Portland NORML News - Wednesday, June 10, 1998

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" (ralphkat@hotmail.com)
To: ralphkat@hotmail.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: annmaria@webtv.net (ann mccormick)

I just spoke with Todd.

GOOD NEWS: Judge McMahon did not send Todd to jail or steal Woody's

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


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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US CA: Prosecutors, Mccormick Hammer Out Deal
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: compassion23@geocities.com
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Source: KNBC - MSNBC affiliate in Los Angeles
Contact: msnbc@tvsknbc.nbc.com
Website: http://www.msnbc.com/local/KNBC/default.asp


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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US CA: Column: Matier and Ross: Inhale This
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: compassion23@geocities.com (Frank S. World)
Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA)
Contact: chronletters@sfgate.com
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]


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

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)
Link to earlier story
Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 15:32:22 -0300 (ADT) Sender: Chris Donald (ai256@chebucto.ns.ca) From: Chris Donald (ai256@chebucto.ns.ca) To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.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: [3]letters@examiner.com Website: [4]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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US CA: City Tries to Clear Air Over Pot Use:
But Council Split on Handling Prop. 215
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: compassion23@geocities.com (Frank S. World)
Source: Sacramento Bee (CA)
Contact: opinion@sacbee.com
Website: http://www.sacbee.com/
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Author: Tony Bizjak - Bee Staff Writer


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

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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US: Wire: Eighteen School Children Sickened
By Pep Pills
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Patrick Henry
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Source: Associated Press


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

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 (turmoil@hemp.net)
To: hemp-talk@hemp.net
Subject: HT: DEA confiscates hemp wear and accessories: (fwd)
Sender: owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net

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: xtc@tiac.net

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: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US MD: Test Of `Heroin Maintenance' May Be Launched In
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Richard Lake 
Source: Baltimore Sun (MD)
Author: Scott Shane, Sun Staff
Contact: letters@baltsun.com
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


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

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

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: hemp-talk@hemp.net
From: Kelley (showquality@seanet.com)
Subject: HT: issues of Modern Living
Sender: owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net

Wednesday June 10 3:20 AM EDT


Issues of modern living...from UPI:


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.)


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

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.


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

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" (cpconrad@twow.com)
From: "Charles P. Conrad" (cpconrad@twow.com)
Subject: [AFIB] A Sordid History: The CIA & the `War Against Drugs'



News * Analysis * Research * Action


SPECIAL - June 10, 1998 - EDITION








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

History of CIA Complicity in Drug International


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




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

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

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

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

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

For more information on U.S. intervention in Colombia, or to
subscribe to _Colombia Bulletin_, please contact:

P.O. Box 1505
Madison, WI 53701
Tel: (608) 257-8753
Fax: (608) 255-6621
E-Mail: csn@igc.org
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E-mail: itt@inthesetimes.com
Web: http://www.inthesetimes.com
- May 1998 -




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

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

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

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

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, paulwolf@icdc.com


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

Art - Technology - Politics
E-mail: pinknoiz@ncal.verio.com
Web: http://www.pinknoiz.com/
- Wednesday, 3 June 1998 -




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.


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

With best regards,

William J. Casey.




Prepared by the Institute for Policy Studies, Washington, D.C.



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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.

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

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.


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.


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.'


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.


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.


750 La Playa # 730
San Francisco, California 94121
E-Mail: tburghardt@igc.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


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: aff@burn.ucsd.edu
Web: http://burn.ucsd.edu/~aff




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: manager@drcnet.org
Reply-To: cheechwz@mindspring.com
Originator: drctalk@drcnet.org
Sender: drctalk@drcnet.org
From: cheechwz@mindspring.com (A H Clements)
To: Multiple recipients of list 
Subject: fwd: THE SMOKING GUN (CIA drug trafficking)

forwarded for Michael Levine (expert53@aol.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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US: FDA Can Control Tobacco, Justice Dept. Asserts In Court
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield
Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)
Contact: letters@latimes.com
Website: http://www.latimes.com/
Pubdate: 10 June 1998
Author: HENRY WEINSTEIN, Times Legal Affairs Writer


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

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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US: Senate Adopts Anti-Drug Proposal
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)
Contact: letters@latimes.com
Fax: 213-237-4712
Website: http://www.latimes.com/
Author: Laurie Kellman, Associated Press Writer


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

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

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

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

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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US: FDA Posts Web Site On Viagra Deaths
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: compassion23@geocities.com (Frank S. World)
Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA)
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Contact: chronletters@sfgate.com
Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/
Author: Sabin Russell, Chronicle Staff Writer


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.


The FDA is posting its Viagra case report updates at

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: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US GE: USA TODAY Column: 'Drug War'
Still Just A Huff And A Puff
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.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: editor@usatoday.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


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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: UN GE: Colombia, Myanmar Urge Alternative Crops
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk:John W.Black
Pubdate Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Source: Orange County Register (CA)
Contact: letters@link.freedom.com
Website: http://www.ocregister.com/


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: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: isenberd@DynCorp.com (Isenberg, David)
Source: Voice of America
Contact: letters-usa@voa.gov
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












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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US NY: PUB LTE: Cheerleaders Against Drugs
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/

Newshawk: Gene Tinelli (genet43@dreamscape.com)
Source: New York Times (NY)
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Contact: letters@nytimes.com
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: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
To: "MN" 
Subject: MN: US: NY Editorial: Wrong About Drugs
Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 06:56:00 -0500
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Peter Webster
Pubdate: June 10, 1998
Source: International Herald-Tribune
Contact: iht@iht.com
Website: http://www.iht.com/


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

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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: UN GE: U.N. Drug Conference Ends
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)
Contact: letters@latimes.com
Fax: 213-237-4712
Website: http://www.latimes.com/
Author: ROBERT H. REID, Associated Press Writer


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

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

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

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 (mapnews@mapinc.org),
Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org)
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US GE: Wall Street Journal Lead Editorial: 500 Drug Geniuses
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
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: editors@interactive.wsj.com
Website: http://www.wsj.com/


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

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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: UN GE: Big Names Sign Letter Criticizing War on Drugs
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Peter Webster
Source: International Herald-Tribune
Contact: iht@iht.com
Website: http://www.iht.com/
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Author: Christopher S. Wren, New York Times Service


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,

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: creator@islandnet.com (Matt Elrod)
To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com
Subject: Canada: GE: War on drugs a bust, minister says
Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 13:57:02 -0700
Lines: 80
Newshawk: creator@mapinc.org
Source: Ottawa Citizen
Contact: letters@thecitizen.southam.ca
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

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

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: creator@islandnet.com (Matt Elrod)
To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com
Subject: Canada: War on drugs a bust, author argues
Date: Wed, 10 Jun 1998 13:55:11 -0700
Lines: 87
Newshawk: creator@mapinc.org
Source: Ottawa Citizen
Contact: letters@thecitizen.southam.ca
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

That is the startling conclusion of Drug Crazy, a new book by Mike

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US: OPED: US Salon Mag Book Review: Drug Crazy
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: compassion23@geocities.com (Frank S. World)
Source: Salon Magazine
Pubdate: 10 June 1998
Contact: salon@salonmagazine.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

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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: Canada: OPED: U.S. Proved 'War on Drugs' is Insane
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: creator@mapinc.org
Source: Ottawa Citizen (Canada)
Contact: letters@thecitizen.southam.ca
Website: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/
Pubdate: Wed, 10 Jun 1998
Author: Timothy J. Meehan


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

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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: GE: Global War Being Fought The Wrong Way, US Told
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Ken Russell
Pubdate: Wed, 10 June 1998
Source: Sydney Morning Herald
Contact: letters@fairfax.smh.com.au
Website: http://www.smh.com.au
Author: Alan Attwood (Herald Correspondent in New York)


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

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: creator@islandnet.com (Matt Elrod)
To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com
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: creator@mapinc.org
Source: Vancouver Sun
Contact: sunletters@pacpress.southam.ca
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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: UK: Scotsman Scours The Jungles For Stress Cure
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.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: editor@pj.ajl.co.uk
Website: http://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/


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

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

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: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: AFRICA: S. African Government Planned To Use Drug On Rioters
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: cozmi@shaw.wave.ca (Deb Harper)
Source: Calgary Herald (Canada)
Pubdate: 10 June 98
Contact: letters@theherald.southam.ca
Website: http://www.calgaryherald.com/


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

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: mgreer@mapinc.org
From: Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org)
Subject: DrugSense Weekly, June 10, 1998 No. 50




DrugSense Weekly
June 10, 1998, No. 50
A DrugSense publication




* 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


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


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



Book Review : Drug Crazy by Mike Gray
(Random House, N.Y., 1988) ISBN

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

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,




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-



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.



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

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.


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



Drug War Leader Is Frustrated Kramek Says Politics Hamper Coast

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."


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



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.


Source: Associated Press
Pubdate: Thu, 4 Jun 1998
Author: Eun-Kyung Kim
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n420.a02.html


United Nations-



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.



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.


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.


Source: Ottawa Citizen (Canada)
Contact: letters@thecitizen.southam.ca
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



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.


Source: Associated Press
Pubdate: Fri, 05 Jun 1998
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n419.a11.html



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.


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.


Source: Seattle-Times (WA)
Pubdate: Wednesday 03 June 1998
Contact: opinion@seatimes.com
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 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.



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.


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


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.


Source: New York Times ( NY)
Author: Julia Preston
Contact: letters@nytimes.com
Website: http://www.nytimes.com/
Pubdate: Sat, 06 Jun 1998
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n421.a04.html



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.


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


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



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

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.


Source: Los Angeles Times
Contact: letters@latimes.com
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 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.


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.


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



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.



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.



Pubdate: Tue, 02 Jun 1998
Source: New York Times
Contact: letters@nytimes.com
Website: http://www.nytimes.com/
Authors: Diana Jean Schemo And Tim Golden
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n409.a06.html


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

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.


Source: CNN
Contact: cnn.feedback@cnn.com
Website: http://www.cnn.com/



Medical Marijuana



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.



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

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


Source: The Guardian, UK
Pubdate: Sat, 06 Jun 1998
Contact: letters@guardian.co.uk
Website: http://www.guardian.co.uk/
Author: David Ward
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n423.a01.html



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.


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."


Pubdate: Tue, 02 Jun 1998
Source: Los Angeles Times ( CA)
Section: Ventura County
Contact: letters@latimes.com
Website: http://www.latimes.com/
Author: Coll Metcalfe, Times Staff Writer
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n411.a03.html



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.


Source: Independent on Sunday
Pubdate: Sun, 07 Jun 1998
Contact: sundayletters@independent.co.uk
Website: http://www.independent.co.uk/
Author: Vanessa Thorpe
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n423.a02.html





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.



WASHINGTON, June 6 (Reuters) - The Senate tobacco bill has been pulled
to the left, yanked to the right, and dragged into parliamentary

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


Source: Reuters
Pubdate: Sat, 06 Jun 1998
Author: Joanne Kenen
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n423.a02.html



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.


But politicians would do well to heed the recent experience of other
countries that have tried such measures in attempting to reduce tobacco

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.


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


Source: San Jose Mercury News
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
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




For an excellent rundown on all the latest on the UN General Assembly
"Drug Summit" please visit:


A full rundown on the newly released "Drug Crazy" Can be found at:





Need a great collection of facts to bolster your arguments? Check out the
Drug War Fact Book at:


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




"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
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