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war for drugs

24 Concrete Policy Steps to Reduce Opioid Addiction and Overdoses

Ohio Politician: "Let Them Die", Response to Opioid Overdoses

As a result of high demand for tea, silk and porcelain in Britain and the low demand for British commodities in China, Britain had a large trade deficit with China and had to trade goods for silver as the Chinese would only except silver in trade.

1730 British exports of opium to China are an estimated 15 tons.

1757 Britain conquers Bengal in the Battle of Plassey. British East India Company pursues a monopoly on production and export of opium in India.

1773 Governor-General of Bengal pursues a monopoly on the sale of opium in earnest, and abolishes the old opium syndicate at Patna. For the next 50 years, opium is the key to the British East India Company's hold on India.

As importation of opium into China was against Chinese law, the British East India Company would buy tea in Canton on credit, carrying no opium, but would instead sell opium for silver at the auctions in Calcutta leaving it to be smuggled to China.

75 tons of opium is shipped in over two thousand "chests", each containing 140 pounds (64 kg) of opium. The British crown with it's surrogate, the corporate chartered British East India Company, is directly responsible for the opium flood that leads to the Opium Wars in China.

1874 Diacetylmorphine, a white, odourless, bitter, crystalline powder derived from morphine is compounded by English chemist, CR Wright.

1898 Bayer begins marketing diacetylmorphine as “Heroin” - early testers said it made them feel heroic.

Tuberculosis and pneumonia were then the leading causes of death, and even routine coughs and colds could be severely incapacitating. Heroin, which both depresses respiration and, as a sedative, gives a restorative night's sleep, seemed a godsend.

There were heroin pastilles, heroin cough lozenges, heroin tablets, water-soluble heroin salts and a heroin elixir in a glycerine solution.

1900 "It's not hypnotic, and there's no danger of acquiring a habit." - Boston Medical and Surgical Journal

1907 American Medical Association gives heroin a stamp of approval.

1914 Heroin is restricted to prescription-only use in the US.


History of Opium

Bayer Promoted Heroin for Children

Her Majesty's drug traffickers:
Britain, Hong Kong and the Opium Wars

The role of Opium in the Expansion of the British Empire from 1764 to 1825


king opium

opium resurgence

"In most cases, the CIA's role involved various forms of complicity, tolerance or studied ignorance about the trade, not any direct culpability in the actual trafficking. The CIA did not handle heroin, but it did provide its drug-lord allies with transport, arms, and political protection. In sum, the CIA's role in the Southeast Asian heroin trade involved indirect complicity rather than direct culpability." - Alfred W. McCoy

"Our own spy agency is behind the killing of thousands of American soldiers and civilians all over the world. They are also responsible for continued Afghan opium production, as it has always served as the primary funding source for CIA paramilitary operations there." - Peter Chamberlin

"Like Afghanistan, South Vietnam at the national level was a massively corrupt collection of self-interested warlords, many of them deeply implicated in the profitable opium trade, with almost nonexistent legitimacy outside the capital city. The purely military gains achieved at such terrible cost in our nation's blood and treasure in Vietnam never came close to exhausting the enemy's manpower pool or his will to fight, and simply could not be sustained politically by a venal and incompetent set of dysfunctional state institutions where self-interest was the order of the day." - Peter Dale Scott



protection racket


1979 The Soviets invade Afghanistan.

1980 Afghanistan produces 200 metric tons of opium.

Throughout the 1980s the CIA working through Pakistan's Inter-Service Intelligence(ISI), spends $2 billion to support the Mujahideen Afghan resistance. Within two years the Pakistan-Afghanistan borderlands became the world's top heroin producer. In Pakistan, the heroin-addict population goes from near zero in 1979 to 5,000 in 1981 and to 1.2 million by 1985.

As the Mujahideen guerrillas territorial control increased more and more farmers planted opium poppies as cash crops. Across the border in Pakistan, Afghan leaders and local syndicates under the protection of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence operated hundreds of heroin laboratories to generate cash which they used to purchase weapons to fight the Soviets.

The CIA helps facilitate distribution, even going so far as to squelch DEA investigations. Once the heroin left Pakistan's laboratories, the Sicilian mafia managed its export to the US, and a chain of syndicate-controlled pizza parlors distributed the drugs to street gangs in American cities. Most ordinary Americans did not see the links between the CIA's alliance with Afghan drug lords, the pizza parlors, and the heroin on America's streets.

"There are powerful business and financial interests behind narcotics. Geopolitical and military control over the drug routes is as strategic as oil and oil pipelines. The bulk of the revenues associated with the global trade in narcotics are not appropriated by terrorist groups and warlords. Narcotics constitute a major source of wealth formation not only for organized crime but also for the US intelligence apparatus, which increasingly constitutes a powerful actor in the spheres of finance and banking. Intelligence agencies, powerful business, drug traders and organized crime are competing for the strategic control over the heroin routes. A large share of this multi-billion dollar revenues of narcotics are deposited in the Western banking system. Most of the large international banks together with their affiliates in the offshore banking havens launder large amounts of narco-dollars." - Michel Chossudovsky

2000 The opium trade had been denounced as immoral by the Taliban and would not be permitted. This was facilitated by a $90 million downpayment on the rights to an oil pipeline deal.

2001 Launch Operation Enduring Freedom

2004 The United Nations estimates that Afghanistan produce 87% of the world opium.

2006 Afghanistan produces 6,724 metric tons of opium - more than 30 times as much opium as in 1980 ~ 448,000 Afghan families cultivate opium poppies. United Nations anti-drug chief announces a staggering increase in Afghani opium production of 60% over 2005.


"Opium production has grown exponentially since 2001 as much as 60% of the country's GDP is either generated by or dependent on it. As many as 90% of Afghanistan's police chiefs are reportedly involved in or protecting the drug trade." - Chris Mason, formerly an Afghanistan policy officer at the State Department from 2001 through 2005; senior fellow at the Center for Advanced Defense Studies

The Afghan minister of counter narcotics General Khodaidad Khodaidad claims the majority of drugs are stockpiled in two provinces controlled by troops from the US, the UK, and Canada.

2007 9000 metric tons of opium are grown.

2008 "The White House says it believes that Ahmed Wali Karzai is involved in drug trafficking, and American officials have repeatedly warned President Karzai that his brother is a political liability, two senior Bush administration officials said in interviews last week." - James Risen, October 4, 2008

2009 It is learned that Ahmed Wali Karzai has been on the CIA payroll since the invasion.

"Ahmed Wali Karzai is the biggest drug baron of Afghanistan. What is most disturbing from my point of view is that the military aircraft, American military aircraft are also being used." - ISI General Hamid Gul

"When five drug traffickers in military uniforms were caught transporting heroin in a police truck in 2007, it was a victory for a dogged team of Afghan investigators and their US mentors who are waging a Quixotic battle against narcotics, the nation's largest industry. The men were prosecuted by a special drug court that the US government has spent tens of millions of dollars developing as a bulwark against corruption. They were sentenced to between 16 and 18 years in prison. But in April, Afghan president Hamid Karzai pardoned the five men. One was the nephew of a powerful politician managing Karzai's reelection campaign, and the presidential decree ordering their release notes that they had ties to a well-respected family, according to a senior Afghan official." - Farah Stockman July 3, 2009





money laundering

How a big US bank laundered billions
from Mexico's murderous drug gangs

Drug money saved banks in global crisis, claims UN advisor

Cheap heroin replaces painkillers as drug of choice


"The Afghan people are rebelling because the American government is currently committed to destroying 60% of their economy. In the name of the "war on drugs," an American corporation, DynCorp, is being paid to barge into the fields of some of the poorest people on Earth and systematically destroy their only livelihood. A quarter of all Afghan babies die before their fifth birthday. If Western governments continue this program of economic destruction - and the negative propaganda bonanza it creates - the Taliban may be sufficiently rejuvenated to march on Kabul. There is an alternative to this disastrous spiral. The Earth is suffering from a shortage of legal opiates.

The World Health Organization describes it as "an unprecedented global pain crisis." About 80% of the Earth's population has almost no access to painkillers at all. In developed countries, for cancer care alone there is an unmet annual need for 550 metric tons more opium to make opium. Instead of destroying Afghanistan's most valuable resource, Western governments should buy it outright and resell it to producers of legal opiate-based painkillers on the global market. Both Turkey and India produce opium as legal suppliers of opiates for pain-control purposes. Add Afghanistan to the legal opium producers and the Taliban would be conquered." - Johann Hari



Sackler Oxycontin

OxyContin®

OxyContin® is oxycodone, an opioid analgesic medication synthesized from thebaine. Thebaine (paramorphine) is an opiate alkaloid. A minor constituent of opium, thebaine is chemically similar to both morphine and codeine.

In May of 2007 Purdue Pharma executives plead guilty to charges that they mislead the government about the risk of addiction to OxyContin®. Purdue Pharma claimed oxycodone was less addictive and less subject to abuse than other opiates. Purdue Pharma, its president, top lawyer and former chief medical officer will pay $634.5 million in fines. In 2004, 36,000 people made emergency room visits due to oxycodone overdoses.

"From 1996 to 2001, the number of oxycodone-related deaths nationwide increased 400 percent while the annual number of OxyContin® prescriptions increased nearly 20-fold, according to a report by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration. In 2002, the DEA said the drug caused 146 deaths and contributed to another 318." - International Herald Tribune

monkey chased the weasel

truth about pain med's. why we suffer. Siobhan Reynolds

Outspoken Activist's Case Becomes Tangled in Secrets

The vindictive grand jury investigation of pain-relief advocate Siobhan Reynolds

Champion of Pain Relief, Siobhan Reynolds Dead in Plane Crash

NTSB Releases Preliminary Report on Fatal Vinton County Plane Crash

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