Pubdate: Wed, 25 Apr 2001
Source: Montreal Gazette (CN QU)
Copyright: 2001 The Gazette, a division of Southam Inc.
Author: J.M Wolowitz


Your editorial just before Earth Day, and during the Quebec Summit, urges 
protesters to speak out against drugs (April 21, "Fight drugs, not trade"). 
It claims that drugs pose a greater threat to democracy than free trade does.

If this is so, how does the United States government explain its 
well-documented use of drug lords in order to fight communism? This took 
place in Vietnam, with planes from the Central Intelligence Agency being 
used to smuggle heroin into the United States.

Cocaine was implicated in the guns for drugs Iran-Contra scandal, in which 
George Bush Sr. played a prominent role.

Also, the CIA helped the present thugs in Afghanistan get into power. These 
retrograde fundamentalists use drug trafficking to fund their regime, which 
flouts democracy and basic human rights.

Today's generation of dissenters is well aware of the falseness of the War 
on Drugs, which many view as a war on black males. Also, in Colombia, the 
War on Drugs is used as a smokescreen for a widening counter-insurgency. In 
Peru, it allowed a military plane to murder an innocent missionary and her 

We didn't ask for the state to spend so much on a basically useless war 
against drugs, particularly against soft drugs. This money should be spent 
on real policing, so women need not fear the streets at night. Putting so 
many black males in prison has just fuelled the rage, and done nothing to 
improve society.

It's also ironic that you advocate the war against drugs, while at the same 
time publishing a special section on the huge pharmaceutical industry. 
These are the real drug pushers, who impoverish our elderly, protect high 
prices and place too high a value on their own intellectual property.

This faulty suggestion, that today's protesters don't know what to oppose, 
would have led to the total destruction of Vietnam. The power of an empire, 
left unchecked, would spread misery and sadness around the planet. And how 
would this reduce the demand for the products of the drug lords?

J.M Wolowitz

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MAP posted-by: Keith Brilhart