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Although voters are stepping into the voting booth, to try and strip our tax dollars,
local resources and destruction of lives away from the drug war, our nation's military is amping those actions WAY  UP!

Over the last fifty years, even casual observers of our military strategy understand that this nation always has ships in the seas surrounding, and boots on the ground, in those places where drugs are available. For instance, over the past thirtyyears, the USA has had a covert presence in the nation of Columbia, with one of our major "war Pivateers," DynCorp serving to "aid" the government there. In fact, I first wrote about this back in August of 2001 -

Today, I opened my web browser to note how Yahoo News is touting a story on our increasing militarized efforts of "stopping" the Drug Wars" as these actions take place off the shores of Latin America. Funny that no matter how much our local economies are suffering, there is always money to stay involved in stopping what hasn't stopped yesterday, and what won't be stopped today or tomorrow.

The crew members aboard the USS Underwood could see through their night goggles what was happening on the fleeing go-fast boat: Someone was dumping bales.

When the Navy guided-missile frigate later dropped anchor in Panamanian waters on that sunny August morning, Ensign Clarissa Carpio, a 23-year-old from San Francisco, climbed into the inflatable dinghy with four unarmed sailors and two Coast Guard officers like herself,
carrying light submachine guns. It was her first deployment, but Carpio was ready for combat.

Fighting drug traffickers was precisely what she'd trained for.

In the most expensive initiative in Latin America since the Cold War, the U.S. has militarized the battle against the traffickers, spending more than $20 billion in the past decade. U.S. Army troops, Air Force pilots and Navy ships outfitted with Coast Guard counter-narcotics teams are routinely deployed to chase, track and capture drug smugglers.

The sophistication and violence of the traffickers is so great that the U.S. military is training not only law enforcement agents in Latin American nations, but their militaries as well, building a network of expensive hardware, radar, airplanes, ships, runways and refueling stations to stem the tide of illegal drugs from South America to the U.S.

Originally posted to Truedelphi on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 12:22 PM PST.

Also republished by DKos Cannabis Law and Drug War Reform.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (13+ / 0-)

    Offer your heart some Joy every day of your life, and spread it along to others.

    by Truedelphi on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 12:22:00 PM PST

  •  Meanwhile, US banks are aiding & abetting... (9+ / 0-)

    the drug lords.  Some of the biggest banks have "...made a habit of  helping move money for Mexican drug smugglers....

    “It’s the banks laundering money for the cartels that finances the tragedy,” says Martin Woods, director of Wachovia’s anti-money-laundering unit in London from 2006 to 2009...

    ...Wachovia is just one of the U.S. and European banks that have been used for drug money laundering. For the past two decades, Latin American drug traffickers have gone to U.S. banks to cleanse their dirty cash...

    When US law enforcement busts the latest in a continual series of money laundering schemes by big banks, they are prosecuted, promise to never do it again, are fined, and then--they do it again, because they know:

    No big U.S. bank -- Wells Fargo included -- has ever been indicted for violating the Bank Secrecy Act or any other federal law. Instead, the Justice Department settles criminal charges by using deferred-prosecution agreements, in which a bank pays a fine and promises not to break the law again...  
    Prosecutors let banks like HSBC get away with only fines, even though they "exposed the American financial system to a wide array of money laundering, drug trafficking, and terrorist financing."

    On one hand, the US is putting US troops in harm's way in an exercise in futility, while on the other hand they send a loud and clear message to the drug lords & banks that no matter that the cash come from drug trafficking,  it's okay for them to launder drug money:  "Outrageous HSBC Settlement Proves the Drug War is a Joke"...  

    ...Federal and state authorities have chosen not to indict HSBC, the London-based bank, on charges of vast and prolonged money laundering...
    •  I know that I used to carry suitcases, boes, etc. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kurious, Lujane, Truedelphi, qofdisks

      of cash right into bank counting rooms. And when there was a larger stack of containerd, the bank would send someone out to the curb to help me carry it in.

      Such were the seventies. I wonder if it's still so loose?

      There can be no protection locally if we're content to ignore the fact that there are no controls globally.

      by oldpotsmuggler on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 04:07:49 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Actually, apparently yes, it's "still so... (5+ / 0-)


        The banks' laundering transactions were so brazen that the NSA probably could have spotted them from space. Breuer admitted that drug dealers would sometimes come to HSBC's Mexican branches and "deposit hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash, in a single day, into a single account, using boxes designed to fit the precise dimensions of the teller windows."

        This bears repeating: in order to more efficiently move as much illegal money as possible into the "legitimate" banking institution HSBC, drug dealers specifically designed boxes to fit through the bank's teller windows....

        At least it was (is?) in just the latest to be caught at it TBTF bank.

  •  A HUGE reason for this escalation (6+ / 0-)

    on top of the fact that ALL the "War on Drugs" is can be boiled down to "escalation": it is always 'we need more' - is that Latin America has moved on: they are talking about and legaling marijuana and small amounts of other drugs.

    THAT is a problem for the US Federal government.

    If you have a lucrative global scam called the war on drugs and WHOLE COUNTRIES stop believing in it and/or stop doing things the was the US wants them done, then you're sending bad message and threatening the profit scheme.

    The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men.

    by xxdr zombiexx on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 02:10:54 PM PST

    •  Well Ecuador and Venezuela have both already gone (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      timethief, akze29, Truedelphi

      pretty far left. Admittedly neither has been a major player in the contraband trade, but at least part of that movement has been based on the desire to acheive some local prosperity. And our desires and tastes up north have created a veritable river of money headed the other way. South American poverty does and will breed conditions that result in supplying anything and everything they have that we'll buy.

      There can be no protection locally if we're content to ignore the fact that there are no controls globally.

      by oldpotsmuggler on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 04:15:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  seems to me that S.A. wants to decriminalize drugs (6+ / 0-)
    ... Guatemalan President Otto Pérez Molina …has coupled his tough talk on crime with calls for a drastic change in crime-fighting tactics centered on the legalization and decriminalization of drugs. Legalization, he insists, should supplement military buildup to stem drug-related violence in Latin America. .... In September, Pérez proposed drug legalization at the U.N. General Assembly. The move angered Washington but was championed by the Presidents of Mexico and Colombia, who appealed to the General Assembly with a similar message. ...

    Faux News ruined my state

    by sc kitty on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 02:27:29 PM PST

  •  its time (3+ / 0-)

    to stop pissing money away on  wars that will NEVER be won
    Iraq was a waste and Afghanistan a waste the
    war on drugs is a joke
    Ike was spot on

    In all affairs it's a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted." Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)

    by lippythelion69 on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 02:48:06 PM PST

  •  Legalize drugs. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Truedelphi, qofdisks


    "Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die," - Buddha.

    by sujigu on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 06:47:07 PM PST

  •  Well, the propaganda no longer holds water with a (0+ / 0-)

    solid majority of Americans regardless of political affiliation. This is a start for a swing towards sanity. The persecution of citizens may get worse before ithe Drug War abates.

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