Daily Archives: September 17, 2012

Bolivian coca and cocaine: Obama laments drug war failures

The following report is from “iol news” which reflects Bolivian poor fight against cocaine illegal trade. Further below, there are a few cartoons which portray this pernicious malady which triggers corruption, violence and drug addiction.

Obama laments drug war failures

September 14 2012 at 11:57pm

Washington – US President Barack Obama Friday accused Myanmar, Bolivia and Venezuela of having “failed demonstrably” to fight the drug trade, but said aid to those countries remains vital to US interests.

This is the fourth year in a row all three countries have been on the counternarcotics “black list,” put out each September in a White House memorandum, in setting US drug policy.

But new this year is the line advocating full continued cooperation in the Latin American and Asian countries.

“I have also determined … support for programs to aid Bolivia, Burma, and Venezuela is vital to the national interests of the United States,” Obama wrote, using Myanmar’s former name, as all US government documents do.

Last year, Obama advocated “limited” cooperation in Venezuela. And there was not yet any cooperation at all in Myanmar, which was ruled for decades by generals before they gave power to a nominal civilian government in 2011.

The administration did not immediately make public its reasons for singling out the same three countries again.

But in the 2011 memo, the president wrote that Venezuela was “one of the preferred trafficking routes out of South America,” thanks to its “porous western border with Colombia, weak judicial system, inconsistent international counternarcotics cooperation and generally permissive and corrupt environment.”

The government of leftist President Hugo Chavez, a staunch US critic, does not officially “encourage, support or facilitate” illegal drug trafficking and related activities, but Obama alleged that, nevertheless, some officials “were credibly reported” to be involved in the drug trade.

The president’s 2011 report also slammed Bolivia for expelling the US Drug Enforcement Administration in 2008, saying it “has seriously harmed Bolivia’s counternarcotics capability.”

The country’s own anti-drug efforts have been improving, but they “have not been adequate to compete with the rising drug trends that have brought Bolivia back to high coca cultivation and cocaine production levels,” he wrote.

And in Myanmar, Obama had noted that opium cultivation had been rising in two states, with minimal government response, and that the government blocked observation of poppy fields, citing safety concerns due to military unrest.

Bolivia, Myanmar and Venezuela are among more than 20 countries, including Afghanistan, Colombia and Mexico, listed as “major drug transit and/or major illicit drug producing countries” in the 2012 memorandum. – Sapa-AFP


The following Bolivian cartoons reflect such illegal trade… and our failures against it:

This is from El Dia, August 2, 2012:

This and next cartoon embrace the ‘olympic’ competition…

As the top coca/cocaine producers/traders show to the podium… number two thinks:

“so they will see when we finish the road through the TIPNIS…”, the three contestant carry on their bags lots of coca leaves and cocaine…

This is from La Prensa, August 2, 2012:

it reads:

“we won the silver medal in narcotrafficking and where are the winners?

Every time they expose large seized quantities of cocaine and or labs captured, not a single ‘big fish’ is captured, nor evidence ends up in important arrests…

This is from Los Tiempos, August 13, 2012:

“The drug problem” reads a newspaper article.

At customs, one employee says to another: “watch him, is very suspicious, doesn’t bring drugs!”

As a tourist (Bolivian for his looks who also resemble one of the top politicians in power) abandons the area. Back in the 1970’s Bolivians had a bad reputation abroad, every time we arrived at a country, we were looked upon as being in the drug-traffic business, this time is no different. And from time to time, we get news from ALL over the world about cocaine being seized and some Bolivians involved. A shame and unfortunate as this coca drug ruins lives on thousands, here and abroad.

Instead of having a more proactive and decisive role against drug trafficking, current politicians in power tend to diminish the remarks made by the American President. The so called ‘hate’ against the USA and capitalism seems nothing more than smoke in the air; instead these people aim at preventing our citizens to see how badly is our society confronting the cocaine pernicious trade.

This is from La Prensa, August 29, 2012:

Happy ‘customers’ chewing coca and a sign that reads:

“Chapare (cocaland)”

These coca growers, former miners of non-competitive state-owned mines have accumulated great power, they are among the richest people in the nation, do not pay taxes, approve public policy and have their leader as our president… and are relentlessly going after the expansion of more land to expand their coca crop; the natural and near site being the TIPNIS indigenous and national park.