Book Review: Free Mexican Airforce Will Be Flying Tonight

Free Mexican Airforce Will Be Flying Tonight:  The Trials And Tribulations Of Procuring, Transporting, And Selling Marijuana, by Terry Canipe

[Note:  This book was provided free of charge by Books Go Social/Net Gallery.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.]

I liked this book a lot more than I thought I would, and that is without agreeing with the author’s worldview concerning weed [1].  This book is a true crime book, the sort of book written by people who have compelling and dark life stories, and in this case the author’s adventures are largely due to his desire to sabotage the United States through importing massive amounts of drugs.  Mission accomplished, you jerk.  This setup, which the author repeats in both the introduction and conclusion to the book, undercuts at least some of the partially valid points he makes about the legitimate uses of hemp and marijuana when it is not smoked, and which it gives me at least some annoyance in considering legitimate in the face of the massive abuse of weed in contemporary culture.  At any rate, if you’re fond of true crime narratives about unsympathetic but particularly lucky criminals, this book is certainly one that has some compelling stories and the author does not sugarcoat the sort of business he is involved in or its risks and dangers, and there is certainly some value in that.

The book as a whole is a fairly short one at less than 100 pages in the version I read, and the author claims throughout that he will be writing a sequel that is just about his escape from prison, which sounds like it would be a dramatic story to read as well, and likely one that explores the corruption of the justice system in Mexico.  The author is wise to present himself as an antihero in these pages, a dissatisfied Vietnam veteran whose disillusionment and drug issues lead him to risk his life flying planes between the United States and Mexico as well as other marijuana growing regimes.  The author deals with unreliable partners whose idiocy threatens his own life and has a respect for the ordinary people of the countries he visits as a drug smuggler.  He takes advantage of corruption on both sides of the border and attempts some creative marketing of drugs in order to maximize his own sales.  Meanwhile, he finds himself caught up in political business that he appears not to have any interest in and has a sense of intuition throughout these stories.  One would scarcely think that someone could be lucky enough to survive what the author has experienced, but so far he has.

This book certainly has the ring of truth about it.  The author doesn’t brag about his prowess and openly admits his own mistakes and misjudgments, including being involved in the drug trafficking business at all.  Yet much of this book does feel like humblebragging, the sort of narrative that would be turned into a movie by the likes of the makers of Pineapple Express or Tropic Thunder or Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle.  Given the popularity of stoner culture, it is probably only a matter of time before someone options this into a film about a lucky drug smuggler and his idiotic business associates.  I can’t really say that I like this book, or the way that the author tries to sell the benefits of marijuana at the beginning of every chapter, but this is a book that accomplishes the author’s task of telling his own life story from his own perspective.  If it’s not a perspective I share, at least I think it is worthwhile that the author is not a total waste of space and has some compelling stories to tell from a thoroughly disreputable profession.

[1] See, for example:

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
This entry was posted in American History, Book Reviews, History, International Relations and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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