To Our Readers: May 29, 1995

You won't find TIME correspondent Elaine Shannon covering the ever changing, ever dangerous international narcotics trade from the safety of her Washington office. For this week's story on the growing influence and sophistication of Mexican cartels, Shannon traveled to one of the front lines of the war on drugs: the U.S.-Mexico border town of El Paso, Texas, which has become a prime gateway for drug smugglers. Thanks to an alliance between the Cali cartel of Colombia and alleged Mexican drug lord Amado Carillo Fuentes, Shannon says, "60% of the cocaine shipped to the U.S. now passes through Mexico. In this case,...

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