Rear Adm. Christopher Tomney

Coast Guard Rear Adm. Christopher Tomney is director of the Joint International Task Force South, a multi-agency, international alliance whose mission is to cover 42 million square miles of territory primarily in Central and South America to stem the flow of illegal drugs and to disrupt and dismantle sophisticated narco-trafficking networks.

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We are getting away from focusing on a type of commodity—drugs, weapons, money—to look at illicit networks writ large. What are those networks involved in any sort of illicit activities, whether it’s terrorism, migration, drug smuggling. How can we impact those networks in our region, so again the countries in the region can be safe and secure within their own borders?

So, to me, this task force is all about helping to bring stability to the region, helping the nations of the region to fight a transnational threat where no one nation, to include the United States, has all the tools, all the capabilities, all the authorities, and all the resources to go it alone.

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