Center for Army Lessons Learned - Thesaurus
CALL title banner

drug cartel

Definition/Scope: Drug cartels are criminal organizations developed with the primary purpose of promoting and controlling drug trafficking operations. They range from loosely-managed agreements among various drug traffickers to formalized commercial enterprises. Drug cartels are not strictly cartels proper as it does not appear that they actually set prices for the illicit drugs. Drug cartels operate in many countries throughout Latin America, including Mexico, Central America and Colombia, and in Afghanistan and South Asia. Some cartels are even establishing themselves in U.S. cities like Phoenix, Houston, and Los Angeles.

Broader Terms:

Army National Guard
Drug Enforcement Administration
Drug Trafficking Organizations
National Drug Control Strategy
National Drug Intelligence Center

Narrower Terms:

counterdrug intelligence
counterdrug operation
drug abuse
drug dealing
drug smuggling
Federation cartel
Gulf cartel
illicit drug trade
Juarez cartel
Los Zetas
Sinaloa Cartel
Sonora Cartel
Tijuana cartel

Related Terms:

Controlled Substances Act
Department of Homeland Security
narcotics smuggling
national security
Office of National Drug Control Policy
Tijuana cartel

CALL Homepage >> Thesaurus Last Updated: Sept 17, 2008