------------------------------------------------------------------- Todd McCormick's Hearing (Ann McCormick, Mother Of The Bel Air, California, Medical Marijuana Patient Charged By The Feds With Cultivation In Spite Of Proposition 215, Indicates Judge McMahon Decided Today That The Longterm Cancer Patient Did Not Use Marijuana In Violation Of The Terms Of His Pretrial Release - To Keep Using The Marinol Lawfully Prescribed By His Doctor, However, McCormick Must Set Up A Special Drug Testing Program Costing $17,500 And Pay For It Himself) From: "ralph sherrow" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: email@example.com Subject: Fwd: Re: Todd McCormick's hearing Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 23:57:20 PDT Subject: Re: Todd McCormick's hearing Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 21:32:57 -0400 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (ann mccormick) I just spoke with Todd. GOOD NEWS: Judge McMahon did not send Todd to jail or steal Woody's money. NOT-SO-GOOD NEWS: To continue his Marinol (or actually, restart it..) he must set up and pay for a special drug testing program with the lab at a cost of $17,500.00! He'll be calling me a little later when he gets home. http://www.upn13.com/ should have an updated story shortly. Meanwhile, in Boston, Woody is in court (he's being sued) for taking film away from a photographer who continued to shoot pictures of Woody and Laura's 2 yr old after being repeatedly asked to stop. They were at the Martha's Vineyard airport en route to Ted Danson's wedding. (Bet that put the Harrelsons in a 'happy wedding' mood) I got caught in a couple 'paparazzi crushes' in LA. Laura, bless her heart, saved me from getting trampled. She nodded her head and took off. I followed her (close) and within minutes she had us out on the sidewalk, away from the craziness. Afterwards, they all agreed, "That was nothing..." From my perspective, it was scary - and it's been a long time since I was 2 years old. These people were my size and it was intimidating at the very least. more news later.... Ann (a very relieved Mom, tonight...) Compassionate Care Alliance PO Box 3141 Darlington, RI 02861 ** JOIN ONLINE ** go to http://www.customforum.com/dare2care/ for more info Are you a registered voter? Didn't vote? Don't gripe...
------------------------------------------------------------------- Prosecutors, McCormick Hammer Out Deal (MSNBC Version) Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 02:53:22 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: Prosecutors, Mccormick Hammer Out Deal Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Source: KNBC - MSNBC affiliate in Los Angeles Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.msnbc.com/local/KNBC/default.asp PROSECUTORS, MCCORMICK HAMMER OUT DEAL Todd McCormick has been making headlines on a regular basis since his arrest last July for growing more than 4,000 pot plants. LOS ANGELES- Federal prosecutors Wednesday agreed to drop efforts to get medical marijuana advocate Todd McCormick's bail revoked for allegedly smoking pot while awaiting trial on drug charges. The government also agreed to allow McCormick to use Marinol, a prescription drug that contains synthetic marijuana. In return, McCormick agreed to pay $17,500 to set up a new drug testing procedure in Los Angeles that differentiates between marijuana and Marinol. The deal came after several hours of negotiations that interrupted a bail revocation hearing. Prosecutors said McCormick, who was arrested last year with more than 4,000 pot plants, tested positive for marijuana 15 times between Jan. 20 and March 18, according to the government.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Inhale This (Excerpt From A Column In 'The San Francisco Chronicle' Notes Dennis Peron Beat Multizillionaire Al Checchi In Six San Francisco Neighborhoods In The Recent California Republican Gubernatorial Primary Race) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 22:53:51 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: Column: Matier and Ross: Inhale This Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Frank S. World) Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Author: Phillip Matier, Andrew Ross [This is an excerpt from today's Matier & Ross column] [snip] INHALE THIS: Local hero Dennis Peron, of San Francisco Cannabis Buyers Club fame, finished far back in the pack in his gubernatorial bid last week, but at least he had the satisfaction of beating multizillionaire Al Checchi in six San Francisco neighborhoods. Final election returns show Peron beat Checchi in Haight- Ashbury, Inner Sunset, Noe Valley, Potrero Hill, Upper Market/ Eureka Valley and Western Addition. Way to go, Dennis. 1998 San Francisco Chronicle Page A13
------------------------------------------------------------------- San Francisco Cops' Version Of Killing Disputed ('The San Francisco Examiner' Says A Witness Has Come Forward To Say San Francisco Police Lied When They Claimed They Shot And Killed A 17-Year-Old Girl Because Her Boyfriend Was Trying To Run Them Over)Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 15:32:22 -0300 (ADT) Sender: Chris Donald (email@example.com) From: Chris Donald (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: email@example.com Subject: More Cops Caught Lying About A Fatal Shooting Can anyone remember a fatal shooting with negligence involved that didn't cause every officer on the scene to lie through their teeth? *** US CA: S.F. Cops' Version Of Killing Disputed Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Source: San Francisco Examiner ( CA) Section: A, 1 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.examiner.com/ S.F. COPS' VERSION OF KILLING DISPUTED Woman says officers shot teen girl as car was speeding away A woman has come forward to challenge official accounts of the May 13 shooting of 17-year-old Sheila Detoy by a San Francisco police officer. Contradicting the police account of the events that led to Detoy's death, Wende Toney, 25, has filed a complaint with the Office of Citizens Complaints saying she saw the Ford Mustang Detoy was riding in drive forward -- not backward - down the steep driveway of the Oakwood Apartment complex on Lake Merced. And, she said, the officers who fired at the car were never in the path of the car or in danger of being hit. If her story is true, said Bay Area Police Watch executive director Van Jones, then the officers are lying and they should be prosecuted for the killing. "There is simply no legal justification for an officer to shoot into the back of a fleeing car full of unarmed people," he said. "There's a word for that. The word is murder." Police officials could not be reached for comment on the complaint Wednesday morning. The Detoy family has heard the new account and supports any new information coming forward in the investigation, said the girl's aunt, Sheila Detoy. "I'm glad she filed a complaint," Detoy said. As for filing their own complaint or lawsuit, Detoy said Sheila's mother was still weighing her options. "If we feel what this witness says is credible, then yes, we'll probably file something as well," Detoy said. "We're not used to filing lawsuits. Things are being considered." Jones said Toney called his office after seeing a television news report of a Police Commission meeting last month at which he and others denounced the shooting. He said his organization was helping Toney file her complaint with the OCC. On May 13, undercover officers had staked out the apartment complex hoping to arrest Raymondo Cox, 21, who was wanted on drug charges. When Cox prepared to leave in the Mustang with Detoy and driver Michael Negron, 22, police said they blocked one end of the horseshoe driveway with a police van. That prompted Negron to put the car in reverse and speed backward down the other side of the driveway and toward two officers, Gregory Breslin and Michael Moran, said homicide Lt. David Robinson after the incident. Robinson said the left rear tire struck the curb near Breslin, and, fearing he was about to be hit, Breslin fired at the car. His bullet went through the open driver's side window and hit Detoy in the head, police said. Moran, who was farther downhill, heard the shots and fired at the approaching car, shattering the rear window, police said. Robinson and Police Chief Fred Lau have said the officers appeared to be firing in self-defense, believing Negron was trying to run them down. But Toney said she saw the incident from across the street as she was out for a walk around Lake Merced that morning. In her complaint, she said she saw two plainclothes officers with guns drawn crouching beside a vehicle parked on the street. "As the Mustang moved down the driveway, the two officers bolted from behind the ( vehicle) and dashed a few yards up the grass alongside the driveway," the complaint said. "The Ford Mustang passed the two officers, and when it reached the street and began bearing left, both officers began firing into the back of the Mustang." Toney added that she never heard the officers identify themselves as police or warn passersby away from the shootout. Four days after the shooting, another woman, who requested anonymity, told The Examiner that the Mustang was not backing down the driveway. "It's hard to understand how two witnesses independent of each other can say something as important as "the car was never driving backwards down that steep hill' " while police maintain an opposite story, said Jones. "It casts doubt on the whole thing." 1998 San Francisco Examiner
------------------------------------------------------------------- City Tries To Clear Air Over Pot Use - But Council Split On Handling Prop. 215 ('The Sacramento Bee' Says Sacramento City Officials Are Divided Over Medical Marijuana Issues And Heading In Opposite Directions - One Councilman Wants To Restrict Use, But Two Others Say The City Should Consider Helping To Get It Into More Patients' Hands) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 22:51:49 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: City Tries to Clear Air Over Pot Use: But Council Split on Handling Prop. 215 Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Frank S. World) Source: Sacramento Bee (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sacbee.com/ Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Author: Tony Bizjak - Bee Staff Writer CITY TRIES TO CLEAR AIR OVER POT USE: BUT COUNCIL SPLIT ON HANDLING PROP. 215 Sacramento city officials want to help part the haze surrounding the state's controversial medicinal marijuana law, Proposition 215. But the key City Hall players are headed in opposite directions -- one wants to restrict medicinal marijuana use, but two others say the city should consider helping to get it into more patients' hands. Councilman Robbie Waters instructed the city attorney Tuesday to draw up a law making it illegal for patients to smoke medicinal marijuana in public. The county already has a ban, which includes fines up to $1,000 and six months in jail, for patients caught smoking in public. Waters' request stems from what he says is a loophole in city and state laws that allow marijuana to be smoked for medicinal purposes outdoors in public. Last year, AIDS patient Ryan Landers was arrested on the K Street Mall for smoking marijuana at an outdoor restaurant, but the District Attorney's Office dropped the charges. Prosecutors said Landers would have prevailed at trial since he legally was allowed to smoke marijuana under Proposition 215, which California voters passed in 1996. Landers, who suffers from nausea, said he needs marijuana to settle his stomach so that he can eat and keep his weight up. Waters contends patients should not have the right to subject others to secondhand marijuana smoke. However, two other council members, Darrell Steinberg and Steve Cohn, argued the city should take a longer look at what it can do to help implement the state law and clear up confusion over who has the right to cultivate medicinal marijuana. Federal officials recently have clamped down on so-called pot clubs -- where medicinal marijuana is distributed -- around the state. Steinberg asked the city attorney to investigate legal options for what the city can do to allow legitimate medical clinics, such as CARES (Center for AIDS Research, Education and Services) to cultivate marijuana for patients. "We ought to protect people from the impact of secondhand smoke," Steinberg said. "But if we are going to discuss this one aspect, we ought to discuss what we can do to implement (Proposition 215), how to ensure that people with AIDS have access to medicinal marijuana without fear of arrest and prosecution." Landers was rebuffed by the City Council last year when he asked for its help to set up and regulate a marijuana distribution club in Sacramento. He applauded Steinberg and Cohn's comments. "That's all I'm trying to do here, see that patients have safe access to marijuana. That's all they need." Waters estimated it could be up to a few months before the city attorney will report back. Copyright 1998 The Sacramento Bee
------------------------------------------------------------------- Eighteen School Children Sickened By Pep Pills ('The Associated Press' Says The 11- And 12-Year-Old Students In Sacramento, California, Were Taken To Hospitals For Treatment And Observation After Ingesting Caffeine Equivalent To 16 Cups Of Coffee - Or An Unspecified Number Of Cola Soft Drinks) Date: Thu, 11 Jun 1998 01:56:52 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: Wire: Eighteen School Children Sickened By Pep Pills Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Patrick Henry Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Source: Associated Press EIGHTEEN SCHOOL CHILDREN SICKENED BY PEP PILLS SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) Eighteen children suffered nausea and stomach cramps Tuesday after consuming powder from caffeine-based "energy" capsules at school. The 11- and 12-year-old students from Kingswood Elementary School were taken to hospitals for treatment and observation after ingesting up to the caffeine equivalent of 16 cups of coffee. A student brought the capsules to school and will be disciplined, officials said. The pills are one of several caffeine-based brands sold as energy-enhancing substances. They are sold over the counter but not allowed at the school. The fifth- and sixth-graders who became ill opened up the capsules and put the powder in food or drink. On Monday, six youngsters at the school sprinkled the powder on instant soup, but none got sick. One capsule contains 200 mg of caffeine, roughly the same amount in two cups of coffee.
------------------------------------------------------------------- DEA Confiscates Hemp Wear And Accessories (A List Subscriber Says The Drug Enforcement Administration Stole Thousands Of Dollars Of Hemp Clothing From Shop Therapy's Freak Street Hempwear In Provincetown, Massachusetts - If The Item Had A Pot Leaf On It, It Was Seized) Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 08:23:18 -0700 (PDT) From: turmoil (email@example.com) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: HT: DEA confiscates hemp wear and accessories: (fwd) Sender: email@example.com Subject: DEA confiscates hemp wear and accessories: June 10, 1998 DEA confiscates hemp wear and accessories: Provincetown, Massachusetts Shop Therapy's Freak Street Hempwear - http://www.freakstreet.com - was the victim of a DEA raid and confiscation. On Tuesday evening, June 9, 1998 at 6:30 PM Federal Drug Enforcement Agents in conjunction with Massachusetts State Police and Provincetown Massachusetts Police executed a search warrant at the retail stores and wholesale warehouse of Shop Therapy. The search and confiscation were wide ranging and included hemp items such as clothes, accessories, jewelry and hats that had a cannabis leaf on the item or its label or hang tag. Thousands of dollars of merchandise was placed in DEA evidence boxes and removed from the location. Freak Street's entire line of hempwear was picked through by the officials. If the item had a leaf on it, it was seized. For further info contact: Freak Street Hempwear c/o Shop Therapy Ronny Hazel or Joey Mars Tel: 508.487.9387 Fax: 508.487.9393 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
------------------------------------------------------------------- Test Of `Heroin Maintenance' May Be Launched In Baltimore ('The Baltimore Sun' Says Johns Hopkins University Drug Abuse Experts And The Baltimore Public Health Commissioner Are Discussing The Possibility Of A Research Study In Which Heroin Would Be Distributed To Addicts Who Have Refused Or Failed Traditional Drug Treatment, In An Effort To Reduce Crime, AIDS And Other Fallout From Prohibition) Date: Thu, 11 Jun 1998 20:50:00 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service
From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US MD: Test Of `Heroin Maintenance' May Be Launched In Baltimore Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Richard Lake Source: Baltimore Sun (MD) Author: Scott Shane, Sun Staff Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Fax: 410-332-6977 Toll free number: 800-829-8000 Mail: The Baltimore Sun Company 501 N. Calvert Street P.0. Box 1377 Baltimore, Maryland 21278 Website: http://www.sunspot.net/ Pubdate: Wednesday, 10 June 1998 TEST OF `HEROIN MAINTENANCE' MAY BE LAUNCHED IN BALTIMORE Health Commissioner, Experts Back Plan To Give Drug To Addicts; `Will Be Politically Difficult' Johns Hopkins University drug abuse experts and Baltimore's health commissioner are discussing the possibility of a research study in which heroin would be distributed to hard-core addicts in an effort to reduce crime, AIDS and other fallout from drug addiction. The plan for a trial of "heroin maintenance" for some Baltimore addicts who have refused or failed in traditional drug treatment is still at a preliminary stage. Conscious that the issue could be politically explosive, the doctors involved are treading carefully and trying to persuade colleagues in other cities to launch such studies simultaneously. In a sign of the growing willingness to consider controversial strategies against illegal drugs, experts on drug abuse from around the world met Saturday at the New York Academy of Medicine to discuss heroin maintenance. Public health specialists from a half-dozen cities in the United States and Canada then met Sunday at the Lindesmith Center, a drug policy institute supported by financier George Soros, to discuss the logistics and politics of a multi-city heroin maintenance study. "It will be politically difficult, but I think it's going to happen," said Baltimore Health Commissioner Dr. Peter L. Beilenson. "It's not going out on the streets and handing out heroin. It would be carefully controlled by health care providers under a research protocol." Beilenson, a physician who has an academic affiliation with the Hopkins School of PublicHealth, said he strongly supports a heroin maintenance study but believes it should be carried out by Hopkins researchers and not by Baltimore personnel. "We would not use city money, and it would not be in city Health Department clinics," he said. David Vlahov, a professor of epidemiology at the Hopkins School of Public Health who attended the weekend meetings, said the discussions are "pretty preliminary," but that data from a three-year study of heroin maintenance in Switzerland are encouraging. Vlahov, who has tracked 3,000 Baltimore drug addicts for 11 years, said only 15 percent of intravenous drug users are in treatment and only 50 percent have ever been in treatment. Offering controlled doses of heroin might lure some addicts off the street and into a setting where they can get health care and counseling and eventually kick the habit, he said. "Heroin maintenance is an outreach strategy to bring people into the system," Vlahov said. Other Hopkins researchers who have discussed a possible heroin maintenance trial are Dr. George E. Bigelow, who runs the Behavioral Pharmacology Research Unit, and Dr. Robert K. Brooner, director of addiction treatment services at Hopkins' Bayview campus. Both expressed interest in the proposal but said Hopkins has not made any decision about participating. Brooner noted that heroin maintenance is "not revolutionary," since doctors routinely give methadone and other substitute drugs to addicts in treatment. Methadone can be given in once-a-day oral doses, while heroin would probably have to given by injection three times a day, he said. "My guess is we could reach some patients who are not being reached," said Bigelow, who has studied drug abuse at Hopkins for 27 years. In addition to Baltimore, the researchers who met Sunday came from Chicago, New Haven, Conn., San Antonio and Sacramento, Calif., as well as the Canadian cities of Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. Participants said details of funding, scientific research design and numbers of participants have yet to be worked out. Heroin maintenance trials would require approval from the Food and Drug Administration and probably from the Drug Enforcement Administration as well, researchers said. The debate brewing over heroin maintenance echoes the 10-year-old controversy over the distribution of clean needles to drug addicts to reduce the spread of acquired immune deficiency syndrome. Needle exchange programs have faced bitter political opposition and President Clinton decided not to provide federal funding this year for such programs, despite a finding by Health and Human Services officials that they curtail transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus that causes AIDS. On one side of the drug debate are those who, like Beilenson and Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke, consider the U.S. war on drugs to be a costly disaster that has filled the prisons without reducing the devastation inflicted by narcotics. These drug policy reformers advocate treating drugs chiefly as a health problem, not a law enforcement problem. They have embraced a philosophy of "harm reduction," which seeks strategies to reduce the death, disease and crime resulting from drug abuse. Such advocates have received funding in recent years from Soros and philosophical encouragement from Ethan A. Nadelmann, the lawyer and drug policy expert who heads the Lindesmith Center. On the other side are those, including political conservatives but also many drug abuse experts, who believe that prosecution of drug users does discourage drug use. They say any step that appears, however indirectly, to condone the use of drugs sends a mixed message to impressionable young people. Some oppose needle exchange programs and a few have begun to publish pre-emptive attacks against heroin maintenance. Dr. Sally L. Satel, a psychiatrist at a Washington methadone clinic, blasted the weekend heroin maintenance conference in the Wall Street Journal on Monday, asserting that the notion of giving heroin to addicts is "wrong" and "scientifically groundless." "We're being presented with false choices," Satel said yesterday. She questioned the claimed success of the Swiss experiment and said other strategies should be tried first, including the use of drug courts to coerce addicts into treatment; expansion of residential treatment; and drug testing for people who receive welfare or other aid. Some scientists who favor trials for heroin maintenance say they resent what they see as an unwarranted fear of even raising the topic for study, saying science should not be intimidated by political unpopularity. "In many ways, the biggest prohibition in the United States is not on drugs, but on the discussion of new solutions to drug abuse," said Dr. David C. Lewis, director of the Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies at Brown University, who led Sunday's discussion on heroin maintenance. Lewis said heroin maintenance was widely discussed in the United States in the 1970s, and a proposal to try it in New York City in 1971 was approved by local and state officials before being rejected by federal authorities. In 1976, he said, the National League of Cities considered launching a heroin maintenance program, but nothing came of it. The Swiss study followed 1,146 addicts on heroin maintenance for three years, ending in 1996. It found a 60 percent decrease in crime committed by those on the program and an increase in health and employment, according to the study's authors. Similar programs are planned in Spain and the Netherlands, and about 300 people receive heroin by prescription in the United Kingdom, according to Nadelmann.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Issues Of Modern Living (Two Items In A United Press International Roundup Repeat The Government's Recent Claim That Attitudes About The Harmfulness Of Marijuana Cause Teens To Partake Or Abstain, And A Report In 'The Journal Of The American Medical Association' That Researchers At New York's Cornell University Medical College Found About One-Third More Cocaine Overdose Deaths On Days When The Temperature Rose Above 88 Degrees) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 10:21:03 -0700 (PDT) To: email@example.com From: Kelley (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: HT: issues of Modern Living Sender: email@example.com Wednesday June 10 3:20 AM EDT LIVING-TODAY Issues of modern living...from UPI: TEEN-AGE POT USE Researchers say rising marijuana use among teen-agers in this decade coincides with a decline in fear of the drug's dangers. The University of Michigan scientists say since the 1980s, teens have become less concerned about the risks of pot smoking...and are more apt to approve of its use. Their analysis of data from 231-thousand 12th, 10th and 8th graders points to changing attitudes toward the drug rather than a rise in juvenile delinquency or rebellious behavior - as a key factor in marijuana's revived popularity. The drug-use studies tracked declining teen marijuana use from the late 1970s and through '80s. But a pot rebound began in 1991 and continues today. The increase has been fastest among 10th graders. (The research appears in the latest edition of the American Journal of Public Health.) COCAINE DEATHS Deaths from cocaine overdoses rise sharply during the summer months. That's according to researchers at New York's Cornell University Medical College...who studied medical examiner records from 1990 through 1995. They say (in the Journal of the American Medical Association) they found about one-third more cocaine overdose deaths on days when the temperature soared above 88 degrees. The investigators also found that one in four people under the age of 55 who died from heatstroke in New York had taken cocaine shortly before their deaths. Dr. Peter Marzuk - the study's lead author - says no similar heat-related increases in overdose deaths were found with other drugs like heroin. Marzuk says (in the Journal of the American Medical Association) the combination of cocaine and heat may be deadly because both raise body temperatures and put increased demands on the heart. He says the New York City findings probably will be echoed in other parts of the country...especially in northern cities, where people are not accustomed to the heat. ABORTIONS AND WELFARE REFORMS New Jersey officials have asked Rutgers University researchers to recast a statewide study that shows an increase in abortions since the state stopped payments to welfare mothers who give birth to additional children. Officials from New Jersey's Human Services Department have sent the draft report back to researchers and have refused to release it to the public. The five-year study finds a provision enacted in 1992 that denies added benefits to welfare mothers who bear more children has a ``small but non-trivial'' impact on abortion rates. The Rutgers University researchers hired by the state find the policy has boosted the number of abortions among welfare mothers by about 240 a year. The Newark Star-Ledger quotes Department of Human Services spokeswoman Jacqueline Tencza saying the request is not an attempt at a cover-up. Some 20 other states have followed New Jersey's example and enacted family caps.
------------------------------------------------------------------- A Sordid History - The CIA And The 'War Against Drugs' (ANTIFA, An Anti-Fascist Group, Posts A Collection Of Four Documents - The Article, 'Colombia's Blowback - Former CIA-Backed Paramilitaries Are Major Drug Traffickers Now,' By Frank Smyth; 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell,' By Martha Honey From 'In These Times'; 1982 Correspondence Between US Attorney General William French Smith And CIA Director William Casey; And 'A Tangled Web - A History Of CIA Complicity In Drug International Trafficking,' From The Institute For Policy Studies) Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 03:50:26 -0700 To: "Chuck's List" (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: "Charles P. Conrad" (email@example.com) Subject: [AFIB] A Sordid History: The CIA & the `War Against Drugs' ANTIFA INFO - BULLETIN News * Analysis * Research * Action *** SPECIAL - June 10, 1998 - EDITION *** * SPECIAL EDITION * *** A SORDID HISTORY: THE CIA & THE `WAR AGAINST DRUGS' *** CONTENTS *** 1. (TI/AA) TRANSNATIONAL INSTITUTE/ACCION ANDINA: Colombia's Blowback - Former CIA-Backed Paramilitaries Are Major Drug Traffickers Now, by Frank Smyth 2. (ITT) IN THESE TIMES: US - Don't Ask, Don't Tell, by Martha Honey [1982 `Memorandum of Understanding] 3. (PNS) PINK NOISE STUDIOS: 1982 Correspondence Between US Attorney General William French Smith & CIA Director William Casey 4. (IPS) INSTITUTE FOR POLICY STUDIES: A Tangled Web - A History of CIA Complicity in Drug International Trafficking *** AFIB EDITOR'S NOTE: The article below by investigative journalist Frank Smyth was published last Fall by the Transnational Institute (Amsterdam) and Accion Andina (Cochabomba, Bolivia) as a chapter titled, "La Mano Blanca en Colombia," in the book "Crimen Uniformado [Crime in Uniform]: entre la corrupcion y la impunidad," 1997. It appears in Antifa Info-Bulletin with the author's permission. *** COLOMBIA'S BLOWBACK: FORMER CIA-BACKED PARAMILITARIES ARE MAJOR DRUG TRAFFICKERS NOW *** By Frank Smyth The CIA has long backed anti-communist allies who, either during their relationship with the agency or later, ran drugs. This comes as no surprise. As early as 1960, U.S. military manuals encouraged intelligence operatives to ally themselves with "smugglers" and "black market operators to defeat communist insurgents, as reported by Michael McClintock in his seminal book _Instruments of Statecraft_. In fact, the CIA did just that. Take Southeast Asia. Later in the that same decade the agency allied itself with, among others, the Hmong in Laos, who, according to historian Alfred W. McCoy in his book _The Politics of Heroin: CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade_, were trafficking opium. Or Afghanistan. There in the 1980s the CIA backed the Mujahedeen against the Soviet Union. In the 1990s, according to Tim Weiner of the New York Times, the same Mujahedeen have controlled up to one third of the opium (used to make heroin) reaching the United States. Colombia is an even better example today. In addition to suffering from rampant common crime, Colombia is a country crippled by two ongoing political campaigns. One is a three-decade war pitching the CIA-backed Colombian military and allied rightist paramilitaries against formerly pro-Moscow and pro-Havana, leftist guerrilla groups. The other campaign is the drug war, where the battle lines are far less clear. Elements of all these sides are involved in Colombia's drug trade, which includes the processing of about 80 percent of the world's cocaine, the base substance of crack. The CIA is no exception. Since 1995, an elite CIA counter- drug team commanded by, progressively enough, a woman, and staffed mainly by young, competent technocrats, has been instrumental in apprehending all top seven leaders of Colombia's Cali cartel. But back in 1991, another CIA team played a different role. More interested in supporting Colombia's dirty counter-insurgency than its counter-drug efforts, this team helped forge and finance a secret anti-communist alliance between the Colombian military and illegal paramilitary groups, many of whom are running drugs today. Why was this alliance made secret? Colombia had outlawed all such paramilitary groups two years before in 1989. Why did Colombia do that? A Colombian government investigation had found that these same paramilitaries had been taken over by the Medellin drug cartel led by the late Pablo Escobar. At the time, Escobar and his associates were fiercely resisting U.S.-backed pressure for Colombia to pass extradition laws intended to make them stand trial in the United States on drug trafficking charges. So they took control of Colombia's strongest paramilitaries, using them to wage a terrorist campaign against the state. These same paramilitaries, based in the Middle Magdalena valley, were behind a wave of violent crimes, including the 1989 bombing of Avianca flight HK-1803, which killed 111 passengers. Investigators concluded that the bomb was detonated by an altimeter, and that the perpetrators had been trained in such techniques by Israeli, British and other mercenaries led by an Israeli Reserved Army Lieutenant Colonel, Yair Klein. The Colombian military had helped protect this training, to the point of even being in radio contact with the paramilitaries' training base, while Escobar had paid the mercenaries' fees. The CIA, however, ignored these facts when it decided two years later to help renew -- in secret -- the alliance between the Colombian military and paramilitary groups. By then, even though the cold war was over and Eastern bloc aid had long since dried up, Colombia's leftist insurgents were still relatively strong. And many trade union, student and peasant groups, among others, provided them with political and sometimes even logistical forms of support. CIA officers knew that paramilitaries -- civilians usually led by retired military officers -- could provide the Colombian military with plausible deniability for assassinations of suspected leftists and similar crimes. "A vast network of armed civilians began to replace, at least in part, soldiers and policemen who could be easily identified," writes Javier Giraldo, a Jesuit priest and founder of Colombia's Inter-Congregational Commission for Justice and Peace. "They also started to employ methods that had been carefully designed to ensure secrecy and generate confusion." But neither the CIA nor any other U.S. agency admitted that it was still backing Colombia's counter-insurgency campaign. Instead U.S. officials claim that all U.S. support to Colombia, since 1989, has been designed to further the drug war. "There was a very big debate going on [about how to best allocate] money for counter-narcotics operations in Colombia," said retired U.S. Army Colonel James S. Roach, Jr., who was then the top U.S. military attache in Bogota as well as the Pentagon's ranking Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) liaison there. "The U.S. was looking for a way to try to help. But if you're not going to be combatants [yourselves], you have to find something to do." Do, they did. First an inter-agency team including representatives of the U.S. embassy's Military Advisory Group in Bogota, the U.S. Southern Command in Panama, the DIA in Washington and the CIA in Langley made recommendations to completely overhaul Colombia's military intelligence networks. Then The CIA independently provided funds to incorporate paramilitary forces into them. It didn't matter that these paramilitary forces were illegal in Colombia at the time. Nor did it matter that they had been outlawed explicitly over the growing influence of the late Pablo Escobar and his Medellin drug cartel in directing them. In addition to drug trafficking, Colombia's nefarious paramilitaries had already been implicated in widespread human rights abuses. This led the Defense Department, for one, to discourage the Colombian military from incorporating them into these new intelligence networks. "The intent was not to be associated with paramilitaries," said Colonel Roach, who was also in regular contact with CIA officers in Bogota. He says they had another approach. "The CIA set up clandestine nets of their own. They had a lot of money. It was kind of like Santa Claus had arrived." CIA spokesman Mike Mansfield declined to comment. News of these clandestine intelligence networks was first brought to light by Human Rights Watch, in November 1996 released U.S. and Colombian military documents, as well as oral testimony, to show that both the Defense Department and the CIA, in late 1990, encouraged Colombia to reorganize its entire military intelligence system. In may 1991, Colombia formed 41 new intelligence networks nationwide "based on the recommendations made by the commission of U.S. military advisors," according to the original Colombian order which established them. Later, four former Colombian operatives from one of network in central Colombia's Magdalena valley testified that it incorporated illegal paramilitary groups, paying them to both gather intelligence and assassinate suspected leftists. Though U.S. officials still maintain that they supported this intelligence reorganization as part of their drug war efforts, the same Colombian order quoted above instructs these new intelligence networks to fight only "the armed subversion" or leftist guerrillas. Indeed most of Colombia's leftist guerrillas, especially among the formerly pro-Moscow FARC, are also involved with drugs. But a U.S. interagency study recently ordered by the Clinton administration's former ambassador in Bogota, Myles Frechette, found the guerrillas' role to be limited to mostly protecting drug crops, and, to a lesser degree, processing operations. Meanwhile, rightist paramilitaries allied with the military protect far more drug laboratories and internal transit routes, according to both U.S. intelligence and Colombian law enforcement authorities. In fact, according to one Colombian law enforcement report, drug trafficking today is -- again -- the paramilitaries' "central axis" of funding. Similarly, according to another report from a different law enforcement entity, this one about the Magdalena valley in 1995 by top detectives from Colombia's Judicial and Investigative Police, the military and paramilitaries there are allied "not only for the anti-subversive struggle, but also to profit and open the way for drug traffickers." One paramilitary suspect it names is "the well-known narco-trafficker Victor Carranza." A contemporary of Medellin's Escobar, Carranza first established himself by rising to the top of Colombia's lucrative emerald trade among the Bo-yaca mountains, and by wiping out a large guerrilla front there at the same time. Soon Carranza also became a major landowner, buying large swaths of it in the eastern plains of Meta, a province choked with drug crops as well as laboratories. Today Colombian police identify Carranza as both a multi-ton level drug trafficker, and one of the key leaders of Colombia's many illegal paramilitary groups like, in Meta, the infamous "Black Snake." Human rights groups have accused Carranza of engineering assassinations as well as massacres. There is no evidence that Carranza has ever been either a CIA asset or informant. But his anti-communist credentials are unquestionable. And he runs frequently in military crowds. Military eyewitnesses say that military officers in Villavicencio, Meta have even met him inside the Los Llanos hotel there which he owns. U.S. officials too know a lot about him. "Carranza comes up constantly in intelligence reporting," one such expert says. An old-fashioned gangster, "Don Victor," as he is respectfully called by his men, still frequents the emerald mines and likes to be the first to pick out the largest stones from the best veins uncovered. Yet, Carranza remains untouchable, even though one of his purported lieutenants, Arnulfo Castillo Agudelo, also known as "Scratch," was arrested in 1995 implicated Carranza in circumstances involving over 40 corpses which had been exhumed -- six years before -- on one of Carranza's Meta ranches. "Scratch" declined to be interviewed in Modelo prison in Bogota. Carranza, who avoids publicity, was also unavailable for comment. In recent years, Carranza has been expanding his operations in central Colombia throughout the Magdalena valley. The above police report notes: "Carranza is planning to acquire Hacienda Bella Cruz [there] to use as a base for his activities, [and] bring in 200 paramilitary operatives from Meta." Witnesses say that it is now teeming with armed men, who have displaced hundreds of local peasants. In total, Carranza and other drug suspects have bought about 45,000 acres of land throughout the Magdalena valley, according to Jamie Prieto Amaya, the Catholic bishop there, quoted in the Bogota news-weekly Cambio 16. Still another suspect is Henry Loaiza, also known as "The Scorpion." Demonstrating the importance of paramilitaries to the overall drug trade, he was one of the top seven Cali cartel suspects arrested with CIA help since 1995. Like Carranza, "The Scorpion" is also implicated in several specific civilian massacres of suspected leftists carried out jointly by military and paramilitary forces, including the 1989 Trujillo massacres (involving chainsaws) near Cali. Other drug suspects identified by the Colombian police include military officers like Major Jorge Alberto Lazaro, a former Army commander also accused of ordering paramilitaries to commit massacres in the Magdalena valley. Today this same central Colombian valley, which runs about 400 miles north toward Caribbean ports, is a major corridor for both processed drugs and precursor chemicals. The CIA helped enable Colombia's military and paramilitaries to collaborate in the dark -- more than a year after the Berlin Wall fell. By doing so, the CIA has facilitated crimes involving both human rights and drug trafficking. Such behavior was reprehensible during the cold war. It is completely indefensible now. Frank Smyth is a freelance journalist who has written about drug trafficking in The Village Voice, The New Republic, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal. He is co-author with Winifred Tate of "Colombia's Gringo Invasion," _Covert Action Quarterly_, Number 60, Spring 1997. The article above was reprinted in _Colombia Bulletin: A Human Rights Quarterly_. For more information on U.S. intervention in Colombia, or to subscribe to _Colombia Bulletin_, please contact: COLOMBIA SUPPORT NETWORK P.O. Box 1505 Madison, WI 53701 Tel: (608) 257-8753 Fax: (608) 255-6621 E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: http://www.igc.apc.org/csn Subscriptions - 1 year $25; low income $12.50 *** IN THESE TIMES E-mail: email@example.com Web: http://www.inthesetimes.com - May 1998 - *** US: DON'T ASK, DON'T TELL *** By Martha Honey In testimony before the House Select Committee on Intelligence on March 16, the Central Intelligence Agency once again suffered a blow to its reputation. This time the injury was self-inflicted. The CIA's own top watchdog, Inspector General Frederick P. Hitz, admitted that although "dozens of individuals and a number of companies" involved in the agency's covert war against Nicaragua during the '80s were suspected drug traffickers, the CIA had legal authority to ignore their crimes as long as they were helping contra rebels fight the left-wing Sandinista government. Hitz revealed that between 1982 and 1995 the spy agency had an agreement with the Justice Department, allowing it to ignore drug trafficking by its "agents, assets and non-staff employees." The directive, known as a "Memorandum of Understanding" (MOU), did not exempt the agency's full-time, career employees, who are known as CIA "officials." However, the agency did not have to tell the Justice Department about the criminal activities of "agents" or "assets" -- terms used interchangeably to refer to its paid and unpaid spies. Also exempt were CIA contractors, such as pilots, accountants and military trainers, who supplied the agency with specific goods and services rather than intelligence. "There was no official requirement to report on allegations of drug trafficking with respect to non-employees of the agency," Hitz told the committee. Hitz said this agreement, which he termed "a rather odd history," has since been changed. But it was not until 1995 -- five years after the end of the war in Nicaragua and three years into Clinton's first term -- that the agreement was revised to include agents, assets and contractors as "employees" whose suspected criminal activities, such as drug trafficking, must be reported to the Justice Department. Disclosure of this agreement is another black eye for the CIA at a time when the agency is trying to distance itself from persistent allegations of drug trafficking, including the provocative August 1996 "Dark Alliance" series in the San Jose Mercury News. Veteran journalists, investigators, policy analysts and members of Congress interviewed by In These Times all say they were unaware of the directive. "This previously unknown agreement enabled the CIA to keep known drug smugglers out of jail and on the payroll of the American taxpayer," says Peter Kornbluh, a senior analyst with the National Security Archive, who has written extensively on the CIA and the war in Nicaragua. "CIA officials realized collaborating with pro-contra drug smugglers was important to the goal of overthrowing the Sandinistas and it sought protection from the Justice Department." In 1982, when the MOU was implemented, the United States was gearing up for a covert war in Central America aimed at toppling the Sandinistas. Over the next eight years, the CIA hired scores of Latin American, Cuban and American spies, as well as dozens of aviation, fishing and real estate companies, to support the contras. Simultaneously, cocaine began flooding into the United States, fueling the crack epidemic that has devastated Los Angeles, Baltimore and other cities. David MacMichael, who was a senior CIA officer in the early '80s, says that while he was not aware of this MOU, he does recall that "in 1981, [CIA Director William] Casey went to attorney general [William French] Smith looking for a blanket exemption from prosecution for CIA officers for crimes committed in the line of duty." Smith demurred, he says. Since the mid-'80s, a spate of media reports, congressional inquiries, and court cases in the United States and Central America have linked contra officials and collaborators with cocaine traffickers, money launderers and various front companies. Many of those implicated also claimed or were alleged to be working for the CIA. In 1996, the accusations erupted anew with the publication of Gary Webb's Mercury News series, which detailed how a Nicaraguan drug ring used black street gangs to sell crack cocaine in Los Angeles. Over the years, the CIA has repeatedly denied allegations that it dealt with drug dealers. Those denials have been championed by Washington Post reporter Walter Pincus, a specialist in national security affairs and a leading critic of the Mercury News series. Pincus, who has yet to report on Hitz's testimony, says he had not been previously aware the directive. "I am still trying to get a clarification of it," he says, adding that it may not be very significant. "All it admits is that what they were doing was legal. On occasion they were dealing with people who may or may not have been dealing in drugs." In December 1985, reporters Robert Parry and Brian Barger wrote the first story tying the CIA's contra operation to cocaine smuggling. The piece for The Associated Press angered Reagan administration officials, who tried unsuccessfully to block its publication. During the contra war, most of the media either ignored or discredited the drug trafficking reports. Parry maintains that his pursuit of this story helped cost him jobs at AP and Newsweek. "Historically we were correct," Parry says. "We pointed to a serious problem in a timely fashion, and we were all punished and ridiculed. The reporters who put this story down have gone on to fame and fortune." Parry calls Hitz's disclosure "extremely significant." "It amounts to a blank check for dealing with drug traffickers," he says. "The agency is admitting that it engaged in covering up drug crimes by the contras and that this was legal." Major media also ignored the 1989 findings of Sen. John Kerry's (D-Mass.) Subcommittee on Terrorism, Narcotics and International Operations. The Kerry committee's two-year investigation turned up substantial evidence of cocaine smuggling and money laundering by persons connected to the contras and the CIA. Among the conclusions of its 1,166-page report: * "Drug traffickers used the contra war and their ties to the contras as a cover for their criminal enterprises in Honduras and Costa Rica. Assistance from the drug lords was crucial to the contras, and the traffickers in turn promoted and protected their operations by associating with the contra movement." * "Drug traffickers provided support to the contras and used the supply network of the contras. Contras knowingly received both financial and material assistance from the drug traffickers." * "Drug traffickers contributed cash, weapons, planes, pilots, air supply services and other materials to the contras." * "In each case, one or another U.S. government agency had information regarding these matters either while they were occurring, or immediately thereafter." The report was all but ignored by the three major networks and buried in the back pages of the major newspapers. Combined, the stories in the Washington Post, New York Times and Los Angeles Times totalled less than 2,000 words. At the March congressional hearing, Hitz explained that the MOU between the agency and the Justice Department was modified slightly in 1986, prohibiting the CIA from paying those suspected of involvement in drug trafficking. The CIA, however, could legally continue to use suspected drug smugglers and not report their activities, as long as they received no money from the agency. But for major drug traffickers, being allowed to operate under the CIA's umbrella was payment enough. The Kerry committee's report, along with most press accounts of the CIA-cocaine connection, alleges that the contras accepted money and supplies from drug smugglers and money launderers -- not the other way around. John Mattes, a young public defender in Miami in the mid-80s, stumbled upon the allegations of drug trafficking by Cuban-Americans working with the contras. Mattes, who represented several cocaine traffickers and soldiers-of-fortune who testified before the Kerry committee, says traffickers were seeking protection, not money, from the CIA. "There was a marriage of convenience between the contras and the coke smugglers," he says. The smugglers had cash, planes and pilots, while the Contras had intelligence, airstrips and, most importantly, unimpeded access to the United States. "And that, to a drug smuggler," he says, "is worth all the tea in China." During the '80s, the CIA conducted several internal inquiries and announced it found no substantial evidence that contra leaders and other persons working for the CIA had connections to cocaine traffickers. Then, the "Dark Alliance" series touched off a volatile, nationwide controversy over the agency's role in introducing crack to Southern California street gangs. To help quell public and congressional anger, both the CIA and Justice Department launched separate internal investigations. Both reports were scheduled to be released last December, but were withheld at the last minute without explanation. Attorney General Janet Reno subsequently announced that she had blocked the release of the Justice Department report (rumored to be the more substantial and significant of the two) for unspecified "law enforcement reasons." Justice Department sources told in These Times that one of the people named in the report is a government witness in an ongoing criminal case, whose identity must be protected. However, Jack Blum, a Washington attorney and investigator for the Kerry committee, doubts that the Justice Department will ever release its report. Blum says law enforcement officials often claim disclosures will jeopardize ongoing cases, and he wonders why the report was not simply edited to protect the informant's identity. In late January, the CIA released a declassified version of volume one of its two-part report. Entitled "The California Story," this 149-page report focuses on the cocaine network described in the "Dark Alliance" series, which detailed the activities of two Nicaraguan drug smugglers, Danilo Blandon and Juan Norwin Meneses. In the early '80s, Meneses and Blandon supplied large quantities of powder cocaine to Ricky Ross, an African-American drug dealer, who then turned it into crack for sale to two Los Angeles gangs. Webb alleges that the Nicaraguans gave some of their drug profits to top contra officials who were working with the CIA. Hitz called the CIA's 18-month investigation "the most comprehensive and exhaustive ever conducted" by the agency. He told the congressional committee: "We found absolutely no evidence to indicate that the CIA as an organization or its employees were involved in any conspiracy to bring drugs into the United States," But, taken in conjunction with what Hitz said about the MOU, "employees" here may pertain only to CIA career officials -- not agents, assets or contractors. Webb, whose reporting touched off the controversy, describes the report as "schizophrenic." "The Executive Summary says there's no CIA involvement," says Webb. "The actual report shows there are CIA fingerprints all over this drug operation." For example, upon the release of volume one, CIA Director George Tenet proclaimed that the Agency "left no stone unturned" in reaching its conclusion that the CIA had "no direct or indirect" ties to Blandon and Meneses. Yet, the report contains a compendium of indirect links between the CIA's contra army and drug traffickers. The most obvious admissions contained in the report include: * An October 22, 1982, cable from the CIA's Directorate of Operations that reports, "There are indications of links between (a U.S. religious organization) and two Nicaraguan counter-revolutionary groups...These links involve an exchange in (the United States) of narcotics for arms." The report goes on to say that there was to be a meeting in Costa Rica of contras, several U.S. citizens and Renato Pena, a convicted drug dealer who was part of Meneses' operation. Astonishingly, a November 3, 1982, cable from CIA headquarters says that the agency decided "not to pursue the matter further" because of "the apparent participation of U.S. persons throughout." * The CIA directly intervened in the 1983 "Frogman Case," in which San Francisco police seized 430 pounds of cocaine and arrested 50 individuals, including a number of Nicaraguans. Because the CIA feared the agency's connections to some of the contras involved had "potential for disaster," an unidentified CIA lawyer convinced the U.S. Attorney in San Francisco and Justice Department officials to cancel plans to take depositions from contra leaders in Costa Rica and to return $36,800 seized in the drug raid to one of the contra factions. "There are sufficient factual details which would cause certain damage to our image and program in Central America," CIA assistant general counsel Lee Strickland wrote in a August 22, 1984, memo quoted in the report. * Blandon and Meneses met on various occasions with the contras' military commander, Enrique Bermudez, who worked for the CIA. At one meeting in Honduras in 1982, Bermudez, arguing that "the ends justify the means," asked the pair for help "in raising funds and obtaining equipment" and arms for the contras. After the meeting, a group of contras escorted Blandon and Meneses to the Tegucigalpa airport, where the pair was arrested by Honduran authorities because they were carrying $100,000 in cash, profits from a Bolivian drug deal. The contras intervened and the money was returned to Blandon and Meneses. The report inexplicably concludes that there is no evidence that Bermudez knew the duo were drug traffickers, even though CIA cables show the agency was aware that Meneses had been a "drug king-pin" since the '70s. At the congressional hearings, lawmakers cited these and other portions of the report, questioning the agency's capacity to investigate itself. Among the most vocal critics were Los Angeles Democratic Reps. Maxine Waters and Juanita Millender- McDonald, whose districts have been the epicenter of the crack epidemic. Waters charged that the report was "fraught with contradictions and illogical conclusions," saying that the CIA's cleverly worded denials of links to drug traffickers in Southern California "defies the evidence." Volume two of the report, which covers the entire Nicaraguan war, was scheduled to be turned over to the House and Senate intelligence committees in late March. But, as of mid-April, CIA officials told In These Times, the report had not been released to Congress. In his congressional testimony, Hitz said that volume two will contain "a detailed treatment of what was known to CIA regarding dozens of people and a number of companies connected in some fashion to the contra program or the contra movement, that were the subject of any sort of drug trafficking allegations." Previewing the report, Hitz admitted: "There are instances where the CIA did not, in an expeditious or consistent fashion, cut off relationships with individuals supporting the contra program, who are alleged to have engaged in drug trafficking activity or take action to resolve the allegation." Several congressional sources say that they suspect the report will never be released. While the precise wording of the MOU has not been made public, some say the directive may be considerably broader than implied at the hearing. At one point in his testimony, Hitz said the MOU applied to "intelligence agencies," indicating that it also may include the dozen or so U.S. agencies involved in intelligence work, not just the CIA. Hitz declined requests for an interview. But the CIA may not be able to get away without further disclosures. The National Security Archive and other public interest groups, as well as Reps. John Conyers (D-Mich.) and Waters, are mounting a campaign for the declassification and release of the text of the MOU, the Justice Department report, volume two of the CIA report, tens of thousands of pages of documents and hundreds of interviews compiled by the two agencies in the course of their internal investigations. Attorney Blum warns that CIA officials who testified before the Kerry committee may have perjured themselves in denying they knew of any links between the CIA, the contras and cocaine traffickers. And investigative journalists Parry and Webb, among others, say Hitz's admission may be the smoking gun that conclusively proves that the CIA colluded with and then concealed its involvement with cocaine traffickers. Martha Honey is director of the Peace and Security program at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C. During the '80s, she covered the war in Nicaragua as a journalist in Costa Rica. Article Courtesy of Paul Wolf, firstname.lastname@example.org *** AFIB EDITOR'S NOTE: The 1982 correspondence below from US Attorney General William French Smith and CIA Director William Casey is a section from a large file posted on the Pink Noise Studios web page: "Intelligence Authorization Act 1999, House of Representatives, May 7, 1998." Portions of those hearings, including the complete 1982 and 1995 CIA/DoJ Memorandum of Understanding, comments by Reps. Millender- McDonald, John Conyers and Maxine Waters and a chronological history of CIA complicity with global narco-trafficking compiled by the Institute for Policy Studies [see below], has been catalogued by Pink Noise Studios Research Director Bob Gonsalves. See: http://www.pinknoiz.com/covert/MOU.html PINK NOISE STUDIOS Art - Technology - Politics E-mail: email@example.com Web: http://www.pinknoiz.com/ - Wednesday, 3 June 1998 - *** 1982 CORRESPONDENCE BETWEEN US ATTORNEY GENERAL WILLIAM FRENCH SMITH & CIA DIRECTOR WILLIAM CASEY *** Office of the Attorney General, Washington, DC, February 11, 1982. Hon. William J. Casey, Director, Central Intelligence Agency, Washington, DC. Dear Bill: Thank you for your letter regarding the procedures governing the reporting and use of information concerning federal crimes. I have reviewed the draft of the procedures that accompanied your letter and, in particular, the minor changes made in the draft that I had previously sent to you. These proposed changes are acceptable and, therefore, I have signed the procedures. I have been advised that a question arose regarding the need to add narcotics violations to the list of reportable non-employee crimes (Section IV). 21 U.S.C. 874(h) provides that `[w]hen requested by the Attorney General, it shall be the duty of any agency or instrumentality of the Federal Government to furnish assistance to him for carrying out his functions under [the Controlled Substances Act] . . .' Section 1.8(b) of Executive Order 12333 tasks the Central Intelligence Agency to `collect, produce and disseminate intelligence on foreign aspects of narcotics production and trafficking.' Moreover, authorization for the dissemination of information concerning narcotics violations to law enforcement agencies, including the Department of Justice, is provided by sections 2.3(c) and (i) and 2.6(b) of the Order. In light of these provisions, and in view of the fine cooperation the Drug Enforcement Administration has received from CIA, no formal requirement regarding the reporting of narcotics violations has been included in these procedures. We look forward to the CIA's continuing cooperation with the Department of Justice in this area. In view of our agreement regarding the procedure, I have instructed my Counsel for Intelligence Policy to circulate a copy which I have executed to each of the other agencies covered by the procedures in order that they may be signed by the head of each such agency. Sincerely, William French Smith, Attorney General *** The Director of Central Intelligence, Washington, DC, March 2, 1982. Hon. William French Smith, Attorney General, Department of Justice, Washington, DC. Dear Bill: Thank you for your letter of 11 February regarding the procedures on reporting of crimes to the Department of Justice, which are being adopted under Section 1-7(a) of Executive Order 12333. I have signed the procedures, and am returning the original to you for retention at the Department. I am pleased that these procedures, which I believe strike the proper balance between enforcement of the law and protection of intelligence sources and methods, will now be forwarded to other agencies covered by them for signing by the heads of those agencies. With best regards, Yours, William J. Casey. *** A TANGLED WEB: A HISTORY OF CIA COMPLICITY IN DRUG INTERNATIONAL TRAFFICKING *** Prepared by the Institute for Policy Studies, Washington, D.C. *** WORLD WAR II The Office of Strategic Services (OSS) and the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI), the CIA's parent and sister organizations, cultivate relations with the leaders of the Italian Mafia, recruiting heavily from the New York and Chicago underworlds, whose members, including Charles `Lucky' Luciano, Meyer Lansky, Joe Adonis, and Frank Costello, help the agencies keep in touch with Sicilian Mafia leaders exiled by Italian dictator Benito Mussolini. Domestically, the aim is to prevent sabotage on East Coast ports, while in Italy the goal is to gain intelligence on Sicily prior to the allied invasions and to suppress the burgeoning Italian Communist Party. Imprisoned in New York, Luciano earns a pardon for his wartime service and is deported to Italy, where he proceeds to build his heroin empire, first by diverting supplies from the legal market, before developing connections in Lebanon and Turkey that supply morphine base to labs in Sicily. The OSS and ONI also work closely with Chinese gangsters who control vast supplies of opium, morphine and heroin, helping to establish the third pillar of the post-world War II heroin trade in the Golden Triangle, the border region of Thailand, Burma, Laos and China's Yunnan Province. 1947 In its first year of existence, the CIA continues U.S. intelligence community's anti-communist drive. Agency operatives help the Mafia seize total power in Sicily and it sends money to heroin-smuggling Corsican mobsters in Marseille to assist in their battle with Communist unions for control of the city's docks. By 1951, Luciano and the Corsicans have pooled their resources, giving rise to the notorious `French Connection' which would dominate the world heroin trade until the early 1970s. The CIA also recruits members of organized crime gangs in Japan to help ensure that the country stays in the non-communist world. Several years later, the Japanese Yakuza emerges as a major source of methamphetamine in Hawaii. 1949 Chinese Communist revolution causes collapse of drug empire allied with U.S. intelligence community, but a new one quickly emerges under the command of Nationalist (KMT) General Li Mi, who flees Yunnan into eastern Burma. Seeking to rekindle anticommunist resistance in China, the CIA provides arms, ammunition and other supplies to the KMT. After being repelled from China with heavy losses, the KMT settles down with local population and organizes and expands the opium trade from Burma and Northern Thailand. By 1972, the KMT controls 80 percent of the Golden Triangle's opium trade. 1950 The CIA launches Project Bluebird to determine whether certain drugs might improve its interrogation methods. This eventually leads CIA head Allen Dulles, in April 1953, to institute a program for `covert use of biological and chemical materials' as part of the agency's continuing efforts to control behavior. With benign names such as Project Artichoke and Project Chatter, these projects continue through the 1960s, with hundreds of unwitting test subjects given various drugs, including LSD. 1960 In support of the U.S. war in Vietnam, the CIA renews old and cultivates new relations with Laotian, Burmese and Thai drug merchants, as well as corrupt military and political leaders in Southeast Asia. Despite the dramatic rise of heroin production, the agency's relations with these figures attracts little attention until the early 1970s. 1967 Manuel Antonio Noriega goes on the CIA payroll. First recruited by the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency in 1959, Noriega becomes an invaluable asset for the CIA when he takes charge of Panama's intelligence service after the 1968 military coup, providing services for U.S. covert operations and facilitating the use of Panama as the center of U.S. intelligence gathering in Latin America. In 1976, CIA Director George Bush pays Noriega $110,000 for his services, even though as early as 1971 U.S. officials agents had evidence that he was deeply involved in drug trafficking. Although the Carter administration suspends payments to Noriega, he returns to the U.S. payroll when President Reagan takes office in 1981. The general is rewarded handsomely for his services in support of Contras forces in Nicaragua during the 1980s, collecting $200,000 from the CIA in 1986 alone. MAY 1970 A Christian Science Monitor correspondent reports that the CIA `is cognizant of, if not party to, the extensive movement of opium out of Laos,' quoting one charter pilot who claims that `opium shipments get special CIA clearance and monitoring on their flights southward out of the country.' At the time, some 30,000 U.S. service men in Vietnam are addicted to heroin. 1972 The full story of how Cold War politics and U.S. covert operations fueled a heroin boom in the Golden Triangle breaks when Yale University doctoral student Alfred McCoy publishes his ground-breaking study, The Politics of Heroin in Southeast Asia. The CIA attempts to quash the book. 1973 Thai national Puttapron Khramkhruan is arrested in connection with the seizure of 59 pounds of opium in Chicago. A CIA informant on narcotics trafficking in northern Thailand, he claims that agency had full knowledge of his actions. According to the U.S. Justice Department, the CIA quashed the case because it may `prove embarrassing because of Mr. Khramkhruans's involvement with CIA activities in Thailand, Burma, and elsewhere.' JUNE 1975 Mexican police, assisted by U.S. drug agents, arrest Alberto Sicilia Falcon, whose Tijuana-based operation was reportedly generating $3.6 million a week from the sale of cocaine and marijuana in the United States. The Cuban exile claims he was a CIA protege, trained as part of the agency's anti-Castro efforts, and in exchange for his help in moving weapons to certain groups in Central America, the CIA facilitated his movement of drugs. In 1974, Sicilia's top aide, Jose Egozi, a CIA-trained intelligence officer and Bay of Pigs veteran, reportedly lined up agency support for a right-wing plot to overthrow the Portuguese government. Among the top Mexican politicians, law enforcement and intelligence officials from whom Sicilia enjoyed support was Miguel Nazar Haro, head of the Direccion Federal de Seguridad (DFS), who the CIA admits was its `most important source in Mexico and Central America.' When Nazar was linked to a multi- million-dollar stolen car ring several years later, the CIA intervenes to prevent his indictment in the United States. APRIL 1978 Soviet-backed coup in Afghanistan sets stage for explosive growth in Southwest Asian heroin trade. New Marxist regime undertakes vigorous anti-narcotics campaign aimed at suppressing poppy production, triggering a revolt by semi-autonomous tribal groups that traditionally raised opium for export. The CIA- supported rebel Mujahedeen begins expanding production to finance their insurgency. Between 1982 and 1989, during which time the CIA ships billions of dollars in weapons and other aid to guerrilla forces, annual opium production in Afghanistan increases to about 800 tons from 250 tons. By 1986, the State Department admits that Afghanistan is `probably the world's largest producer of opium for export' and `the poppy source for a majority of the Southwest Asian heroin found in the United States.' U.S. officials, however, fail to take action to curb production. Their silence not only serves to maintain public support for the Mujahedeen, it also smooths relations with Pakistan, whose leaders, deeply implicated in the heroin trade, help channel CIA support to the Afghan rebels. JUNE 1980 Despite advance knowledge, the CIA fails to halt members of the Bolivian militaries, aide by the Argentine counterparts, from staging the so-called `Cocaine Coup,' according to former DEA agent Michael Levine. In fact, the 25-year DEA veteran maintains the agency actively abetted cocaine trafficking in Bolivia, where government official who sought to combat traffickers faced `torture and death at the hands of CIA-sponsored paramilitary terrorists under the command of fugitive Nazi war criminal (also protected by the CIA) Klaus Barbie. FEBRUARY 1985 DEA agent Enrique `Kiki' Camerena is kidnapped and murder in Mexico. DEA, FBI and U.S. Customs Service investigators accuse the CIA of stonewalling during their investigation. U.S. authorities claim the CIA is more interested in protecting its assets, including top drug trafficker and kidnapping principal Miguel Angel Felix Gallardo. (In 1982, the DEA learned that Felix Gallardo was moving $20 million a month through a single Bank of America account, but it could not get the CIA to cooperate with its investigation.) Felix Gallardo's main partner is Honduran drug lord Juan Ramon Matta Ballesteros, who began amassing his $2-billion fortune as a cocaine supplier to Alberto Sicilia Falcon. (see June 1985) Matta's air transport firm, SETCO, receives $186,000 from the U.S. State Department to fly `humanitarian supplies' to the Nicaraguan Contras from 1983 to 1985. Accusations that the CIA protected some of Mexico's leading drug traffickers in exchange for their financial support of the Contras are leveled by government witnesses at the trials of Camarena's accused killers. JANUARY 1988 Deciding that he has outlived his usefulness to the Contra cause, the Reagan Administration approves an indictment of Noriega on drug charges. By this time, U.S. Senate investigators had found that `the United States had received substantial information about criminal involvement of top Panamanian officials for nearly twenty years and done little to respond.' APRIL 1989 The Senate Subcommittee on Terrorism, Narcotics and International Communications, headed by Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts, issues its 1,166-page report on drug corruption in Central America and the Caribbean. The subcommittee found that `there was substantial evidence of drug smuggling through the war zone on the part of individuals Contras, Contra suppliers, Contra pilots, mercenaries who worked with the Contras supporters throughout the region.' U.S. officials, the subcommittee said, `failed to address the drug issue for fear of jeopardizing the war efforts against Nicaragua.' The investigation also reveals that some `senior policy makers' believed that the use of drug money was `a perfect solution to the Contras' funding problems.' JANUARY 1993 Honduran businessman Eugenio Molina Osorio is arrested in Lubbock Texas for supplying $90,000 worth of cocaine to DEA agents. Molina told judge he is working for CIA to whom he provides political intelligence. Shortly after, a letter from CIA headquarters is sent to the judge, and the case is dismissed. `I guess we're all aware that they [the CIA] do business in a different way than everybody else,' the judge notes. Molina later admits his drug involvement was not a CIA operation, explaining that the agency protected him because of his value as a source for political intelligence in Honduras. NOVEMBER 1996 Former head of the Venezuelan National Guard and CIA operative Gen. Ramon Gullien Davila is indicted in Miami on charges of smuggling as much as 22 tons of cocaine into the United States. More than a ton of cocaine was shipped into the country with the CIA's approval as part of an undercover program aimed at catching drug smugglers, an operation kept secret from other U.S. agencies. *** ANTIFA INFO-BULLETIN (AFIB) 750 La Playa # 730 San Francisco, California 94121 E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org *** On PeaceNet visit ANTIFA INFO-BULLETIN on pol.right.antifa or by gopher - gopher://gopher.igc.apc.org:7021/11/europe Via the Web - http://burn.ucsd.edu/~aff/afib.html ANTI-FASCIST FORUM (AFF) Antifa Info-Bulletin is a member of the Anti-Fascist Forum network. AFF is an info-group which collects and disseminates information, research and analysis on fascist activity and anti-fascist resistance. More info: E-mail: email@example.com Web: http://burn.ucsd.edu/~aff ANTIFAINFO - BULLETIN NEWS * ANALYSIS * RESEARCH * ACTION RESISTING FASCISM * BY ALL MEANS NECESSARY!
------------------------------------------------------------------- The Smoking Gun - CIA Drug Trafficking (Michael Levine, A Former DEA Agent, Publicizes His 'Expert Witness' Radio Show Tomorrow Night Featuring An Interview With Gary Webb, Author Of 'The San Jose Mercury News' Expose On The CIA-Contra Connection, Discussing Levine's Books, Which He Asserts Contain More Than Enough Evidence To Indict And Convict The CIA In Any Federal Court In The Land) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 19:57:24 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (A H Clements) To: Multiple recipients of list
Subject: fwd: THE SMOKING GUN (CIA drug trafficking) forwarded for Michael Levine (email@example.com), an ex-DEA agent *** The EXPERT WITNESS radio show WBAI, FM - NYC- 99.5 FM Tuesdays 7-8 pm Host: Michael Levine The following will be discussed during a presentation with Gary Webb and others at the Martin Luther King Labor Center, West 43rd Street, New York City, on Thursday, June 11, 1998, at 6:30 pm.. For further info call 212-209-2800 or 212-289-2835 THE SMOKING GUN by Michael Levine Before THE BIG WHITE LIE could be published it had to pass a libel reading by attorneys to insure that all the facts established were backed up by documentation. The process was not unlike the preparation of a conspiracy drug trafficking case with a United States Attorney for prosecution if anything, it was more thorough. I have never in my career, as "Case Agent," lost a Conspiracy case in court. To fully appreciate what you are about to read, first, understand that I have convicted law enforcement officers of Conspiracy in drug trafficking cases, for simply having knowledge of drug trafficking and not taking appropriate action. In THE BIG WHITE LIE, as in my other books Deep Cover and Triangle of Death all my facts were corroborated by tape-recorded conversations and government reports unavailable to media and the general public; however, it was not until CIA, Inspector General Frederick Hitz made his statement before Congress in March, 1998, that I truly understood the devastating significance of what I had reported. 1.Hitz's summation of the entire CIA investigation of its own drug trafficking activities: HITZ: (from C-Span broadcast): "...we have found no evidence in the course of this lengthy investigation of any conspiracy by CIA or its employees, to bring drugs into the United States." 2. In answer to Congressional inquiry as to what the CIA's duties and responsibilities were as to the reporting of drug information: HITZ: "Well it was a moveable feat so to speak....from 1976 to 1982, [the CIA's duties were] not really addressed..." Fact to the contrary: I was the DEA's Country Attache assigned to Buenos Aires, Argentina between 1978 and 1982, and it was during this time that the Carter Administration ordered CIA to become actively involved in stopping drugs. The facts documented in THE BIG WHITE LIE show they did quite the opposite. 3. HITZ: (Explaining drug trafficker Danilo Blandon's involvement with Enrique Bermudez, (CIA asset and Contra leader) in a cocaine buying expedition to Bolivia: "Blandon states that one meeting occurred in Honduras in 1982, while he and [Norwin] Meneses were traveling to Bolivia to conduct a drug deal (emphasis mine). Blandon says that Bermudez told them that the Contras were having trouble raising funds; that he and Meneses help. Stating that 'the ends justify the means.' Blandon adds that it is his belief Bermudez did not know that he and Meneses were engaged in drug trafficking, but was aware of Meneses's alleged Nicaraguan organized crime connections. This investigation found no further information on this subject. Unfortunately we could not obtain information from Bermudez, since he was murdered in Managua in 1991." Facts to the contrary: (See Page 417-418) THE BIG WHITE LIE, hard cover edition):"In November of 1982....secret meetings had been called between DEA, the Department of Justice and the CIA to discuss whether or not [Bolivian officials responsible for flooding our streets with cocaine, who also happened to be CIA assets could be indicted]without jeopardizing CIA programs..."If any of the CIA assets were indicted, the Agency's role in the takeover of Bolivia by drug dealers, rapists and murderers97and perhaps their role in drug dealing too97might be revealed to the American people..."The result of the secret meetings ...was that there would be no indictment. The CIA's drug dealing assets would be permitted to continue their criminal ways unhindered by the war on drugs." "The CIA claimed that indicting these people would irreparably damage 'important programs.'" The above, once again, is backed up by tape-recordings and official government reports unavailable to the media, and represents to an expert on Criminal Conspiracy investigations more than enough evidence to indict and convict CIA in any federal court in the land. By any definition, A SMOKING GUN.
------------------------------------------------------------------- FDA Can Control Tobacco, Justice Department Asserts In Court ('The Los Angeles Times' Notes Attorneys For Tobacco Companies, Retailers And Advertisers - But Not Consumers - Urged A Three-Judge Panel Of The US Fourth Circuit Court Of Appeals Tuesday In Charleston, West Virginia, To Overrule A Lower Court Ruling Giving The US Food And Drug Administration Authority To Regulate Tobacco, Arguing That The FDA Is Attempting To Exert Powers Congress Never Intended) Date: Thu, 11 Jun 1998 01:00:22 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: FDA Can Control Tobacco, Justice Dept. Asserts In Court Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Pubdate: 10 June 1998 Author: HENRY WEINSTEIN, Times Legal Affairs Writer FDA CAN CONTROL TOBACCO, JUSTICE DEPT. ASSERTS IN COURT Regulation: Appellate judges hear challenge to ruling giving agency power over industry. In Congress, Senate agrees to key amendments to legislation. CHARLESTON, W.Va.--In a case whose potential importance grows as the fate of comprehensive tobacco legislation remains uncertain in Congress, the Justice Department told a federal appeals court Tuesday that the Food and Drug Administration has the authority to regulate cigarettes and other tobacco products. Attorneys for tobacco companies, retailers and advertisers countered that the FDA is attempting to exert powers that Congress never intended. They urged a three-judge panel of the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals to overrule a lower court ruling. In Washington, meanwhile, progress resumed on the tobacco control bill as the Senate reached agreement on key amendments that Republicans had been pushing on how to spend money the measure would produce. Still, the legislation's ultimate prospects are murky. The legal case that is playing out here stems from the tobacco industry's challenge to the FDA's assertion of regulatory authority over tobacco. In federal district court in North Carolina--the tobacco industry's home turf--Judge William L. Osteen held last year that the agency does have the authority to govern the tobacco industry--including the nicotine content of cigarettes. If the government continues to prevail, it will be able to impose a host of new rules enabling the FDA to regulate cigarettes as drug delivery systems. Ultimately, the agency could compel the cigarette companies to reduce or even eliminate nicotine, which could lead to a significant reduction in sales and profits for the companies. After the hearing ended, both sides declared that they were pleased with how the argument had gone but neither was willing to predict victory. "I thought [Justice Department lawyer] Gerald Kell did a brilliant job of laying out the law," said David A. Kessler, who had pressed for tobacco regulation as FDA commissioner until early last year. But he cautioned: "This is a long haul. I've learned never to get up or down on the basis of any one point." Charles A. Blixt, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co.'s general counsel, lauded the presentation of the industry's lead lawyer, Richard M. Cooper, but added: "You never can tell how the arguments are going." The judges could take several months to issue a decision and, given the stakes, any ruling is likely to be appealed to the Supreme Court. The panel also will rule on the government's appeal of the other major lower-court ruling in the case--striking down FDA regulations that severely restrict cigarette advertising and promotion to young people. Questions posed by Judge James H. Michael, 79, indicated that he was skeptical about the government's position, while Judge K.K. Hall, 80, appeared sympathetic to the FDA. Judge H. Emory Widener Jr., 75, asked the fewest questions and did not indicate how he was leaning, prompting some observers to predict that his might be the pivotal vote. Tuesday's proceedings marked the second time the case had been heard by the 4th Circuit. The appeal of Osteen's decision was first argued before a three-judge panel last August, but before the panel could render a decision, one of the three judges, 92-year-old Donald S. Russell, died. Widener replaced Russell. Kell, the Justice Department lawyer, said that the basic issue of FDA authority was clearly resolved by the language of the 1938 Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, which gives the agency authority to regulate articles "intended to affect the structure or any function of the body." Citing internal industry documents, Kell said that new information developed by the FDA revealed that nicotine is addictive and that the tobacco manufacturers designed their products with the goal of satisfying smokers' addiction. Cooper, representing the industry, said that the history of the 1938 act and subsequent laws show that Congress never intended to give the FDA authority to regulate the design, content or advertising of cigarettes. "What's at stake is the FDA's power to ban tobacco," said Cooper, a former FDA general counsel who is now a partner at Williams & Connolly, one of Washington's most influential law firms. In distinct contrast to the hearing last year, when the judges peppered Justice Department lawyer Walter Dellinger with questions from the outset of his argument, Kell was able to complete his entire opening statement without interruption. However, he had a difficult moment when Judge Michael asked him whether nicotine is a "dangerous drug"--a thorny question since the 1938 Food and Drug law does not permit the marketing of products found unsafe by the FDA. If Kell had answered yes, it would follow that the agency would have to ban nicotine. But he had already stated the FDA's consistent position that it had no intention to ban tobacco, an action that would have drastic consequences for the more than 40 million American smokers. Kell responded that nicotine was not dangerous "per se." Rather, he said, cigarettes are a dangerous product and, since nicotine is addictive, that gives the agency the lever to regulate it. Michael tried two more times to get a yes answer and finally said: "I admire your ability to escape declaring it [nicotine] is a dangerous drug." Cooper called the FDA's stance "bizarre" and "nonsensical." Copyright Los Angeles Times
------------------------------------------------------------------- Senate Adopts Anti-Drug Proposal (An 'Associated Press' Article In 'The Los Angeles Times' Notes Several Amendments Were Proposed In An Attempt To Save The McCain Tobacco Bill, Including A Republican Anti-Drug Proposal Sponsored By Senators Paul Coverdell And Larry Craig) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 23:19:06 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: Senate Adopts Anti-Drug Proposal Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Contact: email@example.com Fax: 213-237-4712 Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Author: Laurie Kellman, Associated Press Writer SENATE ADOPTS ANTI-DRUG PROPOSAL WASHINGTON--Exploiting a thaw in an icy standoff between Senate leaders, the White House and tobacco bill supporters are trying to save the legislation from collapse with an amendment that would give tax cuts to some married people and self-employed workers. "Reports of the death of this legislation are premature," Sen. John McCain, the tobacco bill's sponsor, declared late Tuesday only hours after Senate leaders suggested scrapping the measure. Still he warned, the bill has yet to be revived. "We certainly by no means have total confidence that we will reach a successful conclusion," McCain, R-Ariz., added. But word of a deal on a tax cut amendment considerably brightened the bill's prospects late Tuesday. "I do believe that the possibility of getting a comprehensive bill out of the Senate is greater now than it was this morning," President Clinton told reporters, shortly after speaking with Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott, R-Miss., and Minority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D. Lott was less optimistic about completing action. "This gets us started in that direction," he said on the Senate floor. McCain's bill would charge tobacco companies $516 billion over 25 years, raise cigarette taxes by $1.10 a pack and allow the Food and Drug Administration to regulate nicotine. In the bill's third week of debate, the stalemate over procedure cracked Tuesday afternoon when a Democratic motion to bring the measure to a final vote failed. Within minutes, Republicans and Democrats reached agreement on several of the procedural matters that had split them. Reaching a deal among the GOP on what kind of tax cut to offer was a significant step, since Republicans have disagreed on the terms of that cornerstone of their political message. The deal also represented the GOP's determination to claim some credit this election year for legislation that Clinton has demanded. Sponsored by senior Republicans led by Sen. Phil Gramm of Texas, the amendment calls for spending $46 billion over 10 years of the money raised by the McCain bill to end the income tax "marriage penalty" and help the self-employed pay for health care. The marriage penalty is the extra income tax many married people pay that they would not owe if they were still single. Though Democrats have not signed on to the amendment, one senior aide late Tuesday said that in principle, the GOP plan "appeared to be something that a majority of Democrats could support." Other Democrats predicted that the bill will include a tax cut. "We're not in any way adverse to a marriage penalty reduction," Daschle told reporters. One administration official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the White House was likely to express concern that the anti-drug and tax cut provisions would absorb a significant portion of the money generated by the bill. Still, this official said, neither the president nor his aides will issue a veto threat. Earlier Tuesday, the Senate voted along party lines to adopt a Republican anti-drug proposal, sponsored by Sens. Paul Coverdell, R-Ga., Larry Craig, R-Idaho, that Lott has said was crucial if McCain's bill is to clear the Senate. By 52/46, senators voted to spend $15 billion over five years of the money raised by McCain's bill to increase funding for drug interdiction and allow students who have been victims of drug crimes to switch schools. All 52 votes in favor came from Republicans; 44 Democrats and Republican Sens. John Chafee of Rhode Island and James Jeffords of Vermont voted against. A subsequent attempt by Democrats to substitute their own anti-drug proposal was defeated along party lines. Despite the progress, Democrats still intend to try to choke off debate with votes set for today and Thursday to bring McCain's bill to a final vote. Most GOP lawmakers are expected to vote against such proposals, and Democrats said that would give them fodder for campaign commercials if talks fail. Copyright Los Angeles Times
------------------------------------------------------------------- FDA Posts Web Site On Viagra Deaths - Up To 16, But Cause Unclear ('The San Francisco Chronicle' Prints The URL Where The US Food And Drug Administration Is Making Regular Updates - No Word On How The Agency Is Skirting Regulations Preventing It From Tracking Adverse Reactions) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 23:56:33 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: FDA Posts Web Site On Viagra Deaths Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Author: Sabin Russell, Chronicle Staff Writer FDA POSTS WEB SITE ON VIAGRA DEATHS -- UP TO 16, BUT CAUSE UNCLEAR Bowing to a public fascination with all things Viagra, the Food and Drug Administration has begun posting on the Internet regular updates of deaths among patients who had taken the popular anti-impotence pill. Sixteen deaths have now been reported to the FDA among men who have taken the drug since it hit the market in April. The first six deaths were reported May 21. ``We'll monitor these reports to see if they lead us to any trends,'' said FDA spokeswoman Lorrie McHugh. Of the sixteen deaths, seven occurred among men who were having sex or shortly after they had sex -- raising some concern that patients too ill for the exertion of sexual activity were being tempted to try it by the promise of the drug. But now, as was the case in May, it is uncertain whether the medication played any role in the deaths of the men who took it. Scientifically, the anecdotes are almost meaningless. Three of the cases were merely accounts of deaths reported in the media. Both the FDA and Viagra's maker, Pfizer Inc., continue to voice their confidence in the pill. ``It's a new drug. We're not going to pretend we're not going to see things we didn't find in the trials. But in terms of overall safety, we are reassured,'' said Pfizer spokesman Andrew McCormick. Since its approval as the first effective pill to treat impotence, more than 1.7 million prescriptions for Viagra have been filled, making Viagra the most popular new drug ever sold. Pfizer estimates that 85 percent of Viagra users are over age 50, many of them with physical conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes that can cause impotence. Of the 16 reported deaths, 10 were in men older than 60. The youngest man to die was a 48-year-old with a history of diabetes who had chest pains during sex and was given nitroglycerin by ambulance crews. Nitroglycerin, like Viagra, dilates blood vessels, and in combination can lead to a dangerous drop in blood pressure. Nitrate drugs are the one class of medications that Viagra's label warns against mixing. Nitroglycerin is routinely administered to patients suspected of having a heart attack, and anecdotal accounts like this one led Pfizer to warn emergency room personnel and paramedics to ask victims if they have taken Viagra. ON THE NET The FDA is posting its Viagra case report updates at http://www.fda.gov/cder/news/viagrapostmarket.htm 1998 San Francisco Chronicle - Page A7
------------------------------------------------------------------- 'Drug War' Still Just A Huff And A Puff ('USA Today' Columnist Walter Shapiro Examines The Words Used By President Clinton At The United Nations' Special Session On Drugs, And Finds They Illustrate The Contradictions At The Heart Of The War On Some Drug Users) Date: Thu, 11 Jun 1998 02:05:11 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service
, Mark Greer From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US GE: USA TODAY Column: 'Drug War' Still Just A Huff And A Puff Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield Source: USA Today Section: Page 2 Column: Hype & Glory Columnist: Walter Shapiro Contact: email@example.com FAX: (703) 276-3400 Mail: USA Today, Karen Jurgensen, Editor of the Editorial Page, 1000 Wilson Blvd. (22nd floor), Arlington, VA 22229 Website: http://www.usatoday.com/news/nfront.htm Pubdate: June 10, 1998 'DRUG WAR' STILL JUST A HUFF AND A PUFF Yes, I inhaled. But, as I'm supposed to add, it was part of a pattern of youthful experimentation that I have since regretted every day of my life. There is something resembling a Stalinist show trial about these public confessions. But this remains an obligatory exercise for all baby boomers who aspire to public office or, in my case, merely want to write a column about the incoherence of America's never-ending war on drugs. Bill Clinton, our peripatetic look-busy president, was at the United Nations Monday to add his voice to the vaporous platitudes of the General Assembly's drug summit. Typical of the unworldly rhetoric of this international gabfest was the Pollyanna pledge by Pino Arlacchi, the United Nations' drug czar, to rid the world of all coca leaf and opium poppy crops in 10 years. The president's own oratory was a bewildering collection of semiunrelated declarative sentences. His words are worth parsing because they illustrate the contradictions at the heart of the drug war. "Today we come here to say no nation is so large and powerful that it can conquer drugs alone," Clinton declared. "None is too small to make a difference." Yeah, as Luxembourg goes, so goes the global struggle against drug addiction. In typical fashion, Clinton took pains to assure the world how much better things have gotten on his watch. "Overall," the president said, "cocaine use has dropped 70% since 1985. The crack epidemic has begun to recede. Last year, our Coast Guard seized more than 100,000 pounds of cocaine." These sentences, jumbled together, imply a causal connection between cocaine seizures and the welcome lessening of the crack epidemic. Yet there is no evidence that anyone gave up the drug because the street price soared into the stratosphere. The Drug Enforcement Agency's own figures show that cocaine prices have remained level in a low-inflation environment. This is the inherent fallacy in the federal government's obsession with interdicting drug supplies. A true shortage would drive up prices and force addicts to commit more crimes to maintain their habits. But cocaine and most other illicit drugs are easy to smuggle across our porous borders, which is why every overpublicized drug seizure ends up having scant effect on the law of supply and demand that dictates street prices. Even as the president lamented nations "pointing fingers" over responsibility for the global drug trade, Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo had a bone to pick with his good neighbor to the North. Zedillo was irked because he had just learned of a three-year U.S. sting operation on Mexican soil called "Operation Casablanca." Aggressive interdiction efforts abroad like this invariably ensnare America in the domestic politics of drug-exporting nations. A recent New York Times story revealed that anti-drug assistance to Colombia was frequently being used by the local military in an unrelated struggle against guerrilla insurgents. Once, anti-communism heedlessly propelled us into civil wars in Latin America; now we are again headed into the danger zone because of our law enforcement efforts against the drug trade. At the United Nations, Clinton unveiled his latest strategic breakthrough: a $2 billion ad campaign against drugs. When it comes to knotty social problems, the administration's motto seems to be "Let Madison Avenue handle it." This same approach is reflected in the anti-smoking commercials that would be required by the tobacco bill now on the floor of the Senate. The president may decry Big Government, but he believes in Big TV. With drugs, as with most social issues, Clinton is animated by the need to defuse political attacks from the Republican right. That's why roughly two-thirds of the proposed $17 billion federal drug-control effort goes to flawed law enforcement strategies rather than treatment programs. What troubles me is the way the drug policy debate revolves around such stale remedies as mandatory prison sentences and just-say-no campaigns. I am not preaching decriminalization so much as I am pumping for some original thinking. A small step in that direction came Monday when a blue-ribbon roster of international leaders signed a newspaper ad declaring that "the global war on drugs is now causing more harm than drug abuse itself." Among the American signers were two brave public officials, Baltimore Mayor Kurt Schmoke and the irrepressible Willie Brown, the mayor of San Francisco. But the names that stood out were emeritus establishment figures like Robert Strauss and Lloyd Cutler. Only now, at an age safely beyond ambition, are they free to dissent from the anti-drug orthodoxy. Walter Shapiro's column appears Wednesdays and Fridays.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Colombia, Myanmar Urge Alternative Crops ('The Orange County Register' Notes The Potential Beneficiaries Of The United Nations' Proposed Crop Substitution Program Are All For It) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 10:25:53 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UN GE: Colombia, Myanmar Urge Alternative Crops Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk:John W.Black Pubdate Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Source: Orange County Register (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.ocregister.com/ COLOMBIA, MYANMAR URGE ALTERNATIVE CROPS Leaders from two of the world's major sources of narcotics told a U.N. drug conference Tuesday that programs to wipe out illicit crops will fail without money to help farmers grow alternative crops. The United States has been noncommittal to a U.N. proposal to provide financial incentives to Third World farmers to stop growing cannabis, opium poppies and coca, the raw ingredient of cocaine. President Ernesto Samper of Colombia told reporters that "forced eradication" will fail in the long term "if not accompanied by crop substitution programs." The interior minister of Myanmar, Col. Tin Hlaing, said lack of funds could sabotage the plan to eliminate illicit narcotic crops in 10 years. From Register news services
------------------------------------------------------------------- UN - Drugs - Defense (Transcript Of Today's 'Voice Of America' Broadcast Focuses On UN Officials' Response To An Unfavorable Editorial In 'The New York Times' About The General Assembly Special Session To Expand The Global Drug War) Date: Sun, 14 Jun 1998 19:42:26 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service
From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UN GE: VOA: U-N DRUGS / DEFENSE Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: isenberd@DynCorp.com (Isenberg, David) Source: Voice of America Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Author: Max Ruston Editor's note: This is the text of what VOA told the world. Your tax dollars at work. It takes more time than it is worth to change the original text to lower case, so I hope you do not mind the shouting. - Richard Lake, Sr. Editor, DrugSense News Service *** U-N DRUGS / DEFENSE INTRO: THE UNITED NATIONS TODAY (TUESDAY) REJECTED SUGGESTIONS THAT ITS INTERNATIONAL DRUG CONFERENCE, NOW UNDERWAY IN NEW YORK, IS PROMOTING UNREALISTIC PLEDGES AND INEFFECTIVE PROGRAMS. V-O-A'S MAX RUSTON REPORTS FROM THE UNITED NATIONS. TEXT: A U-N SPOKESMAN GAVE REPORTERS A LENGTHY DEFENSE OF THE DRUG CONFERENCE IN RESPONSE TO AN EDITORIAL IN THE NEW YORK TIMES NEWSPAPER. THE EDITORIAL DESCRIBES THE CONFERENCE AS "WELL INTENTIONED BUT MISDIRECTED" AND SAYS THE POLICIES THE UNITED NATIONS IS SUPPORTING COULD ACTUALLY HINDER EFFECTIVE DRUG PROGRAMS. THE SPOKESMAN FOR THE U-N OFFICE FOR DRUG CONTROL, SANDRO TUCCI, SAYS THE UNITED NATIONS DISAGREES WITH THESE OPINIONS AS WELL AS A STATEMENT IN THE EDITORIAL QUESTIONING PARTNERSHIPS WITH THE TALEBAN LEADERSHIP IN AFGHANISTAN AND THE GOVERNMENT OF MYANMAR. TUCCI ACT THAT THE AFGHAN AND THE MYANMAR GOVERNMENTS ARE UNRELIABLE PARTNERS MAY BE A VIEW OF SOMEBODY. IT MAY EVEN BE OUR VIEW. THE POINT IS THAT THESE ARE THE PEOPLE THAT WE MUST DEAL WITH BECAUSE THESE ARE THE PEOPLE WHO ARE GROWING OPIUM AND THE ALTERNATIVE TO TRY TO WORK WITH THEM WOULD BE TO DO NOTHING. END ACT THE EDITORIAL ECHOES THE CRITICISM OF SOME NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS AT THE THREE-DAY CONFERENCE ... THAT THE UNITED NATIONS IS SUPPORTING STRATEGIES THAT HAVE FAILED IN THE PAST. IT SAYS CROP SUBSTITUTION, LAW ENFORCEMENT AND OTHER PROGRAMS TO CUT DRUG SUPPLY RARELY DELIVER PROMISED RESULTS. MR. TUCCI REJECTS THE EDITORIAL'S CLAIMS, SAYING THAT FOR THE FIRST TIME THE UNITED NATIONS IS GIVING EQUAL STATUS TO THE REDUCTION OF DRUG CONSUMPTION AND PRODUCTION. THE DRUG CONFERENCE IS SCHEDULED TO END WEDNESDAY WITH THE APPROVAL OF A POLITICAL DECLARATION PROMISING INCREASED INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION IN THE WAR ON DRUGS. THE DECLARATION SETS DEADLINES FOR REDUCING PRODUCTION OF ILLICIT DRUGS AND ESTABLISHING INTERNATIONAL COLLABORATION IN THE AREAS OF LAW, PUBLIC HEALTH AND SOCIAL WELFARE. BUT MANY LEADERS ATTENDING THE MEETING HAVE WARNED THAT THE CONFERENCE WILL HAVE BEEN A WASTE OF TIME IF ITS PROMISES ARE NOT FOLLOWED WITH CONCRETE ACTION.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Re - Cheerleaders Against Drugs (Letter To The Editor Of 'The New York Times' By A Psychiatrist Who Specializes In Addiction Praises The Newspaper's Editorial Denouncing The United Nations' Expansion Of The War On Some Drug Users) Date: Thu, 11 Jun 1998 00:27:39 -0500 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US NY: PUB LTE: Cheerleaders Against Drugs Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Gene Tinelli (email@example.com) Source: New York Times (NY) Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.nytimes.com/ As a practicing addiction psychiatrist, I highly applaud your editorial "Cheerleaders Against Drugs." You highlite the futility of our current drug policies and recommend consideration of alternative policies. Well done. Thank you. Gene Tinelli, MD, PhD Department of Psychiatry Health Science Center State University of New York Syracuse, NY 13210
------------------------------------------------------------------- Wrong About Drugs (Staff Editorial In 'The International Herald-Tribune' About This Week's United Nations Conference On Drugs Says That, With Drugs More Plentiful And Cheaper Than Ever, World Leaders Are Mostly Extolling Failed And Counterproductive Strategies To Combat The Problem) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: "MN"
Subject: MN: US: NY Editorial: Wrong About Drugs Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 06:56:00 -0500 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Peter Webster Pubdate: June 10, 1998 Source: International Herald-Tribune Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.iht.com/ WRONG ABOUT DRUGS Manhattan is filled this week with world leaders attending a well-intentioned but misdirected United Nations conference on drugs. With drugs more plentiful and cheaper than ever worldwide, the leaders are mostly extolling failed strategies to combat the problem. Pino Arlacchi, the Italian who heads the UN Drug Abuse Control and Crime Prevention Organization, is promising to eliminate coca leaf and opium poppies, the basis of cocaine and heroin, in 10 years. Such claims get in the way of effective programs to reduce drug use. Mr. Arlacchi's proposal which is likely to be approved, would attempt to cut drug cultivation by bringing roads, schools and other development to drug areas. The notion sounds reasonable, and it is surely better to help farmers than to finance a militarized war on drugs, which has torn apart societies and built up some of the world's most repressive armies. But elements of Mr. Arlacchi's plan are unrealistic and harmful. Half the funding would supposedly come from drug-producing nations themselves, an unlikely prospect. He would also make partners out of such abusive and unreliable governments as the Taleban in Afghanistan and the military in Burma. While there is a place for crop substitution, law enforcement, interdiction and other programs to cut drug supply, these steps rarely deliver promised results. Where crop substitution has been successful, drug cultivation has simply moved next door. The conference has seen a welcome increase in talk about the duties of drug-consuming countries, but its proposals are still tilted toward attacking supply. Studies show that treatment programs are far more cost-effective than efforts overseas, but it is politcally safer to advocate fighting drugs abroad than treating addicts at home. The United Nations kept off the program virtually all the citizens' groups and experts who wanted to speak. There is no discussion of some interesting new ideas such as harm reduction, which focuses on programs like needle exchanges and methadone that cut the damage drugs do. Like previous UN drug conferences, this one seems designed primarily to recycle unrealistic pledges and celebrate dubious programs.
------------------------------------------------------------------- UN Drug Conference Ends ('The Los Angeles Times' Says The Three-Day United Nations Special Session On Expanding The Global War On Some Drug Users Ended Wednesday With Delegates From About 150 Countries Divided Over How To Wage The War) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 19:29:49 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UN GE: U.N. Drug Conference Ends Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Contact: email@example.com Fax: 213-237-4712 Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Author: ROBERT H. REID, Associated Press Writer U.N. DRUG CONFERENCE ENDS UNITED NATIONS--Wrapping up a three-day U.N. drug summit Wednesday, world leaders expressed broad agreement that combating the drug trade requires a coordinated global campaign. But the delegates from about 150 countries, who were to adjourn the conference Wednesday night, were divided out how to wage the drug war. The summit was to end with participants endorsing a plan for governments to work together to curb trafficking, reduce demand, improve judicial cooperation, combat money-laundering and reduce the illegal cultivation of narcotic crops by 2008. However, the meeting underscored broad differences between drug-producing countries of Latin America and Asia and the major consumers -including the United States -on how best to direct limited resources in the fight against drugs. Speakers from Colombia, Myanmar, Mexico and other producers applauded U.N. proposals to reduce illicit cultivation by providing Third World farmers with financial incentives to stop growing opium poppies, coca and cannabis. Several developed countries, including Germany, Japan and Australia, endorsed those plans. But few promised substantial, new funds to pay for them, although Canada's solicitor general, Andy Scott, said his government would consider additional payments. U.S. drug czar Barry McCaffrey, speaking to reporters Monday, avoided committing the United States to support the U.N. crop substitution program, saying the global drug war required more than "just funding for alternative economic development." Sandro Tucci, a U.N. spokesman, said the conference had succeeded in convincing governments that reducing demand in rich countries was a priority. But some private drug research organizations expressed disappointment that more was not said about ways to treat and rehabilitate addicts. "Like the drug war itself, the U.N. drug summit was a failure," said Dr. Ethan Nadelmann, director of the Lindesmith Center. "Rather than producing the intended unity, the drug summit exposed deep divisions ... between drug war zealots who advocate spending on a failed policy and the reformers who want new approaches." Despite those divergent views, the conference showed a universal belief that curbing drug use must be a major international goal in the coming century. Nearly all delegates warned of increasing drug use in their countries, especially among the young. None called for legalization of drugs. Russia's deputy foreign minister, Yury Ushakov, said the number of Russian addicts had risen dramatically since the collapse of the Soviet Union, an observation repeated by leaders of other former Soviet republics. "Two or three years ago, people in Kyrgyzstan had only a theoretical idea what heroin is," said Kubanychbek Jumaliev, president of the former Soviet Central Asian republic. "Nowadays, it has become one of the main drugs on the illegal market." During his speech Monday, President Clinton announced a $2 billion, five-year media campaign against drugs targeted at young people. Copyright Los Angeles Times
------------------------------------------------------------------- 500 Drug Geniuses (Staff Editorial In 'The Wall Street Journal' Responds To The Letter Signed By 500 World Leaders Calling For An End To The Global War On Drugs, Written On The Occasion Of The United Nations General Assembly Special Session On Drugs In New York June 8-10, Saying, 'If The War On Drugs Isn't Working, The Answer Is Not To Abandon The Fight') Date: Thu, 11 Jun 1998 01:41:26 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service (firstname.lastname@example.org), Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US GE: Wall Street Journal Lead Editorial: 500 Drug Geniuses Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: The Media Awareness Project of DrugSense Pubdate: Wednesday, 10 June 1998 Source: The Wall Street Journal Section: Lead Editorial Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.wsj.com/ 500 DRUG GENIUSES With 500 of the world's prominent people serving as foot soldiers, there's now a war on against the war on drugs. As the U.N. General Assembly opened a special anti-drugs session this week, an international group of eminences urged the world to cede victory to the drugs' allure and concentrate its money and attention on making the addicts more comfortable. "The global war on drugs is now causing more harm than drug abuse itself," said a letter appearing Monday in newspapers and bearing the signatures of 500 people rounded up by an outfit bankrolled by financier George Soros, the man who underwrote the successful California effort to legalize "medical marijuana." "Punitive prohibitions" should be dropped in favor of approaches based on "common sense, public health and human rights." The letter is mostly the sort of high-minded pabulum needed to attract such famous names as former U.N. Secretary General Javier Perez de Cuellar or former U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz. The word "legalize" never appears. Nor do the words cocaine, heroin, marijuana, methamphetamine or designer drugs. For the "We Believe" signers, it's all just "drugs." We hope all these sophisticated folks won't feel their judgment is being too terribly offended if we say quite bluntly: They have just been enlisted in Mr. Soros's legalization crusade. It's a remarkable collection: former White House general counsel Lloyd Cutler, Milton Friedman, Willie Brown, Richard Burt, Bob Strauss, Joycelyn Elders, Ahmet Ertegun, Harvey Cox, Charles Murray, Bishop Paul Moore Jr., former FDA Commissioner and Stanford President Donald Kennedy, Ruth Messinger, Walter Cronkite, anti-biowarfare crusader Matthew Meselson of Harvard, Gunter Grass, Ivan Illich, Jesus Silva Herzog of Mexico. They're all listed at www.lindesmith.org/news/un.html. We have a few favorites. Anita Roddick, the founder of the Body Shop, who's famous for worrying about testing cosmetic chemicals on animals. And--this takes the cake--Naderite Sidney Wolfe, who's dedicated his life to allegations that various prescription drugs are "unsafe." No doubt Dr. Wolfe would advocate package inserts listing such side-effects as crack babies and headlong dives out windows. The notion that drug use is both a human right and an unstoppable urge is at root an immoral one, with its suggestion that some human lives are not worth saving from the scourge of addiction. Fortunately, this defeatist attitude is still in the minority. The mainstream view remains the one articulated by French President Jacques Chirac as the U.N. session opened: "The great crusade against drugs will not end until we have done [away] with this cancer eating at our societies." Critics of this approach include a diverse crew of leftists and self-described realists and libertarian economists who believe in backward-sloping demand curves. It occurs to us to suggest that the future of the debate would profit if all of these people stated publicly whether they themselves use any of these drugs recreationally. They argue that years of effort have done little or nothing to stem the flow and consumption of narcotics. Some add that de-criminalizing drug use is the best way to bring down drug lords and to eradicate the pernicious political and social effects of their illegal activities. All seem to believe that drug use and abuse are part of the human condition, and that governments should concentrate on making addicts less of a threat to themselves and their societies by providing safer access to drugs and the adult addicts' attendant diaper-changing services, which they call "public health." It still strikes us as a hard sell to families who've bankrupted themselves trying to bring a son or daughter out of heroin hell. Or parents battling to make sure their children aren't among those down at the local high school or middle school using marijuana. Pedophilia and child prostitution may also be part of the human condition, but you don't hear anyone arguing that they should be legalized or at least made safe and sanitary. None of this can obscure the fact that the current war on drug trafficking--and the political corruption, economic distortion, crime, AIDS and other social ills that flow from it--is not going well. This week's session at the United Nations, however, at least begins to point in the right direction. The proposals we are hearing are for a more cross-border approach to a cross-border problem. Up to now most countries have focused their efforts internally, with a more global approach mostly breeding recriminations. This time the heads of state are on the right track, and perhaps something useful will slowly come from this session. If the war on drugs isn't working, the answer is not to abandon the fight. We suspect that unlike the 500 famous authors of this week's petition, ordinary people have much less tolerance for the drug culture or its denizens.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Big Names Sign Letter Criticizing War On Drugs ('New York Times' Version In 'The International Herald-Tribune') Date: Thu, 11 Jun 1998 09:53:55 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UN GE: Big Names Sign Letter Criticizing War on Drugs Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Peter Webster Source: International Herald-Tribune Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.iht.com/ Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Author: Christopher S. Wren, New York Times Service BIG NAMES SIGN LETTER CRITICIZING WAR ON DRUGS UNITED NATIONS---A drug reform institute financed by the billionaire philanthropist George Soros has amassed signatures of hundreds of prominent people around the world on a letter asserting that the global war on drugs is causing more harm than drug abuse itself. The signers include a former United Nations secretary-general, Javier Perez de Cuellar, a former U.S. secretary of state, George Shultz, the Nobel peace laureate Oscar Arias of Costa Rica, the former CBS television anchorman Walter Cronkite, two former U.S. senators Alan Cranston and Claiborne Pell, and the South African human rights activist Helen Suzman. The signers also include Mr. Soros, who has spent millions of dollars trying to change the way Americans think about illegal drugs. In the past, he helped finance referendums in California and Arizona in support of medicinal use of marijuana and programs that distribute clean needles to those who take illegal drugs by injection. The move was timed to coincide with the UN General Assembly's special session on combating drug abuse. The letter was organized by the Lindesmith Center in New York, which advocates more liberal drug policies. It is addressed to Secretary-General Kofi Annan, whose spokesman said Monday that he had yet to receive it. The letter also ran as a two-page advertisement in The New York Times. The letter proposes no clear alternatives beyond asking Mr. Annan to take the lead in "stimulating a frank and honest evaluation of global drug control efforts." Mr. Soros said by telephone that he had not contributed directly to the cost of the Times ad but that the Lindesmith Institute, which he bankrolls, had. The Lindesmith Center's president, Ethan Nadlemann, said he initiated the project, and coordinated the letter, which drew roughly 600 signatures from around the world. But the letter did not seem to sway participants at the General Assembly's special session. General Barry McCaffrey, the Clinton administration's director of national drug policy, called the letter "a 1950s perception" of the struggle against drugs.
------------------------------------------------------------------- War On Drugs A Bust, Canada Says - Prevention, Rehabilitation As Important As Enforcement, Minister Says ('The Ottawa Citizen' Covers The Speech By Revenue Minister Herb Dhaliwal, The Head Of Canada's Delegation To The United Nations Special Session On Expanding The Global War Against Some Drug Users) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Matt Elrod) To: email@example.com Subject: Canada: GE: War on drugs a bust, minister says Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 13:57:02 -0700 Lines: 80 Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: Ottawa Citizen Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: Wed 10 Jun 1998 Section: News A1 / Front Author: Mike Trickey War on drugs a bust, Canada says: Prevention, rehabilitation as important as enforcement, minister says UNITED NATIONS -- Revenue Minister Herb Dhaliwal admits the ongoing ``war on drugs'' is not working and says the world must find new methods of short-circuiting the industry that is wreaking havoc on societies rich and poor around the world. ``I think everybody recognizes that dealing with the supply side of it hasn't worked, isn't going to work and we need new bold initiatives,'' said Mr. Dhaliwal, who heads the Canadian delegation at a special three-day United Nations conference on drugs that began yesterday. He said the failure to cut off the drug supply explains why some at the conference believe anti-drug campaigns should instead concentrate on reducing demand. The UN conference has set 2008 as the goal for the eradication of illicit drugs. A similar conference eight years ago established 1995 as the year the world was to have been made drug-free. Mr. Dhaliwal said there has been recognition that drugs are a global problem that cannot be dealt with by any one country alone and further recognition, particularly by the United States, that the world cannot be divided into drug-consuming and drug-producing nations. He pointed to the new Canada Drug Strategy, which was put forward last month as an example of Canada's ``balanced approach'' between cutting supply and reducing demand through treatment and programs such as needle exchanges. Such an approach will save taxpayers' money and improve Canadian society, he said. ``Prevention, treatment, rehabilitation in the long term will be a lot cheaper because once people get into the justice system, it becomes very expensive. It costs about $40,000 a year to have someone incarcerated, so our government is very much committed to prevention and rehabilitation and treatment. ``We have to start slowly and see if we're getting good results and do re-evaluations.'' However, calls to decriminalize marijuana by various prominent Canadians, including NDP Leader Alexa McDonough and Liberal Senator Sharon Carstairs, are going too far, he said. ``The question becomes: If you decriminalize marijuana, (will) people start with a soft drug and move to the high drug? In fact, in the longer term, will you have a bigger problem? ``It's something very difficult to predict. But our whole movement is to reduce the use of drugs. Period.'' The Canada Drug Strategy put the costs of drug and alcohol abuse to Canadian society in 1992 at $8.89 billion, but said drugs accounted for only 15 per cent of that. Mr. Dhaliwal said Canada will strengthen laws to discourage money-laundering: A new bill is in the works that will require all financial transactions in excess of $10,000 to be reported to Revenue Canada. As well, new technology and improved intelligence operations are being brought into play in the war against drug-smugglers. Revenue Canada announced yesterday that Vancouver customs officers had seized 150 kilograms of cocaine hidden in the false bottoms of containers in a German-registered ship. Officials put the street value of the cocaine at $30 million. Mr. Dhaliwal said customs officers have seized drugs with a street value of $201 million since the beginning of this year and have made 32,000 drug seizures worth $6.5 billion since 1987.
------------------------------------------------------------------- War On Drugs A Bust, Author Argues ('The Ottawa Citizen' Reviews 'Drug Crazy,' The Outstanding New Book By American Mike Gray, Who Also Wrote The Screenplay For 'The China Syndrome') From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Matt Elrod) To: email@example.com Subject: Canada: War on drugs a bust, author argues Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 13:55:11 -0700 Lines: 87 Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: Ottawa Citizen Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: Wed 10 Jun 1998 Section: News A1 / Front Author: Tod Mohamed War on drugs a bust, Canada says: Criminalization created demand for crack, strengthened drug barons, author argues Far from cleaning up the streets, the war on drugs is responsible for the rise of highly addictive, low-priced street drugs such as crack cocaine. That is the startling conclusion of Drug Crazy, a new book by Mike Gray. Mr. Gray, who also wrote the screenplay for The China Syndrome, asserts the war on drugs has done little more than create a vibrant black market for narcotics -- much the way the ill-fated prohibition of alcohol in the 1920s and '30s sparked the rise of a massive moonshine industry. Ruled by the law of supply and demand, Mr. Gray writes, modern drug barons know only the cheapest, most potent products will win market share. That has resulted in a Darwinian evolution in the strength of common street drugs: the potency of heroin and marijuana has shot up, while their asking price has plummeted. Perhaps the most tragic consequence of this has been the rise of crack, a cheap, addictive derivative of cocaine that provides an explosive but brief high. ``Crack is the creation of the black market,'' writes Mr. Gray. ``The only reason for its existence is economic. It's cheap (and) low cost makes it available to the blue-collar market.'' If Mr. Gray is right, things will get worse before they get better. His controversial take on the prohibition of narcotics comes as 150 countries are signing on to a renewed, UN-sponsored anti-drug campaign with a multibillion-dollar budget. In the U.S., President Bill Clinton has announced that next year's federal budget will include a record $17 billion to get drugs off the streets -- even more than the huge sums spent by his predecessor, Ronald Reagan, who was largely responsible for starting the war on drugs in the 1980s. As the war on drugs escalates, so does opposition to it. A petition asking the UN to work towards liberalizing drug laws is garnering high-profile signatories, including Nobel laureate Adolfo Perez Esquivel, economist Milton Friedman and NDP Leader Alexa McDonough. Mr. Gray -- himself a signatory to the petition -- has won praise for his book from influential sources. Dr. Joycelyn Elders, the former U.S. surgeon general, and Elliott Richardson, the former U.S. attorney general, both write glowing dust-jacket blurbs for Drug Crazy that argue the war on drugs should not be sacrosanct. ``The burden of proof,'' writes Mr. Richardson, is shifting ``from the critics of existing policy to its defenders.'' Mr. Gray's solution to the problem of the street-drug trade also offers an unusual twist. Government must not only enter the drug trade, Mr. Gray writes, it must sell drugs at prices that undercut those of the wares sold by the black-market drug lords. ``If that means drugs have to be given away to serious addicts, so be it,'' Mr. Gray writes. ``A tightly controlled legal market, offering clean, unadulterated pharmaceuticals, would instantly terminate the cash flow to the street bazaar, and the river of money that has fuelled the most brutal collection of criminal combines in the history of the planet would dry up ...'' The book begins with a graphic account of a drug bust in a Chicago neighbourhood. As police close in on a suspect named De-De, the guns come out, and bullets spray everywhere, wounding several officers. The tally for a day's work in drug enforcement is modest: a dozen illegal weapons, about 3 1/2 kilograms of cocaine, $53,000 in cash and the destruction of a local crack ring. If the war on drugs had never been declared, Mr. Gray argues, perhaps the crack would never have been there in the first place.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug Crazy - How We Got Into This Mess And How We Can Get Out ('Salon' Magazine Reviews Mike Gray's New Book, Calling It A 'Voltaire-Level Refutation Of The Church Of Drug Enforcement') Date: Sun, 14 Jun 1998 23:57:26 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: OPED: US Salon Mag Book Review: Drug Crazy Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Source: Salon Magazine Pubdate: 10 June 1998 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.salon1999.com/ Author: Mike Gray DRUG CRAZY How We Got Into This Mess And How We Can Get Out If religion is the opiate of the masses, drug prohibition is the high of the ruling classes. You do not have to be Stephen Jay Gould, an admitted therapeutic toker, to see the folly of criminalizing a citizen's association with plants, especially the kind bud -- cannabis indica, sativa and the hearty ruderalis (hemp). And yet President Clinton, a Rhodes scholar who joked on television about his youthful, offshore fling with Mary Jane, has juiced up Nixon's war against greens and crushed legitimate research into reefer's healing mercies. America's century-long love affair with dope-busting is the subject of Mike Gray's engrossing "Drug Crazy: How We Got Into This Mess and How We Can Get Out." Gray is a Hollywood screenwriter and director with a jones for muckraking -- he co-authored "The China Syndrome" and produced a documentary titled "The Murder of Fred Hampton." From the 1914 Harrison Narcotics Act to the current blooming of medical marijuana in Arizona and California, Gray covers the usual historical landmarks with entertaining twists. Although he is indisposed to prohibition, his easy-to-read, fast-moving polemic has the feel of fairness. The true beauty of the book, the forest behind the trees, is its Voltaire-level refutation of the Church of Drug Enforcement. Gray seems particularly good at reporting the social and political context of destructive policy decisions. For example, a bogus 1909 cure for opium addiction prepared the way for the cruel Just-Say-Cold-Turkey attitude of our earliest narcotics laws. His chapters on the hemispheric quagmire created by exporting our drug war south of the border makes you want to burn Old Glory. Gray sees an escape route running through Holland and Great Britain. Hamstrung by a United Nations treaty, the Dutch cannot easily legalize marijuana. But they have found a loophole -- tolerance. Small sales of weed are permitted in no-hassle coffee shops under government supervision. In theory, this keeps Dutch youth off the harder stuff by socializing the use of the non-addictive leaf. In practice, the trade-off appears to be working. Experimentation with heroin and cocaine has dropped steadily among Dutch teenagers while the marijuana-using population doubled between 1988 and 1992. The increase, of course, looks like red meat to the zero-tolerance crowd. But Gray points out that use by American teens likewise doubled in the same period, "despite the most repressive prohibition in history." As for the cocaine- and heroin-afflicted, Gray describes the success of an old-fashioned, now heretical maintenance program in a Liverpool clinic where clients were dispensed their daily doses and expected to carry on with their lives. What happened? No HIV, high employment and a 94 percent fall in client crime. Naturally, the clinic was closed down. So how insane is the U.S. about drugs? Tobacco and alcohol are licensed to kill in the millions, but a few grams of gentle cannabis can land you in jail, forfeit your house and lose you your job -- unless you are Rep. Dan Burton's son (his stash included eight pounds and 30 plants) or play for the Dutch-oriented National Basketball Association.
------------------------------------------------------------------- US Proved 'War On Drugs' Is Insane (Letter To The Editor Of 'The Ottawa Citizen' Finds Clinton's Talk About 'Expressions Of Individual Liberty' At The UN Special Session On Drugs Ring Hollow In View Of How The Drug War Has Limited Americans' Freedoms) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 22:55:13 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Canada: OPED: U.S. Proved 'War on Drugs' is Insane Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: Ottawa Citizen (Canada) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/ Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Author: Timothy J. Meehan U.S. PROVED 'WAR ON DRUGS' IS INSANE While addressing the United Nations General Assembly regarding illicit drugs ("New 'war on drugs' has familiar ring," June 9), U.S. President Bill Clinton mentioned in passing that "For the first time in history, more than half the world's people live under governments of their own choosing. In virtually every country, we see the expansion of expressions of individual liberty." It's a shame this can't be said for the U.S., where the wasteful, futile and insane War on Drugs has: - made the U.S. the world's highest per capita jailer of its own citizens; - rendered the U.S. Constitution, once the envy of the world, not worth the paper it is printed on because of the jihad against drugs; - made alcohol prohibition and Vietnam look like roaring successes by comparison. Of course it has become fashionable for politicians, when unable to justify a policy on its merits, to make an appeal on behalf of "the children," and that's exactly what Mr. Clinton did. Like most of Washington, he just can't seem to understand that an unregulated black market for drugs does nothing to protect youth, and that dealers are unlikely to ask kids for ID, as merchants of legal (but deadly) drugs such as alcohol and tobacco do. Instead, it's more of the same failed policies that have been used for the better half of this century. More jails, more prisons, more families ruined, more lives wasted. More freedoms taken away. And billions of dollars wasted that could be funding programs to help people who have the disease of addiction to get off drugs. I care about future generations, but I certainly don't want my children to live in a police state in the name of a "drug-free world." It's time to rethink our global drug policies. Timothy J. Meehan, Toronto
------------------------------------------------------------------- Global War Being Fought The Wrong Way, US Told ('The Sydney Morning Herald' Notes 22 Australians Were Among The 500 World Leaders Who Signed The Two-Page Open Letter Opposing The Global Drug War, Circulated By The Lindesmith Center And Addressed To UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan) Date: Tue, 9 Jun 1998 16:31:19 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: GE: Global War Being Fought The Wrong Way, US Told Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Ken Russell Pubdate: Wed, 10 June 1998 Source: Sydney Morning Herald Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.smh.com.au Author: Alan Attwood (Herald Correspondent in New York) DRUG SUMMIT GLOBAL WAR BEING FOUGHT THE WRONG WAY, US TOLD As a three-day international drugs summit gets under way at the United Nations, it seems there is agreement on just one thing - drugs are a problem all over the world. But it is also being claimed that attempts to cure it are actually making things worse. On the day that the United States President, Mr Bill Clinton, spoke at the UN, he found the policies of his Administration under attack - partly by a policy and research institute backed by the billionaire financier Mr George Soros. And the UN, which is hosting the summit, a special session of the General Assembly, has been criticised for its drugs policies by a high-profile gathering including Nobel Prize winners and even a former secretary-general of the UN, Mr Javier Perez de Cuellar. "Drugs are every nation's problem, and every nation must act to fight them," Mr Clinton said. "Together, we must extend the long arm of the law, and the hand of compassion, to match the global reach of this problem." Replying, the director of Mr Soros's Lindesmith Centre in New York, Mr Ethan Nadelmann, said: "We are deeply disappointed that the President recommitted the UN and the US to a drug war that is more militarised and which will ultimately be more futile." On the day the summit began, a two-page open letter addressed to the UN Secretary-General, Mr Kofi Annan, and signed by 500 people had appeared in The New York Times. It was headed: "We believe the global war on drugs is now causing more harm than drug abuse itself." The letter, co-ordinated by the Lindesmith Centre, said existing "drug war" politics "impede public health efforts to stem the spread of HIV, hepatitis and other infectious diseases. Human rights are violated, environmental assaults perpetrated and prisons inundated with hundreds of thousands of drug law violators." The 22 Australian signatories included former State premiers Neville Wran, John Cain, Joan Kirner and Sir Rupert Hamer, former Olympic gold medallists Kevin Berry and John Konrads, journalist Ita Buttrose and Professor of Immunology at the University of NSW, Ron Penny. Australia is being represented at the 150-country summit by the Foreign Minister, Mr Downer.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Panel To Seek Ways To Fight Organized Crime In British Columbia ('The Vancouver Sun' Says British Columbia's Attorney-General, Ujjal Dosanjh, Appointed A Blue-Ribbon Panel Tuesday To Improve The Way Police Combat Modern, Sophisticated Criminals - Senior Police Officers And Provincial And Federal Prosecutors Have Expressed Concern That The Coordinated Law Enforcement Unit, Or CLEU, Has Failed To Fulfill Its Mandate To Charge And Convict Organized Crime Figures) From: email@example.com (Matt Elrod) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: Canada: Panel to seek ways to fight organized crime in B.C. Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 14:02:12 -0700 Lines: 75 Newshawk: email@example.com Source: Vancouver Sun Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Pubdate: Wed 10 Jun 1998 Section: News A1 / Front Authors: Lindsay Kines and Rick Ouston Blue-ribbon panel to seek ways to fight organized crime in B.C. Admitting that B.C.'s fight against organized crime has been ineffective, Attorney-General Ujjal Dosanjh appointed a blue-ribbon panel Tuesday to improve the way police combat modern, sophisticated criminals. The plan to reassess the province's organized crime-fighting abilities follows expressions of concern by senior police officers and provincial and federal prosecutors that the Coordinated Law Enforcement Unit has failed to fulfill its mandate to charge and convict organized crime figures. Interviewed Tuesday, members of Dosanjh's own staff and Chief Superintendent Bob Swann of the RCMP's E Division headquarters for B.C. could not think of a single example where CLEU has provided information that resulted in significant convictions of organized crime figures in the past five years. Dosanjh told a news conference the plan to review B.C.'s crime-fighting strategy has been in the works for some time and was not directly tied to a corruption charge that rocked CLEU last week, He announced the probe just hours after Philip Chiu Ping Tsang, a special investigator with CLEU, appeared in B.C. provincial court to fix a date for his disclosure hearing. Tsang, hired as an expert in Asian crime in 1993 after a stint with the Royal Hong Kong Police, was charged last week with counselling perjury and breach of trust for allegedly leaking confidential police information to a person under investigation. Dosanjh took pains to thank officers who have worked with CLEU since the intelligence agency's inception in 1974. But, ``as a province, we have not been very effective,'' he said. Dosanjh noted that ``outlaw motorcycle gangs'' are considered a significant concern to police agencies, but he agreed that no major bikers, particularly members of the Hells Angels motorcycle club, have been charged with serious crimes in recent memory. The review committee consists of former ombudsman and deputy attorney-general Stephen Owen, former Vancouver police chief Bob Stewart and Richard Allan Bergman, a 36-year veteran of the RCMP who served as deputy commissioner in Manitoba. Dosanjh said the panel has been given until Sept. 15 to assess the fight against organized crime and report back. Vancouver Police Chief Bruce Chambers said the impact of organized crime on communities cannot be overstated. ``Organized crime is behind some of the most serious crime issues that Vancouver is facing, including smuggling and trafficking of hard drugs, prostitution and child pornography, and illegal gun running,'' he said. RCMP Assistant Commissioner Murray Johnston issued a statement saying he supported the review. ``The province is becoming increasingly attractive as a base of operations for both domestic and foreign-based organized crime, and those operations have consequences for the safety and security of every British Columbian,'' he said. Panel members will not speak publicly at least until they hold a meeting Friday, said a spokesman for the attorney-general's ministry.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Scotsman Scours The Jungles For Stress Cure (The Aberdeen, Scotland, 'Press And Journal' Says Professor Alan Harvey Of Strathclyde University And His Colleagues In Argentina Hope A South American Herb, Salvia Gaurantica, Might Replace Valium As A Treatment For Anxiety That Doesn't Cause Drowsiness Or Dependency) Date: Sat, 13 Jun 1998 02:27:37 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: UK: Scotsman Scours The Jungles For Stress Cure Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: J M Petrie
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 Source: Press & Journal (Aberdeen, Scotland) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/ SCOTSMAN SCOURS THE JUNGLES FOR STRESS CURE A Scottish scientist is on the verge of discovering a natural alternative to Valium, which could combat stress without the dangers of addiction. Since the 1960s, millions of people have become hooked on tranquillisers in an attempt to ease the strains of modern living. But now Professor Alan Harvey, of Strathclyde University, and his colleagues in Argentina hope a South American herb will soon be helping people relax, without the fear of becoming drug-dependent. Like Sean Connery's character in the film "Medicine Man," Prof. Harvey believes there are still millions more undiscovered plants throughout the world which could treat countless ailments. The Professor of pharmacology, who is also director of the Strathclyde Institute for Drug Research, said yesterday that locals in Uruguay and Argentina had used the sage-like plant as a soothing herbal tea for years. He said early tests had already shown the plant, known as Salvia gaurantica, could treat anxiety without causing drowsiness. Prof. Harvey said: "The scientists in South America started off investigations into new plants they thought could be used as sedatives. "They found in their first tests the plant extracts did not put them to sleep, but found signs that at least some of the extracts prevented the symptoms of anxiety and stress. "We have been involved in some tests and also finding synthetic variations which are probably about 100 times more active than the original natural product." He added his colleagues had already tested the plant extract on rats, and found they did not become addicted, even after prolonged use. The team is now looking for sponsors before toxicology tests and clinical trials can go ahead. But if the tests are successful the drug could be on the shelves within a couple of years. While recognising there was a "lot of hype" about natural cures for diseases being found in rainforests. Prof. Harvey insisted plants were invaluable to research. He said: "There are about 250.000 greenleaf plants on the globe, and only about 10% have ever been tested for any biological effects at all. "Since most of modern medicines have come from natural sources there must still be a lot more to be found." Rowdy Yates, director of the Scottish Drugs Training Project, said yesterday benzodiazapines, of which Valium is a type, had been causing concern for decades because of their addictive qualities. He said: "There has been growing concern throughout the late 1970s and into the 1980s about so called therapeutic dependence, which has resulted in doctors being reluctant to prescribe them over any length of time." The British Medical Association's GP Committee for Scotland welcomed the research yesterday. It said a non-addictive drug to treat patients with severe stress or anxiety problems could be very useful.
------------------------------------------------------------------- South African Government Planned To Use Drug On Rioters (According To 'The Calgary Herald,' In The Dying Days Of Apartheid South Africa Ordered Its Chemists To Make One Tonne Of Ecstasy For Riot Control) Date: Thu, 11 Jun 1998 00:54:21 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: AFRICA: S. African Government Planned To Use Drug On Rioters Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Deb Harper) Source: Calgary Herald (Canada) Pubdate: 10 June 98 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.calgaryherald.com/ S. AFRICAN GOVERNMENT PLANNED TO USE DRUG ON RIOTERS, SAYS SCIENTIST A former government scientist told South Africa's truth commission Tuesday that in the dying days of apartheid the government ordered its chemists to make one tonne of the mind-altering drug ecstasy for riot control. Dr. John Koekemoer, former head of chemical and biological weapons research, at the secret Delta G facility, said he disapproved, "I did not believe ecstasy was a good incapacitant and I told my superiors that," he told the commission, which is investigating human rights abuses during the apartheid era. "Ecstasy enhances interpersonal relationships. I told them I did not want to kiss my enemy."
------------------------------------------------------------------- DrugSense Weekly, Number 50 (Summary Of Drug Policy News For Activists, From DrugSense) Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 12:30:26 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org) Subject: DrugSense Weekly, June 10, 1998 No. 50 *** DRUGSENSE WEEKLY *** DrugSense Weekly June 10, 1998, No. 50 A DrugSense publication http://www.drugsense.org/ *** TABLE OF CONTENTS: * Feature Article Book Review : Drug Crazy By Dr. Tom O'Connell * Weekly News in Review Drug War Policy- House Panel Approves Bill Extending Reach of US Authorities Coast Guard 'We Need More Money For Drug War' AIDS Activists Hold Protest Funeral United Nations- Wire - Leaders Ask UN for New Drug Policy Canada-GE - Leaders Attack UN War On Drugs U.N. Wants Worldwide Effort To Eradicate Drug Crops Mexico- Undercover Anti-Drug Operation Strains U.S. Ties With Mexico The U.S. at Odds with itself on Mexico Drug Cartel Smashed, Mexicans Say Mexican Heroin on Rise in U.S Latin America- U.S. To Increase Support For Colombian Army Peru, U.S. Building Anti-Drug Military Training Center Medical Marijuana- UK - Jury Clears Man Who Used Cannabis As Pain Killer US CA - Patient May Sue Police For Pot Arrest UK-OPED - Cannabis Campaign - Hope for those in pain Tobacco- Senate Tobacco Bill Yanked in all Directions Tobacco Tax Talk Brings Cheers To The Black Market * Hot Off The 'Net UN Drug Summit info "Drug Crazy" info * DrugSense Tip Of The Week Drug War Fact book * Quote of the Week Will Rogers *** FEATURE ARTICLE Book Review : Drug Crazy by Mike Gray (Random House, N.Y., 1988) ISBN 0-679-43533-6 America's War on Drugs, declared originally by Richard Nixon and waged with varying degrees of enthusiasm by every President since, has become a nearly invulnerable monster, thriving on its own failures and seemingly capable of destroying anyone reckless enough to speak out against it. Its simplistic central premise- drugs pose unthinkable dangers to our children, and therefore must be prohibited- has helped elect legions of politicians who then cite the latest drug scare as reason for tougher crack-downs, harsher laws, and more prisons. So completely has this idea of "illicit drugs" become society's default setting, and so beholden are politicians and others to it, the policy itself receives no critical scrutiny from government or from academics largely dependent of federal funding. "Legalization" is a deadly brickbat hurled indiscriminately at all critics without thought that in a society based on capitalism, it is the illegal markets which are abnormal. Although several scholarly, historically accurate books have pointed out shortcomings of this policy since the late Sixties, not one author has effectively attacked drug prohibition as a policy based on a completely false premise, incapable of preventing substance abuse problems; indeed, certain to make them worse. None, that is, until Mike Gray. A professional from the film world, Gray may have written the book no one else has yet been able to: a concise, readable, historically accurate, and well documented indictment of our drug policy. Very few reading his book all the way through will see the drug war the same way they did before. A major question then becomes: how many people will read it? Will it sink without a trace, overlooked like so many earlier criticisms of official policy- or will it be discovered by a public growing increasingly disillusioned by a perennial policy failure which is jamming prisons, impoverishing schools and colleges and effectively canceling many Constitutional guarantees of personal freedom? Read by enough people, "Drug Crazy" could do for drug reform what "Silent Spring" did for the environment in 1962. Like the film maker he is, Gray opens with a tight close up: Chicago police on a drug stake-out. The view quickly expands to the futility of enforcement against Chicago's massive illegal market from the perspectives of an elite narcotics detective and a dedicated public defender. A comparison with Chicago seventy years ago during Prohibition reveals that police and the courts were equally unable to suppress the illegal liquor industry for exactly the same reason: the overwhelming size and wealth of the criminal market created by prohibition law. This beginning leaves the reader intrigued and eager to learn more; he's not disappointed. The rest of the book traces the history of our drug crusade from its idealistic populist origins, starting in 1901 when McKinley's assassination thrust a youthful TR into the White House. The 1914 Harrison Act, purportedly a regulatory and tax law, was transformed by enforcement practice into federal drug prohibition with the assistance of the Supreme Court. Drug prohibition not only survived the demise of Prohibition, but emerged with its bogus mandate strengthened. Thirty years of determined and unscrupulous management by Harry Anslinger, the J. Edgar Hoover of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics shaped drug prohibition into what would eventually become a punitive global policy. Anslinger was dismissed by JFK in 1960, but not before politicians had discovered the power of the drug menace to garner both votes and media attention. Illegal drug markets have since thrived on the free advertising of their products which inevitably accompanies intense press coverage of the futile suppression effort and dire official warnings over the latest drug scare. This expansion was accelerated when Nixon declared the drug war in 1972. Gray covers that expansion beyond our borders in Colombia ("River of Money"), in Mexico (Montezuma's Revenge"), and at home ("Reefer Madness"). He also describes how some European countries have blunted the most destructive effects of an American domestic policy forced on them by the UN Single Convention Treaty ("Lessons from the Old Country"). In his final chapter, Gray opines that the push to legitimize marijuana for medical use may have exposed a chink in the heretofore impregnable armor of drug prohibition. Beyond that, he believes that the policy, having thrived on relentless intensification, can't allow relaxation without risking the sort of scrutiny which might reveal its intrinsic lack of substance, therefore, any change must come from outside government. He doesn't offer a detailed recipe for a regulatory policy to replace drug prohibition; rather he suggests that it will be very similar to that which replaced alcohol Prohibition after Repeal in 1933- a collection of state based programs, sensitive to local needs and beliefs. There is a desperate need for this book to be read and discussed by hundreds of thousands of thinking citizens. The pied piper of drug prohibition has beguiled our politicians and led us dangerously close to the edge of an abyss. Mike Gray's warning has hopefully come just in time and could itself be a major factor in initiating a much needed change of direction toward sanity. Thomas J. O'Connell, MD, *** WEEKLY NEWS IN REVIEW COMMENT: This week, an increased international flavor occasioned by events in Mexico, the UN General Assembly special session on drugs, and a relative dearth of important domestic news, has led us to abandon the usual "Domestic" and " International" groupings in favor of lumping the two news sources under various topics. *** Drug Policy- *** COMMENT: The House can usually be counted on for the most radical knee-jerk response to drug-related news. Last week, oblivious to the ramifications of further insulting Mexico, they responded to Operation Casablanca with a flourish. The complaint of the outgoing commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard is eminently predictable and typical those who have become addicted to the annual largesse bestowed on newly conscripted drug warriors. Finally, a sad note; Steve Michael, AIDS activist and campaigner for medical marijuana passed away recently. He remained contentious, even in death, as the third news article in this cluster attests. He will definitely be missed. *** HOUSE PANEL APPROVES BILL EXTENDING REACH OF U.S. AUTHORITIES WASHINGTON ( AP) Seeking to stem the global growth of money laundering, a House panel approved legislation Friday that would extend the reach of U.S. law enforcement authorities fighting drug traffickers. The bill whisked through the House Judiciary subcommittee on crime by voice vote, sending it to the full Judiciary panel. The move came about a week after U.S. authorities carried out a major money-laundering sting. They arrested 160 people, including about two dozen Mexican bankers, and seized $87 million, two tons of cocaine and four tons of marijuana. [snip] Pubdate: Tue, 02 Jun 1998 Source: Washington Post Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm Authors: Molly Moore and Douglas Farah Washington Post Foreign Service URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n409.a05.html *** COAST GUARD "WE NEED MORE MONEY FOR DRUG WAR" Drug War Leader Is Frustrated Kramek Says Politics Hamper Coast Guard As commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard for the last four years, Adm. Robert E. Kramek played a key role in the war on drugs, serving as coordinator for U.S. interdiction efforts. But in leaving the post last week after 41 years in the service, the 58-year-old admiral could not hide a sense of frustration and dismay about what he described as partisan bickering and pork-barrel politics that have hamstrung the United States in its fight against illegal narcotics. "If we want to win the war on drugs, we've got to have the will to win," Kramek said in an interview before turning over his command Friday to Adm. James M. Loy. "I don't think we have the will yet. We don't have the will, between the administration and Congress, to win this thing." [snip] Pubdate: Tue, 02 Jun 1998 Source: Washington Post Page: A11 Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm Author: William Branigin Washington Post Staff Writer URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n409.a04.html *** AIDS ACTIVISTS HOLD PROTEST FUNERAL WASHINGTON ( AP) - Friends of a local AIDS activist marched his body along Pennsylvania Avenue on Thursday before coming to a stop outside the White House to accuse President Clinton of being a `murdering liar.'' About 100 people participated in the half-mile procession for Steve Michael, founder of the Washington chapter of ACT UP, the AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power. Organizers said Michael, who died May 25 of AIDS, requested the ``political funeral'' to protest the Clinton administration's AIDS-related policies. [snip] Source: Associated Press Pubdate: Thu, 4 Jun 1998 Author: Eun-Kyung Kim URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n420.a02.html *** United Nations- *** COMMENT: The UN General Assembly session on drug problems had been targeted by reform groups as an opportunity to voice opposition to drug prohibition as policy. It's interesting to compare the more complete and intelligent coverage of this effort in Canada with the sketchy wire story published by most American dailies. The other aspect of the UN session which received media attention was the hare-brained scheme of UN drug czar Pino Arlacchi to resurrect the idea of crop substitution in producer nations. This proved a tough concept for the US to endorse, even though they might approve of Arlacchi's gung-ho general approach to drug enforcement. *** LEADERS ATTACK UN WAR ON DRUGS Host Of Dignitaries Hope To Nip Campaign In Bud Days before the United Nations is to announce its most ambitious anti-drug program ever, hundreds of world leaders, including 80 Canadians, have signed a ground-breaking petition asking the UN to support the liberalization of drug laws instead. The petition, a rough draft of which has been obtained by the Citizen, will be presented to the UN General Assembly when it convenes Monday for what are expected to be hard-nosed discussions on how to crack down on trade in illegal drugs. [snip] The petition is just the latest volley in what has become an increasingly spectacular debate on whether drugs should be decriminalized. Proponents of decriminalization point to the excessive costs of policing and punishing drug offenders, and the crime cartels that thrive on the prohibited drug trade. Opponents of drug decriminalization argue that easier access to drugs would lead to greater rates of addiction and to the erosion of society's morals. [snip] Source: Ottawa Citizen (Canada) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/ Pubdate: Saturday 6 June 1998 Author: Jeremy Mercer, The Ottawa Citizen URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n420.a13.html *** LEADERS ASK UN FOR NEW DRUG POLICY UNITED NATIONS (AP) -- Saying the drug war has caused more harm than drug abuse itself, prominent world figures are calling for ``a truly open dialogue'' to shift drug control policies from punishment to public health issues. The call is being made in a letter to Secretary-General Kofi Annan from the Lindesmith Center, a private institute which conducts drug research, in advance of the U.N. General Assembly special session on drugs, which opens Monday. [snip] Source: Associated Press Pubdate: Fri, 05 Jun 1998 URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n419.a11.html *** U.N. WANTS WORLDWIDE EFFORT TO ERADICATE DRUG CROPS The United Nations plans to seek new international backing for the most ambitious counter-narcotics effort in its history. But the United States and other wealthy nations are resisting pleas to fund the program partly because it would spend billions of dollars in some of the world's most corrupt or repressive nations, such as Afghanistan, Myanmar and Colombia, according to U.S. and U.N. officials. [snip] But President Clinton's top drug-policy aides have advised U.N. officials that Washington is unwilling to commit substantial new money to the effort because the program remains unformed, has yet to attract support from key European and Middle Eastern donors and would probably provoke political opposition at home from human-rights activists and critics of the United Nations. [snip] Source: Seattle-Times (WA) Pubdate: Wednesday 03 June 1998 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://seattletimes.com/ Author: R. Jeffrey Smith and Douglas Farah, The Washington Post URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n413.a07.html *** Mexico *** COMMENT: Mexico remains very much on the front burner, thanks to still-increasing Mexican outrage over Operation Casablanca. Beyond that, Mexico's announcement of a major Methamphetamine bust could be regarded by cynics as an attempt to improve its image at the UN drug summit. The article on heroin indicates that the Colombian-Mexican cooperation in the marketing of cocaine has been extended to heroin. *** UNDERCOVER ANTI-DRUG OPERATION STRAINS U.S. TIES WITH MEXICO MEXICO CITY -- A flap over an undercover money-laundering operation by American customs agents has escalated into a full-scale diplomatic altercation that has strained the close ties between the United States and Mexico. [snip] The feud took a new turn Friday with the publication here of a letter from Sen. Trent Lott, the Senate majority leader, to President Ernesto Zedillo. [snip] Top Mexican officials were infuriated by the letter. Jesus Reyes Heroles, Mexico's ambassador in Washington, blasted back on May 29 with a five-page response defending Mexico's anti-drug record and renewing the attack on the undercover operation, which was code-named Casablanca. [snip] Source: New York Times ( NY) Author: Julia Preston Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.nytimes.com/ Pubdate: Sat, 06 Jun 1998 URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n421.a04.html *** THE U.S. AT ODDS WITH ITSELF ON MEXICO Mexican government officials weren't the only ones caught by surprise by the recent announcement of a massive sting operation ("Casablanca") against Mexican bank officials for money laundering. Most of the American government, at the highest levels, also was in the dark about the operation. [snip] The lesson of Casablanca is that when American foreign policy toward Mexico is dictated by law enforcement, the consequences cascade throughout the whole bilateral relationship in a dangerously accidental way. [snip] Pubdate: Mon, 01 Jun 1998 Source: Washington Post Section: A17 Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm Author: M. Delal Baer URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n411.a01.html *** DRUG CARTEL SMASHED, MEXICANS SAY Crime: Authorities Capture Two Brothers Who Allegedly Ran Main Methamphetamine Ring. MEXICO CITY--Mexican authorities said Tuesday that they had smashed the country's main synthetic drug cartel, dealing a powerful blow to methamphetamine trafficking into California and other American states. Mexico's top anti-drug official, Mariano Herran Salvatti, told reporters that police arrested the suspected cartel leaders, Luis and Jesus Amezcua-Contreras, and seized 125 properties and businesses that were being used to smuggle the drugs and launder the profits. [snip] Source: Los Angeles Times Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Fax: 213-237-4712 Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Pubdate: June 3, 1998 Author: James F. Smith, Times Staff Writer URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n413.a09.html *** MEXICAN HEROIN ON RISE IN U.S. Mexican drug cartels, long regarded as peddlers of cheap, low-grade heroin that accounted for only a tiny portion of the U.S. market, are now producing some of the world's most potent heroin and are seizing control of a rapidly growing share of the U.S. heroin business, according to Mexican and U.S. law enforcement officials. Mexico has become the second-largest source of heroin used in the United States, and the purity of the Mexican-produced drug has increased sixfold in the past two years in what U.S. law enforcement and health authorities describe as alarming trends. [snip] In a dramatic shift in global heroin trafficking patterns, Colombian and Mexican drug cartels largely have taken over distribution in the United States from Asian organizations, whose share of the American market-- based on seizures by law enforcement authorities -- has plunged from 90 percent to 28 percent since 1992. [snip] Pubdate: Tue, 02 Jun 1998 Source: Washington Post Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm Authors: Molly Moore and Douglas Farah Washington Post Foreign Service URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n409.a05.html *** Latin America *** COMMENT: Elsewhere in the Hemisphere, the US remained true to its commitment to all-out drug war by underwriting further militarization in two nations with serious internal problems of corruption and armed resistance. *** U.S. TO INCREASE SUPPORT FOR COLOMBIAN ARMY WASHINGTON -- Concerned about the growing power of leftist rebels in Colombia, the Clinton administration is expanding its support for government forces fighting in the hemisphere's longest-running guerrilla war. U.S. officials say the aid is aimed at stanching the flow of illegal drugs from Colombia, and will target the insurgents only where they protect the production of heroin and cocaine. The officials say they have no intention of getting mired in Colombia's internal conflict. But government documents and interviews with dozens of officials here indicate that the separation Washington has tried to make between those two campaigns -- one against drug trafficking, the other against the guerrillas - -- is increasingly breaking down. [snip] *** Pubdate: Tue, 02 Jun 1998 Source: New York Times Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.nytimes.com/ Authors: Diana Jean Schemo And Tim Golden URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n409.a06.html PERU, U.S. BUILDING ANTI-DRUG MILITARY TRAINING CENTER LIMA ( May 29) XINHUA - Peru and the United States are building an anti-drug military training center in northwestern Peru to combat drug traffickers using jungle waterways, press reports said Friday. Located in the Amazon jungle of Iquitos, Loreto Department, the center will offer training to Peruvian police forces and marine infantry troops. Training will focus on controlling waterways as more drug traffickers resort to the use of a complicated network of jungle rivers after effective interdiction in the air by the Peruvian Air Force. [snip] Source: CNN Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.cnn.com/ http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n407.a05.html *** Medical Marijuana *** COMMENT: Two news articles highlight differing attitudes toward medical use of marijuana: a jury in England, where medical use isn't recognized by law, acquitted a man who openly admitted such use. In California, a man who went to the police to avoid harassment was arrested. The comments of authorities in the California case show clearly that they don't recognize any uncontested right of patients to use marijuana for medical purposes, an attitude which is almost universal within the State. The California man will be arraigned next month. The editorial comment in the Independent on Sunday raises hope that Britain, where the medical establishment has gone on record with more courage than the AMA, may represent the best hope for national reclassification of marijuana as a useful therapeutic agent. *** JURY CLEARS MAN WHO USED CANNABIS AS PAIN KILLER Verdict 'brings closer' legalisation of drug for medical purposes By David Ward A man who smoked four cannabis joints a day to relieve pain caused by a broken back vowed yesterday to continue rolling them after a jury cleared him of drugs charges brought following a police raid on his home. "I will carry on smoking cannabis," said Colin Davies, of Stockport, Greater Manchester. "It helps the terrible pain I get from my injuries. I feel vindicated that the jury has listened to me." The eight women and four men at Manchester Crown Court took just 40 minutes to clear Mr Davies of cultivating cannabis contrary to the 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act [snip] Source: The Guardian, UK Pubdate: Sat, 06 Jun 1998 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.guardian.co.uk/ Author: David Ward URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n423.a01.html *** PATIENT MAY SUE POLICE FOR POT ARREST Law; Military veteran with doctor's prescription for medical marijuana says he was within his Prop. 215 rights in growing cannabis plants for own use. SIMI VALLEY--The latest test of California's medical marijuana law is shaping up in Simi Valley, where a man arrested last month for cultivating more than a dozen pot plants said he will sue police for violating his rights as a patient. [snip] Despite Jones' prescription and official card that identifies him a user of medicinal marijuana, authorities maintain that in this instance he does not qualify for the exemption. "There are a lot of questionable issues involved with this particular case and one of those deals with quantity," Rein said. "The law allows for personal use and we understand that, but, again, there are some questions in that regard." [snip] Pubdate: Tue, 02 Jun 1998 Source: Los Angeles Times ( CA) Section: Ventura County Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Author: Coll Metcalfe, Times Staff Writer URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n411.a03.html *** CANNABIS CAMPAIGN - HOPE FOR THOSE IN PAIN THE growing consensus about the merits of cannabis in the alleviation of pain was strengthened last week when it emerged that a government-commissioned report backs its therapeutic use, writes Vanessa Thorpe. The Independent on Sunday campaign to decriminalise cannabis won a second significant boost last week when a jury in the north of England cleared a man who admitted to smoking the drug to alleviate his chronic back pain. [snip] Source: Independent on Sunday Pubdate: Sun, 07 Jun 1998 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.independent.co.uk/ Author: Vanessa Thorpe URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n423.a02.html *** Tobacco *** COMMENT: The Senate, at cross purposes from the beginning, became more bogged down than ever in its debate over pending tobacco legislation. As this newsletter is being prepared, Trent Lott has stated that the bill is dead and Tom Daschle is claiming it can be saved. With the Big Tobacco under the gun, some of the best editorials attacking the logic of drug prohibition are being written by apologists for the tobacco industry. No need to ask where they were when legal tobacco was an accepted fact. *** SENATE TOBACCO BILL YANKED IN ALL DIRECTIONS WASHINGTON, June 6 (Reuters) - The Senate tobacco bill has been pulled to the left, yanked to the right, and dragged into parliamentary quicksand. After two weeks of meandering but acrimonious debate, the only thing certain is that the Senate is stuck and a lot of people are mad at each other. [snip] Source: Reuters Pubdate: Sat, 06 Jun 1998 Author: Joanne Kenen URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n423.a02.html *** TOBACCO TAX TALK BRINGS CHEERS TO THE BLACK MARKET TAX tobacco like crazy, squeeze billions of dollars out of the tobacco companies and save a generation of kids from smoking. That's the formula government and anti-tobacco activists are pushing these days. If the government cracks down enough, some believe, tobacco use might dwindle to nothing in our lifetime. [snip] But politicians would do well to heed the recent experience of other countries that have tried such measures in attempting to reduce tobacco consumption. Take Canada. Under similar pressures from the anti-smoking lobby, the Canadian government cranked up tobacco taxes in the early 1990s. The result was predictable: a black market. [snip] Today, it is U.S. legislators who appear to be blinded by the prospect of filling government coffers with easy tobacco bucks while getting the political fix that comes from appearing to be on the right side of a public health issue. But to be truly responsible, they should consider the probable consequences of their actions. If they don't, they might be remembered as the architects of the worst social experiment since Prohibition. [snip] Source: San Jose Mercury News Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/ Pubdate: Thu, 04 Jun 1998 Author: Anne Macdiarmid Note: The author is a member of FORCES Canada, a non-profit Note: organization for smokers' rights. URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n417.a02.html *** HOT OFF THE 'NET *** For an excellent rundown on all the latest on the UN General Assembly "Drug Summit" please visit: http://www.drugsense.org/ungass.htm A full rundown on the newly released "Drug Crazy" Can be found at: http://www.drugsense.org/crazy.htm *** TIP OF THE WEEK *** Need a great collection of facts to bolster your arguments? Check out the Drug War Fact Book at: http://www.drugsense.org/factbook.htm It is chock full of facts, references, and information sorted by subject. Use this valuable resource to professionalize your letters and debates on drug policy issues. compiled by Kendra E. Wright and Paul M. Lewin Common Sense for Drug Policy for the Drug Policy Information Service June 1998 *** QUOTE OF THE WEEK *** "Instead of giving money to found colleges to promote learning, why don't they pass a Constitutional Amendment prohibiting anybody from learning anything? If it works as good as Prohibition, why, in five years we will have the smartest race of people on earth." -- Will Rogers *** DS Weekly is one of the many free educational services DrugSense offers our members. Watch this feature to learn more about what DrugSense can do for you. News/COMMENTS-Editor: Tom O'Connell (email@example.com) Senior-Editor: Mark Greer (firstname.lastname@example.org) We wish to thank all our contributors and Newshawks. NOTICE: In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. REMINDER: Please help us help reform. Send any news articles you find on any drug related issue to email@example.com PLEASE HELP: DrugSense provides this service at no charge BUT IT IS NOT FREE TO PRODUCE. We incur many costs in creating our many and varied services. If you are able to help by contributing to the DrugSense effort please Make checks payable to MAP Inc. send your contribution to: The Media Awareness Project (MAP) Inc. d/b/a DrugSense PO Box 651 Porterville, CA 93258 (800) 266 5759 MGreer@mapinc.org http://www.mapinc.org http://www.drugsense.org -------------------------------------------------------------------
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