World Health Organization Suppresses Report Finding Marijuana Safer than Alcohol and Tobacco 2/20/98

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The February 18 edition of Britain's NEW SCIENTIST Magazine reports that the Geneva-based World Health organization (WHO) suppressed, under political pressure, a report which confirmed that marijuana is safer than either alcohol or tobacco. The report, which was to be a part of the WHO's summary report on Cannabis (released in December), was reportedly axed under pressure from the US National Institute on Drug Abuse and the UN International Drugs Control Program, who told the WHO that inclusion of the section would "play into the hands of groups campaigning to legalize marijuana."

According to New Scientist (to which a copy of the suppressed report was leaked) the official explanation of the exclusion of the report was that "the reliability and public health significance of such comparisons are doubtful." But New Scientist also reports that insiders informed them that the report was scientifically sound.

Kevin Zeese, President of Common Sense for Drug Policy Foundation, told The Week Online, "Just business as usual for the drug war establishment. Once again they have shown themselves to be afraid of the truth, to the point of suppressing it. The suppression of information as a method of sustaining a policy which cannot stand up to the truth is a tactic of totalitarian, non-democratic regimes. For the citizens of the free nations of the world, even for those who have never given a thought to the rationale behind the Drug War, this kind of tactic should serve as a warning that something is terribly wrong."

(We are attempting to obtain a copy of the report, for posting on the web. If you have one, please send a copy to us at 2000 P St., NW, Suite 615, Washington, DC 20036.)

You can find the New Science article on the WHO report, which is part of a large special section on marijuana (2/21 edition) at http://marijuana.newscientist.com.

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Issue #30, 2/20/98 Medical Marijuana Support Fund Established | Gingrich Calls Clinton's New Drug Strategy "The Definition of Failure," Pledges GOP Legislative Package | World Health Organization Suppresses Report Finding Marijuana Safer than Alcohol and Tobacco | Needle Exchange Volunteer Arrested in New Jersey: Letters are needed! | Protesting Penn State Professor Julian Heicklen, Four Others to be Charged -- High School Student Suspended for Three Days Without Hearing | Ex-Michigan Gov: Drug Lifer Law Inhumane | Medical Marijuana Activists to Open Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Across Eastern Canada | Interview with Canadian Medical Marijuana Activist Peter Young | Classmates of UK Home Secretary Straw's Son Hand Him Petition for Legalization of Cannabis | Job Opportunity: Drug Policy Foundation seeks Public Policy Director | Editorial: Bill, Newt, and the coming battle over the war
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