Proceedings Of The Marine

FALL 2014

Proceedings magazine is a communication tool for the Coast Guard's Marine Safety & Security Council. Each quarterly magazine focuses on a specific theme of interest to the marine industry.

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 12 of 70

10 Proceedings Fall 2014 Endnotes: 1. Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime: Addressing Converging Threats to National Security. National Security Council; the White House, July 2011. Avail- able at transnational-organized-crime.pdf. 2. Convergence: Illicit Networks and National Security in the Age of Globalization. Michael Miklaucic and Jacqueline Brewer, editors, NDU Press, Washington, D.C., 2013. The author contributed a chapter to the book. 3. These include recently founded Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Comunidad de Estados Latinoamericanos y Caribeños-CELAC), and the Bolivar- ian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America (Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América-ALBA). 4. Fact Sheet: Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime. Offce of the Press Secretary; the White House, July 25, 2011. 5. On the lower end, the United Nations Offce of Drugs and Crime estimate TOC earnings for 2009 at $2.1 trillion, or 3.6 percent of global GDP. Of that, typical TOC activities such as drug traffcking, counterfeiting, human traffcking, weapons traffcking and oil smuggling, account for about $1 trillion or 1.5 percent of global GDP. For details see Estimating Illicit Financial Flows Resulting from Drug Traffck- ing and other Transnational Organized Crimes. United Nations Offce of Drugs and Crime, September 2011. On the higher end, in a speech to Interpol in Singapore, 2009, U.S. Deputy Attorney General Ogden cited 15% of world GDP as total annual turnover of transnational organized crime. See: Josh Meyer's U.S. attorney general calls for global effort to fght organized crime. Los Angeles Times, October 13, 2009. Available at: 6. Central America's Northern Triangle: A Time of Turmoil and Transition. IBI Consultants, April 2013. Available at: pdf. 7. For a broader defnition and look at how "criminalized states" in Latin Amer- ica operate, see Douglas Farah's Transnational Organized Crime, Terrorism and Criminalized States: An Emerging Tier-One Security Priority, U.S. Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute, August 2012. 8. One of the most detailed cases involved the 2001 weapons transfers among Hez- ballah operatives in Liberia, a retired Israeli offcer in Panama and a Russian weapons merchant in Guatemala. A portion of the weapons, mostly AK-47 assault rifes ended up with the United Self Defense Forces of Colombia (Autodefensas Unidads de Colombia-AUC), a designated terrorist organization heavily involved in cocaine traffcking. The rest of the weapons, including anti-tank systems and anti-aircraft weapons likely ended up with Hezballah. For details, see Douglas Farah's Blood From Stones: The Secret Financial Network of Terror. Broadway Books, New York, 2004. 9. For a detailed look at this development see Antonio L. Mazzitelli's The New Trans- atlantic Bonanza: Cocaine on Highway 10. Western Hemisphere Security Analysis Center, Florida International University, March 2011. 10. The FARC is the oldest insurgency in the Western hemisphere, launched in 1964 out of Colombia's Liberal Party militias and enduring to the present as a self- described Marxist revolutionary movement. For a more detailed look at the his- tory of the FARC see Douglas Farah's The FARC in Transition: The Fatal Weakening of the Western Hemisphere's Oldest Guerrilla Movement. NEFA Foundation, July 2, 2008. Available at: 11. Clapper, J., Director of National Intelligence. Unclassifed Statement for the Record: Worldwide Threat Assessment of the U.S. Intelligence Community for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, January 31, 2012, p. 6. 12. For the most comprehensive look at Russian Organized Crime in Latin America, see Bruce Bagley's Globalization, Ungoverned Spaces and Transnational Organized Crime in the Western Hemisphere: The Russian Mafa. Paper prepared for Interna- tional Studies Association, Honolulu, Hawaii, March 2, 2005. 13. Morris, R. China: Latin America Trade Jumps. Latin American Business Chron- icle, May 9, 2011, accessed at: aspx?id=4893. 14. Cancel, D. China Lends Venezuela $20 Billion, Secures Oil Supply. Bloomberg News Service, April 18, 2010. By the end of August 2011 Venezuela's publicly acknowl- edged debt to China stood at some $36 billion, equal to the rest of its outstanding international debt. See Benedict Mander's More Chinese Loans for Venezuela, FT Blog, September 16, 2011. Available at: more-chinese-loans-4bn-worth-for-venezuela/#axzz1Z3km4bdg. 15. Quito y Buenos Aires, Ciudades preferidas para narcos nigerianos. El Universo (Guaya- quil, Ecuador, January 3, 2011. 16. Shelley, L. The Unholy Trinity: Transnational Crime, Corruption and Terrorism. Brown Journal of World Affairs, Winter/Spring 2005, Volume XI, Issue 2. criminalized state/TOC/terrorist groups and foreign hostile state and non-state foreign actors exploit the ungoverned or stateless areas in an areas of close proximity to U.S. bor- ders — and the dangers they represent both in their current confguration and future iterations. Understanding how these groups develop and how they relate to each other and to groups from outside the region is vital — particularly given the rapid pace with which they are expanding their control across the continent, across the hemisphere, and beyond. Developing a predictive capacity must be based on a more realistic understanding of the shift- ing networks of actors exploiting the pipelines, the nature and location of the geographic space in which they operate, the critical nodes where these groups are most vulnerable, and their behaviors in adapting to new political and eco- nomic developments, market opportunities, setbacks, inter- nal competition, and the countering actions of governments. In turn, an effective strategy for combating transnational organized crime must rest on a solid foundation of regional intelligence, which, while cognizant of the overarching transnational connections, remains sensitive to unique local realities behind seemingly ubiquitous behavior. A one-size- fts-all policy will not suffce. It is not a problem that is only or primarily a matter of state or regional security, narcot- ics, money laundering, terrorism, human smuggling, weak- ening governance, democracy reversal, trade and energy, counterfeiting and contraband, immigration and refugees, hostile states seeking advantage, or alterations in the mili- tary balance and alliances. It is increasingly a combination of all of these. It is a com- prehensive threat that requires analysis and management within a comprehensive, integrated whole-of-government approach. At the same time, however expansive in global terms, a strategy based on geopolitics — the fundamental understanding of how human behavior relates to geographic space — must always be rooted in the local. About the author: Mr. Douglas Farah is the president of IBI Consultants LLC and senior asso- ciate, Americas Program, CSIS.

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Proceedings Of The Marine - FALL 2014