On April 25, 2023, Professor Celina Realuyo briefed the full meeting of the Inter-American Defense Board on the fentanyl crisis in the US and the emerging threat from synthetic drugs in the Western Hemisphere. She described how synthetic drugs are more addictive, easier to produce and lethal in the case of fentanyl and how this shift from plant-based to synthetic drugs is revolutionizing the narcotics trafficking business. Professor Realuyo explained how the alliance between the Mexican cartels and Chinese facilitators providing precursor chemicals and illicit fentanyl and laundering US dollars poses a threat to the security and prosperity of the Americas. She shared her concern that illicit fentanyl is beginning to be discovered in several Latin American countries. She stressed the need to raise awareness of the lethal effects of illicit fentanyl and fentanyl-laced pills and called for more international cooperation to detect and interdict narcotics shipments and reduce demand for these synthetic drugs.