This Pigeon Exposes a Hole in President Trump's Plan to Stop Drug Trafficking

May 26th 2017

Law enforcement officials in Kuwait intercepted a homing pigeon that had a mini-backpack stuffed full of pills containing ketamine on Tuesday.

The bird — which has been dubbed "party pigeon" — was part of an apparent attempt to smuggle drugs over the border.

It might seem unusual, but the use of pigeons isn't unheard of in drug trafficking. When border walls and law enforcement stand in the way of the illegal drug trade, traffickers often develop unconventional and innovative techniques to bypass those barriers.

Some other examples: catapults, submarines, drones, intricate tunnel systems, and T-shirt cannons.

catapultU.S. Customs and Border Protection - cbp.gov

This is why drug policy experts have cast doubts on President Donald Trump's plan to end the drug crisis in the U.S. by constructing a massive wall along the border.

For one, most trafficking occurs at border entry points, with drugs stowed away in vehicles. But in other instances, border walls have done little to prevent traffickers — inspiring creativity, instead.

Sanho Tree, the drug policy project director at the Institute for Policy Studies, told ATTN: in an earlier interview that increased border enforcement efforts created a "filtering effect," stopping "inefficient traffickers" but missing those who are "the most evolved, the most efficient, the most innovative."

"We're selectively breeding super-traffickers," he said.

The US Border Fence at the Pacific OceanFlickr - flickr.com

In other words, as long as there's demand for illegal drugs, there will likely continue to be homing pigeons, and other quirky methods of drug trafficking, trained to carry tiny backpacks full of ketamine pills. And as a reference point, Trump's proposed border wall could be as tall as 55-feet — but pigeons can fly at an altitude of more than 6,000 feet.

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