Small Wars Journal

Confronting the Narcoterrorism Nexus

Thu, 08/06/2015 - 7:57am

Confronting the Narcoterrorism Nexus by James Kitfield, Yahoo News

.. Southcom is one of the smaller and most under-resourced of the U.S. military’s geographic commands, in large part because its area of responsibility is Latin America, a vast region of 31 countries and more than 475 million people that is nevertheless often an afterthought for U.S. officials preoccupied with higher-priority crises, like Syria or Ukraine. Nor does it help that Southcom’s primary mission involves some of the most intractable problems the U.S. government has faced, including long and unsuccessful “wars” on drugs and terror and an inability to secure the southern U.S. border.

And yet, in the news of any given week, Southcom officials see a threat matrix that has a direct impact on the lives of millions of Americans. The public recently learned, for instance, that Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, the world’s most notorious drug lord, had escaped from a maximum-security prison in Mexico for the second time. Governors and mayors across the country have recently begun warning of an unanticipated heroin epidemic that has seen the number of heroin-related deaths in the U.S. nearly quadruple. Time magazine recently reported that tiny El Salvador is now on track to replace little Honduras as the world’s most murderous country outside a declared war zone. Peace talks between Colombia and the FARC narcoterrorist insurgent group are reportedly on the brink of collapse. Argentines remain transfixed by an ongoing investigation into the mysterious death earlier this year of that country’s best-known prosecutor, who was found with a bullet in his head after building a case that Iran’s terrorist proxy Hezbollah was behind the long-ago bombing of a Jewish center in Buenos Aires, and his government knew about it…

Read on.

Categories: El Centro



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Fri, 08/07/2015 - 11:08am

Excellent article. It puts in "layman's terms" what those of us who had to struggle over the years working underfunded, and under resourced while tackling the SOUTHCOM issues have continued to advocate. Calling SOUTHCOM an "economy of force" effort in an euphemism at best, an oxymoron at worst. The reality is that the SOUTHCOM AOR is the "soft underbelly" and wide-open gateway to America's backyard. Our adversaries all know this and continue to exploit.

Even when Hollywood tries to bring the point home with limited success (e.g. Film "Act of Valor"), or when the media finally breaks out "seemingly unlikely plots of criminals planning hits against foreign diplomats on US Soil at the behest of our adversaries, we continue to turn a blind eye to the obvious. The same illicit networks and lines of communications that move drugs, counterfit goods, counterfit and illicit funds, human trafficking (get the picture?) could be used to insert and withdraw individuals and materials for more nefarious means.

Such thinking not only goes again common sense, but also against historic doctrine (Monroe Doctrine).