Research Paper: Drug Trafficking

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[. . .] Two years ago, the newspaper article, "DEA, ICE mend fences; agree to share information on drug trafficking" (2009) reports that for years in the past, Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) officers complained that the dearth of cooperation with other federal law enforcement agencies contributed to a myriad of missed opportunities s as well as complex challenges when trying to obtain information they needed to arrest drug traffickers in the U.S. "The Drug Enforcement Administration and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency ended a seven-year dispute. . . . This agreement marks a new era of cooperation between ICE and DEA to combat drug smuggling" ("DEA, ICE Mend Fences;," 2009, p. A03). The cooperation and combined efforts from DEA and ICE will reportedly help their agents better target and abort the outreach of drug traffickers currently operating in and those entering the U.S. who facilitate illicit drug use in American communities. Last year, another newspaper article, "Violent Mexican drug gangs pose rising risk to Americans," reported that the Justice Department identified more than 200 U.S. cities where Mexican drug cartels maintain drug distribution networks or supply drugs to distributors. This number had increased from 100 during 2007. "The department's National Drug Intelligence Center, in its 2010 drug threat assessment report, described the cartels as the single greatest drug trafficking threat to the United States" ("Violent Mexican Drug Gangs," 2010, p. A01). The Justice Department also reported that Mexican gangs had established drug operations in every area of the U.S. And had begun to expand into more rural and suburban locations. Another newspaper article last year, "Massive sweep nets suspects, drugs in 18 states; federal, state, local officers move against Mexico cartels" (2010) confirmed the threat regarding the Mexican drug trafficking business in the U.S. The arrest that federal, state and local authorities made of more than 2,200 individuals and their seizure of 74 tons of illicit drugs in 18 states during an immense nationwide undercover investigation revealed Mexican drug smuggling organizations and the trafficking business are well entrenched in the U.S., particularly along the U.S.-Mexico border. These and other nationwide arrests, albeit, which constitute part of Project Deliverance (a DEA operation) deal debilitating blows to the network of drug traffickers relating to major Mexican drug cartels. In an American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) post on the Web last year, "Tales from the DEA: Project deliverance or project folly?," Cooke (2010) proffers considerations regarding the DEA as well as the war on drug trafficking and drug abuse in the U.S. Cooke asserts that Project Deliverance confirms that despite repeated accusations that the U.S. no longer wages a war against drug trafficking and abuse, the War on Drugs continues. No matter the label that the DEA attributes to its operations, its basic enforcement strategies ("investigate, arrest, seize assets, prosecute, incarcerate -- repeat" (Cooke, ¶ 5) appear resolute. Nevertheless, even though U.S. agencies like the DEA have spent a trillion dollars on the War on Drugs and arrested millions of adults, individuals continue to use drugs, with some drugs like cocaine being less expensive and more pure than in the past.

The solution to decreasing drug trafficking and limiting the negative impacts of substance abuse in the U.S., according to Cooke (2010), relates to diminishing the market for illicit drugs. Vigorously funding and implementing treatment and prevention programs could conceivably contribute to this what appears to portray the best and most humane option to help limit the negative impacts of substance abuse. The writer concurs with Cooke, that: "Until the U.S. aggressively confronts the limitless demand for drugs by its own citizens, . . . [the U.S.] can expect more of the same: Deaths in Mexico, massive arrests in the U.S., and clever operation names from the DEA" (Cooke, ¶ 8). Instead of continuing the status quo, drug trafficking needs to be treated as the destructive component of substance abuse it constitutes; that adversely affects individuals in the U.S., in Mexico and in countries throughout the world. Perhaps then, the problems inherent in drug abuse promoted by drug trafficking in the U.S. from Mexico and other countries as well as by individuals living in America, will begin to decrease. Diverting increasing increments of the billions of dollars currently spent to import, manufacture, cultivate, distribute and/or sell illegal drugs into promoting treatment and prevention of drug abuse could not only help fund positive, legal business ventures -- it could help save and enrich millions of lives.


Cooke, M. (2010). Tales from the DEA: Project deliverance or project folly?

The American Civil Liberties Union. Retrieved June 30, 2011 from

DEA, ICE mend fences; agree to share information on drug trafficking. (2009, June 19). The Washington Times (Washington, DC), p. A03. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from Questia database:

Desroches, F. (2007). Research on Upper level drug trafficking: A review. Journal of Drug Issues, 37(4), 827+. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from Questia database:

Ganster, P. & Lorey, D.E. (2008). The U.S.-Mexican border into the twenty-first century. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.

Goodman, L.C. (2009, March). A report from the front lines in the war on drugs. In These Times, 33, 26+. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from Questia database:

Harris, N. (2009). Drug trafficking. What if we do nothing? Pleasantville, NY: Gareth Stevens Publishing.

Massive Sweep nets suspects, drugs in 18 states; federal state, local officers move against Mexico cartels. (2010, June 11). The Washington Times (Washington, DC), p. A07. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from Questia database:

Sherman, J. (2010). Drug Trafficking. Edina, MN: ABDO.

Violent Mexican drug gangs pose rising risk to Americans. (2010, April 1). The Washington Times (Washington, DC), p. A01. Retrieved June 29, 2011, from Questia database: [END OF PREVIEW]

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APA Format

Drug Trafficking.  (2011, June 30).  Retrieved November 13, 2019, from

MLA Format

"Drug Trafficking."  30 June 2011.  Web.  13 November 2019. <>.

Chicago Format

"Drug Trafficking."  June 30, 2011.  Accessed November 13, 2019.