Vice Squad
Sunday, September 03, 2006
Innovative Anti-Drug Strategy for Afghanistan

Sure, the recent news is that attempts to eradicate the opium crop in Afghanistan were wildly unsuccessful. But sometimes it takes a crisis like this to inspire bold new policy breakthroughs. Fortunately, Mr. Antonio Maria Costa, executive director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, had a burst of insight, recounted in the linked New York Times story:
“I am pleading with the government to be much tougher,” he said. A new high-security prison block would be inaugurated in a few weeks, he said. “We have room for 100 people and I am asking the government to fill it within six months,” he said.
No word on whether the prison should be filled after trials and convictions, or by some less time-consuming method. Perhaps in terms of the impact on the Afghan opium crop, the precise prison-filling mechanism is immaterial.

Hmmm, another policy reform jumps to mind. Either eliminate the UN's "Office on Drugs and Crime" while turning drug policy over to the WHO, or open an "Office on Alcohol and Crime."

Libby at Last One Speaks noted the UN's refreshing new idea, too.

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