The Castro dictatorship and its ties to Pablo Escobar and drug trafficking

The communist Castro dictatorship’s human rights violations and human trafficking are well known. Not so well known is the regime’s role in drug trafficking. With its strategic position just 90 miles from the U.S. coast and a corrupt government that will do anything for cash, Cuba was the perfect steppingstone for the narcotics trafficking route of Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar. And the Castro dictatorship was more than happy to oblige.

Via CubaNet (my translation):

Pablo Escobar and Fidel Castro: The dirty ties to the Cuban regime

On December 2, 1993, in Medellín, Colombia, Colombian drug trafficker Pablo Escobar Gaviria, one of the most powerful and pursued drug lords of the 20th century, died.

Born on December 1, 1949, in the Rionegro, Antioquia region, Escobar was the leader of the Medellín Cartel, a criminal organization dedicated to drug trafficking. During the 1980s, his cartel was responsible for a major portion of cocaine supply to the United States and other countries. Escobar’s immense wealth made him one of the wealthiest individuals in the world at that time.

In his quest to smuggle drugs into the United States, Escobar found a secret ally: the communist regime of Fidel and Raúl Castro.

The connection between Castro’s regime and drug cartels has been documented and publicly exposed over the past decades. One of the figures that revealed this was the late John Jairo Velásquez, better known as “Popeye,” a hitman for the leader of the Medellín Cartel and right-hand man of Pablo Escobar himself.

In the book “El verdadero Pablo” by Astrid Legarda, “Popeye” made reference to the alleged link the Castro regime had with drug trafficking through Cuba.

“Pablo (Escobar) was pleased with that route (Colombia-Mexico-Cuba-United States). He said it was a pleasure doing business with Raúl Castro because he was a serious and enterprising man,” recounted John Jairo Velásquez in his publication.

“Popeye” himself detailed that the operation lasted about two years and was conducted “by Cuban military personnel under the command of General (Arnaldo) Ochoa and officer Tony de la Guardia, under direct instructions from Raúl Castro.”

According to the deceased hitman, each flight transported between 10,000 and 12,000 kilograms of cocaine, significantly multiplying Escobar’s profits.

Despite Fidel Castro repeatedly denying any kind of link between his regime and drug trafficking, asserting that the operations with the Medellín Cartel were carried out by Ochoa independently of the State, the official version of events is hardly credible in a country like Cuba, where the top echelon of the dictatorship and its repressive and intelligence organs maintain absolute control over everything that happens.

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