WHY AMERICAN SPECIAL OPS MEDICS WERE DODGING CARTELS IN PERU

We’d just crossed a nameless, murkey Amazonian river and were moving toward our objective on foot. The two-star general accompanying our motley crew of misfit medics through the Peruvian jungle informed us the advanced security element, just ahead of our location, uncovered a guerilla fighting position equipped with teneraite charges and several automatic weapons. The information elicited little more than a twisted grin from the seasoned special operations alumni on our five-person team.

Somewhat analogous to the current poppy predicament in Afghanistan, the Peruvian military had been engaged in a lengthy and costly battle with violent cartels, some cleverly disguised as legitimate political resistance parties. Tactics of these groups included, but were not limited to, kidnapping women, forcibly impregnating them, and raising the children to follow their own extreme ethos. More often than not, their cocaine cash crop was compulsorily grown against the will of local farmers on their own land. The alternative was death.

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