Pubdate: Sun, 25 Dec 2005
Source: Baltimore Sun (MD)
Copyright: 2005 The Baltimore Sun, a Times Mirror Newspaper.
Author: Robert Sharpe
Bookmark: (Colombia)
Bookmark: (Cocaine)


G. Jefferson Price III has good reason to question the U.S. drug war 
in Colombia ("Time to confront the truth about another U.S. war," 
Opinion Commentary, Dec. 14). Plan Colombia could very well spread 
both coca production and civil war throughout South America. U.S. tax 
dollars would be better spent addressing the socioeconomic causes of 
civil strife in Colombia rather than applying overwhelming military 
force to attack the symptoms.

We're not doing the Colombian people any favors by funding a civil 
war, nor are Americans being protected from drugs. Destroy the 
Colombian coca crop and production will boom in Peru, Bolivia and 
Ecuador. Destroy every last plant in South America and domestic 
methamphetamine production will increase to meet the demand for 
cocaine-like drugs. The self-professed champions of the free market 
in the Bush administration are seemingly incapable of applying basic 
economic principles to drug policy. Instead of wasting scarce 
resources waging a futile supply-side drug war abroad, we should be 
funding cost-effective drug treatment here at home.

Robert Sharpe, Washington

The writer is a policy analyst for Common Sense for Drug Policy.
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