon the Neocon, btw.

  30. Kingfisher says:


    As far as a “turning point” as a resource goes, take a look at the Chouet interview I linked to above. Sure, he is a critic of America, but an incredibly informed one at that. He says:

    “I remind you that up until the Nairobi and Dar es-Salam attacks, al-Qaeda (still known then as the "Services Bureau") was considered a tool, even an ally, by the United States, rather than an adversary. That was not our opinion.”…….
    “The American services were long persuaded that they controlled the movement, either directly or vicariously through the Pakistani or Saudi secret services. That conviction often led them to lower their guard or to remain blind to certain tendencies.”

    As far as fuel for Ike’s “military industrial congressional complex”? I think situations and opportunities present themselves, and the system just kicks in and reinforces itself. I think it is an organic process, and don’t really subscribe to the theory that it is orchestrated by men with monocles wearing Mr. Monopoly Man hats, though there may be a grain of truth to that. There is a wonderful documentary series by Adam Curtis of the BBC called “The Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear” that argues politicians have failed on delivering in previous utopian ideologies and have turned to fear to unite and inspire their people. I disagree with some parts of it, but overall consider it an important documentary series. It’s all over Youtube so check it out sometime.

  31. Metemneurosis says:

    @Anon the neocon

    I'm certainly happy to discuss social trends when that's either the subject under direct discussion or relevant to it.

    The reason I brought up fascism is because in the video I linked to it was brought up that the leaders of the Family cited Stalin, Hitler, and Osama as role models for those they were grooming because they 'knew how to handle power'. I find it a scary thought that these people have any influence in our government.

    And the point of my sarcastic reply was that one can be concerned about MS13 and social trends at the same time one is concerned about DEA corruption and other things. They aren't mutually exclusive. I am concerned about groups like MS13 among other things. But this blog deals with issues related to government corruption and loss of civil liberties. It would be presumptuous to come here and try to turn the discussion to MS13 instead of discussing what's being posted, unless it was directly relevant.

  32. Anonymous says:


    You know I am aware of the charge against LA county for MS13.

    And if I didn't provide a counter-argument, it's because I take my stance for granted.

    Basically, I have zero sympathy with criminals, so I don't buy "victims of the system" crap.

    Decisions were made at county level with budgetary constraints. Human nature is vicious, but the least we can do is remain clear on who is the criminal.

    Ok – Switzerland. Arsenal of Democracy?

    Look – I though you were aware of the endless, numerous, never ending attempts to rein in our procurement system. The smartest people on the planet are working on it since time immemorial. If it was that easy, to sit in an arm chair and chaff at inefficiency, and then rein in the monster – we'll, I'm sure it would be done.


    The Family is nonsense. It's the latest trend. It's one guy making a name with himself with one book. In the 70s the extreme-right harped on about the Socialist conspiracy and the NWO. I would think we would all seek to move out of that kind of narrow perception of our nation's extremely complicated politics.

    I agree, DEA corruption is a priority. As is corruption in all security agencies. After all, who if not the watchers, need to be watched?

    But frankly, reducing MS13 to a bad prison decision on the part of overtaxed local authorities, is like the above comment about Al-Qaida. Yes, we used them – but, we didn't control them. They used us too.

    Again, its a reductionist tendency, which never seems to admit that the social trend can have an underlying dynamic, completely unrelated to the "someone pulling the strings" scenario.

  33. Kingfisher says:

    @Anon the Neocon,

    I said nothing about LA County in what I wrote about the Maras, what part didn’t you understand? I give a damn about your values, and said nothing about victims of any system. What part of cause and effect don’t you get?

    Yes, Switzerland. One of the finest national defense programs in recent history; there is a reason Switzerland was never attacked in either WWI or WWII, it would have been too damn costly for any attacking force. To this day all households in Switzerland maintain weapons ranging from rifles to mortars, bridges are prepared to be demolished on short notice, and fortifications are entrenched into mountain sides and continuously maintained. The defense system of Switzerland was the model for the creators of the Israeli Defense Force.

    So yes, Switzerland; “arsenal of democracy” is a buzz term spouted by liberal interventionists and neoconservatives – both of whom don’t know their ass from their elbow when it comes to national defense, and like playing with war in pursuing their agendas.

  34. This man left out a huge slice of the story which is that these same people who were running “intelligence”, smuggling cocaine for profit, financing their little wars and “ticket punching” their favorite “intelligence asset”/ drug dealer were the same ones who created the black market to start with.


    What about “civil asset forfeiture”? The DEA has been stealing from people for years; so has the US Customs Service, excuse me ICE (Institutionalized (Racist) Crime Enforcement). They did away with due process using all kinds of arcane “legal” sophistry so that these good ole boys could profit at the federal, state and local level’ it’s a freaking right wing fascist conspiracy.

    I’m going to sue them in federal court under the RICO Act and under international humanitarian law such as: crimes against humanity and the peace; genocide; ethnic cleansing.

    Let’s see what the “federal drug judges” are going to say now.

    [WORDPRESS HASHCASH] The poster sent us ‘0 which is not a hashcash value.


  1. […] 2009, Sandalio Gonzalez appeared on the Boiling Frogs Post podcast to discuss his case and the ordeal he went through in attempting to have the scandal properly […]

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