Investigative journalist Paul Eddy, co-author of The Cocaine Wars, which traces the course of cocaine from the hills of Bolivia to American street corners, and the domination of the market by a group of drug barons based in the resort town of Medellin, Colombia. The book also details the extent of cocaine corruption in both Dade County, Florida (Miami) and the Bahamas. Eddy writes for the Insight Team, the investigative arm of the Sunday Times of London.
World music critic Milo Miles discusses Cumbia (COOM-bia), the leisurely musical form that took shape in the northern regions of Colombia, and now influences bands in Mexico and the Southwestern United States. You may have already heard a Cumbia tune on TV, during a Colombian coffee commercial.
Colombian journalist Maria Jimena Duzan helped expose the connection between Colombia's drug traffickers and the nation's military in 1988. Duzan and her paper, El Espectador, were the targets of death threats and attacks. By 1990 all of the members of the paper's former investigative unit were either dead or in exile. Duzan went into exile, but her sister, a documentary film maker, was murdered. Duzan returned to Columbia in 1992. She has a new book, "Death Beat: A Colombian Journalist's Life Inside the Cocaine Wars." (HarperCollins)
Journalist Mark Bowden's new book is called Killing Pablo: The Hunt for the Worlds Greatest Outlaw (Atlantic Monthly Press.) Its an investigation into the US government's role in bringing down Colombian cocaine kingpin and terrorist Pablo Escobar. BOWDEN will talk about Escobar, the world of drug trafficking and US/Colombia relations. MARK BOWDEN is a reporter with the Philadelphia Inquirer. His previous book was the award winning bestseller Black Hawk Down. A film adaptation is in the works.
El Tiempo is one of Columbia's leading dailies. Enrique Santos Calderon will talk about putting out a newspaper under the threat of kidnapping, torture or death from leftist guerillas and right wing paramilitary groups. In Columbia, more journalists have been killed in the past five years than in any other country.
Colombian senator and presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt. In a country controlled by drug cartels and corrupt government officials, she has spoken out against corruption. Her efforts have earned her and her family death threats. She travels with as many as a dozen body guards, and sent her children away. Betancourt grew up in Paris, the daughter of Colombia ambassador to Unesco. Her mother was a political activist. Betancourt book about her fight against corruption was a bestseller in France where it was first published.
Filmmakers Josh Marston and Orlando Tobon discuss Maria Full of Grace, their film about a Colombian girl who swallows pellets of narcotics and travels on a plane to New York. In real life, Tobon runs a travel agency that arranges transport back to Colombia for dead smugglers, who have died when the pellets burst.
As the United Nations' former under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs, Jan Egeland has tracked down violent guerrilla leaders, confronted warlords and addressed humanitarian crises around the world. His new memoir is A Billion Lives: An Eyewitness Report from the Frontlines of Humanity.