Media Alert: The Wall Street Journal hits the nail on the head with regard to the Drug War's destruction of Colombia's society 8/29/97

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On Thursday, 8/28, the Wall Street Journal checked in with a provocative editorial titled, "Whose Drug Problem?" The piece notes that American leaders find it very convenient to point toward outside influences, namely the Colombian government's inability to reign in its narco-criminals, for America's drug use, and, in so doing, create false operative questions such as how much more firepower we should send to the Colombian army. But, they write, "the real problem is that cocaine users in American society are doing such a good job of funding the bad guys in Colombia that a few more helicopters to help the good guys is not likely to make a difference."

The editorial goes on to outline some of the more horrendous consequences of America's Drug War on Colombian society. "The army is locked in a timeless struggle against exceedingly well-armed guerillas... equipped with the best technology money can buy.... In 1996 more than 180,000 Colombians were made refugees by the violence. Some 33,000 people were killed last year alone. In the past month scores of peasants have been murdered and at least five mayors were kidnapped. Colombian President Ernesto Samper's own party asked him to shut down congress and adopt emergency powers in order to end the violence."

The journal concludes by saying that at some point, the Colombians, tired of existing in a U.S.- mandated state of chaos, will finally tell the Americans to deal with their own drug problem.

We agree. And we are asking our membership to take a few minutes to send a letter (or email) to the Journal focusing on the arrogance and immorality of destroying one democratic society in an unachievable and politically disingenuous quest to save another from its self-destructive tendencies. We would also add that just as an unenforceable Prohibition is destabilizing source countries, so it is in America, with exploding prison populations, the erosion of civil rights, and the creation of a culture of violence, especially among the non-affluent young.

As always, we would love to get a copy of any correspondence you send. And if your letter gets published... by all means let us know!

WSJ e-mail: [email protected]

or by mail:

Wall Street Journal
Letters to the Editor
200 Liberty Street
New York, NY 10281

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Issue #9, 8/29/97 International News: US Claims Progress, Fog Lifting in UK Drug Policy, March in Germany, Mexico Blood Bath | Drug War Corruption: Employees at points of entry find that crime pays better than baggage handling | Medical Marijuana: California Attorney General adds a surprising voice to calls for research | Student Drug Testing: An old and nearly forgotten phrase is uttered by a New Jersey judge... Probable cause | Media Alert: The Wall Street Journal hits the nail on the head with regard to the Drug War's destruction of Colombia's society | Justice and Human Rights: Criminal justice systems out of control in the US and China | Link of the Week: Shedding light on the impact of America's overused criminal justice system | Quote of the Week: Drug Czar McCaffrey has figured out one of the problems | Editorial: Needle exchange is still illegal in New Jersey... but that doesn't make it wrong
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