No Buzz from Colombian Drug Strategy


Ted Galen Carpenter of the Cato Institute explains how and why the much-vaunted $3.3 billion Plan Colombia has failed in stemming the floods of white powder in the U.S., through a combination of factors such as shifting areas of cultivation to other countries, increased efficiency on the part of traffickers, and continued endemic links between the drug dealers and Colombia's government. Of course, this war is hopeless. Of course, drug czar John Walters insists we must stay the course. And, perhaps in response to reactions like Carpenter's to his announcement last week while in Mexico City that "We have not yet seen in all these efforts what we're hoping for on the supply side, which is a reduction in availability," he contradicted himself on that point this week. But failure and success are all the same for futile government programs–either are a good excuse for more money.