Tom Feiling | Cocaine Nation: How the White Trade Took Over the World (Pegasus Books)

From big time drug lords to government insiders, Feiling paints a detailed and solid picture of the U.S. government and its historical, interdependent relationship with cocaine.

 

 
 
If you dare enter into a conversation over politics, corruption and conspiracy are usually soon to follow. Seems like a large majority of society believes the U.S. government, in some way or form, has its hands in secretive and illegal acts. While everyone speculates what these secretive and illegal practices are, the lengths to which some American politicians have gone would surprise many, especially younger generations who are hearing it for the first time.

In his book Cocaine Nation: How the White Trade Took Over the World, Tom Feiling paints a remarkable image of national and international drug crimes based on firsthand accounts by those who were involved. From big time drug lords to government insiders, Feiling paints a detailed and solid picture of the U.S. government and its historical, interdependent relationship with cocaine.

One of the best things about this book is the author himself. As a British national who spent some time living abroad in Columbia, Feiling’s international experience lends a great outsider perspective while including back-to-back firsthand accounts. The fact remains, while there are many stellar books out there, there are few that are as life changing as this one. The magnitude of information thrown at you is enough to make your head spin, but the realization that they are all proven and verified facts will do your head in totally.

 
As a child of the ‘80s, a large majority of historical events talked about in this book happened before my time. While the ‘80s were marked by the Iran-Contra affair, I was still too young to grasp what was going on. I remember Oliver North’s testimony plastered over all the television stations as he sat behind a table and microphone. While I was old enough to know he was in trouble for something, I was too young to know what that something was. Feiling smoothes over a lot of those patchy holes in history with a mixture of historical facts and economic and social implications throughout his book.
 
The biggest asset to this book by far is that it begins with the origin and traditional uses of the coca leaf in South America and walks you through society’s dysfunctional relationship with it since then, a sort of guide that opens your eyes to the positive and truly medicinal side of the coca leaf as opposed to its use in cocaine. | Jennifer Manjarez

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