A blog about Mexican drug cartels reported on December 7 about a leaked encrypted email supposedly sent by notorious Sinaloa cartel kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzmán to prominent Islamic State (ISIS) leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi. In the email, Guzmán allegedly threatens to retaliate against ISIS for destroying drug shipments and interfering in cartel business. Despite numerous mainstream media outlets reporting this “story” on December 10, the sole unverified source for this information is an unidentified Mexican blogger.
Although the most often cited source for this report is CartelBlog.com, the same information was also posted on ThugLifeVideos.com on November 30. So far, news outlets like FOX News Latino, The Mirror (UK), the Russia Times, and International Business Times are all reporting identical information sourced to the same place.
Per CartelBlog.com, the Mexican blogger who somehow intercepted this encrypted email and leaked it “has intimate ties with actual Sinaloa cartel members.” The part of El Chapo’s alleged email that was leaked reads as follows:
“You [ISIS] are not soldiers. You are nothing but lowly p*ssies. Your god cannot save you from the true terror that my men will levy at you if you continue to impact my operation… My men will destroy you. The world is not yours to dictate. I pity the next son of a wh*re that tries to interfere with the business of the Sinaloa Cartel. I will have their heart and tongue torn from them.”
There is no readily available information indicating ISIS has destroyed any illegal drug shipments originating in Mexico, or belonging to the Sinaloa cartel in any way. The blog claims that ISIS is adamantly against narcotics, but there is ample evidence that ISIS fighters are operating under the influence of stimulants—specifically one called Captagon—that help them overcome fear and fatigue. In March, 2015, head of the Russian state anti-drug agency Victor Ivanov said in a press interview that ISIS made up to $1 billion annually from Afghan heroin trafficked through its territory.
This is not the first time major media outlets have posted stories about Guzmán that were not based on verified facts. In early October 2015, Breitbart Texas reported on a Yahoo! News story about El Chapo posting $100 million reward for Donald Trump. That story was based only on a series of Tweets and was quickly debunked. Currently, there is no reason to believe this leaked email from Guzmán to al Baghdadi exists, or that ISIS has destroyed any drug shipments belonging to the Sinaloa cartel.
Sylvia Longmire is a border security expert and Contributing Editor for Breitbart Texas. You can read more about cross-border issues in her latest book, Border Insecurity: Why Big Money, Fences, and Drones Aren’t Making Us Safer.