Drug War Chronicle

comprehensive coverage of the War on Drugs since 1997

Europa: Proibição de fumar holandesa não se aplicará à maconha, diz ministro da Saúde

A partir de 1º de julho, será ilegal acender um cigarro em restaurantes, hotéis, bares e cafeterias na Holanda, mas a proibição de fumar não se aplica aos baseados feitos somente de maconha. De acordo com a NIS News, o ministro holandês da Saúde, Ab Klink, mandou uma carta a esse respeito à Câmara Baixa na quarta-feira.

Conforme a proibição tabagista, fumar tabaco em bares e demais alojamentos públicos será permitido apenas em áreas restritas em que não se prestam serviços. Mas, a Lei sobre o tabaco se aplica apenas ao fato de fumar produtos feitos total ou parcialmente de tabaco. Os fumantes de maconha que enrolarem seus baseados sem lhes acrescentar tabaco poderão continuar fazendo-o em paz na Holanda.

Mas, muitos holandeses e outros aficionados europeus da maconha estão acostumados a enrolar os baseados deles com tabaco. Em sua carta, Klink disse que não espera que os fumantes de maconha mudem em massa para baseados sem tabaco, mas organizará um estudo para ver se os hábitos de fumar de clientes de cafeterias mudam por causa da nova lei.

América Latina: Fim de semana de Páscoa sangrento em guerra às drogas do México

A violência relacionada com a proibição das drogas no México não tirou folha na Páscoa, já que 59 pessoas foram mortas no período de três dias entre a Quinta-Feira Santa e o Domingo de Páscoa, de acordo com informes da imprensa mexicana compilados pelo serviço de notícias Frontera NorteSur (FNS) da Universidade Estadual do Novo México. As vítimas incluem policiais retirados e ativos, quatro soldados, traficantes de rua, vendedores de carros usados e um cidadão estadunidense, Humberto Flores, cubano de nascimento, que foi abatido em Cancun.

A violência atravessou o país, sendo que houve matanças nos estados fronteiriços do norte (Baixa Califórnia, Sonora, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, Tamaulipas), no centro (Guanajuato, o Estado do México) e na Costa do Pacífico (Oaxaca, Guerrero, Sinaloa). Como apontou o FNS: “Mais uma vez, o padrão geográfico de matanças demonstra como o crime organizado estendeu seu alcance violento por todos os cantos do país”.

Mas, há zonas de conflito e uma delas é Cidade Juárez, do outro lado do Rio Grande vindo de El Paso. Cerca de vinte e cinco assassinatos aconteceram lá ao longo do fim de semana de Páscoa, inclusive foram encontradas quatro pessoas carbonizadas em Los Lamentos em Chihuahua, localizada na fronteira com o Novo México. O chefe de polícia do lugar cruzou a fronteira estadunidense rumo ao Novo México em busca de asilo depois que seus ajudantes pediram demissão, dizendo que temia os traficantes.

Mais abaixo em Reynosa em Tamaulipas, o cadáver de Araceli de la Cruz, uma mulher de 47 anos seqüestrada no dia 13 de março, foi desovado diante de um posto do Exército vendado e com uma das mãos mutilada e enfiada na boca dela. Junto com o corpo havia uma nota dirigida a um general do Exército mexicano advertindo-lhe do destino que recai sobre os informantes.

Nos dois últimos anos, quando o governo mexicano levou a cabo enormes ofensivas contra as organizações do tráfico e os cartéis têm brigado entre eles mesmos pelo controle das franquias lucrativas, o saldo de vítimas esteve em torno dos 2.000 ao ano. Parece que 2008 segue o ritmo, se é que não o passou. E a matança continua: Mais nove assassinatos foram informados em Cidade Juárez por volta de meados desta semana.

Europa: Tchecos pedem a maconha medicinal legal

Enquanto deputados no parlamento tcheco debatem uma proposta de descriminalizar o porte de pequenas quantidades de maconha e o cultivo de até três plantas (vide artigo da semana passada), ativistas de Cannabis Is Medicine fizeram um apelo para que legalizassem o consumo medicinal de maconha já que estão nessa. O grupo pede ao governo que autoriza os pacientes a cultivar até 1Kg360g de maconha ao ano.

O pedido de Cannabis Is Medicine foi respaldado por uma série de personalidades tchecas, inclusive a cantora Marta Kubisova, a ex-deputada Tana Fiserova e a cineasta Olga Sommerova. Isso acontece menos de um mês depois que a Suprema Corte da República Tcheca despronunciou a condenação de uma mulher por cultivo porque a consumia medicinalmente.

Os pacientes devem poder cultivar mais do que as três plantas previstas conforme a proposta de descriminalização, disse Jiri Richter, diretor de um agrupamento de organizações sem fins lucrativos que trabalham no tratamento e prevenção às drogas. “Apenas três plantas de cânabis, isto é ridículo”, disse à agência tcheca de notícias CTK.

Richter acrescentou que achava que a maconha deveria ser completamente legal. Mas, embora o apoio à descriminalização pareça ser forte dentro da coalizão dominante, considera-se que propostas de legalização não têm muitas chances.

Semanal: Esta semana na história

1º de abril de 1909: A Lei de exclusão do ópio [Opium Exclusion Act] entra em vigor.

03 de abril de 1953: Com o apoio de Allen W. Dulles, diretor da Agência Central de Inteligência dos EUA, Richard C. Helms propõe verbas para um programa de pesquisa de guerra bioquímica chamado MKULTRA, que, entre outras coisas, administra lSD a seus participantes inscientes.

30 de março de 1961: A Convenção Única sobre Entorpecentes se convoca na Cidade de Nova Iorque, o primeiro de três tratados internacionais que obrigam os países signatários a sistemas proibicionistas.

02 de abril de 1988: The Economist escreve um editorial favorável a pôr consumidores de drogas dentro da lei permitindo-lhes comprar doses limitadas de drogas que tenham sido feitas e distribuídas legalmente.

30 de março de 1992: Bill Clinton, durante a campanha presidencial de 1992, diz: “Quando estive na Inglaterra experimentei maconha uma ou duas vezes e eu não gostei. Não inalei”.

29 de março de 2000: A CNN informa que uma varredura antidrogas multinacional conhecida como Operação Conquistador captura 2.331 pessoas, 4.966 quilogramas de cocaína, 55,6 quilogramas de heroína e 362,5 toneladas de maconha. A operação de 17 dias acontece em Panamá, Colômbia, Venezuela, Bolívia, Equador, Suriname, Trinidade e Tobago, Montserrat, Dominica, São Cristóvão e Neves, Antígua, Anguilha, São Martim, as Ilhas Virgens Britânicas, Barbuda, Granada, Barbados, São Vicente e Granadinas, Santa Lúcia, Aruba, Curaçau, Jamaica, Haiti, a República Dominicana e Porto Rico.

1º de abril de 2000: O principal jornal nacional do Canadá, The National Post, escreve um editorial a favor da legalização da maconha.

31 de março de 2001: Um editorial em The Lancet – o principal diário de medicina do Reino Unido – critica a futilidade da proibição das drogas e as presentes estratégias antidrogas dos Estados Unidos.

28 de março de 2002: O juiz federal Emmet G. Sullivan decide que a Emenda Barr [Barr Amendment], que impede o Distrito de Colúmbia de considerar uma iniciativa eleitoral pró-maconha medicinal, infringe os direitos da Primeira Emenda.

28 de março de 2003: A Associação das Indústrias do Cânhamo, vários fabricantes de alimentos e cosméticos à base de cânhamo e a Associações dos Consumidores Orgânicos pedem ao Nono Circuito federal que impeça a DEA outra vez de acabar com a venda legal de produtos feitos de sementes e azeite de cânhamo nos EUA.

02 de abril de 2003: Ron Paul, deputado federal dos EUA, pede ao Tribunal de Contas do Governo (GAO, na sigla em inglês) dos EUA que investigue se o Gabinete de Política Nacional de Fiscalização das Drogas violou a proibição do Congresso de gastar verbas em publicidade ou propaganda.

Semanal: Blogando no Bar Clandestino

Junto com a nossa reportagem investigativa da Crônica, desde o verão passado a DRCNet também esteve proporcionando conteúdo diário na forma de blogagem no Bar Clandestino Stop the Drug War - muitíssimas pessoas estiveram lendo-o recentemente-, assim como links às Últimas Notícias (canto inferior esquerdo) e mais informações. Cheque a DRCNet todos os dias para ficar a par da reforma das políticas de drogas!

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/dc-beer-raid-small.jpg
reide anticerveja da época da lei seca, Washington, DC (Biblioteca do Congresso)

Desde a última edição:

Scott Morgan é autor de: “No futuro, a guerra às drogas será travada por robôs” [In the Future, the Drug War Will be Fought by Robots], “Países Baixos são considerados mais estáveis e prósperos do que EUA” [Netherlands Rated More Stable and Prosperous Than U.S.], “Envenenando o debate das políticas de drogas em 8 passos simples” [Poisoning the Drug Policy Debate in 8 Simple Steps], “1/3 das pessoas admitidas ao tratamento por maconha não tinha fumado maconha!” [1/3 of People Admitted to Marijuana Treatment Hadn't Been Smoking Marijuana!] e “Uma nota à imprensa falsa e vergonhosa do subsecretário antidrogas” [A False and Embarrassing Press Release from the Deputy Drug Czar].

Kalif Mathieu, estagiário da DRCNet, contribui com: “Agricultores comuns sofrem o pior do combate afegão às drogas” [Simple Farmers Bearing Brunt of Afghan Drug War].

David Guard publica numerosas notas à imprensa, alertas e outros anúncios organizacionais no blog In the Trenches.

Por favor, junte-se a nós nos Blogs do Leitor.

Obrigado por ler, e escrever...

Retorno: Você lê a Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas?

Você lê a Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas? Se sim, gostaríamos de ouvi-lo. A DRCNet precisa de duas coisas:

  1. Estamos entre doações ao boletim informativo e isso torna a nossa carência de doações mais premente. É grátis ler a Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas, mas não produzi-la! Clique aqui para fazer uma doação por cartão de crédito ou PayPal ou para imprimir um formulário a fim de mandá-lo por correio.

  2. Por favor, mande citações e informes sobre de que maneira você aplica o nosso fluxo de informação, para uso em futuras propostas de doação e cartas a financiadores ou possíveis financiadores. Você usa a DRCNet como fonte para falar em público? Para cartas ao editor? Ajuda a conversar com amigos ou sócios sobre a questão? Pesquisa? Para instrução própria? Você mudou de opinião sobre quaisquer aspectos das políticas de drogas desde que se inscreveu ou foi inspirado a se envolver na causa? Você reproduz ou republica partes dos nossos informativos em outras listas ou em outros informativos? Tem quaisquer críticas, reclamações ou sugestões? Queremos ouvi-las também. Por favor, mande a sua resposta - tudo bem se forem uma ou duas frases; seria ótimo ter mais também - mande um e-mail a [email protected] ou responda a um endereço eletrônico da Crônica ou use o nosso formulário eletrônico de comentário. Faça o favor de nos informar se podemos reproduzir os seus comentários, e, em caso positivo, se podemos incluir o seu nome ou se deseja continuar anônimo. IMPORTANTE: Mesmo se você nos deu este tipo de retorno antes, seria útil termos o seu retorno atualizado agora também - precisamos saber o que você acha!

Mais uma vez, por favor, ajude a manter a Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas viva nesta época importante! Clique aqui para fazer uma doação eletrônica ou envie o seu cheque ou ordem de pagamento a: Caixa Postal 18402, Washington, DC, 20036. Faça a sua doação a nome da Fundação DRCNet para fazer uma doação dedutível do imposto de renda à Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas - lembre-se se escolher um dos nossos prêmios gratuitos que reduzirão a parte da sua doação que é dedutível de impostos - ou faça uma doação não-dedutível ao nosso trabalho de lóbi - pela Internet ou através de chegue pagável à Rede Coordenadora da Reforma das Políticas de Drogas no mesmo endereço. Também aceitamos contribuições em ações - mande um e-mail a [email protected] para as informações necessárias.

Estudantes: Faça o seu estágio na DRCNet e ajude a parar a guerra às drogas!

Quer ajudar a acabar com a "guerra contra as drogas" enquanto também recebe créditos universitários? Candidate-se ao programa de práticas da DRCNet para este outono (ou primavera) e você pode vir se somar à equipe e nos ajudar a travar a luta!

A DRCNet (também conhecida como "Stop the Drug War") tem um bom histórico de dar experiência considerável de trabalho aos nossos estagiários - você não vai passar o verão arquivando ou passando recados, você desempenhará um papel integral em um ou mais dos nossos programas empolgantes. As opções de trabalho que você pode realizar conosco incluem a comunicação com a coalizão como parte da campanha para revogar o dispositivo antidrogas da Lei de Ensino Superior [Higher Education Act] e expandir esse trabalho para abranger outras leis ruins sobre as drogas como disposições parecidas na lei de previdência social e moradia pública; contato na blogosfera e na rede; pesquisa e comunicação com a mídia; trabalho na página (pesquisa, redação, suporte técnico); possivelmente outras áreas. Se você for escolhido para o estágio, lutaremos para compatibilizar os seus interesses e habilidades com qualquer área em que você se encaixar da melhor maneira.

Embora os nossos estágios não sejam remunerados, nós lhe reembolsaremos a passagem de metrô e a DRCNet é um lugar divertido e gratificante para se trabalhar. Para se candidatar, favor enviar o seu currículo a David Guard pelo [email protected] e tome a liberdade de nos contatar pelo (202) 293-8340. Esperamos ter notícias suas! Confira a nossa página em http://stopthedrugwar.org para saber mais sobre a nossa organização.

Webmasters: Ajude o movimento pondo feeds de agregação da DRCNet na sua página!

Você é fã da DRCNet e tem uma página que gostaria de usar para difundir a mensagem com mais força do que um único link ao nosso sítio pode conseguir? Temos o prazer de anunciar que os feeds de agregação de conteúdo da DRCNet estão disponíveis. Tanto se o interesse dos seus leitores está na reportagem investigativa quanto na Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas, o comentário corrente nos nossos blogs, a informação sobre subtópicos específicos da guerra às drogas, agora podemos dar-lhes códigos personalizáveis para que você os ponha nos lugares adequados no seu blog ou página e atualizem automaticamente os links ao conteúdo de conscientização da DRCNet.

Por exemplo, se você for um grande fã da Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas e acha que os seus leitores tirariam benefícios dela, pode ter as manchetes da última edição, ou uma porção delas, aparecendo e atualizando-se automaticamente quando sair cada nova edição.

Se a sua página for dedicada às políticas de maconha, pode publicar o nosso arquivo temático, com links a todos os artigos que publicamos na nossa página acerca da maconha – os artigos da Crônica, as publicações nos blogs, a lista de eventos, links a notícias externas e mais. O mesmo vale para a redução de danos, o seqüestro de bens, a violência do narcotráfico, os programas de troca de seringas, o Canadá, as iniciativas eleitorais, quase cem tópicos diferentes que rastreamos correntemente. (Visite o portal da Crônica, na coluna direita, para ver a lista atual completa.)

Se você gosta especialmente da nossa nova seção do Bar Clandestino, há conteúdo novo todos os dias lidando com todas as questões e você pode colocar links a essas publicações ou a subseções do Bar Clandestino.

Clique aqui para ver uma amostra do que está disponível - por favor, note que a extensão, a aparência e demais detalhes de como isso aparecerá na sua página podem ser personalizados para se adequarem às suas necessidades e preferências.

Por favor, saiba também que ficaremos felizes em fazer-lhe mais permutas do nosso conteúdo disponível sob pedido (apesar de não podermos prometer o cumprimento imediato de tais solicitações já que, em muitos casos, a oportunidade dependerá da disponibilidade do nosso web designer). Visite o nosso Mapa do Sítio para ver o que está disponível atualmente – qualquer feed RSS disponível ali também está disponível como feed de javascript para a sua página (junto com o feed da Crônica que não aparece ainda, mas que você já pode encontrar na página de feeds relacionada acima). Experimente o nosso gerador automático de feeds aqui.

Entre em contato conosco se quiser assistência ou informe-nos sobre o que está relacionando e aonde. E obrigado de antemão pelo seu apoio.

Recurso: A página da DRCNet oferece uma grande quantidade de feeds RSS ao seu leitor

Os feeds RSS são uma onda do futuro – e a DRCNet os oferece agora! A última edição da Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas está disponível usando RSS em http://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle/feed.

Temos muitos outros feeds RSS disponíveis também, sobre cerca de cem subtópicos diferentes das políticas de drogas que começamos a rastrear desde o relançamento da nossa página neste verão – relacionando não somente os artigos da Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas, mas também as publicações no Bar Clandestino, as listas de eventos, os links a notícias externas e mais – e para as nossas publicações diárias nos blogs e em seus diferentes subendereços. Visite o nosso Mapa do Sítio para ler a série completa.

Obrigado por se sintonizar na DRCNet e na reforma das políticas de drogas!

Recurso: É possível acessar o Calendário do Reformador através da página da DRCNet

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/appointmentbook.jpg
Com o lançamento da nossa nova página, O Calendário do Reformador não aparecerá mais como parte do boletim Crônica da Guerra Contra as Drogas, mas será mantido como seção de nossa nova página:

O Calendário do Reformador publica eventos grandes e pequenos de interesse para os reformadores das políticas de drogas ao redor do mundo. Seja uma grande conferência internacional, uma manifestação que reúna pessoas de toda a região ou um fórum na universidade local, queremos saber para que possamos informar os demais também.

Porém, precisamos da sua ajuda para mantermos o calendário atualizado, então, por favor, entre em contato conosco e não suponha que já estamos informados sobre o evento ou que vamos saber dele por outra pessoa, porque isso nem sempre acontece.

Southeast Asia: Thailand Launches New "War on Drugs," But Promises No Killings (Maybe)

Five years ago, the Thai government of then Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawtra launched a bloody "war on drugs" in which an estimated 2,500 people were killed. Now, his political allies have announced that its successor has gotten underway, but they say they will not resort to extra-judicial executions of suspected drug peddlers and users.

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/thai-officials-cnd08.jpg
Thai officials attend NGO human rights panel slamming Thai government at UN drug summit in Vienna last month
"Drugs are a chronic problem," Deputy Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat said at a ceremony launching the six-month initiative. "Whoever is involved, police and the army will decisively arrest and prosecute the traffickers. But we will not kill or hurt anyone; otherwise, people will say this is government policy."

But Interior Minister Chalerm Yoobumrung, who is in charge of the campaign, sounded more ominous. The government would follow the rule of law, he said, then added: "If anyone does not want to die, don't walk this road," he said.

Chalerm said he had a list of 10,000 drug users compiled by police. "I can assure you all in the media that you will not get bored -- you will witness new and bold measures in this campaign," he said.

During the last Thai "war on drugs," human rights organizations accused the government of allowing police and soldiers to murder drug suspects. Thaksin defended his repressive apparatus, saying the deaths were "bad guys killing bad guys," and an investigation of his government by his government claimed security forces were acting in self-defense.

Thai officials complained that drug abuse had increased in the past two years. According to the Thai Justice Ministry, there are an estimated 570,000 drug users, up from 460,000 in 2003. While heroin is available, the most significant hard drug is methamphetamine.

This Week in History

Posted in:

April 8, 1989: Miguel Angel Felix Gallardo is arrested in Mexico. Guillermo Gonzalez Calderoni leads a team of Federal agents who arrest the drug lord in a residential suburb of Guadalajara. Gallardo is imprisoned on charges relating to the kidnapping and murder of Enrique Camarena. His nephews, the Arellano-Felix brothers, inherit part of his drug-trafficking empire.

April 6, 1995: ABC News airs a special entitled "America's War on Drugs: Searching for Solutions" in which legalization is presented as an alternative to the failing war on drugs.

April 6, 1998: Dr. Dennis Rosenbaum's six year study of 1,798 students, "Assessing the Effects of School-based Drug Education: A Six Year Multilevel Analysis of Project DARE," finds that "DARE had no long-term effects on a wide range of drug use measures," that DARE does not "prevent drug use at the stage in adolescent development when drugs become available and widely used, namely during the high school years," and that "DARE may actually be counterproductive."

April 5, 2000: The Journal of the American Medical Association publishes "Trends in Medical Use and Abuse of Opioid Analgesics." The researchers conclude: "Conventional wisdom suggests that the abuse potential of opioid analgesics is such that increases in medical use of these drugs will lead inevitably to increases in their abuse. The data from this study with respect to the opioids in the class of morphine provide no support for this hypothesis. The present trend of increasing medical use of opioid analgesics to treat pain does not appear to be contributing to increases in the health consequences of opioid analgesic abuse."

April 6, 2000: The First National Clinical Conference on Cannabis Therapeutics convenes at the University of Iowa.

April 9, 2002: NORML launches a $500,000 campaign featuring bus shelter signs and telephone booth posters carrying a quote from New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who when asked whether he had ever tried marijuana said, "You bet I did. And I enjoyed it." NORML used Bloomberg as the centerpiece of its campaign to urge the city to stop arresting and jailing people for smoking marijuana. "Millions of people smoke marijuana today. They come from all walks of life, and that includes your own mayor," said NORML Executive Director Keith Stroup.

April 8, 2003: The US House of Representatives Government Reform's Subcommittee on Criminal Justice, Drug Policy, and Human Resources holds a hearing on the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas and Counterdrug Technology Assessment programs because, as Subcommittee Chairman Souder stated, "HIDTA has reached far beyond its intended focus on national drug trafficking. We will need to consider how best to streamline and increase accountability within the HIDTA program."

April 10, 2003: In the wake of the federal conviction of medical marijuana grower Ed Rosenthal, US Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA) and 27 other members of Congress introduce H.R. 1717 (the "Truth in Trials Act").

Resource: Reformer's Calendar Accessible Through DRCNet Web Site

Posted in:

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/appointmentbook.jpg
DRCNet's Reformer's Calendar is a tool you can use to let the world know about your events, and find out what is going on in your area in the issue. This resource used to run in our newsletter each week, but now is available from the right hand column of most of the pages on our web site.

The Reformer's Calendar publishes events large and small of interest to drug policy reformers around the world. Whether it's a major international conference, a demonstration bringing together people from around the region or a forum at the local college, we want to know so we can let others know, too.

But we need your help to keep the calendar current, so please make sure to contact us and don't assume that we already know about the event or that we'll hear about it from someone else, because that doesn't always happen.

Resource: DRCNet Web Site Offers Wide Array of RSS Feeds for Your Reader

Posted in:

RSS feeds are the wave of the future -- and DRCNet now offers them! The latest Drug War Chronicle issue is now available using RSS at http://stopthedrugwar.org/chronicle/feed online.

We have many other RSS feeds available as well, following about a hundred different drug policy subtopics that we began tracking since the relaunch of our web site this summer -- indexing not only Drug War Chronicle articles but also Speakeasy blog posts, event listings, outside news links and more -- and for our daily blog postings and the different subtracks of them. Visit our Site Map page to peruse the full set.

Thank you for tuning in to DRCNet and drug policy reform!

Webmasters: Help the Movement by Running DRCNet Syndication Feeds on Your Web Site!

Are you a fan of DRCNet, and do you have a web site you'd like to use to spread the word more forcefully than a single link to our site can achieve? We are pleased to announce that DRCNet content syndication feeds are now available. Whether your readers' interest is in-depth reporting as in Drug War Chronicle, the ongoing commentary in our blogs, or info on specific drug war subtopics, we are now able to provide customizable code for you to paste into appropriate spots on your blog or web site to run automatically updating links to DRCNet educational content.

For example, if you're a big fan of Drug War Chronicle and you think your readers would benefit from it, you can have the latest issue's headlines, or a portion of them, automatically show up and refresh when each new issue comes out.

If your site is devoted to marijuana policy, you can run our topical archive, featuring links to every item we post to our site about marijuana -- Chronicle articles, blog posts, event listings, outside news links, more. The same for harm reduction, asset forfeiture, drug trade violence, needle exchange programs, Canada, ballot initiatives, roughly a hundred different topics we are now tracking on an ongoing basis. (Visit the Chronicle main page, right-hand column, to see the complete current list.)

If you're especially into our new Speakeasy blog section, new content coming out every day dealing with all the issues, you can run links to those posts or to subsections of the Speakeasy.

Click here to view a sample of what is available -- please note that the length, the look and other details of how it will appear on your site can be customized to match your needs and preferences.

Please also note that we will be happy to make additional permutations of our content available to you upon request (though we cannot promise immediate fulfillment of such requests as the timing will in many cases depend on the availability of our web site designer). Visit our Site Map page to see what is currently available -- any RSS feed made available there is also available as a javascript feed for your web site (along with the Chronicle feed which is not showing up yet but which you can find on the feeds page linked above). Feel free to try out our automatic feed generator, online here.

Contact us for assistance or to let us know what you are running and where. And thank you in advance for your support.

Students: Intern at DRCNet and Help Stop the Drug War!

Posted in:

Want to help end the "war on drugs," while earning college credit too? Apply for a DRCNet internship for this fall semester (or spring) and you could come join the team and help us fight the fight!

DRCNet (also known as "Stop the Drug War") has a strong record of providing substantive work experience to our interns -- you won't spend the summer doing filing or running errands, you will play an integral role in one or more of our exciting programs. Options for work you can do with us include coalition outreach as part of the campaign to repeal the drug provision of the Higher Education Act, and to expand that effort to encompass other bad drug laws like the similar provisions in welfare and public housing law; blogosphere/web outreach; media research and outreach; web site work (research, writing, technical); possibly other areas. If you are chosen for an internship, we will strive to match your interests and abilities to whichever area is the best fit for you.

While our internships are unpaid, we will reimburse you for metro fare, and DRCNet is a fun and rewarding place to work. To apply, please send your resume to David Guard at [email protected], and feel free to contact us at (202) 293-8340. We hope to hear from you! Check out our web site at http://stopthedrugwar.org to learn more about our organization.

Feedback: Do You Read Drug War Chronicle?

Posted in:

Do you read Drug War Chronicle? If so, we'd like to hear from you. DRCNet needs two things:

  1. We are in between newsletter grants, and that makes our need for donations more pressing. Drug War Chronicle is free to read but not to produce! Click here to make a donation by credit card or PayPal, or to print out a form to send in by mail.

  2. Please send quotes and reports on how you put our flow of information to work, for use in upcoming grant proposals and letters to funders or potential funders. Do you use DRCNet as a source for public speaking? For letters to the editor? Helping you talk to friends or associates about the issue? Research? For your own edification? Have you changed your mind about any aspects of drug policy since subscribing, or inspired you to get involved in the cause? Do you reprint or repost portions of our bulletins on other lists or in other newsletters? Do you have any criticisms or complaints, or suggestions? We want to hear those too. Please send your response -- one or two sentences would be fine; more is great, too -- email [email protected] or reply to a Chronicle email or use our online comment form. Please let us know if we may reprint your comments, and if so, if we may include your name or if you wish to remain anonymous. IMPORTANT: Even if you have given us this kind of feedback before, we could use your updated feedback now too -- we need to hear from you!

Again, please help us keep Drug War Chronicle alive at this important time! Click here to make a donation online, or send your check or money order to: DRCNet, P.O. Box 18402, Washington, DC 20036. Make your check payable to DRCNet Foundation to make a tax-deductible donation for Drug War Chronicle -- remember if you select one of our member premium gifts that will reduce the portion of your donation that is tax-deductible -- or make a non-deductible donation for our lobbying work -- online or check payable to Drug Reform Coordination Network, same address. We can also accept contributions of stock -- email [email protected] for the necessary info.

Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

Along with our weekly in-depth Chronicle reporting, DRCNet has since late summer also been providing daily content in the way of blogging in the Stop the Drug War Speakeasy -- huge numbers of people have been reading it recently -- as well as Latest News links (upper right-hand corner of most web pages), event listings (lower right-hand corner) and other info. Check out DRCNet every day to stay on top of the drug reform game!

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/dc-beer-raid-small.jpg
prohibition-era beer raid, Washington, DC (Library of Congress)

Since last issue:

Scott Morgan writes: "New Study: Pot Smokers Aren't Drug Addicts, They Just Like Pot," "Even if We Succeed, The Drug Warriors Will Take All the Credit," "South Park Takes on Drug Prohibition," and "Winning 'Em Over One at a Time."

DRCNet intern Eric Wilhelm contributes: "Looking for a New Boogie Man," while intern Amanda Shaffer offers: "Southpark: 11 Years of Exposing Drug War Fallacies."

David Guard posts numerous press releases, action alerts and other organizational announcements in the In the Trenches blog.

Please join us in the Reader Blogs too.

Thanks for reading, and writing...

Spring Special: "Stop the Drug War" Knapsacks from StoptheDrugWar.org

Posted in:

We are pleased to announce a DRCNet "spring special": the new StoptheDrugWar.org knapsack. Promote the Stop the Drug War cause by buying this new DRCNet membership premium and using it to carry around your books or other belongings for work, school, or wherever life takes you!

The Stop the Drug War bag is yours on request with any donation sized $35 or more. Just visit our online donation page at http://stopthedrugwar.org/donate, where you can place your order by credit card or PayPal, or if you prefer, print out a form to send in by mail. We also continue all our other recent offers -- visit our donation page online to view all the offerings in the righthand column.

Your donation will help DRCNet as we advance our campaign to stop dangerous SWAT raids in routine situations; to take on new issues like the drug penalties in welfare and housing law; to advance the dialogue on drug legalization; to build on our stunning web site successes of the last third of 2007; all while continuing to publish our acclaimed and widely-read newsletter, Drug War Chronicle.

So please make a generous donation today to help the cause! I know you will feel the money was well spent after you see what DRCNet has in store. Please note that contributions to the Drug Reform Coordination Network, our lobbying entity, are not tax-deductible. Tax-deductible donations can be made to DRCNet Foundation, our educational wing. (Choosing one or more gifts will reduce the portion of your donation that you can deduct by the retail cost of the item.) Both groups receive member mail at: DRCNet, P.O. Box 18402, Washington, DC 20036.

Thank you for your support, and hope to hear from you soon.

Sincerely,


David Borden, Executive Director
StoptheDrugWar.org (DRCNet)
P.O. Box 18402, Washington, DC 20036
http://stopthedrugwar.org

Latin America: Ecuador Files Complaint Against Colombia for Spraying Coca Fields Near Border

Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Maria Isabel Salvador announced Monday that her government has filed a complaint with the International Court of Justice (World Court) asking it to order Colombia to stop spraying herbicides on coca fields along its border. The court sits in the Hague.

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/eradication.jpg
eradication: much pain, no gain
The move comes as tensions between Ecuador and Colombia remain high over a Colombian military raid last month into Ecuadorian territory that killed a high-level Colombian guerrilla leader, several of his comrades, an unclear number of Mexican students, and possibly, one Ecuadorian citizen.

During a Monday press conference, Salvador said that Ecuador had tried for years to get Colombia to stop spraying near the border and "the diplomatic process was exhausted." There was "overwhelming evidence" that herbicidal spray has crossed into national territory, ''and as a result the health and economics of numerous Ecuadorians have been seriously affected.''

Ecuador will ask the world court to rule that Colombia violated its sovereignty. It seeks an ordered halt to spraying within six miles of the border, as well as damages from Colombia.

Colombia had agreed in late 2005 to suspend spraying near the border, but started up again in December 2006, saying the guerrillas had swarmed into the area. In February of this year, Colombia announced another suspension, saying it would eradicate plants by hand, but Ecuador says it is not sure Colombia would not start spraying again in the future.

Europe: Dutch Court Throws Out Maastricht Coffee Shop Ban on Foreigners

A district court judge in the Dutch border city of Maastricht Tuesday overturned a municipal ordinance ordering coffee shops to refuse to serve foreign clients, according to reports compiled by NIS News. The city had imposed the ban as an experimental measure in 2005, in part to appease the neighboring Belgian, French and German governments, who complain that their citizens go to Holland to score, and in part to appease conservative Justice Minister Peit Hein Donner.

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/maastricht-coffee-shop.jpg
downstairs of a coffee shop, Maastricht (courtesy Wikimedia)
One coffee shop was shut down for three months in 2006 because it did not follow the ban on foreigners. But it reopened three months later.

In the meantime, a legal challenge to the ordinance wound through the courts. Now, a Dutch judge has ruled that because the sale of marijuana is legal in practice under Dutch law, ordinances barring foreigners from partaking in that legal activity amount to discrimination by nationality, which is banned by the Dutch constitution unless there are objective, reasonable grounds to justify it. The judge held that no such grounds exist in the present case.

As a Dutch city bordering neighboring countries where marijuana policies are not so relaxed, Maastricht has been the locus of numerous battles over marijuana sales. Just three weeks ago, courts ruled against its bid to set up coffee houses on a designated strip on the city's outskirts to mitigate congestion from foreign "drug tourists."

Search and Seizure: Vermont Supreme Court Throws Out Marijuana Conviction Based on Warrantless Aerial Surveillance

In a decision handed down last Friday, the Vermont Supreme Court threw out the felony marijuana cultivation conviction of a man caught growing marijuana following a warrantless flyover of his rural property by a military helicopter. Vermont residents have a broad privacy right "that ascends into the airspace above their homes and property," the court held in State v. Bryant.

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/eradication-helicopter.jpg
marijuana eradication helicopter, Nashville
The case began in 2003, when Stephen Bryant, who owned a remote Addison County home, told a local official he didn't want trespassers. That unnamed official "found defendant's insistence on privacy to be 'paranoid,'" the opinion noted, and suggested that a Vermont State Police team do a flyover to look for marijuana. Under the rules of the state's Marijuana Eradication Team, which uses Vermont Army National Guard helicopters and pilots, flights are supposed to stay 500 feet above the ground. But an August 7, 2003 surveillance flight dipped down to 100 feet and hovered above Bryant's property for half an hour.

Troopers in the chopper saw marijuana plants, then used that information to obtain a search warrant. Bryant was arrested and charged with marijuana possession and cultivation. At trial, he argued that he used marijuana for medicinal purposes to treat an old work injury. Jurors acquitted him of possession, but convicted him of cultivation. In June, 2005, he was sentenced to 45 days. His appeal followed.

The Vermont constitution protects the privacy rights of residents even if it means some pot plants may go unseized, the court held in an opinion written by Associate Justice Marilyn Skoglund for the 4-1 majority.

"We protect defendant's marijuana plots against such surveillance so that law-abiding citizens may relax in their backyards, enjoying a sense of security that they are free from unreasonable surveillance. Vermonters expect -- at least at a private, rural residence on posted land -- that they will be free from intrusions that interrupt their use of their property, expose their intimate activities, or create undue noise, wind, or dust," wrote Skoglund.

"With technological advances in surveillance techniques, the privacy-protection question is no longer whether police have physically invaded a constitutionally protected area. Rather, the inquiry is whether the surveillance invaded a constitutionally protected legitimate expectation of privacy," she added.

"The decision is a boon to all Vermonters," said Middlebury attorney William Nelson, who represented Bryant at the Supreme Court. "It protects our privacy when we are out of doors, on our own property, and in our own yards," he told the Burlington Free Press after the decision.

The opinion serves as further evidence that the state constitution gives Vermonters greater privacy protection than federal laws do, Vermont law school professor Cheryl Hanna told the Free Press. "A lot of people feel the federal government doesn't respect privacy rights after Sept. 11," said Hanna. "Vermonters, at least at the state level, have that additional check on what the government can do."

Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cop Stories

A Pittsburgh cop rips off the evidence locker, and four Metro Detroit cops get indicted for slinging steroids, helping a biker gang, and lying to the feds. Let's get to it:

In Pittsburgh, a retired Penn Hills police lieutenant was charged last Friday with stealing thousands of dollars worth of heroin and cocaine from department evidence lockers. Former Lt. William Markel, 54, is charged with three counts of theft and three counts of possession of a controlled substance. Markel went down after narcotics detectives told the police chief 110 bags of heroin were missing from a locked evidence locker. Further investigation revealed that an additional $2,000 worth of crack and powder cocaine was gone, as was another heroin stash valued at between $200 and $2,000. According to an affidavit in the case, Markel first said he took the drugs to give to informants, but then admitted stealing heroin and cocaine for his own use on multiple occasions. He also came up dirty on a departmental drug test and was fired. Markel says he has completed in-patient drug rehab and is now undergoing out-patient therapy. He is due back in court June 2.

In Detroit, four Metro Detroit police officers were indicted last month on drug charges and for lying to federal agents and a grand jury in an FBI operation targeting the Highwaymen Motorcycle Club, the Detroit area's largest outlaw biker gang. The feds were going after the Highwaymen for alleged drug dealing, murder for hire, interstate theft, acts of violence, mortgage and insurance fraud and police corruption. Although the March 13 indictments served up only one Highwayman (for marijuana and prescription pill peddling), they did get since-fired Garden City Police Officer David Tomlan for perjury and possession with intent to distribute cocaine and steroids. He had joined the biker gang and lied to agents about his contacts with club members. Brownstown Police Officer Michael Ramsey and former Detroit reserve officer Dennis Abraham are charged with lying to agents and a grand jury, and are accused of informing club members of an informant in their midst. Hamtrack Officer Randell Hutchinson, who was assigned to the DEA's Metro Detroit task force, allegedly told the Highwaymen the FBI was wiretapping a club member. He is charged with conspiracy to distribute steroids.

Law Enforcement: Detroit Prosecutor Charged With Misconduct for Allowing False Testimony in Drug Case, Misleading Jury

The head of the Major Narcotics Unit of the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office has been charged with professional misconduct for allowing an informant and two Inkster police officers to lie on the stand in a 2005 cocaine case and for misleading jurors in her closing arguments in the case, the Detroit Free Press reported, citing the state Attorney Grievance Commission. The prosecutor, Karen Plants, was reassigned from her supervisory position Tuesday, after the Free Press called Prosecutor Kym Worthy's office seeking comment on the charges, which were filed Monday.

Worthy was in the news just a week ago announcing she would seek criminal charges against Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and his former chief of staff, Christine Beatty, for perjuring themselves in a police whistle-blower case. In announcing the criminal charges against the pair, Worthy said perjury cannot be tolerated in court proceedings.

But she was singing a different tune when it came to one of her prosecutors abetting perjury. Although Worthy conceded there was perjury in the 2005 drug case, she said Plants had properly notified the judge after the trial.

Still, Worthy had to reiterate her office's stance on perjury. "The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office does not condone perjury of any kind," Worthy wrote. "The office takes very seriously its obligations to the public, to the accused, and will continue to do so in the future."

Here's what happened: Informant Chad Povish gave police information leading to a 47-kilogram cocaine seizure in March 2005. During a preliminary examination, two evidentiary hearings, and the 2005 trial, Plants allowed Povish, Inskster Police Sgt. Scott Rechtzigel and Det. Robert McArthur to repeatedly deny they knew each other. That prevented defense attorneys from finding out Povish was a paid snitch and attacking his credibility, the commission charged.

Povish actually tipped off the police to a drug buy, then took duffel bags full of cocaine from one defendant before police arrived. He later told jurors he had never met the cops before and he didn't know what was in the duffel bags. Plants knew the claims were untrue, but never corrected them, the commission said. Even worse, she tried to buttress those false claims during closing arguments to the jury, characterizing Povish and another witness as "dummies who were stupid enough to be the carriers, the mules."

According to the commission, Plants told Wayne County Circuit Judge Mary Waterstone twice that the cops and informant had lied, but neither Plants nor the judge notified the defense. "He knowingly committed perjury to protect the identification of the" informant, Plants told the judge in one instance. "I let the perjury happen."

Waterstone said she understood the perjury was committed to protect the snitch's life, a claim made by Plants. But the commission pointedly noted that prosecutors had produced no evidence that Povish's life was indeed in danger or would be if his role was disclosed.

Waterstone has since retired from the bench.

The prosecutor's office later filed a confession of error in the case of one defendant after he was convicted, but both defendants ended up taking plea bargains with significant prison time. But they also both appealed, and one of them, Alexander Aceval, saw his case sent back to the appeals court by the state Supreme Court to decide if the perjured testimony denied him a fair trial.

Aceval's lawyer, David Moffitt of Bingham Farms, told the Free Press the episode is "the worst instance of police, prosecutorial and judicial misconduct" he has seen. "Not only did they attempt to unfairly convict my client, they covered up and lied in the face of accusations about the scheme."

Legal experts consulted by the newspaper agreed the charges were serious. "If a prosecutor violates a legal or ethical duty, the criminal justice system is perverted," said Larry Dubin, an ethics professor at University of Detroit Mercy School of Law.

Farmington Hills lawyer Michael Schwartz, grievance administrator for the commission in 1979-88, said: "The normal everyday result should be disbarment. But the mitigation is that she wasn't doing it for herself. She was trying to protect a confidential informant."

Schwartz also faulted Judge Waterstone, who he said should have declared a mistrial or told jurors witnesses had lied once she knew. "A judge simply cannot sit by and do nothing," Schwartz said. She "has to make sure the rules of ethics are adhered to."

Whether Wayne County Prosecutor Worthy will prosecute the lying police and informant like she is the mayor and his one-time paramour remains to be seen. Meanwhile, prosecutor Plants, who abetted the perjury and misled the jury, has been demoted, but is still on the job.

Middle East: Israeli Anti-Drug Campaign Links Marijuana Use to Terrorism

American drug czar John Walters would be proud. Tearing a page from his "pot smoking supports terrorism" playbook, the Israeli Anti-Drug Authority this week launched a new campaign featuring Lebanese Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah, in hopes of deterring Israelis from smoking marijuana.

https://stopthedrugwar.org/files/nasrallah-marijuana-poster.jpg
(haaretz.com)
The campaign includes a poster showing Nasrallah emerging genie-like from a bong. Beneath the image, the text reads: "Hezbollah is clearly planning to flood Israel with narcotics. Narcotics pose a strategic threat to Israeli society. Whoever uses narcotics is giving a hand to the next terrorist attack."

The new campaign, with its linkage of marijuana and terrorism, comes just a week after senior Israeli security sources told Israeli media that Hezbollah, which fought Israel to a stand-off in the summer of 2006, is planning to flood the country with drugs in an effort to harm its citizens. That same day, Israeli police and IDF troops seized the largest shipment of heroin ever confiscated on the border with Lebanon, some 60 pounds.

Lebanese hash has been a staple of the Israeli drug scene for decades, but no one is growing opium there. The heroin most likely came on a long journey from the valleys of Afghanistan. But if Israel is really concerned about local potheads putting money in Hezbollah's hands, it could solve that problem by allowing domestic, regulated cultivation of cannabis.

Drug War Issues

Criminal JusticeAsset Forfeiture, Collateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Court Rulings, Drug Courts, Due Process, Felony Disenfranchisement, Incarceration, Policing (2011 Drug War Killings, 2012 Drug War Killings, 2013 Drug War Killings, 2014 Drug War Killings, 2015 Drug War Killings, 2016 Drug War Killings, 2017 Drug War Killings, Arrests, Eradication, Informants, Interdiction, Lowest Priority Policies, Police Corruption, Police Raids, Profiling, Search and Seizure, SWAT/Paramilitarization, Task Forces, Undercover Work), Probation or Parole, Prosecution, Reentry/Rehabilitation, Sentencing (Alternatives to Incarceration, Clemency and Pardon, Crack/Powder Cocaine Disparity, Death Penalty, Decriminalization, Defelonization, Drug Free Zones, Mandatory Minimums, Rockefeller Drug Laws, Sentencing Guidelines)CultureArt, Celebrities, Counter-Culture, Music, Poetry/Literature, Television, TheaterDrug UseParaphernalia, ViolenceIntersecting IssuesCollateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Violence, Border, Budgets/Taxes/Economics, Business, Civil Rights, Driving, Economics, Education (College Aid), Employment, Environment, Families, Free Speech, Gun Policy, Human Rights, Immigration, Militarization, Money Laundering, Pregnancy, Privacy (Search and Seizure, Drug Testing), Race, Religion, Science, Sports, Women's IssuesMarijuana PolicyGateway Theory, Hemp, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Marijuana Industry, Medical MarijuanaMedicineMedical Marijuana, Science of Drugs, Under-treatment of PainPublic HealthAddiction, Addiction Treatment (Science of Drugs), Drug Education, Drug Prevention, Drug-Related AIDS/HIV or Hepatitis C, Harm Reduction (Methadone & Other Opiate Maintenance, Needle Exchange, Overdose Prevention, Pill Testing, Safer Injection Sites)Source and Transit CountriesAndean Drug War, Coca, Hashish, Mexican Drug War, Opium ProductionSpecific DrugsAlcohol, Ayahuasca, Cocaine (Crack Cocaine), Ecstasy, Heroin, Ibogaine, ketamine, Khat, Kratom, Marijuana (Gateway Theory, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Medical Marijuana, Hashish), Methamphetamine, New Synthetic Drugs (Synthetic Cannabinoids, Synthetic Stimulants), Nicotine, Prescription Opiates (Fentanyl, Oxycontin), Psilocybin / Magic Mushrooms, Psychedelics (LSD, Mescaline, Peyote, Salvia Divinorum)YouthGrade School, Post-Secondary School, Raves, Secondary School