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April 2005
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And yet, the drug war continues without pause…

(From CNN: Report: Colombia drug war failing.)

A new White House report showed that a massive aerial spraying offensive last year failed to dent the area of coca under cultivation in Colombia.

But President Alvaro Uribe vowed on Friday to press ahead with U.S.-financed fumigation of cocaine-producing crops.

The war on drugs in Colombia, the world’s main cocaine-producing country and a major supplier of heroin, has cost more than $3 billion in U.S. aid here since 2000. Critics of Washington’s effort say the report indicates the Colombia and U.S. governments are losing the war.

“The U.S. government’s own data provides stark evidence that the drug war is failing to achieve its most basic objectives,” said John Walsh, of the Washington Office on Latin America, a think tank critical of U.S. drug policies in Colombia.

The report by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy said that despite a record-setting aerial eradication offensive, 281,694 acres of coca remained in Colombia at the end of 2004 — an increase from the 281,323 acres left over after spraying the year earlier.

Walsh also pointed out that prices of cocaine and heroin have been steadily dropping over the years on U.S. streets, indicating availability of the drugs has not diminished.

What do you do when what you’re doing doesn’t work? Why, keep on doing it, of course.

But President Alvaro Uribe vowed on Friday to press ahead with U.S.-financed fumigation of cocaine-producing crops.

And if you’re the Drug Czar’s office, you just make up stuff.

David Murray, a top official in the White House drug office, insisted there were positive signs…
The White House drug office said that while the area under coca cultivation remained “statistically unchanged” over the previous year, the fumigation diminished the potential production of cocaine…

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