By Kevin Stoda, non-drug-user but angry about waste of lives and money for decades

Today, in the daily DEMOCRACY NOW [DN] News Program, the following was reported in Afghanistan: “The US military . . . has confirmed it’s ended poppy eradication in several areas of Afghanistan. US forces have previously targeted Afghan farmers responsible for poppy crops that produce large quantities of opium and heroin. But the US says it’s ended the eradications in a bid to win over Afghan support. A US military official said, ‘We don’t trample the livelihood of those we’re trying to win over.’”,26174,1973998,00.html

I think that is an important phrase to repeat in NORTH AMERICA, don’t you? “We don’t trample the livelihood of those we’re trying to win over.” Let’s Stop the WAR ON AMERICAN—alias THE WAR ON DRUGS–, or better known as America’s Longest War. THAT WAR on DRUGS has been extremely wasteful of the lives’ of minorities and marginalized Americans for decades.

Even the enforcer of the U.S. War on Drugs, i.e. the so-called DRUG CZAR, Gil Kerlikowske, has called for the END of the WAR. In 2009, he said, “Regardless of how you try to explain to people it’s a ‘war on drugs’ or a ‘war on a product,’ people see a war as a war on them,” he said. “We’re not at war with people in this country.”

This is how most people in North America, see the issue: “What there is is a cynical program of political duplicity; the intent of which is not to prevent drug abuse (which it encourages), but to create a climate of distrust, fear, hostility, alienation, divisiveness, and violence within our society. The so called ‘War on Drugs’ is in reality a war of cultural prejudice waged primarily against the young, the poor, the non-white and the socially disaffected to the advantage of the Elected, the Corporate, the Privileged and the Few.”

Last Charles Bowden spoke last week on DN on the topic of “The War Next Door”. Bowden was speaking just after US foreign service personnel were killed in violence near Juarez, Mexico—the murder capital of the world thanks to our “border wars”. Bowden noted: “We’re spending $30 to $40 billion a year on narcotics officers in this country. Every state in the union, if you get out of the house and drive, is now studded with little prisons, some private. They’re all dependent on the—on laws outlawing drugs.The income from drugs in Mexico exceeds all other sources of foreign currency, except possibly oil, and that’s debatable. In other words, if President Calderon succeeded in his claimed goal of eradicating the drug industry in Mexico, Mexico would collapse in a minute. That’s what I mean. I mean, why don’t we face the fact that drugs are like alcohol? They’re part of our culture now. They’re not going away. If we want to make them illegal, we can continue to live the way we have: imprisoning our own people, creating a police state, having prisons everywhere. But no matter what we do, they’re going to be in the neighborhood, just as they are.”

continued, “There was an interesting government study released a while ago that said 232 American cities now have the presence of Mexican drug organizations. Well, look, I’m a little older, possibly, than some of your listeners, but if you bought a joint in 1975, it wasn’t coming from Finland or some place. They’ve always been here. It’s a market. All we’ve got to decide is whether it’s legal or illegal. That’s it. It’s like gambling. It’s got a life of its own. But we are destroying, or helping to destroy, a country next door by our policies. Although there are many explanations for the problems in Mexico, and most of them lie with Mexicans, but certainly our economic policy, NAFTA, our drug policies, the war on drugs, and our militarization of the country have proven to be nothing but a disaster for the Mexican people.”

People, like me who see the connections between the war on drugs, war on terror, and the military industrial complex running the political-, social- and economic landscapes of good-hard working (when there are jobs) Americans think that the current policy in Afghanistan’s poppy fields should be as soon as possible the liaise faire approach of the U.S. military in Afghanistan. “[D]on’t trample the livelihood of those we’re trying to win over.’”


Tell your congressmen to get America’s military- and incarceration budgets under the 1% level of the U.S. ASAP.

Imagine, how such a revolutionary political approach came from local, national and regional leadership and pulpit punchers. DON’T TRAMPLE THE LIVELHOOD OF THOSE WE’RE TRYIING TO WIN OVER!!!

About eslkevin

I am a peace educator who has taken time to teach and work in countries such as the USA, Germany, Japan, Nicaragua, Mexico, the UAE, Kuwait, Oman over the past 4 decades.
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