Washington - The top US military commander for Latin America says he does not have the ships and surveillance capabilities to go after illegal drugs flowing into the US and is forced to "sit and watch it go by".
General John Kelly says he is able to get about 20% of the drugs leaving Colombia for the US, but the rest gets through.
Kelly was testifying on Thursday before the Senate Armed Services Committee. He says he could interdict more drugs if he had 16 ships that could hold helicopters to quickly go after traffickers in the water. He currently has three US ships he can use.
Kelly says severe budget cuts will reverse any progress being made.