As president of the community council of Vereda MedellÍn, a farming settlement three miles south of Puerto AsÍs on the Putumayo River, NarvaÍs himself had cultivated 25 acres of coca and profited nicely. Local processing labs, operated by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), bought NarvaÍs's coca and profited nicely, as well.
In turn, these labs sold the drugs to international cartels to help finance their long-running civil war.
Officials estimate that 402,000 acres of coca plants are under cultivation in Colombia, one of the world's most fruitful coca-producing regions. Each year, about 330 tons of Colombian cocaine, with a street value of about $8,600 per pound, illegally find a way to American drug abusers, according to U.S. officials; another 220 tons go to Europe.
Colombian and U.S. officials are working cooperatively in a costly program to curb cocaine production in Colombia, hoping to reduce cocaine exports to the United States and cripple FARC's economic power. The Bush administration has named a new regional program the Andean Initiative, ...1
Already a CT subscriber? Log in for full digital access.
Subscribe to Christianity Today and get access to this article plus 60+ years of archives.
- Home delivery of CT magazine
- Complete access to articles on ChristianityToday.com
- Over 120 years of magazine archives plus full access to all of CT’s online archives
- Learn more