Pubdate: Fri, 12 Apr 2002
Source: The Monitor (TX)
Copyright: 2002 The Monitor
Author: Stephen Heath, Drug Policy Forum of Florida


To the editor:

Re: Colombia Just Says No (March 15):

Thanks for the astute commentary. For over a year now the Bush 
administration has been bombarded with criticism about Plan Colombia, which 
funnels billions of American tax dollars to the Colombian civil war. As we 
pass the anniversary of the plan's implementation, the CIA reports that 
cocaine production in Colombia has actually increased compared to last year 
at this time.

Faced with this stark indictment of the flawed plan, President Bush is now 
attempting to re-spin the war as a "terrorist action," in desperate hopes 
of continuing taxpayer funding of these efforts. What should we expect 
then? Will we be carpet bombing Colombia until we "smoke out" the last 
remaining drug lord?

Most Americans support tax dollars directed to helping real drug abusers 
have access to treatment on demand. But regardless of how many hectares of 
Colombia we poison with chemical bombing, and no matter how many Colombians 
or other South Americans we kill with our military hardware and troop 
support, not a single drug addict in America is any closer to recovery.

It's time to tell Congress, "NO!" with regard to continued funding of the 
Colombian civil war, and "YES" to funding of drug treatment on demand for 
those truly in need.

Stephen Heath, Drug Policy Forum of Florida Clearwater, Fla.
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