Islamist Militants Join Latin American Drug Lords in Explosive Duo. Hezbollah Seeks Closer Links with Drug Cartels Due to Iran’s Falling Oil Revenues
This week, the DEA announced the arrests of Hezbollah operatives with connections to ‘La Oficina de Envigado,’ a major Colombian Drug Trafficking organization responsible for a large share of the cocaine shipped to US and European markets. The presence in Latin America of Hezbollah, the Lebanese-based and Iran-backed Shi’a Islamic terror group is hardly news.
The group has been active in money laundering and other illicit activities in the region for decades, predominantly in the lawless tri-border region between Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina. Most notably, Hezbollah bombed a Jewish center in Buenos Aires in 1994, killing 85 and wounding hundreds. However, the recent increase in cooperation with drug traffickers, as evidenced by these high-profile arrests, represents an alarming trend and a dangerous prospect for the future of hemispheric security.
But hey, who’s paying attention?