Sunday, March 25, 2012

DEA "The FAST Team" in Afghanistan


Over a village in southern Afghanistan, an American helicopter circles and lands. Armed men jump out and huddle near a compound wall. A translator speaking through a megaphone announces a police action and says the men are coming in.
It's one of the most politically unstable corners of the world, but the men aren't on a typical mission for troops in Afghanistan. In fact, they aren't even soldiers, and, despite what it looks like, this is not a U.S. military operation. This is the American Drug Enforcement Administration.

"It's never just about seizing and destroying the drugs," team leader Frank Tarentino told "Nightline." "It's really more about the taking down, dismantling, the disruption of organizations. ... This operation will start to generate intelligence and information that will assist for following operations."

For nine years the DEA has quietly toiled away in Afghanistan to stop drug traffickers. But now the agency is at the center of the Obama administration's strategy in Afghanistan.