America's cocaine habit fueled its migrant crisis

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  • Published on:  Friday, February 8, 2019
  • And it's destroying Guatemala and Honduras.Help us make more ambitious series like Vox Atlas by joining the Vox Video Lab. It brings you closer to our work and gets you exclusive perks, like livestream Q&As with your favorite Vox creators. Learn more at, the US is facing a migration crisis on its southern border with Mexico. Thousands of people from Central America, especially Guatemala and Honduras, are fleeing their home countries, taking a dangerous journey north through Mexico, and claiming asylum in the US. How did this crisis begin? Much of it can be traced back to the 1970s cocaine trade. Cocaine, which is mostly produced in Colombia, used to be shipped by boat and plane across the Caribbean. But in the 80s and 90s, the US cracked down on this route, so traffickers started shipping their drugs through Central America and over land to Mexico. That created a violent and competitive turf war between gangs and organizations in Guatemala and Honduras, and after the governments cracked down, violence only increased, forcing people to flee, often to the US. Through Vox Atlas, producer Sam Ellis demonstrates where conflicts occur on a map and the ways in which foreign policy shapes a region. Watch all the episodes here: to our channel! is a news website that helps you cut through the noise and understand what's really driving the events in the headlines. Check out Check out our full video catalog: our podcasts: Vox on Twitter: on Facebook:
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  • Joplynn Moser

    Joplynn Moser

     6 months ago +2261

    between all the cocaine and the coffee, it looks like Colombias mission is to wake up the world.

  • Eyuel Gorfu

    Eyuel Gorfu

     6 months ago +105

    First law of economics:
    Whenever there is a demand there will be a supply. Outlawing somting is not automatic solution to cut down demand.

  • theChillChanneL


     6 months ago +840

    Politicians are asking the wrong questions; Instead of asking "How can we stop drugs from getting into the U.S.?" they should ask "Why are so many Americans buying them in the first place? Why is the U.S. the most profitable country in the world for illegal drugs? How can an American use a product they know people likely died to manufacture, to smuggle, to sell?" The end of the drug war will not and cannot take place in Mexico or Central America, it can only end in America with a complete 180 in policy, education, thought, economics and society.

  • iced coffee

    iced coffee

     5 months ago +138

    they failed to mention how the US also killed the democratically elected leaders of those countries and replaced them with authoritarian puppets so we could get our bananas and spread capitalism.... If it wasn't for us destroying central America years ago then the governments there might have stood a chance .

  • elver galarga

    elver galarga

     6 months ago +303

    As long as people IN THE USA keep demanding , drugs will never stop . This will never stop

  • Friar Ruse

    Friar Ruse

     6 months ago +757

    > America: Complains about Illegal immigrants bringing over illegal drugs
    > Also America: Does Cocaine
    Good job America

  • kiran


     6 months ago +31

    The US should look inside for a solution rather than waging wars outside..

  • soid drone slayer

    soid drone slayer

     5 months ago +40

    I once heard a quote that if America accuses our nation (Mexico & Colombia) of being drug pushers then we accuse America of being a nation of drug addicts. Their is alof of truth to this on both sides.

  • Darth Plagueis

    Darth Plagueis

     3 months ago +12

    2:21 George Bush only did it because of the communist connections, he could’ve cared less about the cocaine

  • Anton Borysenko

    Anton Borysenko

     6 months ago +391

    3 seasons of narcos in 1 vid

  • Heartwork By Kitty

    Heartwork By Kitty

     1 months ago +6

    "A go fast boat"
    He hehe
    But on a more serious note
    Legalize and tax

  • Rap the rainbow Taste the rainbow

    Rap the rainbow Taste the rainbow

     6 months ago +74

    CIA Cocaine importing agency

  • Marcelo Potty

    Marcelo Potty

     6 months ago +129

    Actually Honduras dictator is the biggest drug dealer of The country

  • Carlos Lanza

    Carlos Lanza

     6 months ago +4

    As a Honduran, I really agree on how this video handles the topic. Thank you

  • Henrik Swanström

    Henrik Swanström

     6 months ago +7

    What can I say?
    If people want to party other people will help them find a way to party.
    War on drugs, what a joke. Just like all other wars all it does is cause damage.

  • 5thGen


     4 months ago +6

    And the government buys most of it !
    Oh and Dont forget Escobar was a informant...

  • Ashish Gupta

    Ashish Gupta

     6 months ago +3

    hears kilogram
    laughs in metric



     6 months ago +3

    America's War on Drugs fueled America's migrant crisis.

  • rohde007


     6 months ago +1794

    Amercians creating their own problems? (insert pikachu face here)

  • Ephraïm Boateng

    Ephraïm Boateng

     6 months ago

    Meanwill Canada is watching from up north [insert pikachu face]😂😂