Emerging External Influences in the Western Hemisphere, Hearing Before the Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere, Transnational Crime, Civilian Security, Democracy, Human Rights, and Global Women's Issues of the Committee on Foreign Relations, U.S. Senate, One Hundred Fifteenth Congress, First Session, May 10, 2017 [open pdf - 668KB]
This testimony compilation is from the May 10, 2017 hearing on "Emerging External Influences in the Western Hemisphere," before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere, Transnational Crime, Civilian Security, Democracy, Human Rights, and Global Women's Issues of the Committee on Foreign Relations. From the opening statement of Dr. Ottolenghi: "Across the Western Hemisphere, Islamic terror networks are expanding their influence by increasingly cooperating with violent drug cartels, often 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 to 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 U.S. policy priority. One of its primary targets should be Iran's most deadly proxy, the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah. Thanks to a vast network of support in key areas of Latin America, Hezbollah plays a central role in a new landscape where drug and human trafficking, gun running, illicit cigarette trade, trade-based money laundering, and terror financing can no longer be treated as distinct phenomena. [...] Iran's and Hezbollah's operations in Latin America thus intersect and mutually reinforce one another. Both pursue goals that are not only diametrically opposed to U.S. interests but also clearly pose a direct threat to American national security." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: Dr. Emanuele Ottolenghi and Eric Farnsworth.
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