The Cocaine Crisis: How the Drug Trade Is Ruining West Africa

Marco Vernaschi / Pulitzer Center

Tiny Guinea-Bissau has become a base for cocaine trafficking between Latin America and Europe, and officials seem helpless to stop it

The first indication that the men cutting down cashew trees and filling in the ditch outside Quinta's house in central Guinea-Bissau were not, as they told her, evangelicals making a clearing for a Christmas Day parade came at 9 p.m. on Dec. 18, when they returned in several cars accompanied by four white men and with a truck loaded with drums of aviation fuel. At 11 p.m., 20 soldiers arrived on a second truck and divided themselves into two groups. After setting up two checkpoints 2 km apart in Quinta's village, Amedalae, the soldiers began unloading hundreds of large aluminum cooking...

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