What Effect Has Narco-Trafficking Had on Colombian Politics and Society?

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Abstract: Colombia is internationally notorious for the trafficking of illicit drugs, and for the past thirty years. Its impact of politics and society has been immense. This essay will highlight and expand to what extent have Colombia’s socio-politics been affected. It will firstly highlight, the damaging effects of the narcotics industry, by explaining 1) the economic effects, 2) undermining the authority of the Colombian Government through funding Guerrilla and paramilitary groups and social consequences of these groups, 3) the corruption of politics 4) political relations with the USA, 5) direct political power of drug lords and 6) the health consequences of the circulation of drugs. However, these arguments will be counteracted by explain that other factors contribute to Colombia society and politics, such as 1) a weakened central state and 2) poverty. However, this essay will conclude that the narcotics industry affects all aspects of Colombia.
In the 1980s, Colombia achieved international notoriety as a centre for the trafficking of illicit drugs. The industry has influenced Colombia’s development and as a result the entire political and societal structure of Colombia has been affected by its vast drug problem. As Francisco Thoumi summarised, “illegal drug and trafficking have marked the past thirty years of Colombia’s history; contributing greatly to the changes in institutions and values, and becoming a major element in the country’s policy.” .
This essay will primarily postulate Thoumi’s argument- that the extent to which illicit drugs (in this essay we will concentrate on the cocaine industry) in Colombia have affected politics and society ranges wide in scope, and has affected the country in several ways:
1a Economically
2a Undermining the authority of the Colombian Government through funding Guerrilla and Paramilitary groups and the Social Consequences of these groups
3a Corruption of Politicians
4a Political relations with the USA
5a Direct



Bibliography: Books Dudley, Steven (2004) Livingstone, Grace (2004). Inside Colombia: Drugs, Democracy and War. 1st Edition, Reuters University Press. Kilne F, Harry and Wiarda J, Howard (2007) . Colombia in Latin American Politics and Development. 6th Edition, Westview Press. Mark (2001). The Hunt For The World 's Greatest Outlaw." Atlantic Monthly Press, New York University Press. Stokes, Doug (2005). America 's Other War: Terrorizing Colombia. Zed Books Journals/Papers Berry, Albert (1978). Rural Poverty in 21st Century Colombia in Journal of Interamerican Studies and World Affairs. Vol. 20, No. 4 pp. 355-376 Buitrago, L Francisco E. Thoumi (2002). Illegal Drugs in Colombia: From Illegal Economic Boom to Social Crisis in Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. Vol. 582, Cross national Drug Policy. Pp 102-116. Sarmiento Anzola, Libard Websites Amnesty International, Everything Left Behind: Internal Displacement in Colombia (2009) (http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/info/AMR23/015/2009/en) Author Unknown. El DIA 8.000. (1996). (http://www.semana.com/wf_InfoArticulo.aspx?IdArt=44895) Retrieved: 10th November 2010 Author Unknown Colombian Drugs and Society, 1988. (http://www.photius.com/countries/colombia/society/colombia_society_drugs_and_society.html) Retrived: 10th November 2010. USAID: From the American People; Budget; Colombia. (http://www.usaid.gov/policy/budget/cbj2005/lac/co.html). Retrieved: 11th November 2010 Vieira, Constanza ( 2008) Videos Mi Padre Pablo Escobar (My Father Pablo Escobar), Nicolas Entel (2010)

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