FierceHomelandSecurity is reporting on testimony of both the Commandant and the Commander of SouthCom, Marine Corps Gen. John Kelly, before a joint hearing of the House Transportation and Infrastructure and Foreign Affairs subcommittees.
“Joint Interagency Task Force South, which is part of Southcom and includes the Coast Guard, (other–Chuck) military services and other agencies, seizes the majority of the cocaine bound for the United States, said Marine Corps Gen. John Kelly, the Southcom commander. Yet it receives only 1.5 percent of the federal government’s total counternarcotics budget, he said.”
Commandant Adm. Robert Papp, who appeared alongside Kelly, said that in the past five years, the Coast Guard seized more than twice the amount of cocaine as all domestic law enforcement agencies – federal, state and local – combined.
Over the last five years, Coast Guard ships and law enforcement detachments operating in the offshore regions have removed more than a million pounds of cocaine with a wholesale value of nearly $17 billion. This is more than two times the amount of cocaine seized by all other U.S. federal, state and local law enforcement agencies combined.
While I have my own reservations about the effectiveness of efforts to restrict supply, if you are going to attempt to cut supply, it sure looks like funding Coast Guard efforts should be the first place to put your money.