We, the officers and crew of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Persistent, write this letter to offer you new and more efficient ways to fight the war on drugs.
As Coast Guard personnel and American citizens, we detest the dark shadow that the drug trade has cast over our land. As you have stated, America's most pressing national security threat comes from "the international criminals and drug traffickers who threaten the future of our children." We want to prevent their poison from reaching U.S. shores.
Our job is to interdict drugs at sea, but we lack the equipment, infrastructure, and expertise needed to make major inroads against the smugglers. Without changes, we will continue to be an annoyance—but not a deterrent—to professional narco-traffickers. We propose a number of actions to improve command and control, reallocate resources, and increase institutional knowledge. We hope these ideas will spark debate and provide you with the information you need to make the tough, unbiased decisions to best marshal U.S. forces against the drug cartels.