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Invisibleveggie

Registered: 07/26/04
Posts: 13,985
Drug war enters rainforests
    #3910871 - 03/13/05 11:54 AM (12 years, 1 month ago)

Drug war enters rainforests
March 13, 2005
dailyherald.com

OVER THE JUNGLES OF WESTERN COLOMBIA - The newest battle in Colombia's drug war is being fought in one of the largest tracts of virgin rainforest in the Americas, an expanse of stunning beauty where crystalline rivers weave around mountains hugged by a blanket of trees.

Harried by eradication campaigns elsewhere, drug gangs have been moving into the remote region, bringing in millions of seedlings for coca - the bush used to make cocaine - to be planted by peasants who are felling patches of trees.

U.S. crop-dusters, which helped wipe out more than a quarter-million acres of coca last year in other parts of Colombia, have begun fumigating the new fields in their costly cat-and-mouse struggle with traffickers.

An Associated Press team, squeezed alongside door gunners, flew over the region Thursday aboard a helicopter gunship to get a look at the new front in the war.

Stretching as far as the eye can see, the rainforest in Choco state reaches into neighboring Panama. It is one of the planet's wettest regions, penetrated by few roads.

As the Vietnam War-era "Huey" helicopter clattered deeper into the isolated region, evidence of the drug gangs became apparent. A machine gunner pointed to an ugly gash in the trees. Then another, and another.

Some of the fields carved from the jungle were green with budding coca. Others were brown after being poisoned by spray planes. Bright-green seedbeds could also be seen.

Cocaine producers turned to this rainforest, bordered on the west by the Pacific Ocean and the east by the Andes Mountains, after being hit by extensive coca eradication campaigns in southern, northern and eastern Colombia.

Analysts learned of the encroachment by examining satellite photos, which showed the new coca fields popping up, said Capt. Miguel Tunjano of the Colombian Counternarcotics Police. Operations to crush it were quickly mounted in an effort to prevent a "balloon effect" - where drug production pops up in a new area after being squeezed in another.

Three years ago, this happened when spray planes wiped out coca crops in southern Colombia's Putumayo state and drug gangs moved their fields to Narino state in the southwest.

"Back then, we focused the spraying in Putumayo and it boomed in Narino," Tunjano said. "If we don't attack the problem in Choco now, the same thing will happen there."

Maj. Juan Pablo Guerrero, commander of police counterdrug operations in Choco, said traffickers - who use peasant farmers to grow the coca - are making a major move into the region.

So far, 3,420 acres of coca have been detected in Choco and 1,075 acres have been sprayed, Guerrero said at a forward operating base in Tulua, near the southeastern edge of the rainforest.

Government troops recently carried out a raid in which numerous drug labs and seed beds were destroyed, he said.

"We found 152 seed beds with 10,000 plants in each one," Guerrero said. "That's more than 1 million plants. This represents only what we've found thus far - and we are just starting to penetrate this area."

Guerrero said the budding cocaine operation in Choco is controlled by the Rastrojos, a private army of the Northern Valley drug cartel, and by two leftist rebel groups, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia and the National Liberation Army.

The U.S. government has contributed billions of dollars to the counternarcotics effort in Colombia since 2000 and has said the aid will continue.

Gen. Bantz Craddock, head of the Miami-based U.S. Southern Command, said more than 342,000 acres of coca and 9,500 acres of opium poppy - record amounts - were destroyed in Colombia last year.

"We have made significant gains," Craddock told the House Armed Services Committee this week.


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Invisibledblaney
Human Being

Registered: 10/03/04
Posts: 7,894
Loc: Here & Now
Re: Drug war enters rainforests [Re: veggie]
    #3911021 - 03/13/05 12:52 PM (12 years, 1 month ago)

Aside from the blatant violation of international law by the US, the spraying is horrible! They are killing legitimate plants, animals, people are getting sick, tribes are being forced to move. The chemicals used in the crop dusters are highly poisonous, and not just to weeds such as Coca. It is a horrible atrocity, yet most people don't realize the extent of the operations down there, because they think Coke is the devil and so as long as it cuts down on the amount of cocaine, then the ends will justify the means.

This is a very naive attitude. Shame on the United States.


--------------------
"What is in us that turns a deaf ear to the cries of human suffering?"

"Belief is a beautiful armor
But makes for the heaviest sword"
- John Mayer

Making the noise "penicillin" is no substitute for actually taking penicillin.

"This country, with its institutions, belongs to the people who inhabit it. Whenever they shall grow weary of the existing government, they can exercise their constitutional right of amending it, or their revolutionary right to dismember or overthrow it." -Abraham Lincoln


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Offlinedelta9
Active Ingredient
Male Arcade Champion: Plumber

Registered: 10/29/04
Posts: 5,390
Loc: California
Last seen: 6 years, 6 months
Re: Drug war enters rainforests [Re: dblaney]
    #3912363 - 03/13/05 06:40 PM (12 years, 1 month ago)

How about...  We make it legal and it is produced in-country at little cost driving the damn gangs out of the fucking market.  :rolleyes:


--------------------
delta9


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Offlinefaslimy
Dead Man
 User Gallery
Registered: 04/04/04
Posts: 3,436
Last seen: 1 year, 4 months
Re: Drug war enters rainforests [Re: delta9]
    #3912654 - 03/13/05 07:55 PM (12 years, 1 month ago)

but then how would the companies who make the poison make their money? and how would all the government people employed in this plant murdering regeme make their money?

the cocaine would also make less money if the government made it.. so dont you see how great it is for the money? moneymoneymoney


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Invisibledblaney
Human Being

Registered: 10/03/04
Posts: 7,894
Loc: Here & Now
Re: Drug war enters rainforests [Re: faslimy]
    #3912687 - 03/13/05 08:02 PM (12 years, 1 month ago)

The plant itself is very good for you.


--------------------
"What is in us that turns a deaf ear to the cries of human suffering?"

"Belief is a beautiful armor
But makes for the heaviest sword"
- John Mayer

Making the noise "penicillin" is no substitute for actually taking penicillin.

"This country, with its institutions, belongs to the people who inhabit it. Whenever they shall grow weary of the existing government, they can exercise their constitutional right of amending it, or their revolutionary right to dismember or overthrow it." -Abraham Lincoln


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Offlineblaze2
The Witness
Male

Registered: 12/20/02
Posts: 1,883
Loc: San Antonio, TX
Last seen: 4 years, 9 months
Re: Drug war enters rainforests [Re: dblaney]
    #3913474 - 03/13/05 10:39 PM (12 years, 1 month ago)

I saw this on a 20/20 a long time ago with John Stossel. It was a pretty good look at everything the war on drugs has done wrong. I remember just how surpised I was when I saw that they were spraying fuckign herbacide in the rainforest. Whos bright Idea was that? I mean they are dumping out of planes its not like you can be precise, plus it fuckin leaches into rivers and streams. Its so wrong and yet no one cares. This country is filled with an unbelievable amount of idiots.


--------------------
"Religion without science is blind, Science without religion is lame." Albert Einstein

"peace is not maintained through force it is acheived through intelligence." Albert Einstein

"Those who desire to give up Freedom in order to gain Security, will not have, nor do they deserve, either one."
Thomas Jefferson

"To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors, is sinful and tyrannical." --Thomas Jefferson


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