War On Drugs By Us Government Research Paper

1958 words - 8 pages

War on DrugsThe American fought war on drugs has a deep impact on the affected Latin American countries. The effects rebound to the world economy and other third world countries. The shortage of suitable world market products, attractions and alternatives is why former colonies of Latin America completely downgraded their national ambitions to the export of agricultural products and random existing raw materials and shifted to drug production. After the colonial era, the former colonial countries, such as Spain or Portugal subdued those countries with their free trade and capital movements in order to build up the needed agricultural production and raw materials for the world market. Because ...view middle of the document...

The reason Latin American countries were never able to develop to a stonger economy level is their subordinate role as a raw material suppliers in world politics and economics. If profits are made, they mostly flow into the pocket of foreign investors. Another significant reason for their dependence on US politics is the fact that these Latin American countries created a useful buffer zone during the cold war, until the 1990s. After the communist block dissolved, they were not as important any more to world politics than they used to be. Therefore, several foreign aid packages are no longer available to them.Colombia's most important source of foreign currency was coffee until 1987 when the coffee price on the world market slumped nearly fifty percent. Instead of 3 billion US dollars, coffee brought only 1.7 billion US dollars into the country. Compared to the 9 billion US dollars income of the drug cartel during 1986 - 1987, of which only 1.7 US dollars stayed in the country, the impact of this money is clarified (Mittermeyer 21). Therefore, it is understandable that cocaine production is now the number one export of Colombia. According to United Nations estimates, 300 - 400 billion US dollars are spent every year on drugs, which is more than for food in Latin American countries.The main cocaine production occurs in Colombia, while Peru and Bolivia provide the coca leaves. The drugs are distributed to the USA, from the cities of Cali and Medellin. The economical impact is enormous. Over two million people in the Andean region alone depend on cocaine as a export good. Colombia controls eighty percent of the world cocaine market. In addition, they produce twenty-two percent of the American consumption. The two major cartels are run by a few selected families. The Cali cartel has been around since the mid seventies, with about 2500 - 6000 members. It is smaller than the Medellin cartel, less violent, more efficient and likely to be responsible for a small portion of the murders of civil servants. Their traditional markets are New York, Houston and Miami. The Medellin cartel, which is ruled by Pablo Emilio Escobar, is not as tightly organized as the Cali cartel. It consists of about two hundred splinter groups, which have an alliance in form of profit sharing rather than compulsion. The local government has no reason to criminalize the so called "narcos" because they are successful businessmen and part of the upper class. These drug lords are highly involved in politics. Some of them even hold parliament seats or own newspapers. Contacts to the two major political parties are well-kept through "donations." Besides that, the four major drug lords possess about twenty percent of the arable land in Colombia (Sauloy 97).The situation in Peru is as complex as it is in Colombia. Peru, with a total area under cultivation of 100,000 - 300,000 hectare (1 hectare = 2,47 acres), is the world's largest area of coca plantation. From those plantations around the...

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