Illicit Drug and Enforcement Strategies
April 26, 2013
Professor David Makin
In Project 2, I proffered that the proliferation of illegal drugs, has negatively impacted our economy, environment, learning institutions and society as a whole. I had mentioned that America had been fighting drug abuse for almost a century, beginning in the mid-nineteen century, but so far, the policies of government has yielded very limited results in the fight to stem trafficking of illegal drugs across our borders. According to an executive summary by the National Drug Control Strategy (NDCS), current drug use indicates, that although the number of casual users is declining, hard-core use ...view middle of the document...
In order to achieve that, drug markets will have to be policed effectively so as to disrupt the supply system. From an economic perspective, if the demand for illegal drugs is restricted, it may cause the supply network to crumble, thus constricting the market and resulting in falling prices for the product. Therefore, law enforcement should develop two strategies; one for the country that distributes the illegal drugs, and the other for the country that consumes the illegal drugs. Drug markets, according to the U.S. Department of State, have geographic "specificity." Competition can be a struggle for literal "territory, even if it is only a particular lucrative street corner." However, high level drug traffic lacks that specificity, as transactions may occur at any place and time, being that amounts are large and infrequent, and the two transacting parties find it more advantageous to make prior arrangements , "rather than relying on intersecting routes for contact." Drug traffickers pay corrupt officials who control specific channels, such as landing strips (Schellings, 1997). In Mexico, drug suppliers fight for control of specific drug routes. In 2006, President Filepe Calderon launched a military style campaign against the traffickers in an effort to stem the flow of drugs and the violence associated with it. The campaign involved high level Mexican officials who were in the pay of major drug lords. The U.S. implemented a new strategy to disrupt supply, by working with President Calderon's administration. In 2008 Calderon fired large numbers of police officers and arrested hundreds of others within the Attorney General's administration who provided the traffickers with inside information (Caulkin et al, 2005). Through this type of strategic cooperation, turnover at the leadership level of drug traffickers has been huge. Many have been killed or incarcerated, including scores of operatives who were extradited to the United States for trial (U.S. Department of State, 2008). The disruption of illegal drug supply had huge repercussions for domestic markets in the U.S.
During the reporting period, crack cocaine, more than any other illicit drug engendered violent behaviors in communities of the U.S. Caulkin et al, (2005). As part of their operational strategies, police conducted surveillance to deal with transactional violence within local markets. U.S. domestic markets are characterized by mostly resident dealers and customers. Adopting the SARA model, (scanning, analysis, response, assessment), police targeted street-level drug operations by utilizing three basic strategies: high profile, proactive patrols, which emphasize aggressively stopping and detaining pedestrians and motorists; buy-bust operation, in which officers promptly arrest suspects who sell narcotics to undercover cops; and demand reduction and prevention programs, such as Drug Awareness and Resistance Education and Gang Resistance Education and Training (Myers, 2000). To...