He was, according to my informant, in a car being driven by one Rev Al Miller – en route to the US Embassy in Kingston. Yes, the appropriately named Dudus Coke has been caught at a road block in Jamaica. Most had written him off suspecting he had fled to Latin America from whence – the police say – cameth his coke.
Coke stands accused of a morass of drug dealing crimes in the US and looks as if he’ll be deported to stand trial there. But in the meantime the strong allegation is that he has compromised the government of Jamaica allegedly funding the ruling party itself.
The prime minister went to amazing lengths to try to block his extradition before having to apologise to his people for deploying state funds to hire an American firm to fight the deportation that side of the water.
Coke’s case highlights yet again the terrible dynamic so many developing countries are caught in. Standing at the cross-roads between production and consumption, the Caribbean mimics West Africa in its rancid dependence upon drug cartels for corrupt advancement.
It’s a gathering disaster that the ‘North’ simply will not face. As I reported more than two decades ago when based in the US, the power in American politics wielded by the illegal drug industry knows few bounds. It is reportedly, according to UN estimates, a multi hundred billion dollar business. So it is in Europe too.
The crime, misery, corruption, social distortion, and the rest, questions the entire approach of the ‘Northern powers’ to illegal drugs. From Afghanistan and Pakistan, to Colombia and Bolivia, and beyond wars continue, centred on drug cultivation.
Is it time to send for Smith Kline Beacham, Roche, and the rest and ask them to take the entire industry over? In other words, IS there another way?
Should Dudus Coke go down as the man who eventually broke the taboo that continues to surround any question of ever readdressing the global menace of illegal drugs?