Adam Isacson

Still trying to understand Latin America, my own country, and why so few consequences are intended. These views are not necessarily my employer’s.


Get a weekly update in your email


This just screams “phone wallpaper”

“A promotional map of the Pan-American Highway produced by Standard Oil,” from “The Collection of Eric Rutkow” in the New York Times’ review of Rutkow’s new history of the Pan-American Highway.

Read More

Colombia’s ungoverned, conflictive margins

While looking for a graphic to use in a presentation for tomorrow, I found this cartogram of Colombia’s population at a site called World Mapper. A cartogram re-sizes territories on a map, usually using software, to reflect an attribute. This one shows what Colombia’s map might look like if each pixel contained an equal number […]

Read More

Amazing maps, but what a mess

It’s hard to believe anyone would even try to map out the tangled, shifting patchwork of violent groups active in “post-conflict” Colombia’s Pacific coastal region. But the Ideas for Peace Foundation (FIP), a Bogotá-based think tank, accepted the challenge. This map, from an April 10 FIP report on rearmed FARC “dissident” groups, depicts the department of […]

Read More

2016 suspect trafficking maps

These U.S. government maps were on display at today’s Senate Colombia hearing, but weren’t in anyone’s published testimony. Click on them to see them enlarged. That route from southwest Colombia and Ecuador to Mexico and Guatemala is really striking. Also striking is the relative absence of vessels headed to Nicaragua, El Salvador, Cuba, and Haiti.

Read More

Trafficking routes over time

Below this text, in reverse chronological order, are some maps from U.S. Southern Command that I’ve collected over the years. They show the tracks of aircraft or boats that Southcom and its Key West, Florida-based “Joint Interagency Task Force South” (JIATF-South) component has suspected of trafficking drugs (or other illegal things). These give you a […]

Read More
Get a weekly update in your e-mail:

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.