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Deirdre Boyd: Strip away the spin and the world has again trashed drugs – thanks Russia and Iran


“Between a battle lost and a battle won, the distance is immense and there stand empires” – Napoleon

The emperor Napoleon used two key interchangeable battle plans: manoeuvre and attrition. In the first, Napoleon’s main force held the enemy’s attention to his front, while other forces fell upon one of his flanks. The second poured frontal firepower into those he wished to overthrow in enormous amounts until they appeared to weaken, then great masses of men would be thrown in to smash their way through. Such a battle was costly affair. But it worked until Wellington beat him at Waterloo, in a far-from-guaranteed victory.

This week, history repeated itself.

From 19-21 April, for the first time in almost 20 years, the United Nations held a General Assembly Special Session on the world drug problem and policy. This session, in New York, was the grand finale of heavily financed global pro-cannabis, pro-legalisation media manoeuvres. Taking up the rear, personal attacks including internet trolling were used to silence individuals wishing to prevent and reduce drug use worldwide – as my own and this website’s experience can attest.

According to the Washington Times, over $48million was poured into this campaign by George Soros alone, a man feted for his philanthropic funding of international-policy and journalism schools and scholarships in strategic areas.

Another $70million of his firepower was directed to pro-legalisation organisations, enabling groups such as the International Drugs Policy Consortium (IDPC, funded also by unwitting taxpayers via the EU Commission) and Stop The Harm, to smash their way via a further 213 organisations into UNGASS debates.

“The pro-legalisation movement hasn’t come from a groundswell of the people. A great deal of its funding and fraud has been perpetrated by George Soros and then promoted by celebrities,” confirmed John Walters, former director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.

For example, Soros donated $5million in 2008 and more in 2012 for Barack Obama’s US presidential campaigns and has funded current presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Soros’ accounts also show that he also donated at least $250,000 to former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan’s foundation with Annan most strongly adding his voice to the ranks of the pro-cannabis campaign.

The largest single recipient of Soros’s $200million largesse in this area since 1994, according to Forbes magazine is the Drug Policy Alliance headed by Ethan Nadelmann.

The outcome of all this investment has been, as no doubt planned, a constant salvo of headlines. “The war on drugs is dead,” wrote IDPC. “The best reasons why we must reform our drug laws,” blasted Richard Branson via the Virgin website, referring to and praising a pro-legalisation letter “brilliantly collated by the Drug Policy Alliance”.

And who else but the DPA called the press conference proclaiming that: “World leaders call for decriminalisation and regulation of drugs,” ironically referring to many of those it had itself been involved in funding. Dutifully and obediently, the Washington Post wrote that “More than 1,000 world leaders say the drug war has been a disaster” while the Huffington Post wrote of “Censorship and exclusion on Day One of UNGASS” (HuffPo and WP links to Soros).

Abroad, Kerry Cullinan, director of South Africa Health News Service funded by – well you probably guessed – fired a broadside with “How to get rid of a ‘delusional, dangerous’ policy on drugs”.

In the UK, Nick Clegg speaking on behalf of the Global Commission on Drugs Policy (GCDP) funded by – yes, you’ve guessed again –charged in, accusing Home Secretary Theresa May of tampering with a Coalition pro-legalisation report he’d engineered when deputy PM. Ironically, his attack merely succeeded in showing the ‘Portuguese Model’ of decriminalisation hadn’t emerged  so bright and shiny under scrutiny.

The Lancet was also on hand to publish its sympathetic ‘scientific’ evidence for the legalisation cause. But then its editor chief editor, Sir Richard Horton, is a key adviser to the International Centre for Science in Drug Policy which in turn is funded by… do I need to repeat it again? Hence its promotion by Soros-funded Transform Drugs Policy Foundation. The British Medical Journal and the BMA have long given platforms to Transform to spin pro-drugs propaganda dressed up as science, as The Conservative Woman revealed in another blog.

All these roads, so to speak, trace back back to one source – to one man.

Given his massive investment and global campaign, many feared that this month’s United Nations’ session would mark the beginning of the end of drugs control. But to the surprise of many, the UNGASS battle didn’t play out as the legalising lobby hoped.

“UN drugs summit opens with worldwide divisions laid bare,” came the BBC headline.

Yes, Jamaica defended its decriminalisation of possession of small amounts of marijuana; Canada stated its intention to liberalise drugs; and Switzerland argued for a four-pronged approach: prevention, therapy, damage limitation and repression.

But Iran stated it had seized 620 tons of drugs last year and was helping protect the world from “the evils of addiction”. Singapore, too, slammed calls for a soft approach. Indonesia called for a zero-tolerance approach.Cuba (please note) also opposed the legalisation of drugs and condemned any declaration suggesting them to be harmless: “It will be really difficult to solve the problems of mass production of and trafficking in drugs from the South, if the majority demand from the North [ie, US] is not eliminated”. Did Obama take this on board on his recent Cuban sojourn, I wonder?

But while US drug czar Michael Botticelli wobbled on the political tightrope, it was Russia and Putin who provided the most powerful resistance to the pro-legalisation campaign.

So, despite the barrage, on 19 April the United Nations, led by UNODC head Yury Fedotov of Russia, opted for a ‘new’ framework that wasn’t new at all. It reaffirmed the cornerstone principles of the global drug control system, emphasising “the health and welfare of humankind that is the founding purpose of the international drug conventions”. 

Who won the UNGASS battle then? Not George Soros and his liberal American political allies, but the Russians filling the leadership void that the US under Obama has abandoned – with the backing of the majority of the world’s leaders (press: please note).

There was a Parthian shot. On the last day of the week, hors de combat, The Guardian proclaimed: “Legalise all drugs,’ business and world leaders tell UN”. Actually, the world leaders had agreed and signed the UN document. The Guardian referred merely to former leaders, members of the Soros-funded GCDP.

“You must not fight too often with one enemy, or you will teach him all your art of war,” Bonaparte advised. We have been taught much.

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Deirdre Boyd
Deirdre Boyd
Deirdre Boyd is a leader in the field of recovery from addiction. She heads DB Recovery Resources which supplies a daily news service to the international alcohol/drug-treatment field and organises DB Recovery+ UKESAD summit on addiction recovery.

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