This Week in History 6/13/03

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From time to time, DRCNet will present "This Week in History," recounting of historical events of interest to drug policy that occurred during the coming week in previous years. This first History Week includes two events of great significance in the escalation of the drug war, and other interesting items.

June 17, 1971: President Nixon declares "war on drugs." At a press conference Nixon names drug abuse as "public enemy number one in the United States." He announces the creation of the Special Action Office for Drug Abuse Prevention (SAODAP), to be headed by Dr. Jerome Jaffe, a leading methadone treatment specialist. During the Nixon era, for the only time in the history of the war on drugs, the majority of funding goes towards treatment, rather than law enforcement.

June 19, 1812: The United States goes to war with Great Britain after being cut off from 80% of its Russian hemp supply. Napoleon invades Russia to sever Britain's illegal trade in Russian hemp.

June 19, 1986: The death of Len Bias, a promising college basketball star, from a cocaine overdose, stuns the nation. Ensuing media reports provoked and public concern sparked a political frenzy in which Congress passed harsh mandatory minimum sentences, radically altering the framework of federal criminal sentencing, without holding hearings.

June 19, 1991: Colombia's assembly adopts a news Constitution which bans extradition, to take effect July 5th, in a secret vote. Brutal drug lord Pablo Escobar surrenders to Colombian police the same day.

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Issue #291, 6/13/03 Editorial: The Rule of Law | Global Social Forum Meeting in Cartagena to Draw Broad Spectrum of Global Activists for Colombia Focus -- DRCNet Will Be There | Anatomy of a Victory: How Reformers Rolled Back Souder and the Drug Czar | Ontario Marijuana Laws in the Twilight Zone | Jacksonville Hemp Fest Marred by Police Violence, Warrant Issued for Organizer for Obstructing (In)Justice | Drug Reform and the Democratic Presidential Nominating Process | Sad Day in the Medical Marijuana Movement: Medical Marijuana Patient and Activist Cheryl Miller Passes Away at 57 | DRCNet Urgently Needs Your Donations -- Sullum Book Offer Still Going | This Week in History | Newsbrief: European Union Presidency Calls for Frank Discussion of Drug Laws | Newsbrief: Demonstrations Mark Thailand Drug War Killings | Newsbrief: Oregon Medical Marijuana Provider Gets Prison Time | Newsbrief: Drug Czar Declares War on Summer | Newsbrief: Supreme Courts Again Says No to Cincinnati Drug Zone Ban Law | The Reformer's Calendar
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