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The War on Drugs - and the results of it A war against drugs, or against families?

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Old 06-22-2005, 11:33 PM
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Default Books & Videos relating to the Drug War

Books and Movies relating the the Drug War ( Prohibition )

Book: A Shadow in the City: Confessions of an Undercover Drug Warrior by Charles Bowden Joey O'Shay is not the real name of the narcotics agent in an unnamed city in the center of the country. But Joey O'Shay exists. The nearly three hundred drug busts he has orchestrated over more than two decades are real, too; if the drug war were a declared war, O'Shay would have a Silver Star. With nerves and mastery worthy of his subject, Charles Bowden follows O'Shay as he sets in motion his latest conquest, a $50 million heroin deal that originates in Colombia and has federal agents sitting at attention from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C., to New York City. As it unfolds, O'Shay reveals the unerring instinct and ceaseless vigilance that have led him through minefields and brought down kingpins. But now they have led him to a place where it isn't so clear who the heroes are or what the fight has been for.

Video: American Justice: Justice Denied The troubling case of Leah Bundy, who was convicted of drug possession and sentenced to 15 years to life in prison despite evidence that pointed to her innocence. Bundy's co-defendant in the case was represented by the famed William Kunstler, whose defense was inept, paving the way for both defendants to be convicted.

Books: Down by the River: Drugs, Money, Murder, and Family by Charles Bowden Lionel Bruno Jordan was murdered January 20, 1995, in an El Paso parking lot, keeps coming back as the skeleton key to a multibillion-dollar drug industry, two corrupt governments --the US and Mexico -- and a War on Drugs that is a fraud. Phil Jordan runs DEA intelligence, but when his brother Bruno is killed, he is powerless. Amado Carrillo Fuentes runs the most successful drug business in the history of the world, but when his usefulness to governments ceases, he mysteriously dies. Carlos Salinas runs Mexico, but as soon as he leaves office, his brother is jailed for murder and Salinas flees into exile. Sal Martinez, DEA agent and Bruno's cousin, does the secret work of the US government in Mexico, but when he seeks revenge for his cousin's murder, he is sentenced to a term in federal prison. Beneath all is a world of lies, pain, and money. Of how one Mexican drug leader outfought and outthought the US government. Of how major financial institutions fattened on the drug industry. And how the governments of the US and Mexico buried everything.

Book: Without a Badge: Undercover in the World's Deadliest Criminal Organization by Jerry Speziale with Mark Seal. An original member of the DEA's legendary Group 93, which was founded in 1990 to target the drug cartels based in Cali, Colombia, Speziale has an amazing life story to tell, and in a breathless narrative, he (with freelance writer Seal) nails the high points of his 20-year-long career. From his troubled youth in New Jersey through his incarnation as the suave "Geraldo Bartone" to infiltrate the Cali gangs, to a final bout with career burnout, Speziale provides a detailed insider look at the tough life of undercover cops and the relentless pressure of a job in which the "only way to bust the cartel is to become part of it." As Speziale is schooled in the ways of a drug lord by a confidential informant-who later tries to double-cross him-the authors show just how easy and dangerous it is to go to Guatemala, build an airstrip, set up a business and begin to do large drug deals for the Cali cartel. Unfortunately, the book is written in a faux tough-guy style, reminiscent of old Miami Vice episodes. Speziale has lived an interesting life, but phrases like "I felt that roller-coaster ride ratcheting up another level" don't raise his tale beyond that of a B-movie.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Book: The Politics of Heroin: CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade by Alfred W. McCoy The first book to prove CIA and US government complicity in global drug trafficking, ncludes documentation of dishonesty and dirty dealings at the highest levels from the Cold War until today. Maintaining a global perspective, this groundbreaking study details the mechanics of drug trafficking in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and South and Central America. New chapters detail US involvement in the narcotics trade in Afghanistan and Pakistan before and after the fall of the Taliban, and how U.S. drug policy in Central America and Colombia has increased the global supply of illicit drugs.

Video: Narcs DEA is charged with eliminating illegal drugs in America. It is an uphill battle against the temptation of corruption, and America's appetite for drugs. From the origins of the Federal Bureau of Dangerous Drugs to the modern day DEA, this is the definitive look at the "war on drugs," and those at the heart of the battle. Explore landmark cases including the apprehension of a notorious drug "queenpin," and the brutal death of an agent in Mexico. Travel deep into South American jungles, where the DEA is attacking the cocaine epidemic at the root. DEA operatives look at the tactics they employ and the dangers they face. And agents who have tarnished the DEA's image by giving into temptation and turning into the kind of criminals they swore to fight.

Book: Killing Pablo by Mark Bowden Killing Pablo is further proof. It describes the rise and fall of Pablo Escobar, a notorious Colombian drug lord who became one of the narcotic trade's first billionaires. Pablo--Bowden refers to him by his first name throughout the book--started out as a petty thief and wound up running a massive smuggling empire. At his height in the 1980s, he owned fleets of boats and planes, plus 19 separate residences in Medellin, each with its own helipad. Violence marked everything he did: "He wasn't an entrepreneur, and he wasn't even an especially talented businessman. He was just ruthless." He bought off police, politicians, and judges throughout his country, and killed many others who wouldn't cooperate. The Colombian government tried to capture him, but without much luck; he evaded them time after time. "Now and then the police achieved enough surprise to catch him, literally, with his pants down. In [1988], about one thousand national police raided one of his mansions," writes Bowden. "Pablo fled in his underwear, avoiding the police cordon on foot." He got away, again, but his days were numbered. He was making powerful enemies in both Colombia and the United States. The final straw probably came when Pablo's men murdered a popular politician and, three months later, planted a bomb on a plane, killing 110 people, including two Americans.

Video: Killing Pablo Experience the hunt for Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar with "Killing Pablo", an original production from The Philadelphia Inquirer and CNN, and companion to the Mark Bowden book. Go where it all happened, as secret American military forces, the CIA, DEA, and Colombian National Police commandos tracked Pablo through the streets and countryside of Colombia. See the essential role that members of a shadowy vigilante group played in the hunt. What did America know about them? Includes bonus DEA and CIA footage of Pablo's lavishly appointed estates and mountaintop "prison". About the Actor From Knight Ridder Video, producers of "Black Hawk Down: The Official Documentary", companion to the Mark Bowden book of the same name.

Book: Drug War by Dan Russell The definitive, and most entertaining, general history of the Drug War. 420 photos illustrate 675 annotated & indexed pages. "Drug War epitomizes such books as Alexander Cockburn’s Whiteout, Alfred McCoy’s The Politics of Heroin, and Gary Webb’s Dark Alliance all together, with riveting photography throughout. Written in an easy to read, flowing style that is entertaining while at the same time amazingly detailed, concise, and to the point, Drug War covers one hell of a lot of ground.

Book: Smoke and Mirrors by Dan Baum In a retrospective look at the war on drugs in the United States, journalist Dan Baum calls the nation's drug policy "as expensive, ineffective, delusional and destructive as government gets." He examines the Nixon White House's effort to turn the drug war to political advantage and the Carter Administration's brief flirtation with decriminalizing marijuana. He also details the cover-ups and blunders of some of the biggest drug busts in the country's history. Yet despite the policy's ineffectiveness, at least 85 percent of Americans oppose legalization. Baum sheds light on the reasons for this issue and calls for radical compromise.

Book: Why Our Drug Laws Have Failed and What We Can Do About It: A Judicial Indictment of the War on Drugs by James P. Gray Our drug prohibition policy is hopeless, just as Prohibition, our alcohol prohibition policy, was before it. Today there are more drugs in our communities and at lower prices and higher strengths than ever before.
We have built large numbers of prisons, but they are overflowing with non-violent drug offenders. The huge profits made from drug sales are corrupting people and institutions here and abroad. And far from being protected by our drug prohibition policy, our children are being recruited by it to a lifestyle of drug use and drug selling.
Judge Gray’s book drives a stake through the heart of the War on Drugs. After documenting the wide-ranging harms caused by this failed policy, Judge Gray also gives us hope. We have viable options. The author evaluates these options, ranging from education and drug treatment to different strategies for taking the profit out of drug-dealing.
Many officials will not say publicly what they acknowledge privately about the failure of the War on Drugs. Politicians especially are afraid of not appearing "tough on drugs." But Judge Gray’s conclusions as a veteran trial judge and former federal prosecutor are reinforced by the testimonies of more than forty other judges nationwide.

Books: Drug War Crimes: The Consequences of Prohibition by Jeffrey A. Miron Legislators and other policy-makers would benefit from his non-politicized, non-moralistic approach; everyone can benefit from reading this important, insightful work.
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