To Combat Illegal Immigration, Trump Should Target Latin America’s Hezbollah-Narco Nexus

Editor’s Note: For more information on the terrorist-tobacco trafficking connection, see here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.


President-elect Donald Trump staked much of his successful campaign on stopping illegal immigration. Yet the flow of migrants is symptomatic of a much larger danger to U.S. security that is rapidly gathering on our southern doorstep. Across the region, violent drug cartels and Islamic terror networks increasingly cooperate, with the assistance of corrupt political elites. This toxic nexus is fueling both the rising threat of global jihadism and the collapse of law and order across Latin America that is helping drive drugs and people northward into the United States. Developing a strategy to combat this growing risk to the American homeland needs to be a priority of the Trump administration. And one of its primary targets should be Iran’s most deadly proxy, the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah.


Banco Amambay belongs to Paraguay’s president, Horacio Cartes, through his family group. While there is no indication that Cartes is personally the target of any investigation, in the past U.S. law enforcement authorities suspected his bank of participating in a money laundering scheme that funneled illicit revenue from drug and contraband tobacco sales to the United States. The investigation’s premature exposure in a 2010 Wikileaks dump of U.S. diplomatic cables ended up crippling the case.

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