War on Drugs: A Controversial Campaign Essay

Submitted By nickkernan
Words: 323
Pages: 2

"War on Drugs" is a term commonly applied to a controversial campaign of prohibition and foreign military aid and military intervention undertaken by the United States government, with the assistance of participating countries, and the stated aim to define and reduce the illegal drug trade.[5][6] This initiative includes a set of drug policies of the United States that are intended to discourage the production, distribution, and consumption of illegal psychoactive drugs. The term was first used by U.S. president Richard Nixon, and was later popularized by the media.[7][8][9]
On May 13, 2009, Gil Kerlikowske, the current Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), signaled that although it did not plan to significantly alter drug enforcement policy, the Obama administration would not use the term "War on Drugs," as he claims it is "counter-productive".[10] ONDCP's view is that "drug addiction is a disease that can be successfully prevented and treated... making drugs more available will make it harder to keep our communities healthy and safe."(2011)[11] One of the alternatives that Kerlikowske has showcased is the drug policy of Sweden that seeks to balance public health concerns with opposition to drug legalization. The prevalence rates for cocaine use in Sweden are barely one-fifth of European countries such as the United Kingdom and Spain.[12]
In June 2011, the Global Commission on Drug Policy released a critical report on the War on Drugs, declaring