by Stephen Hardman
The modern drug war is often traced back to 1971 and US President Richard Nixon’s declaration to wage a “new all-out offensive” aimed at defeating America’s “public enemy number one” – drug abuse. Initially the policies focused on funding treatment programs aimed at tackling the demand for drugs. Nixon stated that efforts of interdiction and eradication would be destined to fail. Two years later he forgot his own words when the US launched a massive interdiction effort in Mexico, creating the DEA in the process. Since then the US has been fighting a war which many people believe cannot be won, at least not in a traditional sense.