DEA Chief Says Colombian Crackdown Could Help

DEA Chief Says Colombian Crackdown Could Help
Posted by FoM on February 22, 2002 at 08:14:35 PT
By John Rice, The Associated Press
Source: Associated Press
Drug Enforcement Agency chief Asa Hutchinson said Colombia's crackdown on rebels will aid in the war against illegal drugs. Colombian President Andres Pastrana on Thursday ordered a military attack on a vast rebel territory, ending a three-year peace process hours after guerrillas allegedly hijacked a domestic airliner and kidnapped a senator onboard. 
"I see it clearly as a benefit in that region," Hutchinson said Thursday, adding that anti-drug efforts "would have to be a focus" of the military campaign. Pastrana gave the Switzerland-sized zone to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, in 1998 to encourage peace negotiations. Hutchinson welcomed Pastrana's reference to rebel links to drug trafficking, saying it was "clear recognition" of long-standing U.S. allegations. "If the military and police enter the (rebel) zone, you're going to find cocaine diversion labs there, (drug) labs," he said Thursday. "You're going to have intelligence" on trafficking operations, he said. Making his first trip to Mexico since taking over the DEA in August, Hutchinson praised the administration of President Vicente Fox and Attorney General Rafael Macedo de la Concha. He singled out efforts to root out corruption and improve training of anti-narcotics agents. Yet despite a series of major seizures over the past year, Hutchinson conceded there was no sign that the supply, price or quality of illegal drugs reaching the United States had been affected. Mexico's legal system also has frustrated one U.S. goal: extraditing alleged drug bosses for trial in the United States. Mexico shipped 17 suspects to the United States over the past year, but its Supreme Court last year barred extradition of some of the most-wanted suspects because they could face the death penalty or a life sentence. Mexico and many other countries believe those punishments violate human rights. Hutchinson said the Mexican government "may have to look at a legislative solution" making such extraditions legal. Hutchinson said U.S. officials also are studying ways to restrict the flow of opium and heroin out of Afghanistan, historically a major producer. Reporters there have seen vast fields of opium poppies after the fall of the restrictive Taliban government during the U.S.-led war on terrorism. That war followed the Sept. 11 terror attacks in the United States. Complete Title: DEA Chief Says Colombian Crackdown Could Help War on Drugs Source: Associated PressAuthor: John Rice, The Associated PressPublished: February 22, 2002Copyright: 2002 Associated PressRelated Articles & Web Site:Colombia Drug War News U.S. Aid To Colombia Urged as Peace Fails Backs Colombian Crackdown on Rebels Seeks To Help Colombia Defend Pipeline
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Comment #2 posted by E_Johnson on February 22, 2002 at 09:52:54 PT
Will he put his career up as collateral?
Drug Enforcement Agency chief Asa Hutchinson said Colombia's crackdown on rebels will aid in the war against illegal drugs.Since Asa is supposed to be such a standup, dialog-loving guy, then let's ask him to put his money where his mouth is, and agree to voluntarily resign from all public life if this turns out not to be true and this crackdown has no measurable effect on the rate of illegal drug use in America.
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Comment #1 posted by Jose Melendez on February 22, 2002 at 08:53:32 PT:
would Asa Hutchinson criminalize caffeine use?
from: equally important issue is the use of caffeine by the average active teenager or adult. Caffeine’s
widespread use was demonstrated in a recent survey by the Canadian Centre for Drug Free Sport.
The survey found that 27% of Canadian youths (11-18 years old) had used a caffeine-containing
substance in the previous year for the specific purpose of enhancing athletic performance. 
caffeine act as a “gateway” drug for the young who then use dangerous substances?
Narcosoft - What if YOUR drugs were illegal?
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