By Lic. Edward V. Byrne View Edward V. Byrne's profile
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48 hours after U.S. authorities announced the disruption of an Iranian
plot to assassinate the Saudi Arabian ambassador in Washington, a State
Department official told Congress today that Latin drug cartels present a
greater threat to the security of the United States than does Iran.
William Brownfield, assistant secretary of state for the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, testified today before the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
greatest threat is now in Central America, from where drug cartels and
criminal gangs move 90% of the cocaine which arrives in the United
States,” said Brownfield. He told legislators that the situation
presents a serious danger to all governments in the region.
Republican committee chair said that the potential for internationally
linked terrorism should be of great concern to the U.S., since one of
the arrested Iranians had tried to hire someone he believed to be a
Mexican drug cartel sicario (hit man) to carry out the planned assassination. The hit man was actually an undercover DEA agent.
senior Democrat on the committee said that the United States should
view its “neighbors (in Latin America) not as threats, but as
opportunities” to enhance U.S. security.
More on the Iranian plot here.
More on Latin drug cartels and their U.S. operations here.