U.S. Drug Czar Warn Europe About Cocaine & Ecstasy

U.S. Drug Czar Warn Europe About Cocaine & Ecstasy
Posted by FoM on October 29, 1999 at 11:27:12 PT
By Barry James, International Herald Tribune
Source: IHT
BRUSSELS - The U.S. drug czar, Barry McCaffrey, warned Europeans on Thursday not to be complacent about the spreading use of cocaine, which he called the ''worst thing that happened to the United States'' since World War II.
Mr. McCaffrey said that in the 1980s cocaine ''was widely believed to be safer than alcohol and nonaddictive.'' But today, some 3.6 million Americans are chronically addicted to the drug, which is one of the major causes of crime.''We did not understand the danger,'' he said.He said that while the United States had a serious drug problem that was getting better, the Europeans had a similar problem that was getting worse, partly because of increasing tolerance in many EU countries for drugs like cocaine and Ecstasy, both of which are widely used in the Continent's dance and rave club culture.Mr. McCaffrey, the director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, was attending the annual meeting of the EU's drug-monitoring agency in Lisbon. He said he would invite the EU ''to study the experience of the United States in the 1980s and not repeat our disastrous mistake'' over cocaine. Mr. McCaffrey said that during his six-nation tour of Europe, he also was seeking a dialogue on doping in sport. ''We are all involved in the Olympic movement,'' he said, emphasizing that ''chemical re-engineering of the human body'' had to be outlawed.At a summit meeting in Tampere, Finland, earlier this month, EU leaders decided to step up cooperation in fighting crime and money laundering. Mr. McCaffrey said intelligence sharing and cooperation between U.S. and European law enforcement agencies already was highly effective, but he added that he was calling for broadened trans-Atlantic political cooperation.As the United States tightens the screws on narcotics smugglers, European cocaine seizures have been increasing in each of the past six years. Seizures in the first six months of this year were double the total in 1998.Mr. McCaffrey warned that the success of efforts in the United States to reduce narcotics use - which he said had dropped by half over the last two decades - meant that organized gangs were seeking to expand markets in Europe. U.S. intelligence estimates a total flow of about 700 metric tons of cocaine from Bolivia, Peru and Colombia this year, with up to 130 tons still looking for a market. Data released by Mr. McCaffrey indicated that police forces were now seizing more cocaine in Europe than along the southwestern U.S. border, the chief entry point of the drug into the United States. Spain was the main entry point for the drug in Europe, with an estimated 57 percent of the total, followed by the Netherlands.Mr. McCaffrey said that in meetings with officials at the European Commission here, he was strongly suggesting that economic aid to Latin American nations seeking to replace coca production with other crops was ''the right thing to do.''''It is making a difference and it is serving the interests of the EU as well,'' he added.He said Europe also was a major source of drugs, such as Ecstasy, which he called an underestimated danger. He said science had proved that a single heavy dose of the so-called recreational drug Ecstasy or a low dosage over time would cause serious brain damage.''This drug is dangerous,'' Mr. McCaffrey said.The heroin consumed in Europe, on the other hand, comes almost entirely from Afghanistan and Pakistan, according to data released by Mr. McCaffrey's office. Afghanistan not only is replacing Burma as the chief source of illegal opiates, but also has become the main processing center.Most of the heroin is shipped overland to Europe through Iran and Turkey. War in the Balkans has pushed the heroin traffickers northward from their traditional route through Serbia, with the drug now moving through eastern Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and Poland before reaching Western Europe through Germany. Russia also has become a market for drugs. Paris, Friday, October 29, 1999Related Articles:Doping-U.S. Drug Czar Rejects IOC Proposals - 10/27/99 Back U.S. Drug Proposal - 10/26/99 Executive Assails White House Drug Chief - 9/25/99 IOC Drug Policy Criticized in D.C. - 10/20/99
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help

Comment #3 posted by steve1 on October 29, 1999 at 15:35:36 PT
cocaine addiction and brain damage
Cocaine is definitely dangerous and addictive, it is highly toxic and the drug Ecstasy has been proven to provide brain damage, this is fact. I notice this report doesn't say anything about marijuana. That's because marijuana is not toxic, it does cause lung damage but you can also choose to ingest the substance. And you don't need to inhale marijuana as many times as a cigarette. The marijuana laws have to be changed to full decriminalization or legalization. Harder drugs such as Cocaine are proven to be addictive, dangerous and toxic. Marijuana on the other hand is not addictive, toxic or dangerous if used responsibly. The first step in the drug war is to decriminalize/legalize marijuana. And then seek out the options for the other drugs. Remember it is the black market for marijuana that opens up the other options of taking the other drugs. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #2 posted by observer on October 29, 1999 at 15:07:00 PT
is dangerous
> He said science had proved that a single heavy dose of > the so-called recreational drug Ecstasy or a low > dosage over time would cause serious brain damage.I can't imagine a person who's every utterance are more in need of "fact checking."> ''This drug is dangerous,'' Mr. McCaffrey said.Maybe, maybe not. But fascist anti-drug user laws are proven to be deadly (ask Mario Paz, Esequiel Hernandez, Pedro oregon, Donald Scott, etc). Ask Dorion.''Doiron first requested medical attention in September 1997 for severe pain in her leg. She did not obtain the correct diagnosis of bone cancer for another five months. Had she been diagnosed and treated properly in the early stages of her illness, her survival rate was estimated by a medical report to be about 90%. By the time she left prison, however, and was able to seek treatment on her own, her cancer was so aggressive that her chances for survival were just 10%. Doctors amputated Doiron's leg to try to save her life, but it was too late.Her short prison term for drug possession had turned into a death sentence. ''Or ask Tina.''Tina Balagno was sentenced to four years in prison on drug charges in June 1998. While in custody at CCWF, she discovered breast lumps and was diagnosed with breast cancer. As with Doiron's case, a series of delays in medical care resulted in receiving no treatment for five months, when Balagno finally had a mastectomy.But it was too late for her as well. The cancer had metastasized to her bones, leaving her in excruciating pain. While in the prison system's Skilled Nursing Facility, Tina was never given sufficient pain medication to keep her comfortable. [Serves the 'druggie' right, eh?] She received no assistance with eating or bathing, even though she was too ill to move. In February 1990, she was granted "compassionate release." She died one week later.'', Drug Warriors, for protecting "the children" from these horrible criminals. Don't let those nasty "legalizers" get you down with unpleasant facts. Full steam ahead!
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #1 posted by rainbow on October 29, 1999 at 13:42:32 PT:
Cocaine the worst thing
I wonder if that is a political statement since the Republicans were in office when the CIA started the epidemic.CheersRainbow
[ Post Comment ]

Post Comment

Name: Optional Password: 
Comment: [Please refrain from using profanity in your message]
Link URL: 
Link Title: