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Mon Mar 12, 2012, 09:25 AM

Drug War-Related Homicides In The US Average At Least 1,100 a Year

The number of people murdered in the drug war inside the United States between 2006 and 2010 exceeds the US-troop death toll in the Iraq War since it was launched in 2003, according to a Narco News analysis of FBI crime statistics.

The US drug-war homicide tally also is nearly three times greater than the number of US soldiers killed in Afghanistan since the first shots were fired in that war in 2001, the Narco News analysis shows.

And that US drug-war murder total — nearly 5,700 people cut down on US soil over the 5-year period examined by Narco News — very likely undercounts significantly the extent of the bloodshed.

Vice President Joe Biden early this week while visiting Mexico made it clear, according to media reports, that “there is no possibility” that the United States would entertain the notion of ending drug prohibition, despite a growing call among Latin American leaders and citizens of those countries for a new course in the bloody drug war, one that includes a discussion of drug legalization.

This stubborn resistance against entertaining any other options beyond a fundamentalist adherence to prohibition for dealing with drug use in the United States is cloaked in an arrogant denial of the human costs of the drug war and the possibility that ending it would lead to less, not more, death.

The US, by some estimates now spends about $40 billion a year at home and abroad waging its war on drugs and has imprisoned currently up to 400,000 people on drug-related charges — the vast majority of them nonviolent offenders.


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