US troops in Afghanistan guarding opium fields.
Yesterday outlaw publisher Rupert Murdoch's Wall Street Journal reported that law enforcement officials in Miami and New York are investigating leaders of the Venezuelan government for alleged involvement in drug trafficking and money laundering. Various media have been nailing the label of "narco state" on Venezuela for years.
Venezuela is a relatively small and poor country whose military is nowhere near a match for the United States military. Hence Venezuela fits the profile of a country that the United States might very well attack with force of arms, like Panama, which had borne the label " narco state" before the United States military invaded it, killed an unknown number of Panamanians and then captured and brought the small country's leader, Manuel Noriega, to a United States court room, over alleged actions said to have transpired in Panama.
The irony of the United States, which is the world's largest consumer of mind altering drugs, both licit and illicit , judging drug lords and narco States stands out strongly enough. Poorer and weaker countries in the vicinity of the USA such as Venezuela naturally are pulled towards the U.S. drug market by economic gravity. One of Hugo Chavez' "unforgettable sins" in the eyes of the world's number one drug purchasing power was his expulsion of the United States Drug Enforcement Administration from Venezuela. Actually Venezuela's law enforcement agencies began to uncover interdict and seize a greater tonnage of illicit drugs than they did under the tutelage of the United States Drug Enforcement Administration. Possibly President Chavez couldn't reconcile enrollment of Venezuela's police and military into the United States' odd "War on Drugs" wherein Latin American soldiers, police officers, judges, prosecutors, journalists and ordinary citizens are to die by the score and by the thousands on their own turf in the name of a United States Drug war in which United States military, police, judges, prosecutors, journalists and ordinary citizens are not expected to lose their lives. Perhaps on the other hand he took drug eradication more seriously than the United States do. Not only do Americans not perish in this war of choice, but at present the US is in the process of legalizing marijuana and seizing the opportunity to dominate the world market by legalizing marijuana cultivation both by private companies licensed by the separate States and by those States directly. How many Mexicans, Colombians Guatemalans and other Latin American citizens have died trying to eradicate this cash crop under DEA supervision from their own lands? Certainly many more sacrificed their lives to keep the cash crop from reaching its biggest potential markets: the streets and school yards of California and Colorado and all of the United States .
I recently spent three months in Venezuela, where I can't say I once encountered mind altering drugs other than coffee and beer. Of course it's not unlikely that illicit drugs are transportated through Venezuela and of course where you find loose money you will find government officials, just as it is in the United States.
President Obama should be thankful that President Maduro and Assembly President Diosdado Cabello never asked me for advice, as I would propose they go all out to make dollars by providing whatever we American people are willing to buy.