Gangster Warlords: Drug Dollars, Killing Fields and the New Politics of Latin America

Getty Images


Ioan Grillo
Mexico City–based Journalist and Writer


Monday, January 23, 2017


Noon–1:00 p.m. PT


RAND Corporation
1776 Main Street
Santa Monica, CA

About the Program

A new kind of criminal kingpin has arisen: a hybrid of CEO, terrorist, and rock star, commanding guerilla attacks, strong-arming governments, and taking over much of the world’s trade in narcotics, guns, and humans. Gangster Warlords is the first definitive account of the crime wars unleashing a humanitarian disaster in Central and South America and the Caribbean, regions largely abandoned by the U.S. after the Cold War. Author of the critically acclaimed El Narco, Ioan Grillo has covered Latin America since 2001 and gained access up the cartel chain of command in what he calls the new battlefields of the Americas. Moving between militia-controlled ghettos and the halls of top policy makers, Grillo provides a disturbing new understanding of a war that has spiraled out of control—and needs to be confronted now.

About the Speaker

Ioan Grillo, a journalist and writer based in Mexico City, has been covering Latin America since 2001 for news media including Time Magazine, CNN, Reuters, The Houston Chronicle, The Associated Press, GlobalPost, France 24, CBC, The Sunday Telegraph, Letras Libres and many others. His work has also appeared in The New York Times, BBC and Guardian. He will be discussing his book Gangster Warlords: Drug Dollars, Killing Fields and the New Politics of Latin America (released 2016); he is also author of El Narco: Inside Mexico’s Criminal Insurgency (released 2011).

About IDSS

The International Development Speaker Series is a student-led initiative sponsored by Pardee RAND Graduate School and several RAND research units: RAND Labor and Population, RAND International, RAND Health, RAND Education, and RAND Justice, Infrastructure, and Environment.

Learn more about the International Development Speaker Series