Mountain High, White Avalanche
Cocaine and Power in the Andean States and Panama
by Scott B. MacDonald
June 1989, 166pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Praeger

Paperback: 978-0-275-93235-0
$48, £36, 40€, A69

MacDonald . . . [provides] us with a concise, well-researched overview of how cocaine became a national security threat to the United States and other countries. Defense & Diplomacy

The Latin Amnerican drug trade has become one of the major problems confronting the United States in the late twentieth century. The key dynamic of that trade is cocaine, which is primarily produced in the Andean nations of Bolivia, Colombia, and Peru. The cocaine trade’s influence, however, has spread outwards into other Andean states–Chile, Ecuador, and Venezuela. Moreover, countries on the Andean periphery, such as Panama, have become enmeshed in the trade as transit points and money-lanudering centers. This book examines the cocaine trade in the Andean states and Panana with a special emphasis given to the relationship between cocaine and power.

MacDonald examines the linkages between the political and economic power of those in the cocaine trade, the narcotraficantes, and the governments in the region. Important parts of this issue are the drug-insurgency nexus and the significance of the debt crisis. Although the book concentrates on the structure of the cocaine industry in the Andean states and Panama, the final chapters offer policy options on how to contend with the problem.

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