U.S. Aid in Latin America

About this project: U.S. Aid in Latin America

U.S. anti-drug money spent on Latin America has been funneled through corrupt military, paramilitary and intelligence organizations and ends up violating basic human rights, a new ICIJ investigation shows.

The project team:

Ignacio Gómez, Angel Paez, Leonarda Reyes, Fernando Rodrigues, Frank Smyth, Laura Peterson, André Verlöy

Researchers / Fact-Checkers
Aparna Basnyat, Tamy Guberek, Vanessa Haigh, Julie Leimbach, Rupa Patel, Daniel Politi, Lisa Rab, Erik Schelzig, Peter Smith

Arthur Allen, Bill Allison, Maud Beelman

This report was supported by a grant from the Ford Foundation.

Read more
Inside U.S. Aid in Latin America
Narcotics and Economics Drive U.S. Policy in Latin America
September 26, 2012 — WASHINGTON: At a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on March 5, 1998, Gen. Charles E. Wilhelm, then head of the U.S. Southern Command, laid out the rationale for a large-scale U.S. military aid program unfolding for Colombia.
Inside U.S. Aid in Latin America
Fighting One Half of the Drug War
COLOMBIA: Putumayo, a vast, rainforest-carpeted province in southern Colombia, is the main military target of the $1.3 billion U.S. aid package known as Plan Colombia. Coca grown in the region provides 40 percent of the cocaine sold in the United States, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. Pilots working for DynCorp, a major U.S. government military contractor, spray poison on the coca of Putumayo, while U.S.-trained assault troops secure the area for the fumigation raids. But there are other forces operating here, as well.
Inside U.S. Aid in Latin America
Outsourcing War
COLOMBIA: One of the striking characteristics of the U.S. operation in Colombia and elsewhere in the Andes is hiring civilians for work traditionally carried out by U.S. military and intelligence services.