Beating the Drug-War Addiction

Since the end of the Cold War, the US has focused its security efforts in Latin America on fighting the "war on drugs." But, with drug-trafficking and murder rates increasing throughout the region in past decades, the US must revise its regional doctrine in order to address other pressing security needs.

BUENOS AIRES – In January, US President Barack Obama nominated Marine Corps Lieutenant General John F. Kelly to head the United States Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM). Based in Miami, Florida, USSOUTHCOM runs military operations throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, and is the key US “drug warrior” in the region. Across the region, the key question, among civilian and military leaders alike, is whether the change in commanders will bring with it a change in focus.