Portland NORML News - Wednesday, July 1, 1998

Amish Anguish (Tsk-Tsk Staff Editorial In The Illinois 'Daily Herald'
On The Cocaine Bust Of Two Amish Men In Pennsylvania)

Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998 17:41:33 -0700
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US PA: Editorial: Amish Anguish
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Newshawk: Steve Young
Source: Daily Herald (IL)
Contact: fencepost@dailyherald.com
Website: http://www.dailyherald.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 1 Jul 1998


The simple, innocent lifestyle the Amish prefer apparently has been
infiltrated by drugs. Is nothing sacred?

If this conservative religious sect was to weaken, succumbing to the ways
of the world, we would have preferred they try electricity - not cocaine.
But as content as they appear to be, isolated from the rest of modern
society, it seems they could not keep the drugs out.

Last week's news that two Amish young men had been accused of buying
cocaine from a motorcycle gang surprised the outside world, but perhaps not
their religious community. Apparently there had been trouble with alcohol
and marijuana, but recently the talk was of Amish young people using harder
drugs. The two men accused of buying the cocaine allegedly were
distributing the drugs to Amish youth groups. As unimpressionable as their
society seems, some of their young people must have been easy prey.
Unfortunately, targeting youths is nothing new to the rest of the world.

Not lost among the details of the story was the name of the motorcycle gang
- the Pagans. How appropriate.

Although none of us is willing to give up the conveniences of society, we
marvel at how the Amish make do with so much less. By no means is theirs an
easy life. And even if some of them have strayed, we cannot help but feel
compassion for a simple group confronting a difficult problem.

Farmers Will Raise Hemp Study This Weekend ('The Lexington Herald-Leader'
In Kentucky Says On Friday, The Kentucky Hemp Museum And Library
Will Release An 18-Month Study Of The Crop's Economic Viability -
URL For Full Text Included)

Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998 17:48:37 -0700
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US KY: Farmers Will Raise Hemp Study This Weekend
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: kevzeese@laser.net (kevin b. zeese)
Source: Lexington Herald-Leader (KY)
Contact: hledit@lex.infi.net
Website: http://www.kentuckyconnect.com/heraldleader/
Pubdate: Wed, 01 Jul 1998
Author: Janet Patton Herald-Leader Business Writer


Study to examine profits, costs of controversial crop

Kentucky farmers who want to grow industrial hemp hope a July 4 weekend
event becomes their Independence Day.

On Friday, the Kentucky Hemp Museum and Library will release the results of
an 18-month study of the crop's economic viability. Invited to the 3 p.m.
unveiling are celebrities who range from President Clinton and Gov. Paul
Patton to drug enforcement czar Barry McCaffrey and U.S. Attorney General
Janet Reno.

"This is really an issue of freedom to farm," said Joe Hickey, president of
the Kentucky Hemp Growers Cooperative Association.

Andy Graves said the July 4 weekend is symbolic of farmers' desire for the
freedom to grow hemp. Graves is one of the plaintiffs in a lawsuit that
would-be hemp farmers filed in May against Reno and the DEA. The federal
response is due July 15.

The $23,000 study, done by economists at the University of Kentucky's
Center for Business and Economic Research, covers a lot of new ground, said
the researchers, who were surprised at how little previous data had been

"I think everybody else is going to kind of be kind blown away when they
read it," Hickey said.

For the release of the study, the hemp advocates picked historic Ashland,
Henry Clay's estate, where it's said the Great Compromiser once grew hemp

Today's potential hemp farmers are seeking a compromise, too =96 one
reached with the government that would allow the growing of industrial

"It's like any economic study," said Graves. "This is a credible business
college, credible people that put this together, unbiased.

"We want people to stand up and disprove what the study says if they're so
smart. The only way to disprove it is to grow it and sell it," he said.

The study is expected to give a clearer picture of the economics of the

"The idea was to look at the economic potential of hemp for the state
economy of Kentucky," said Mark Berger, one of the study's authors. "To
look at the size of the existing market for hemp and do some scenarios for
potential size of the market ... compared with the returns of what farmers
could get instead of corn and tobacco."

Berger said the study is very conservative in its estimates. "We didn't
engage in any unneeded speculation about what the market would be like," he

To assess the market, co-authors Eric Thompson and Steven Allen traveled to
the hemp-growing nations of England and Germany. The two also talked to
hemp growers and processors in China and France, the countries that grow
the most hemp.

The study does not address law-enforcement concerns involving marijuana
versus industrial hemp, which has little worth as a drug crop, hemp
advocates say.

To gauge the cost of a detection program to discourage growing illicit
plants, the economists looked at Canada, which is just getting into its
second crop.

Canadian farmers, who typically grow at least 25 acres of hemp, pay about
$50 each to cover the costs of a 10-year background check and plotting of
geographic coordinates for satellite photos of fields, said Thompson.

"We were dealing with enough speculation as it was, and here's a place
that's doing it," Berger said. "We were convinced by that (that the
prohibition on growing marijuana can be enforced)."

On the Web

The study, Economic Impact of Industrial Hemp in Kentucky, will be posted
to the Kentucky Hemp Growers Co-op Web site (http://www.hempgrowers.com) at
noon Friday.

All Contents Copyright 1998 Lexington Herald-Leader. All Rights Reserved

Hemp An Opportunity (A Letter To The Editor Of 'The Lexington Herald-Leader')

Date: Fri, 3 Jul 1998 22:56:53 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US KY: PUB LTE: Hemp An Opportunity
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Joe Hickey (agfuture@kih.net)
Pubdate: Wed, 01 Jul 1998
Source: Lexington Herald-Leader (KY)
Page: Editorial
Contact: hledit@lex.infi.net
Website: http://www.kentuckyconnect.com/heraldleader/


The Herald-Leader has done a very good job of trying to educate the public
of the merits of growing industrial hemp. There are more than 20,000 uses
of hemp. It is not a drug. It contains less than one percent of the active
ingredient, THC, that makes pot smokers high. Marijuana plants contain 10
percent of 20 percent THC.

There is a fantastic opportunity for the farmers of Kentucky to have a new
crop. Those bashing the tobacco industry have no concept of the economic
damage their course of action will have throughout the commonwealth.

I sincerely hope the state of Kentucky does not sit by and watch Canada,
England, France and China supply hemp materials to this country without
letting our farmers do the same.

Connie Clinkinbeard Lexington, KY

Hemp Hysteria (A Column In The July-August Issue Of 'The Farm Journal'
By Robin Hoffman Says Canada Has Allowed Its Farmers To Grow Hemp
While US Interest Groups Are Devoting Their Energy To Mudslinging -
At The Core Of The Impasse Is The Intense Emotion Driving The Anti-Drug
Crusade In The US)

Date: Sat, 18 Jul 1998 00:06:57 -0400
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US: Hemp Hysteria
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Joe Hickey (agfuture@kih.net)
Pubdate: July/August 1998
Source: The Farm Journal
Contact: FjRobin@aol.com
Author: Robin Hoffman
Editor's Note: Contact e-mail is for Mr. Hoffman, his phone # is: (815) 338-6436
Newshawk's Note: See University of Kentucky Economic Study at:


Legalization debate produces heat, smoke and very little light

This spring, Canada will join the European Union and most of the rest of the
world in allowing its farmers to plant industrial hemp.

Outlawed in the U.S., the crop had been similarly banned in Canada since the
late 1930s (with a pardon during and shortly after WW II) for the crime of
looking too much like marijuana. But unlike the U.S., Canada's debate over
legalization was relatively brief and uncontentious.

"There hasn't been a lot of negative reaction," says Jeff Atkinson,
communications coordinator for the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, the
nation's largest farm organization. "There was the usual bureaucratic
resistance," he says. "But hemp wasn't a hard sell for most people. They'd
ask: Is it a drug? No. Is it dangerous? No. People see it as a chance to

Canada legalized the crop in 1996 and focused on writing regulations to
prevent potential abuse of hemp's resemblance to marijuana. Meanwhile, U.S.
interest groups devoted their energy to mudslinging.

Typifying the level of discourse, Federal drug czar Barry McCaffrey,
recently called efforts to legalize industrial hemp "a thinly disguised
attempt...to legalize the production of pot," in a story in the Louisville

In reply, hemp proponents accuse the Drug Enforcement Administration of
fighting to protect its marijuana eradication budget. They cite a report
from the Office of the State Auditor in Vermont that says less than 1% of
the plants destroyed in the U.S. under the program in 1996 were cultivated
marijuana. The rest were ditch-weed descendants of industrial hemp grown for
rope, paper and cloth.

Neither position contributes much toward a reasonable resolution. But hey,
that's America. We don't feel we've really debated an issue until we've
turned it into a three-ring circus of exaggeration, recrimination and
celebrity court cases (photo).

At the core of the impasse is the intense emotion driving the anti-drug
crusade in the U.S. Even though certified industrial hemp contains THC
levels far too low to produce a psychoactive effect, opponents of legalizing
hemp say the stakes are too high to allow compromise.

They're also alarmed by uninvited support for hemp from the movement to
legalize marijuana. (Observers note that a reference to American Farm Bureau
(AFB) support for hemp research in High Times magazine played a key role in
AFB's hotly debated decision to reverse its position this year.)

It's hard to say if pro-marijuana forces harbor ulterior motives, or if they
simply believe the crop has been unjustly banned. (More than three-fourths
of people polled in separate surveys in Kentucky and Vermont in 1996 favored
legalization of industrial hemp.) Regardless, hemp supporters say licensing
and inspection, combined with normal hemp cultural practices, make it
virtually impossible to hide marijuana in hemp fields.

Anti-drug crusaders also seem suspicious of all this enthusiasm over a niche
product whose volume in world trade has declined from a modest 400,000
metric tons a year in the 1960s to about 100,000 tons, worth about $5.5
million. They fail to understand that farmers and environmentalists have
been obsessed with creating natural, renewable alternatives to
petrochemicals since Henry Ford's time.

Supporters like hemp because it's a hardy, adaptable plant that produces
large amounts of useful biomass with moderate fertilizer and virtually no
pesticides. They say industries ranging from auto parts to home carpeting
express a growing interest.

Neutral observers like University of Kentucky ag economist Valerie Vantreese
warn that hemp's industrial potential is highly speculative at this point.
"People argue that if we had a good supply of hemp, processors would build
the [factories]. But I'm not sure that argument holds up since we can import
hemp today from China or Romania at least as cheaply as we could grow it,"
she says.

At the same time, she adds that every developing market requires a certain
leap of faith and argues that "legalization and economics should be two
separate questions. Legalization shouldn't depend on whether farmers can
make money on it right away."

Andy Graves, a farmer and hemp advocate from the Lexington, Ky., area,
agrees that timing will be critical. "It's taking much longer than I ever
thought it would, but maybe our years of struggle will pay off by giving us
the time to establish a market before we start to grow it," he says.

Meanwhile, hemp advocates look hopefully, enviously north and wonder: If
they can do it, why can't we?

A Soldier Storms DC (The July Issue Of 'George' Magazine
Waters Down A Story About Drug Czar General McCaffrey's Penchant
For Making Enemies And Undermining His Cause)

Date: Sun, 05 Jul 1998 16:58:26 -0400
To: DrugSense News Service (mapnews@mapinc.org)
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US: George Magazine: A Soldier Storms D.C.
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Tom Murlowski http://www.november.org
Source: George Magazine
Pubdate: July 1998 issue
Author: Claire Shipman
Contact: letters@georgemag.com


General Barry McCaffrey is one of the country's bravest military heroes.
Now, as he fights the war on drugs, he's taking on an entirely different
enemy-the way Washington does business.

By Claire Shipman

General Barry McCaffrey is used to winning battles. He is a legend in
military annals for his daring "left-hook" infantry maneuver in the Persian
Gulf War, which cut off and decimated Saddam Hussein's Republican Guard.
These days, McCaffrey, the nation's drug czar, is equally unstoppable. Last
August, he was touring border towns in Mexico when he learned that a drug
cartel was planning an assassination attempt on him. In his military
vernacular, McCaffrey responded simply, "We'll continue to march," and the
attack never materialized.

Three years ago, McCaffrey seemed an ideal antidote to Bill Clinton's drug
problem. With elections coming, Republicans had stumbled upon a critical
weakness in the president's campaign strategy: Though the economy was
booming, inflation was low, and welfare rolls were shrinking, there was one
trend that wasn't going in Bill Clinton's direction-the number of American
teenagers using drugs. After a steady decline through the late '80s and
early '90s, drug use began to spike upward, but no one in the
administration was paying much attention. In his first term, in fact,
Clinton had slashed the budget of the Office of National Drug Control
Policy, and its head, former New York City police commissioner Lee Brown,
couldn't master its bully pulpit. Republicans sensed a vulnerability.

So did White House trouble shooter Rahm Emanuel, who sought the perfect
replacement for Brown-someone who could define the office much as C.
Everett Koop had personified the surgeon general's office. Emanuel found a
four-star solution: McCaffrey had an impeccable record of national service
and an air of moral certitude that reassured Democrats and stymied
Republicans. "He's a general who could have done anything in life, and he's
chosen to fight drugs with us," Emanuel declares.

Ironically, McCaffrey was the very general who had been rebuffed when
visiting the White House in 1993 by a young Clintonite who reportedly told
him, "I don't speak to people in uniform." This time around, at his White
House debut in March 1996, McCaffrey was royally feted. The White House
press corps was introduced to a West Point graduate who, at his retirement
just days earlier, was the army's youngest four-star general-and its most
highly decorated. Among other achievements, he served as commander in chief
of the U.S. Southern Command, was a staff assistant to General Colin
Powell, and was a military liaison to NATO. He earned his medals leading
U.S. troops in the Dominican Republic, Vietnam, and Iraq. After a spirited
45-minute session, members of the crotchety White House press corps gushed
that McCaffrey was a cut above the usual Clinton appointee.

As I followed McCaffrey out of the briefing room that day, far enough
behind the general that he didn't notice me, I got a tip-off that this
warrior had a political side: The reporters, I heard McCaffrey growl to an
aide, had been every bit as thickheaded and self-important as he had
expected. Minutes later, when I sat across from the general for a
one-on-one interview, the diplomat, complimentary and gracious, was back.

McCaffrey's ardor for his job, he says now, was formed in the 1970s, when
he watched drug use devastate the military. While stationed in Germany, he
explains, "I saw [drug-related] gang rapes in the barracks, knife brawls in
the mess hall-and we really went after the drug problem." In his two years
on the job, McCaffrey, 55, has indeed become the drug war-waging leader
whom the White House sought, traveling the country to preach the saving
grace of drug treatment and restoring the high profile of the drug czar
office. But he has also been remarkably willing to challenge Washington's
status quo.

Take, for instance, the fight McCaffrey had with Donna Shalala, the Health
and Human Services secretary, last spring. Shalala, one of the most
politically savvy cabinet members, was hours away from announcing the
controversial decision that the administration, as part of its campaign
against AIDS, would help fund needle-exchange programs for I.V. drug
addicts. But on the verge of the announcement, Shalala learned that
President Clinton had had a change of heart: The government would support
the programs in principle but not with money. Clinton's reversal was, at
least in part, the result of vigorous-some say underhanded-lobbying by

What exactly McCaffrey did in the fight over needle-exchange programs is a
matter of some debate. "It was sort of a bull-in-a-china-shop routine,"
says one White House insider. Some contend that he even rallied Republicans
to kick up a fuss. Staffers for Illinois congressman Dennis Hastert,
chairman of Newt Gingrich's Task Force for a Drug-Free America, admit that
they were advised by McCaffrey aides to pump up their rhetoric. "We were
told to do anything we could to affect the decision or delay it," explains
Pete Jeffries, a Hastert aide. "The more ruckus, the better."

"McCaffrey's office was out of control," complains one senior
administration official. But others appreciate McCaffrey's intensity.
"Look, HHS lost the needle-exchange issue, and they hate losing," says one
Clinton aide. "I hope everywhere he goes, he causes problems-that's what
his position is all about, to break through the clutter."

From McCaffrey's point of view, he did nothing out of line. Sitting in his
spacious quarters a block from the White House, the general exudes a sort
of suave candor. "From the start, I said I had no monopoly on wisdom," he
professes. "I told Donna Shalala that at the end of the day, I would
support her decision and the president's decision. But until then.ellipse"

Meanwhile, as that campaign was under way last spring, McCaffrey found that
he was suddenly alienating a good portion of the Congressional Black
Caucus. His stand on needle exchange so enraged caucus members that they
demanded his ouster. And California representative Maxine Waters protested
that McCaffrey hadn't directed any of his $195 million advertising budget
to African-American-owned media. The two had one awkward conversation in
which a pained McCaffrey brought up that he was a member of the NAACP,
while Waters asked "what that had to do with the price of tea in China."
The call ended, says Waters, with McCaffrey hanging up on her.

Politics aside, after five years of rising teenage drug use, McCaffrey's
office is buoyed by last year's numbers, which show signs of a plateau.
(Critics respond that the changes in the latest numbers on drug use are too
small to be significant.) And while McCaffrey wants to leave his office
having made a significant dent in the drug problem, he's a realist. "This
is not a problem we can put behind us," he says. "We have to educate each
new generation of kids."

For now, McCaffrey appears to be polishing up his diplomacy. He stopped by
the White House recently to offer an apology to press secretary Mike
McCurry for having issued errant press releases on the dangers of needle
exchanges. And Shalala and McCaffrey insist that they still have a warm
working relationship. At her suggestion, the two officials had a
peacemaking lunch. In her characteristically blunt fashion, Shalala told
McCaffrey that she found his behavior irresponsible and unprofessional. He
simply smiled, and the conversation moved on.

Contra-Cocaine - Evidence Of Premeditation (The July-August Issue
Of 'iF' Magazine Says New Evidence Strongly Suggests
That The Reagan Administration's Tolerance Of Drug Trafficking
By The Nicaraguan Contras And Other Clients In The 1980s Was Premeditated -
Representative Maxine Waters Of Los Angeles On May 7 Introduced A 1982 Letter
Into The Congressional Record Revealing How CIA Director William J. Casey
Secretly Engineered An Exemption Sparing The CIA From A Legal Requirement
To Report On Drug Smuggling By Agency Assets)

Date: Wed, 2 Sep 1998 17:22:53 -0700
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
Subject: MN: US: Contra-Cocaine: Evidence of Premeditation
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Anne R. Kist
Pubdate: July/August 1998
Source: iF Magazine
Contact: parry@ix.netcom.com
Website: http://www.consortiumnews.com/
Author: Robert Parry
Section: Page 2


New evidence, now in the public record, strongly suggests that the Reagan
administration's tolerance of drug trafficking by the Nicaraguan contras
and other clients in the 1980s was premeditated.

With almost no notice in the national press, a 1982 letter was introduced
into the Congressional Record revealing how CIA Director William J. Casey
secretly engineered an exemption sparing the CIA from a legal requirement
to report on drug smuggling by agency assets.

The exemption was granted by Attorney General William French Smith on Feb.
11, 1982, only two months after President Reagan authorized covert CIA
support for the Nicaraguan contra army and some eight months before the
first known documentary evidence revealing that the contras had started
collaborating with drug traffickers.

The exemption suggests that the CIA's tolerance of illicit drug smuggling
by its clients during the 1980s was official policy anticipated from the
outset, not just an unintended consequence followed by an ad hoc cover-up.

Before the letter's release, the documentary evidence only supported the
allegation that Ronald Reagan's CIA concealed drug trafficking by the
contras and other intelligence assets in Latin America. The CIA's inspector
general Frederick P. Hitz confirmed that long-held suspicion in an
investigative report issued on Jan. 29, 1998.

Laundry List

But the newly released letter, placed into the Congressional Record by Rep.
Maxine Waters, D-Calif., on May 7, establishes that Casey foresaw the legal
dilemma which the CIA would encounter should federal law require it to
report on illicit narcotics smuggling by its agents. The narcotics
exemption is especially noteworthy in contrast to the laundry list of
crimes which the CIA was required to disclose.

Under Justice Department regulations, "reportable offenses" included
assault, homicide, kidnapping, Neutrality Act violations, communication of
classified data, illegal immigration, bribery, obstruction of justice,
possession of explosives, election contributions, possession of firearms,
illegal wiretapping, visa violations and perjury.

Yet, despite reporting requirements for many less serious offenses, Casey
fought a bureaucratic battle in early 1982 to exempt the CIA from, as Smith
wrote, "the need to add narcotics violations to the list of reportable
non-employee crimes."

In his letter, Smith noted that the law provides that "when 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.

But Smith agreed that "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."
[At the time of Smith's letter, Kenneth Starr was a counselor in the
attorney general's office, although it is not clear whether Starr had any
input into the exemption.]

On March 2, 1982, Casey thanked Smith for the exemption. "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 the agencies," Casey wrote.

In the years that followed, "protection of intelligence sources and
methods" apparently became the catch-all excuse for the CIA's tolerance of
South American cocaine smugglers using the contra war as cover. Though
precise volume estimates are impossible, the contra-connected drug pipeline
clearly pumped tons of cocaine into the United States during the
early-to-mid 1980s.

Contra Umbrella

Some contra defenders have argued that the anti-Sandinista armies in
Honduras and Costa Rica were not the primary beneficiaries of the narcotics
smuggling, that most of the profits probably went to drug lords with few
political interests. Still, over the past 15 years, substantial evidence
has surfaced revealing that many drug smugglers scurried under the contra
umbrella. They presumably understood that the Reagan administration would
be loath to expose its pet covert action to negative publicity and possibly
even to criminal prosecution.

According to the accumulated evidence, Bolivia's "cocaine coup" government
of 1980-82 was the first in line filling the contra drug pipeline. But
other contra-connected drug operations soon followed, including the
Medellin cartel, the Panamanian government, the Honduran military and
Miami-based anti-Castro Cubans. The contra-connected cocaine also moved
through transshipment points in Costa Rica and El Salvador. [For details,
see Robert Parry's Lost History; Cocaine Politics by Peter Dale Scott and
Jonathan Marshall; or Gary Webb's forthcoming book, Dark Alliance.]

Less clear is exactly what the U.S. government knew about the
contra-connected drug trafficking and when. Reagan authorized CIA support
for the contra army in mid-December 1981. But the first publicly known case
of contra cocaine shipments appeared in government files in an Oct. 22,
1982, cable from the CIA's Directorate of Operations.

The cable passed on word that U.S. law enforcement agencies were aware of
"links between (a U.S. religious organization) and two Nicaraguan
counter-revolutionary groups [which] involve an exchange in (the United
States) of narcotics for arms." The material in parentheses was inserted by
the CIA as part of its declassification of the cable. The name of the
religious group remains secret.

Over the next several years, the CIA learned of other suspected links
between the contras and drug trafficking. In 1984, the CIA even intervened
with the Justice Department to block a criminal investigation into a
suspected contra role in a San Francisco-based drug ring, according to
Hitz's report.

In December 1985, Brian Barger and I wrote the first news article
disclosing that virtually every Nicaraguan contra group had links to drug
trafficking. In that Associated Press dispatch, we noted that the CIA knew
of at least one case of cocaine profits filtering into the contra war
effort, but that DEA officials in Washington claimed they had never been
told of any contra tie-in. The Casey exemption explains why that was possible.

After the AP story ran, the Reagan administration attacked it as unfounded
and the article was largely ignored by the rest of the Washington press
corps. But it did help spark an investigation by Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass.,
who over the next two years amassed substantial evidence of cocaine
smuggling in and around the contra war. Still, the Reagan and Bush
administrations continued to disparage Kerry's probe and its many witnesses.

Through the end of the decade, the mainstream Washington media also
denigrated the allegations. In April 1989, when Kerry released a lengthy
report detailing multiple examples of how the contra war supplied cover for
major drug trafficking operations, the nation's most prestigious newspapers
-- The New York Times, The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times --
published only brief, dismissive accounts.

With the end of the contra war in 1990, the controversy faded further into
the historical recesses. The Clinton administration quietly rescinded
Casey's narcotics exemption in 1995.

Crack Epidemic

The contra-cocaine issue arose again in 1996 with an investigative series
by Gary Webb of the San Jose Mercury-News. Those stories traced how one of
the contra drug conduits helped fuel the crack epidemic in Los Angeles.

In response, the major newspapers again rallied to the CIA's defense. They
denounced the series as overblown, although finally acknowledging that the
allegations raised during the 1980s were true. Webb's series also prompted
a new investigation by the CIA's inspector general.

In the first volume of his investigative report, Hitz admitted the CIA knew
early on about contra drug trafficking and covered it up. The report's
second volume reportedly puts the CIA in even a worse light.

The CIA press office acknowledges that the second volume has been
completed, but adds that there is no timetable for releasing a declassified
version. "They'll only let it out if they're pressured," commented one U.S.

But the CIA apparently is counting on continued disinterest by the national
press as a sign that there is no need to revisit the issue. That assessment
was bolstered on May 7 when Waters introduced the Casey-Smith letters into
the Congressional Record and drew very little media interest in the
damaging admissions.

For her part, Waters stated that the Casey-Smith arrangement "allowed some
of the biggest drug lords in the world to operate without fear that the CIA
would be required to report their activities to the DEA and other law
enforcement agencies. ... These damning memorandums ... are further
evidence of a shocking official policy that allowed the drug cartels to
operate through the CIA-led contra covert operations in Central America."

Though Waters's comments focused on the contra war, Casey's narcotics
exemption could have had other CIA covert operations in mind. In the early
1980s, the CIA-backed Afghan mujahedeen also were implicated as major
heroin traffickers in the Near East.

But whatever the genesis of the drug exemption, the Casey-Smith exchange of
letters stands as important historical evidence bolstering the long-denied
allegations of CIA complicity in drug trafficking. Worse yet, the documents
are evidence of premeditation.

Copyright (c) 1998

GAO Report On Drug-Related Police Corruption (A List Subscriber
Posts The URL For The General Accounting Office's New Report,
Plus The 'Results In Brief' Summary)

Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998 09:37:03 EDT
Errors-To: manager@drcnet.org
Reply-To: adbryan@onramp.net
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Subject: GAO Report On Drug-Related Police Corruption

A couple of doozies have come from the GAO this morning.
One is on police drug-related corruption and the other
concerns the WOD in Mexico. Neither are very flattering.

http://www.gao.gov/new.items/gg98111.pdf (corruption)

I'll get the URL for the Mexico report later.

Following are the "Results in Brief" portion of this report.

United States General Accounting Office
GAO Report to the Honorable Charles B. Rangel, House of Representatives
May 1998
Information on Drug-Related Police Corruption

United States General Accounting Office
Washington, D.C. 20548
General Government Division
May 28, 1998
The Honorable Charles B. Rangel House of Representatives

Results in Brief

According to a number of commission reports, academic publications, and other
literature we reviewed and the officials and academic experts we interviewed,
drug-related police corruption differs in a variety of ways from other types
of police corruption. In addition to protecting criminals or ignoring their
activities, officers involved in drug-related corruption were more likely to
be actively involved in the commission of a variety of crimes, including
stealing drugs and/or money from drug dealers, selling drugs, and lying under
oath about illegal searches. Although profit was found to be a motive common
to traditional and drug-related police corruption, New York City's Mollen
Commission identified power and vigilante justice as two additional motives
for drug-related police corruption. The most commonly identified pattern of
drug-related police corruption involved small groups of officers who protected
and assisted each other in criminal activities, rather than the traditional
patterns of non-drug-related police corruption that involved just a few
isolated individuals or systemic corruption pervading an entire police
department or precinct.

Regarding the extent of drug-related police corruption, data are not collected
nationally. Federal agencies either do not maintain data specifically on
drug-related police corruption or maintain data only on cases in which the
respective agency is involved. Thus, it was not possible to estimate the
overall extent of the problem. However, the academic experts and various
officials we interviewed, as well as the commission reports, expressed the
view that, by and large, most police officers are honest.

The FBI provided us with data on FBI-led drug-related corruption cases
involving state and local law enforcement officers. However, since the

GAO/GGD-98-111 Drug-Related Police Corruption Page 3

total number of drug-related police corruption cases at all levels of
government is unknown, the proportion constituted by FBI cases also is
unknown. Data from local sources, if collected, pose several problems. For
example, drug-related police corruption cases may not be readily identifiable
from the offense charged or departments may view this information as
proprietary or confidential and may not release it. Notwithstanding the lack
of systematic data, the commissions and some academic experts described cases
of drug-related police corruption in large cities such as Atlanta, Chicago,
Cleveland, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, and

Many of our sources consistently reported certain factors to be associated
with drug-related police corruption, although these factors may also be
associated with police corruption in general. Not every source identified
every factor, and the sources differed to some degree on the emphasis to be
placed on a factor. However, if all of the factors are considered together,
they provide a consistent framework. Also, the factors discussed in this
report may not encompass all factors associated with drug-related police
corruption, since the identified factors are based on publicly reported
incidents of drug-related police corruption.

One commonly identified factor associated with drug-related corruption was a
police culture that was characterized by a code of silence, unquestioned
loyalty to other officers, and cynicism about the criminal justice system.
Such characteristics were found not only to promote police corruption, but to
impede efforts to control and detect it. A second associated factor was the
maturity (e.g., age) and education of police officers. Officers lacking in
experience and some higher education were considered to be more susceptible to
involvement in illicit drug-related activities.

Several of our sources also identified a variety of management-related factors
associated with drug-related corruption. These factors included ineffective
headquarters and field supervision, the failure of top police officials to
promote integrity, and weaknesses in a police department's internal
investigative structure and practices. In addition, on-the-job opportunities
to commit illegal acts; inadequate training, particularly integrity training
in the police academies and on the job; police brutality; and pressures
arising from an officer's personal neighborhood ties were also believed by
some sources to be associated with drug-related police corruption.

GAO/GGD-98-111 Drug-Related Police Corruption Page 4

Our sources also identified practices that they believed could prevent or
detect drug-related police corruption. These practices, although often
directed toward combatting police corruption in general, also were viewed as
effective steps toward specifically addressing drug-related police corruption.
Again, while every source did not conclude that every practice was effective
or suitable for local conditions, considered together, the practices offer a
starting point for prevention strategies.

Among the prevention practices that our sources identified were (1) making a
commitment to integrity from the top to the bottom of the police department;
(2) changing the police culture; (3) requiring command accountability (i.e.,
requiring a commitment to corruption control throughout the entire department,
especially by field commanders); (4) raising the age and educational
requirements and implementing or improving integrity training in the police
academy for recruits; (5) implementing or improving integrity training and
accountability measures for career officers; (6) establishing an independent
monitor to oversee the police department and its internal affairs unit; and
(7) community policing.4

The detection practices our sources discussed included integrity testing,5
early warning systems to identify potential problem officers, and proactive
investigations of individual officers or precincts with a high number of
corruption complaints.

Lastly, we identified several federal initiatives that were directed toward
assisting state and local governments in preventing and detecting police

Anti-Tobacco Crowd Hasn't Learned Anything From History
(An Op-Ed In The Illinois 'Daily Herald' Compares The Failure
Of The McCain Tobacco Bill With The Failed Efforts
Of Turn-Of-The-Century Tobacco Prohibitionist Lucy Page Gaston
And Her Anti-Cigarette League Of America - She Was The Person
Who Invented The Term 'Coffin Nails')
Link to earlier story
Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998 17:55:06 -0700 To: mapnews@mapinc.org From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: OPED: Anti-Tobacco Crowd Hasn't Learned Anything From History Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Steve Young (theyoungfamily@worldnet.att.net) Source: Daily Herald (IL) Contact: fencepost@dailyherald.com Website: http://www.dailyherald.com/ Pubdate: Wed, 01 Jul 1998 Author: Cal Thomas ANTI-TOBACCO CROWD HASN'T LEARNED ANYTHING FROM HISTORY Perhaps nothing is more amusing or more pathetic than adults determined to force adolescents to do their bidding. The defeat of the tobacco bill in Congress and pledges by the Clinton administration to continue to search for ways to "save our children" from the ravages of tobacco smoke and addiction to nicotine will be about as effective as Prohibition. Today, the crusaders are named Bill Clinton, C. Everett Koop and John McCain. More than 90 years ago, there were Chicago's Lucy Page Gaston and her Anti-Cigarette League of America. It was Gaston who invented the term "coffin nails." In the beginning, she seemed to be making progress. Cigarette production peaked at 4.9 billion units in 1897, but by 1901 fewer than 3.5 billion were produced. Gaston's crusade helped produce laws against smoking, including some that targeted women only (New York City passed the Sullivan Ordinance in 1908, prohibiting women from smoking in public; other municipalities followed New York's example). For many, such laws only added to the allure of cigarettes. This forbidden-fruit factor, coupled with the aura of danger surrounding cigarettes, and men who smoked while away in World War I, contributed to more, not less, smoking. States like Arkansas, Idaho, Iowa and Tennessee repealed their anti-smoking laws in 1917. The defeat of the anti-smoking crusade was a forerunner to the repeal of Prohibition, another attempt to regulate a form of human behavior that encountered strong resistance. As historian Robert Sobel recounts in his book "They Satisfy: The Cigarette in American Life," Gaston toyed with the idea of running for president. Her platform sounded like a forerunner of the Christian Coalition: "clean morals, clean food and fearless law enforcement." Gaston was appalled when Warren Harding - a cigarette smoker - was elected president in 1920. She said Harding had a "cigarette face" (a diagnosis invented by Gaston). She predicted Harding would come to no good, that his administration would be laced with corruption and that Harding would even die in office before the end of his term (he did, but not from cigarette smoking). Gaston was struck by a trolley in 1924 and later died. Her doctor said the cause of death was not her injuries, but throat cancer, though there is no indication she was a smoker. Sobel notes that when Gaston started the National Anti-Cigarette League, 4.4 billion cigarettes were consumed. The year she died, more than 73 billion cigarettes were sold. In 1905, the New York Times had editorialized against one proposed anti-cigarette law in Indiana, calling it "fussy legislation" and "as scandalous an interference as can be conceived with constitutional freedoms." Today, the Times, which flipped on abortion, has also flipped on cigarettes, believing teenagers can be dissuaded from smoking without regulation of the "cool" factor. It is unlikely that today's anti-tobacco crusaders and politicians will be any more successful than Lucy Page Gaston and her followers. Adults telling kids they don't want them to smoke will likely encourage them to puff even more. What was that about those who learn nothing from history are doomed to repeat it? (c) 1998, Los Angeles Times Syndicate

Activism On-Line - The Revolution Will Be Wired (An Article In 'High Times'
By Adam J. Smith Of The Drug Reform Coordination Network Explains Why
The Internet Makes It Impossible For Government And Mass Media
To Cover Up The Truth About The Failed War On Some Drugs)

Date: Mon, 22 Jun 1998 20:12:16 -0400
To: DrugSense News Service 
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: US: Activism On-line: The Revolution Will Be Wired
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Richard Lake
Source: High Times
Author: Adam J. Smith
Section: High Witness Views
Pubdate: July, 1998
Contact: letters@hightimes.com
Website: http://www.hightimes.com/


The Internet's low-cost, instantaneous communication and its ability to
make unlimited information available to an ever-expanding audience is
nothing short of a revolution in the people's ability to effect social
change. The vast network of drug-law reformers on-line represents a growing
army of peace which will ultimately topple the prohibitionist establishment
and put an end to America's longest war.

In the past, most reform efforts have been local. The economics of creating
a mass movement relegated like-minded people to relative isolation, making
it difficult to join forces even in modest ways, across state or county
lines. But not anymore.

Today, electronic communication is beginning to make the problems of time,
distance and access to information obsolete. The old impossibilities are
fading at the feed of a new virtual reality. For marijuana-law reformers,
this new age is particularly important. Building coalitions, exploding
popular myths and activating a growing constituency, the movement is
quickly coming together - the first and most important step in changing the

In addition to connecting marijuana-law reformers to each other, the
Internet has catalyzed links between the people and organizations active on
other issues in the drug-policy-reform movement. Advocates who are working
on issues such as needle exchange, mandatory-minimum sentencing, asset
forfeiture, privacy rights, pain control, human rights, racial justice and
Latin American sovereignty are finding each other on-line and realizing
that they are fighting a common enemy in the Drug War establishment.

Groups like NORML, the Marijuana Policy Project, the November Coalition,
the Media Awareness Project and Family and Friends for Drug Reform do
terrific work, despite being uniformly underfunded and short-staffed. The
World Wide Web has enabled them to post important legislative information,
scholarly articles and ways to become involved - information that could not
possibly be communicated to such wise audiences so quickly by phone, fax or

My organization, the Drug Reform Coordination Network (DRCNet), founded in
1993, aims to be a communications and information epicenter for the reform
movement. Our 5,000 plus subscribers receive both periodic state and
federal legislative alerts and The Week Online, a weekly drug-policy e-zine
which features news, analysis, interviews, links to other organizations and
editorials. The Week Online brings all of the issues and the people who are
working on them together in one publication, strengthening each part of the
movement by broadening its reach.

The effects of these electronic grass-roots are already being felt. In
Virginia, for instance, a 1997 bill which would have overturned that
state's medical-marijuana defense was defeated with the help of letters,
phone calls and faxes in response to DRCNet statewide alerts. Numerous
other bills in other states have drawn a similar response. So now, when
NORML or MMP needs an immediate response to a bill or a media event, our
electronic network offers them fast and easy access to large numbers of
people who will respond - people who might not have elected to formally
join a marijuana-only organization.

The strength, and ultimately the success, of such a network depends on how
many people use it to keep up with and respond to events and legislation
that affect our issues. The Internet makes that goal achievable. The
ability to easily forward and re-post information means that the network's
rate of growth increases with its size. While it took us nearly four years
to reach 1000 subscribers, it took only one more year to quadruple that

As promotional efforts swing into gear, and subscription numbers swell, we
will be able to generate thousands, or tens of thousands, of responses at
the touch of a button. Then, for the first time in history, the
antiprohibition movement will be in a position to consistently influence
legislation on the whole range of reform issues, at both the state and
federal levels.

As the millennium approaches, an electronic generation stands poised to
change the world. The internet is a worldwide medium of nearly limitless
communication. Whether or not our opponents understand its implications, it
offers us a unique opportunity to end the War. So plug in, stand up, and
speak out, because the revolution is coming. And it will happen at 56k.


Adam J. Smith is the associate director of DRCNet. You can check out their
Web site, and subscribe to their free service, at

Pot Case Thrown Out ('The Calgary Sun' Says Provincial Court Judge
William Gilbert Has Ruled That Neither Marc Zagar's Distinct Smell Of Pot,
Nor Banff RCMP Corporal WL Young's Olfactory Skills Justified His Search
Of Zagar That Turned Up A Joint)

From: webmaster@mapinc.org (Matt Elrod)
To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com
Subject: Canada: Pot case thrown out
Date: Wed, 01 Jul 1998 08:52:19 -0700
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/
Lines: 37
Newshawk: creator@mapinc.org
Source: Calgary Sun
Contact: callet@sunpub.com
Pubdate: July 1, 1998
Author: KEVIN MARTIN -- Calgary Sun


This case is a real stinker from a police perspective.

A marijuana cigarette seized from a suspect who smelled of the drug
was inadmissible because it came from an illegal search, a judge has

Provincial court Judge William Gilbert said Banff RCMP Cpl. W.L.
Young did not have reasonable grounds to search Marc Zagar last Nov.
13 -- and acquitted him.

Zagar was charged with possession of a narcotic after he was stopped
for performing an unlawful U-turn while visiting Banff.

When Young approached Zagar in his hotel parking lot, he "detected a
strong odor of burnt marijuana emanating from the person of the
accused," Gilbert said.

The officer asked Zagar if he had any drugs on him and when told he
didn't, Young searched the suspect.

He found a single marijuana joint in a cigarette package in the
accused's vest pocket.

But Gilbert, in a written ruling, said neither Zagar's distinct
smell, nor Young's olfactory skills, justified the search. "Such
action is contrary to the liberty of the subject to be free from
arbitrary search and seizure."

Copyright (c) 1998, Canoe Limited Partnership.

Illegal In Mexico (A Letter To The Editor
Of 'The International Herald-Tribune' Says The United States
Had No Right To Treat Mexico As It Did In 'Operation Casablanca')

Date: Wed, 01 Jul 1998 20:23:51 -0400
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: UN GE: PUB LTE: Illegal in Mexico
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Peter Webster
Pubdate: Wed, 1 Jul 1998
Source: International Herald-Tribune
Contact: iht@iht.com
Website: http://www.iht.com/


At a United Nations drug conference in New York on June 8 President Ernesto
Zedillo of Mexico declared that no country should feel entitled to violate
another country's laws for the sake of enforcing its own. This was a clear
reference to the U.S. sting aimed at the laundering of drug money, in which
more than two dozen Mexican bankers were snared.

Mr. Zedillo's government was not informed of the operation in advance. The
Mexicans have said that the operation violated their country's sovereignty.

Undercover operations, by their very nature, involve deception and ethically
questionable tactics. By creating an artificial criminal milieu and holding
out temptation for criminal opportunities that do not otherwise exist, U.S.
authorities are not punishing crime but testing people, and punishing
those too weak to pass the test.

This case is in the realm of foreign policy, to say the least. Treasury
Secretary Robert Rubin overstepped his authority, and Secretary of State
Madeleine Albright was correct to reprove him.

The United States has no right to treat its neighbors this way.

PAUL WOLF. Glen Mills, Pennsylvania.

The War On Drugs From The Supply Side (A lengthy but excellent op-ed
in Z magazine by a co-founder of the Colombia Support Network provides
a much more accurate picture of the social and economic forces destroying
Colombia in the name of the war on drugs than could ever be found
in mainstream American mass media. About 4,300 Colombians are killed each
year for political reasons out of a total annual death toll of 30,000 and a
population of 33 million. According to the Colombian Commission of Jurists,
only 2 percent of these political killings are drug related, while 28 percent
of the deaths are at the hands of guerrillas and 70 percent are caused
by the paramilitary/military alliance.)

Date: Sun, 09 Aug 1998 19:31:07 -0400
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: Colombia: OPED: The War On Drugs From The Supply Side
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Steve Young (theyoungfamily@worldnet.att.net)
Pubdate: July/August 1998
Source: Z Magazine
Section: p. 21
Contact: Lydia.Sargent@zmag.org
Website: http://www.zmag.org
Author: Cecilia Zarate-Laun
Note: Author is a co-founder of the Colombia Support Network, P.O. Box 1505,
Madison, Wisconsin 53701; 608-257-8753; fax 608-255-6621; csn@igc.apc.org;
www.igc.apc.org/csn. Or CSN Urgent Action Service, C/O HRAS, 438 N. Skinker,
St. Louis, MO 63130.


Last October 25 a paramilitary patrol landed on the small town of El Aro in
Colombia's northern Antioquia province, with the intention of "doing away
with the guerrillas." For five days the town was converted into a
concentration camp. First, they killed Andres Mendoza, Wilmar Restrepo,
RosaMaria Barrera, and Dora Angela Areiza in front of everybody.

Before leaving El Aro the paras assassinated 64-year-old Marco Aureho Areiza
who owned the town's store. Prior to killing him, they tied him to a tree in
the plaza, tortured him, pulled out his eyes and heart, and rubbed salt all
over his body. His wife and children were forcefully taken to see his
remains. On leaving, the paramilitary burned the town. The result of the
paramilitary presence in El Aro was 51 of the 68 town's houses destroyed and
10 small farms looted and burned. Another 5 peasants were killed and the
paras took with them 1,300 heads of cattle and 130 mules and horses.

After the paramilitary left, the 250 survivors buried the bodies of their
friends and relatives, and fled to nearby towns, joining some 1,500 other
refugees from the region, adding to the one and a-half million refugees in
the country.

Colombia has been for many years the window case democracy which the U.S.
State Department loves to show off as Latin America's oldest and most
durable democracy. Yes, Colombia fulfills all the formal requisites of a
democracy: elections are held every four years, the three branches of
government function in different buildings, even though their powers are not
separate. A string of civilian presidents sign all kinds of international
treaties on human rights, women's rights, environmental rights, and
children's rights. Colombia holds its place at the United Nations, the OAS,
and the ILO where it has no moral problems with the fact that more labor
leaders are killed in Colombia than in any other country in the world.

Colombia has always, had two political parties, Liberals and Conservatives,
whose power struggles have caused many wars. The last one, La Violencia,
from 1948 to 1953, left more than 300,000 dead. Killings continued on a
lower scale through the 1960s and 1970s. These two political entities might
as well be considered one party with two heads, because there is no
ideological difference between them and they hold the same position on
social and economic issues.

Colombia is not a poor country. It has abundant resources such as oil, coal,
gold, emeralds, platinum, and uranium. It exports coffee, flowers, sugar,
and bananas. An article in the Wall Street Journal published last year said
that "Colombia boasts continuous economic growth, by far the best in Latin
America and perhaps in the world." Yet there is much hunger in Colombia.
Colombia's tragedy is the result of deep inequalities - 3 percent of the
people own 70 percent of the arable land-and the lack of political will to
implement social, political, and economic reforms.

Because of these deep inequalities and violence, guerrilla movements started
forming in the late 1930s. Today there are two major guerrilla forces, FARC
(Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia) and ELN (Ejercito de
Liberacion Nacional).

In 1985 a challenge to the two political parties came about when the
government, in one of its periodic peace processes, offered amnesty to those
guerrillas who would give up their arms and become a political party
competing in elections. Created by former guerrillas, the Union Patriotica
Party (UP) organized at the grass roots and appealed to a broad range of
Colombian citizens who believed Liberals and Conservatives had done nothing
to represent their interests. Elections came and UP enjoyed extensive
electoral success: city council members, mayors, state assembly and national
Congress members were elected. There was a sense of being a democracy at
last. Except that virtually all of the UP's elected officials and the
party's only two presidential candidates were killed. About 4,000 of them at
last count. The real number of UP grass-roots activists and sympathizers has
been lost.

Colombia has a privileged geographical location as the only country in South
America with coasts on both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. This particular
geographic location was the main reason why Colombia became, in the 1970s, a
key stop in the trade of cocaine brought from Peru and Bolivia. This
stopover for drug trade was initially made by Miami Cubans who wanted to
profit from drugs after the American troops came home hooked from Vietnam.
Contacts were made with the un-derworld in Colombia and with the emerald
trade. Soon the Colombians outdid their Cuban partners and became the main
middlepeople in the drug trade.

Initially Bolivia and Peru produced coca leaves and paste and the paste was
brought to Colombia where it would be processed and refined to cocaine and
distributed to the always hungry U.S. market. So we find two contradictory
ille-gal forces, FARC and drug traffickers, co-habiting the vast rain
forests of Colombia's Amazon basin. In this way the drug trade with all its
money and power became another factor in the old and vicious Colombian war.

The Players

The displaced peasants:

The peasants, who have fled from terror during all of these 50 years
of war in the countryside, have two options: to go to the big cities and
become beggars and prostitutes or go to the rainforest to colonize the land.
If they choose the latter, they till the land and plant crops such as corn or
plantains. Since these areas were never developed, they lack transportation
routes. Only by using the big rivers and crossing hundreds of miles can the
crop reach Bogota or other markets. By the time it gets there, the crop is
rotten or has become so costly that all the profit is practically lost. There
is only one alternative open to peasant farmers: growing coca leaves. They do
not have to worry about transportation because the drug lords' economic
machinery picks up the harvested coca at the farm. Coca is more profitable
than corn in the "free market."

The guerrillas:

FARC and ELN have a political agenda that calls for agrarian reform,
democratization, and protection of natural resources from multi-national
corporations. But the Conservative and Liberal parties have never allowed
third party or grass-roots opposition.

Colombian politics is very exclusionary. Guerrillas have used kidnappings of
rich people to finance their activities. They also place land mines in areas
where they are active, and the ELN has a penchant for bombing oil pipelines
causing untold ecological damage.

In the 1980s paramilitary groups such as MAS (Death to Kidnappers) were
formed when enraged cattlepeople joined forces with drug traffickers against
guerrilla kidnappings. Recently guerrillas announced that they would also
start attacking civilians they believe are friends or relatives of
paramilitaries, which means fur-ther spreading the conflict to the civilian
population. This violates international humanitarian law. Today, the
guerillas hold virtual control of vast regions of the countryside where for
most of this century the only presence of the state has been the army. Since
guerrillas and drug traffickers generally operate in the same areas, many
guerrilla fronts tax drug trafficking operations, while protecting
plantations of coca, processing, and shipping drugs, just as they tax any
area that comes under their control, and in this way they benefit from the
drug trade. But to say that guerrillas are "narco-guerrillas" is a

The drug traffickers:

Colombia's rigidly stratified class system does not give much opportunity for
people to advance socially. In Medellin, for example, the textile capital of
Latin America, many people were left unemployed when factories closed during
the 1970s economic recession. Unemployed people plus refugees fleeing from
terror make an easy breeding ground for drug trafficking. The under-world and
the ruthless emerald-trade Mafia in the state of Boyaca quickly took
advantage of the promising drug trade. Fortunes were made quickly by this new
class, which became wealthier than the traditional elites. They saw
themselves as much entrepreneurs as the coffee or sugar barons and demanded
their share of power. Money talks and soon those who did not sell themselves
were eliminated. Among them the incorruptible leaders of the UP party. Here
the drug people figured out how to kill two birds with one stone: since the
UP represented the left, and since the drug traffickers sought to win grace
from the viscerally anti-communist Colombian elites and military, they
proceeded to go after UP people and kill them, as well as non-combatant
peasants suspected of guerilla sympathies such as the ones in El Aro. The
drug traffickers in this way also started to get land. In the last seven
years drug traffickers have taken between four to five million hectares of
the best Colombian land. They are not interested in growing anything, they
just want to gain social status, and owning land gives status. In taking the
land, they drive the peasants out and introduce private armies to protect

The Army:

Keep in mind that Colombia's army is Simon Bolivar's army which
crossed the Andes in an epic march and gave the first defeat to the Spanish
empire. Made up of peasants, that army and its aristocratic and enlightened
leader sought to found a republic where democracy, freedom, and human rights
would prevail. That army later became the private army of the ruling elites
and a proxy army for a foreign power. Fighting a guerrilla war in the
tropics for 50 years has made it the most seasoned army in this hemisphere,
and the most brutal. Lately, as documented by the BBC, this army has been
renting itself out to protect multinational corporations' properties.
Colombia's list of graduates from the School of the Americas is the longest
of any Latin American country. Colombians started training in 1947 and have
continued to the present. Colombians will roudly tell anybody that they are
not only students but teachers at SOA.

The Paramilitary:

In November 1996 Human Rights Watch released a report called
"Colombia's Killer Networks: the Military-Paramilitary Partnership and the
U.S.," which documents the historical links between U.S. Cold War
strategies, political violence in Colombia, and the nurturing of
paramilitaries by the CIA and the Pentagon since the 1950s.

Paramilitaries are a creation of the Colombian state. They represent an
attempt to cover up the brutalities of the army which are continually
reported by reputable human rights organizations. Amnesty International,
Human Rights Watch, and the myriad of Colombian NGOs, at tremendous risks
and despite the numerous killings they suffer, keep reporting atrocities
such as the one in El Aro.

These paramilitary groups act together with the military, but carry out
irregular actions in order to blur the borders between what is civilian and
what is military. It is a perverted mechanism because it resorts to secrecy
and makes a mockery of democracy and its institutions. When paramilitaries
are created, a state's responsibility ceases to exist.

Father Javier Giraldo, in Colombia:

The Genocidal Democracy reveals some of the characteristics of Colombia's
paramilitaries. The paras receive support from trade organizations and
powerful businesses such as export agriculture, cattlemen, oil companies and
drug traffickers. They get political support from the military and leaders of
the traditional parties. They receive military support from the Army's local
battalion and brigade. The judicial system protects them by absolving the
responsible parties and discontinuing the criminal proceedings. Or if the
courts condemn someone, they refuse to investigate the lines of command. The
executive and the legislative powers provide the military who organize and
direct this criminal structure with all kinds of promotions in rank and

More insidious is the military-paramilitary modus operandi of the last ten
years. The strategy has been to declare as military objectives, not only
FARC and ELN militants, but also members of dissident political parties.
They target people who have lived in regions where guerrillas have been
present and members of any community organization, such as cooperatives,
which represent alternative models to the accumulation of capital different
from neo-liberalism. For local peasants geographical territories stop being
seen as lands where you feel emotionally attached, but become "conquered
territories" with armed groups. They are forced to relate to the combined
action of the army and the paramilitaries as those who exercise power. A
brutally cynical counter-insurgency tactic of former guerrillas joining
paramilitary units is being tried now with young men fighting for the
highest payer.

This strategy responds to the "development" plans with a new conception of
social and family relations. These relations are based on irrational use of
force and loyalties where the most important thing is private property and
profitability. A new society is created within the free market model where
only those people who have money and property (be it cattle, contraband, or
cocaine) can compete. The rest have to beg to be included in the
paramilitary scheme or are excluded. The creation of the parastate has arrived.

Paramilitary structures have multiple alliances with important sectors of
drug4rafficking in coordination with military units, as the massacres of
Trujillo and Riofrio have shown. A typical example is that of Colonel Luis
Felipe B-cerra, who coordinated the death squad massacres in March 1988 of
22 workers from banana planta-tions in Uraba. When an honest judge announced
preliminary results of her probe against two drug traffickers and three
military officials, she received death threats and had to flee. Seven months
later, in retaliation, her father was slain. When Colonel Becerra was going
to be served with legal papers, he was in the United States where he was
taking a course to be promoted to lieutenant colonel. When he returned, he
was involved in a second massacre in Riofrio in 1993. A known drug lord
wanted the land around Riofrio, 50 13 peasant owners were killed through
army-paramilitary cooperation.

The Church and the NGOs:

After being one of the most conservative churches in Latin America for
centuries, the Colombian Catholic Church has become one of the few
institutions left to help the poor.

Many priests and nuns have died working for justice and the poor. Many of
the internal 1,500,000 refugees have come to the Church's door. The Bishops'
Con-ference has raised its voice in favor of the poor. And the Colombian
Jesuits, with their prestigious think tank. CINEP and their Program for
Peace, have taken leadership in struggling for the rights of the poor.
Colombian NGOs have led a courageous battle to assist and represent the
poor. Many activists have been killed or "disappeared" as a result.

The U.S.:

The U.S. support for the "war on drugs" does not strengthen democracy
or respect human rights. The Colombian army has a long and close
relationship with the U.S. military; From World War II on, they
collaborated against "communist subversion." Now it is drugs. The State
Department has issued reports about human rights violations, but these are
not taken seriously by the Colombian elites because the U.S. government
keeps giving military aid to the Colombian army. Human Rights Watch reports
that in 1990 a team of CIA and U.S. strategists gathered to assist
Co-lombian military intelligence. The document produced at this meeting does
not mention narcotics at all, but rather emphasizes combating "terrorism by
armed subversion."

So one must question the real goal of the "war on drugs." Is the "war on
drugs" a pseudo-ethical argument for perpetuating violence for the economic
benefit of the elites in both countries? The facts contradict the speeches
by U.S. politicians in their appeals to the U.S. public. Drug czar General
McCaffrey announced on a recent visit to Bogota that the U.S. is willing to
help Colombia combat not only "drug traffickers" but also the "guerrillas."
It would be interesting to know if he considers the brutally murdered CINEP
researchers Mario Calderon (a former Jesuit) and Elsa Alvarado as
guerrillas, or the millions of Colombians who desire social change.

The United States is involved in the region's most brutal war - a war in
which the army, allied with drug traffickers and paramilitary death squads,
combats not only guerrillas but anyone committed to political or social
change. The victims of this war have been lawyers, priests, nuns, political
activists, labor leaders, peasant leaders, university professors,
journalists, cooperative members, women leaders, anybody who thinks.

Some 4,300 Colombians are killed each year for political reasons out of a
total annual death toll of 30,000. This carnage is in a country with a
population of 33 million people. According to the Colombian Commission of
Jurists only 2 percent of these political killings are drug related, while
28 percent of the deaths are at the hands of the guerrillas and 70 percent
are caused by the paramilitary/military alliance.

Herbicide Again (Another Letter To The Editor
Of 'The International Herald-Tribune' Protests
The United States' Parallel Policies Involving Poison
In Colombia And Vietnam)

Date: Wed, 01 Jul 1998 20:32:16 -0400
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: Columbia: PUB LTE: Herbicide Again
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Peter Webster
Pubdate: Wed, 1 Jul 1998
Source: International Herald-Tribune
Contact: iht@iht.com
Website: http://www.iht.com/
Note: According to our newshawk and author of this letter, the IHT printed a
"tamed" version of his original letter, leaving out this sentence: "No
wonder the U.S. is the only nation objecting to the establishment of a
strong independent court in the U.N. to take up the issues of atrocities and
crimes against humanity."


Regarding "Columbia to Test Herbicide on Coca" (June 22):

Has the United States learned nothing from its use of herbicide in Vietnam?
It appears that the Washington plans to carry on the drug war to the bitter
end, even if it means producing more Vietnams in South America.

PETER WEBSTER. Le Cannet, France.

Poppy Fungus Project Is Not 'Biological Warfare' Says UN
(A UN Information Service Press Release Issued By Pino Arlacchi,
Director Of The Vienna-Based UN Office For Drug Control And Crime Prevention,
Tries To Finesse A Recent Article In Britain's 'Sunday Times')

Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 14:25:58 -0400
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews)
Subject: MN: UN: WIRE: Poppy Fungus Project
Is Not 'Biological Warfare' Says UN
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/
Newshawk: Michael (Miguet@NOVEMBER.ORG)
Source: UN Information Service
Contact: Sandro Tucci, Spokesman, ODCCP, Ph: (43-1) 21345 5629
Website: http://www.undcp.org/press/press.htm
Fax: (43-1) 21345 5931
Pubdate: 1 Jul 1998
Author: Pino Arlacchi


1 July 1998


VIENNA, 1 July (UN Information Service) -- The following statement was
issued today by the Spokesman for Pino Arlacchi, Executive Director of the
Vienna-based UN Office for Drug Control and Crime Prevention:

With reference to an article which appeared in the "Sunday Times" on 28
June under the title "Britain funds biological war against heroin" and
subsequently quoted by other dailies and media organizations in different
countries, the United Nations International Drug Control Programme (UNDCP)
wishes to clarify the following:

-- The UNDCP is supporting a research and development programme on an
environmentally safe plant pathogenic fungus (Pleospora papaveracea). The
research is being carried out by the Institute of Genetics in Tashkent,
Uzbekistan, with financial support from the UNDCP, through donor funding.

-- Neither the Institute of Genetics in Tashkent nor the UNDCP are involved
in developing any "biological weapon" nor are they conducting any research
on "biological warfare". These terms are totally inappropriate and gravely
distort the nature of the project which, as above mentioned, aims at
developing an environmentally safe and reliable biological control agent
for opium poppies.

-- Statements made in the press to the effect that intelligence agents and
germ warfare experts are involved in the project are baseless. Research on
the project is being carried out by scientists at the Institute of
Genetics, with UNDCP assistance.

-- This research and development programme is still in its initial stages.
No results, even at preliminary level, will be available for many months to

Victory Claimed In Battle With Drug Barons
(According To 'The Irish Independent,' A 29-Page First-Year Review
Of The Governing Coalition's Action Programme For The Millennium
Claims The Criminal Assets Bureau Has Been Effective In Targeting
Drug Barons)
Link to earlier story
Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998 17:57:00 -0700 To: mapnews@mapinc.org From: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: Ireland: Victory Claimed in Battle With Drug Barons Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org Reply-To: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Martin Cooke (mjc1947@cyberclub.iol.ie) Source: Irish Independent Contact: independent.letters@independent.ie Website: http://www.independent.ie/ Pubdate: Wed, 01 Jul 1998 Author: Gene McKenna -Political Staff VICTORY CLAIMED IN BATTLE WITH DRUG BARONS MANY ``big players'' have been driven out of business by the Criminal Assets Bureau which has effectively targeted drug barons, according to the Government. Justice and crime is one area where the Government claims that many of its pre-election promises have been met in its first year in office. The 29-page first-year review of the Coalition's Action Programme for the Millennium goes through what has been implemented, Department by Department and how it hopes to complete the rest of the programme. The Government says its objective is to build an inclusive society where all citizens ``have the opportunity and the incentive to participate fully in the social and economic life of the country.'' The Government points out that unemployment has fallen by 25,000 in the year since the Government came into office. It says the unemployment rate, seasonally adjusted, has fallen every month for the last l4, is currently at its lowest level for eight years and it is the first time since November, l990 that the unadjusted Live Register has been below 250,000. It says the progress achieved on the introduction of a minimum wage ``perhaps the most significant social policy initiative since we legislated for equal pay 25 years ago'' is clear evidence of its commitment to social partnership. It promises that the necessary legislation for a National Minimum Wage will be introduced next year. Discussions will take place next month with the social partners. In the Justice area, the review reiterates the Government target to have l2,000 gardai by the year 2002. The current strength is about ll,000 but, due to people leaving the force, the recruitment of an estimated 2,200 will be required, it says. It says also that a prison building programme due to be completed in August, l999 will bring to l,092 the additional prison spaces provided by this Government. It says the target is to provide a further l,000 spaces by 2002. It also says that the Independent Courts Service is expected to come into operation at the end of this year, while work on refurbishing and providing new court accommodation is continuing. The Budget for this year is IEPl2m. The review says the Government believes that the problem of drug misuse is best addressed in the context of tackling the wider problem of social exclusion, with a sum of IEP30m being invested over three years in youth services and facilities to combat drug abuse.

DrugSense Weekly, Number 53 (Summary Of Drug Policy News For Activists)

Date: Wed, 01 Jul 1998 07:08:39 -0700
To: mgreer@mapinc.org
From: Mark Greer (MGreer@mapinc.org)
Subject: DrugSense Weekly, July 1, 1998 No. 53




DrugSense Weekly, July 1, 1998, No. 53
A DrugSense publication




* Feature Article

Gonzo Drug Czar

* Weekly News In Review

	Drug War Policy-

UN Adopts Plans To Combat Worldwide Illicit Drug Use

Nightline: The Battle Over How to Fight the War on Drugs

LTE in WSJ: Prohibition Is Immoral

Book Review: Stone Crazy

The West's Secret Weapon To Win The Opium War

	Drug Trade-

Women Recruited by Drug Traffickers

Two Amish Men Accused of Cocaine Deals with Motorcycle Gang

Case Links Russian Sub, Colombia Drugs

	Legal Issues & Prisons-

A Prison for The Future

1,000 More Face Out-of-State Prison

High Court OKs Stiff '3-Strikes' Sentences

Justices Strike Down Forfeiture as Excessive

	Medical Marijuana-

Medical Marijuana Petition Nets More Signatures Than Estimated

Smoking Cure On Trial


Suspect Accuses Tobacco Firms Of Smuggling

	International News-

Canada: RCMP Chief Says Lack Of Funds Means Mob `On A Roll'

UK: Editorial: Crime and Punishment

Lebanon: War On Drugs Impoverishes Farmers

Germany: The Walls Are Crumbling

Sweden: Uncompromising Climate in Drug Debate

* Hot Off The 'Net

* DrugSense Tip Of The Week

Read Your DrugSense Weekly On-Line

* Quote of the Week

Clarence Darrow




Sometimes it seems that Canada is far ahead of the U.S. in its drug
policies and leadership. We want to encourage and support any paper
with the courage and wisdom to question the "leaders" who are so
consistently blind to reason, facts and science on drug policy issues.

Please consider sending a brief note of encouragement to the Ottawa
Citizen (Canada) Circulation 500,000 (By Canadian standards a very
large paper)

Contact: letters@thecitizen.southam.ca



If the world-wide war on drugs has a commander-in-chief, it is President
Bill Clinton's "Drug Czar," retired general Barry McCaffrey.

Those who still support the failed policy of drug prohibition should note
the latest musings of their leader.

Testifying before a U.S. Senate committee, Gen. McCaffrey sounded as if
he were auditioning for a part on the X-Files when he claimed, "There
is a carefully camouflaged, exorbitantly funded, well-heeled, elitist
group whose ultimate goal is to legalize drug use in the United States."

The general's comments followed the publication the previous week of a
two-page newspaper ad calling for an end to the war on drugs. The
letter was signed by more than 500 prominent individuals from around
the world, and included subversives like George Shultz, Ronald Reagan's
Secretary of State, former UN Secretary General Javier Perez de
Cuellar, Nobel-laureate Milton Friedman, and journalist Walter
Cronkite. The general's Senate audience knew exactly what and whom he
was getting at.

Was this petition "carefully camouflaged"? It was organized -- quite
openly - -- by the Lindesmith Center. That this American institute is
funded by billionaire financier George Soros is well-known. And Mr.
Soros is hardly a shadowy character: His philanthropic efforts,
including assistance for former communist countries making the
transition to freedom, have been impressive. He deserves better than
the general's innuendo.

What about the claim that the legalization movement is "exorbitantly
funded"? Exorbitant is a relative thing. The United States spends $30
billion a year on its drug war and accompanying propaganda. Relative to
that $30 billion, its funding is insignificant.

As for the charge of elitism, that is an example of the worst sort of
political rabble-rousing, a cheap shot not worth comment.

But the drug-warrior-in-chief wasn't done. He went on to tell the
Senate that drug reformers had, "Through a slick misinformation
campaign, E [perpetrated] a fraud on the American people, a fraud so
devious that even some of the nation's most respected newspapers and
sophisticated media are capable of echoing their falsehoods."

In other words, it's inconceivable that journalists could look at the
facts and reasonably come to a conclusion different than the general's.
Every publication that disapproves of drug prohibition -- among them
National Review, The Economist, and yes, this newspaper -- has simply
been duped by the conspiracy.

General McCaffrey's bitter, paranoid attacks, coming as they did hard
upon the UN conference on drugs and the debate about drug prohibition
that it prompted, exposed just how empty the drug warriors' case really

Bereft of evidence, belied by experience, drug prohibitionists have few
rational arguments to make -- so they insult, vilify, and denounce.

It's an old rule in politics: When the facts are against you, throw mud
in their eyes.

Copyright 1998 The Ottawa Citizen

Newshawk: creator@mapinc.org
Source: Ottawa Citizen ( Canada)
Contact: letters@thecitizen.southam.ca
Website: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/
Pubdate: Monday 29 June 1998




Drug War Policy-



The UN session, in an action reminiscent of infamous Soviet "5-year
plans," and without taking notice of the opposition to their policy
uncovered by an open letter in the New York Times, approved a list of
measures to eliminate the criminal drug market in ten years.

However, the federal government did notice that opposition. Barry
McCaffrey flashed his resentment of criticism by foolishly describing
signers of the letter as a "fringe" movement in remarks before a
Senate Committee. He was heard by the public when "Nightline" did a
Special on federal response to the Times ad.

Another imprudent denigration of the signatories also backfired. The
infamous WSJ "500 Geniuses" editorial produced many outraged
responses. 7 were published; including those of Lynn Carol and Mark
Greer. No letters supporting the WSJ position appeared; one wonders if
they received any.

Meanwhile, "Drug Crazy" hit the bookstores. In this first review we've
seen; the reviewer came to exactly the right conclusions; hopefully
others will also.

Finally, there's an improbable British account of an apparent US
strategy to wage biological warfare on the opium poppy. Quite apart
from the irresponsibility of breeding a pest which might effect other
crops; haven't the geniuses at the DEA heard of synthetic opioids?



The UN General Assembly has called for all its member states to join an
international campaign to combat illegal drug use. In a series of
documents adopted at the end of the "drug summit" held in New York
(June 8-10), the Assembly called for the states to attack not only the
production and trafficking of illicit drugs but also to work to reduce
the demand for these drugs.

By 2003, member states are to have established or enhanced
drug-reduction programmes; strengthened legislation to combat illicit
manufacture, trafficking, and abuse of synthetic drugs; taken steps to
halt the laundering of illegal drug profits; and improved cooperation
between judicial and law enforcement authorities so that they can
effectively deal with the international criminal organisations involved
in the drug trade.

By 2008, member states are to have eliminated or significantly
significant reduction in demand; and eradicated or significantly
reduced cultivation of coca bushes, cannabis plants, and opium poppies.


Pubdate: Sat, 20 Jun 1998
Source: Lancet, The ( UK)
Contact: lancet.editorial@elsevier.co.uk
Website: http://www.thelancet.com/
Author: Michael McCarthy



FORREST SAWYER, ABC NEWS: They say the war on drugs is a multi-billion
dollar disaster.

MICHAEL MASSING; Our drug budget now is $17 billion a year and even by
the drug czar's own admission, we're only treating one half the addicts.

FORREST SAWYER; A disaster that has caused more harm than drug abuse

KEVIN ZEESE, COMMON SENSE FOR DRUG POLICY; In fact, we invest more now in
prisons than we do universities because of the drug war.

FORREST SAWYER; But the general leading the way says those critics, who
are some of the most influential people in the world, are dangerously

give prominence to this drug legalization argument. It's sort of a
fringe group. It has increasingly, with enormous cunning, gotten an
argument into the public dialogue of this country.


Source: ABC News - Nightline
Airdate: Monday, 22 June 1998
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n490.a04.html



It is one thing for The Wall Street Journal editorial page to support
the mislabeled "war on drugs" ( "500 Drug Geniuses," Review & Outlook,
June 10); it is quite another for you to misrepresent the views of
those of us who believe that the "war on drugs is now causing more harm
than drug abuse itself."


Milton Friedman
Stanford, Calif.


Do you really believe that all drug use constitutes abuse, and that
the government should make such personal decisions for us?


Lynn Carol
San Diego


You described us ( for I was one of the signatories) as naive
"geniuses" who were issuing pabulum to the world; claimed that we were
all dupes of George Soros, and suggested that the signatories might be
drug users.


Henry G. Jarecki, M.D.
New York


How can any rational thinker analyze our drug policy and fail to
conclude that it is a monumental failure? We have more people in prison
than any industrialized nation. We've spent hundreds of billions of
dollars on the drug war. We've destroyed families and lives and
undermined Constitutional freedoms. We've made inner city children, who
should have been young business men, into drug dealers. And what do we
have to show for all this effort? Any child or adult with a few dollars
in his pocket can buy any illicit drug in existence anywhere in the


Mark Greer
Porterville, Calif.



The war against drugs, says a new book, is a colossal failure.

Drug Crazy. How We Got Into This Mess and How We Can Get Out. By Mike
Gray. Random House. $23.95.

If World War II had been as successful as America's "war on drugs,"
we'd all be chowing down on bratwurst and naming our newborns after
Adolf and Eva.


In "Drug Crazy," though, reformers are handed some powerful
ammunition. By forcefully detailing the drug war's fiscal costs and
erosions of civil liberties, its futilities and hypocrisies and
corruptions, Gray has made a strong case for a radical re-evaluation of
our laws.

Source: Savannah Morning News
Section: Top Stories - Accent:
Contact: mswendra@savannahnow.com
Website: http://www.savannahmorningnews.com/
Author: Doug Wyatt, Savannah Morning News
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n488.a03.html



It does not look like the nerve centre of the best-kept secret in the
war against drugs. The perimeter walls are dull concrete topped with
barbed wire; the buildings drab; a guardhouse and a huge mechanical
steel gate offer the only entry.

But the compound set beyond the sprawl of tractor factories and grey
apartment blocks of Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, could hold the
answer to tackling the international trade in heroin.


Behind the locked steel doors, spores of a refined and rampant strain
of a fungus called Pleospora papaveracea are stored and cultured. This
could be the weapon that cuts off the heroin trade at source by
devastating the opium poppy fields of Asia's golden crescent and golden
triangle, the principal sources of raw material for the heroin trade.


Source: Sunday Times ( UK)
Contact: editor@sunday-times.co.uk
Pubdate: Sun, 28 Jun 1998
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n505.a09.html


Drug Trade



This week's mix of news contained several articles underscoring the
adaptability of the illegal drug market in bringing its products to
market despite police interference (it helps if the industry standard
is one of unconcern for either the health or welfare of low-level

Amish participation in the criminal drug market received nation-wide
publicity; it should be considered a marketing triumph for
prohibition- but of course won't be seen that way at all.

Even in this era, the submarine story sounds improbable, however, here
it is.



MIAMI -- Canadian women are increasingly being recruited by drug
traffickers who use their "innocent" reputation with border guards to
smuggle drugs, U.S.federal officials say.

Following vacations to Jamaica, four Ontario women since March have
pleaded guilty in Miami for conspiring to import cocaine by swallowing
the substance wrapped in condoms.


Source: Ottawa Citizen ( Canada)
Contact: letters@thecitizen.southam.ca
Website: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/
Pubdate: Sun, 21 Jun 1998
Author: Susan McClelland, The Ottawa Citizen
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n484.a01.html



Federal prosecutors in Pennsylvania yesterday accused two Amish men
of buying cocaine from a gang called the Pagan Motorcycle Club and
distributing the drug to other young members of the religious group
at parties known as "hoedowns."

"We've seen plenty of underage drinking cases but a drug case is
unheard of" among the Amish, said John Pyfer, who is representing
Abner Stoltzfus, 24.


Source: Washington Post
Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm
Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/
Pubdate: Wed, 24 June 1998
Author: Hanna Rosin, Washington Post Staff Writer
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n492.a11.html



MIAMI--It was a typical night at Porky's, a strip joint known for
its Russian dancers in the seedy Miami suburb of Hialeah.

The girls were grinding on the dance floor while, inside the club's
inner office, cut off from the driving rhythms, owner Ludwig Fainberg
was talking business. Big business, federal prosecutors now say: drug
business, Russian Mafia business and how the two were coming together
in a single deal.

And the U.S. government was listening.

According to documents recently filed in federal court here, on that
night in April 1995 Fainberg explained to an undercover U.S. drug
enforcement agent a deal he was brokering between Russian organized
crime and Colombian drug lords to provide a $35-million Soviet navy
submarine to the biggest cocaine cartel in South America.


Source: Washington Post
Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/
Pubdate: Wed, 24 June 1998
Author: Hanna Rosin, Washington Post Staff Writer
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n492.a11.html


Courts & Prisons



As America continues its drug war-inspired orgy of incarceration,
prison tax bills may be the first issue to grab the attention of
voters. There are some signs that the compensatory mechanisms which
have kept prison costs from being an issue may finally have been maxed
out. The near-certainty that this will become a hot topic in
California shortly after 2000 is another good reason to prefer Davis
over Lungren in November.

An irony of the second story is that Oklahoma, one of the destinations
for surplus Wisconsin inmates, sends its own surplus prisoners to be
warehoused in private Texas prisons.

With its usual blithe indifference to either justice or political
reality, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of double jeopardy,
facilitating even more prison overcrowding.

Speaking of the Supremes: lest we become too encouraged by their
ruling on forfeiture, just notice that the test case didn't involve



Kern County: Private firm is ready to make a bid to house state's

Sometime this week, bulldozers will begin to carve the high-desert
landscape of Kern County to make way for a $94 million development
unique in California: a massive, privately built prison.

Sometime later this month, a Senate committee will consider a
constitutional amendment that would assure that not a single felon
convicted in California courts will ever spend a day inside it.

In a state where politicians and voters have consistently embraced
enhanced-sentencing laws, but have in recent years shied away from
nearly every proposal to build new prisons, the private project in
California City is destined to become a battleground in a
big-spending political war.

On one side is the California Correctional Peace Officers Association,
which has become one of the state's most powerful unions because of its
fast-growing membership and its savvy alliance with Gov. Pete Wilson.
It is joined by every major public-safety union in the state.

On the other is the Corrections Corp. of America, the nation's largest
private-prison firm. It is joined by others in the industry as well as
nearly every association of local governments in the state.


Pubdate: Sun, 14 Jun 1998
Source: North County Times ( CA)
Contact: opinion@nctimes.com
Author: Timm Herdt, Star State Bureau Chief
Note: Author's email address is: Herdt@staronline.com
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n488.a12.html



Legislators raise total to 3,200 as Wisconsin prisons are brimming

Madison -- With no room to spare in Wisconsin's crowded prison system,
lawmakers Tuesday gave Corrections Secretary Michael Sullivan authority
to send 1,000 more convicts to prisons in other states.

The Joint Finance Committee approved the transfer of 600 inmates to
private prisons run by the Corrections Corporation of America in
Oklahoma and Tennessee.


Pubdate: Wed, 24 Jun 1998
Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel ( WI)
Contact: jsedit@onwis.com
Fax: ( 414) 224-8280
Website: http://www.jsonline.com/
Author: Richard P. Jones of the Journal Sentinel staff
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n493.a03.html



Tough-on-crime law does not constitute double jeopardy

The Supreme Court sharpened the teeth of California's "three strikes"
law Friday, making it easier for states to stiffen sentences for repeat
offenders based on past crimes.

In a decision hailed by the law's author and criticized by San
Francisco's chief deputy public defender, the justices ruled, 5-4, that
the constitutional protection against being tried twice for the same
crime does not apply to sentencing proceedings in non-death penalty


Source: San Francisco Examiner
Pubdate: June 26, 1998
Contact: letters@examiner.com
Website: http://www.examiner.com/
Author: Victoria Colliver, Emelyn Cruz Lat and Eric Brazil
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n506.a02.html



Case Involved Gas Station Owner Taking Large Amount of Undeclared Cash
to Syria

A sharply divided Supreme Court ruled yesterday that the federal
government cannot seize and keep the money of a person trying to carry
funds out of the country simply because the person failed to fill out
the proper Customs Service forms. The decision marked the first time
the court had struck down a government fine as unconstitutionally
excessive, and dissenting justices said the reasoning may jeopardize a
vast range of financial penalties the government imposes.

The case produced an unorthodox 5-to-4 voting alliance and a majority
opinion by Justice Clarence Thomas that said a punitive forfeiture is
forbidden if it is "grossly disproportional to the gravity" of the


Source: Washington Post
Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm
Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/
Pubdate: Tue, 23 Jun 1998
Author: Joan Biskupic, Washington Post Staff Writer
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n491.a04.html


Medical Marijuana



Not much this week; just updates of two ongoing stories- the
systematic British consideration of (commercial) medical cannabis and
the cliff-hanger in Nevada.



Vanessa Houlder on a research programme that could lead to a currently
illegal drug being cleared for medicinal use.

Rarely has a new research programme caused such a stir. When last week
the UK Government gave the go-ahead to a cannabis farm that would grow
plants for the first large-scale clinical trials of the drug, it seemed
to signal an important change in attitude.

There is now the political will to approve cannabis as a drug, in the
view of Geoffrey Guy, the pharmaceutical entrepreneur behind the
initiative. Four years ago, his request to conduct a similar programme
received a frosty response.


Pubdate: Thu, 18 Jun 1998
Source: Financial Times
Contact: letters.editor@ft.com
Web site: http://www.FT.com Author: Vanessa Houlder



CARSON CITY -- Initial counting by county clerks around Nevada shows
advocates of a plan to authorize marijuana for medical treatment turned
in a few thousand more signatures than they thought.

The secretary of state's office said Friday reports from 11 of the 13
counties that got medical marijuana petitions showed a raw count of
73,756 signatures. The petitioners had estimated the total from all 13
counties at 70,155. Most of the change occurred in Clark County, up
from 43,694 to 45,955; and Washoe County, up from 16,111 to 17,201.


Pubdate: Sun, 21 Jun 1998
Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal
Contact: letters@lvrj.com
Fax: 702-383-4676
Website: http://www.lvrj.com/lvrj_home/
Author: Brendan Riley Associated Press
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n486.a03.html




Not much tobacco news following the death of the Senate bill. This
description of the illegal market which briefly came into being when
Canada increased taxes shows just how hard it is even for a
"legitimate" business to resist the lure of an illegal market. The
Canadian manufacturers of Players and DuMaurier certainly knew the



MASSENA, N.Y. - In 1992, Canadian cigarette companies exported twice as
many cigarettes to the United States as they had the previous year. On
paper, it was as if Americans suddenly decided to smoke twice as many
exotic Canadian brands such as Players, Export A and DuMaurier.

In fact, most of those cigarettes were shipped right back into Canada
in a short-lived but profitable black market that started when Canada
imposed a smoker's tax of $2 per pack. Smugglers pocketed the $2 by
buying the cigarettes tax-free in the United States and selling them at
taxed rates in Canada, netting hundreds of millions of dollars.

A major smuggling point was here in Massena, just a few miles from the
Canadian border.


Pubdate: Sunday 28 June 1998
Source: Seattle Times ( WA)
Contact: opinion@seatimes.com
Website: http://www.seattletimes.com/
Author: Raja Mishra, Knight Ridder Newspapers
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n506.a07.html


International News



There is a plethora of international news; some of the increase
reflects expanding coverage of overseas press by our NewsHawks, some
is a response to the recent UN Special Session. There is also the fact
that we are now able to archive some foreign language press accounts
in translation, a privilege for which we are most grateful. The
overall message in the international news is that the criminal drug
market created by US policy is destructive and out of control.

Our drug warriors can take some comfort from the fact that Sweden
still behaves like a clone of the US, at least when it comes to drug



Assessing the war on drugs:

Organized crime in Canada is now so pervasive that police have been
reduced to putting out isolated fires in a blazing underworld economy,
says RCMP Commissioner Philip Murray.


Pubdate: Fri, 26 Jun 1998
Source: Ottawa Citizen ( Canada)
Section: News A1 / Front
Contact: letters@thecitizen.southam.ca
Website: http://www.ottawacitizen.com/
Author: Ian MacLeod
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n503.a01.html



Scottish penal policy is in crisis. Our prison population per head of
population is the second highest in Europe, 15 per cent higher than in
England and Wales; 70 per cent of the prisoners remanded in custody
awaiting trial or sentence do not receive custodial sentences; the
suicide toll among prisoners is a national disgrace.

Source: Scotsman ( UK)
Contact: Letters_ts@scotsman.com
Website: http://www.scotsman.com/
Pubdate: Sat, 27 Jun 1998



The Bekaa valley in Lebanon gets little from UN

BAALBEK, Lebanon - During Lebanon's long civil war, the Bekaa Valley
flourished as one of the world's most fertile regions for growing
cannabis for hashish and poppies for heroin. In 1992, as it struggled
to emerge from more than a decade of self-destruction and lawlessness,
Lebanon successfully controlled its illicit drug crops, with the
support of the United States. But in the process it left tens of
thousands of farmers indigent.


Source: Boston Globe ( MA)
Contact: letters@globe.com
Website: http://www.boston.com/globe/
Pubdate: Sun, 28 Jun 1998
Author: Charles M. Sennott



Traditional drug policy has failed. I believe we change the trend by
prescribing heroin." This is not a legalise-it-disciple or a member of
the Green party speaking, it is the police chief of the city of
Bielefeld, Horst Kruse. Along with police chiefs and high-ranking
medical officials, even conservative politicians nowadays demand a
change in drug policy. A stock-taking on the occasion of today's German
action day on drug policy.


Pubdate: Tuesday, 16 June 1998
Source: Die Tageszeitung
Authors: Manfred Kriener and Water Saller
Contact: http://www.taz.de/~taz/etc/lesbrief.html
Mail: taz, die tageszeitung., Postfach 610229, 10923 Berlin
Website: http://www.taz.de/~taz/
Translation by: Susanne Schardt
Editors note: Our newshawk is the executive director for European
Cities on Drug Policy. Please check out their website at:



Stockholm -TT- Anyone who criticize today's heavy handed narcotics
policy is immediately branded as a drug liberal.


So says Henrik Tham, Professor of Criminology at Stockholm University,
in answer to the Social Ministers demand in a debate article in Sundays
Dagens Nyheter for the Swedes who backed the call for a new drug policy
to step forward and explain themselves.

Henrik Tham is one of the twelve Swedes who, in connection with the UN
summit on drugs at the beginning of June, signed a call for a new and
milder drugs policy.


Pubdate: Sun, 21, Jun 1998
Source: Aftonbladet
Contact: birgitta.edberg@aftonbladet.se
Website: http://www.aftonbladet.se
Author: Ingrid Dahlbäck/TT
Translation: Olafur Brentmar and John Yates
URL: http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v98.n500.a01.html




17 Questions for Our Political Leaders

Have you ever been in a debate on drug policy, been writing a letter,
or even had a media opportunity and found yourself at a loss for just
the right thing to say?

Check out our 17 Important Questions at:


These have been refined from over 300 submitted by reformers over a 3
month period. We think that they are the type of questions that get
even hardcore prohibitionists stuttering and sputtering.

Please visit this page and use the questions as often as possible.




Read Your Newsletter On-Line

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To read this issue or any future issue on-line go to:


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are meant to serve' - Clarence Darrow -


DS Weekly is one of the many free educational services DrugSense offers
our members. Watch this feature to learn more about what DrugSense can
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News/COMMENTS-Editor: Tom O'Connell (tjeffoc@drugsense.org)
Senior-Editor: Mark Greer (mgreer@drugsense.org)

We wish to thank all our contributors and Newshawks.


In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is
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[Portland NORML notes: The Daily News archive for July 1, 1998, was broken up
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To find the article you were originally referred to, try typing in the letter
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