Pubdate: Thu, 24 Aug 2000
Date: 08/24/2000
Source: Washington Times (DC)
Author: John Corbett

I agree fully with those who claim that the U.S. policy of
certification of foreign countries based on their efforts to combat
drugs is hypocritical and imperialistic. Your editorial "Certified
politics" (Aug. 21) helps make this case by pointing out our
unwavering - and unjustified - support of a major drug-trafficking
country such as Mexico.

Yet your conclusion that this ineffective and divisive process should
be preserved and shifted to the Organization of American States rings
hollow and stands at odds with the rest of your editorial. The very
concept of certification, as your editorial points out clearly, shifts
the blame from the largest consumer of illicit drugs to the hapless
conduits for their production and distribution.

No certification program, no matter how independent it may be, can
ever free itself from such a flawed premise. This assumes, of course,
that the United States would agree to allow such an organization to
dictate our economic and foreign policy.

Pointing fingers never will solve the drug problem.

John Corbett,
Highlands Ranch, Colo.