Counternarcotics

Drug trafficking is big business and the illicit actors that engage in it maintain a global reach that extends from North and South America into Africa, Asia, and Europe.  Mexico’s drug cartels have become so powerful that they threaten, if not supplant, the state in certain parts of the country.  Profits are huge and the Mexican enterprise is sprawling, reaching into the United States, Central America, and beyond.  In addition, there is a growing convergence of the forces of crime and terror.  The drug trade is increasingly a source of funding for foreign terrorist organizations.  In turn, cartels and other criminals are adopting terrorist tactics.  A regional and multilateral response is needed, encompassing law enforcement, intelligence, and military components as well as socio-economic and politico-institutional measures.