A country of mountains, Colombia like the other Andean countries where similar U.S. spray-programs have been implemented, constitutes the highland of the Amazon basin, a zone that includes parts of Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Venezuela, Guyana and Brazil. This forest, representing one of the lungs of planet Earth (the other lung being Siberia, an area also undergoing raging destruction), is one of the richest and most diverse ecosystems in the world, a delicate and fragile system despite its apparent imposing strength. Just like the mere fact of building a highway cutting through this environment affects life in ways unforeseen, spraying chemicals meant to

destroy the foliage will also have consequences that are not too difficult to imagine and will upset the entire cycle of life around the giant trees of the Amazon. Just like anywhere else in the world but on an even greater magnitude, attacking the trees means attacking the soils, attacking the insects, attacking the birds and attacking all the other life-forms that live off them. We know how these processes start, but we can only imagine how they will end. Many world governments have little if any consideration for the environment -- such destructions are still catching up on us all -- and a heavy price will be paid for failed ideas such as spraying defoliant over coca fields in Colombia.