The History Channel’s America’s War On Drugs: How Accurate Was This Docu-Series?

By Kalee Brown, Collective Evolution

For a long time, the truth about the war on drugs was only known by high-level politicians and “conspiracy theorists,” as many people couldn’t fathom the idea that the U.S. government, which claimed to be “against drugs,” was the very institution facilitating the drug trade.

Nevertheless, over the years, more of the truth behind this propaganda campaign has come to light, allowing society to further understand the role the government plays in drug trafficking and how that relates to the prison system and other aspects of society.

Now, America’s war on drugs is finally starting to be addressed in the mainstream. Last year, the Netflix documentary 13th was released, which discussed the link the war on drugs has to the prison system and the mass incarceration of black people (you can read about this here). Last week, the History Channel released a four-part docu-series titled America’s War on Drugs, highlighting some of the key elements of this propaganda campaign.

It’s truly inspiring to see mainstream media (MSM) finally address what was once considered a conspiracy theory. The term “conspiracy theory” was actually created by CIA “media assets,” as evidenced in the design laid out by “Document 1035-960: Concerning Criticism of the Warren Report,” a report issued in early 1967 to Agency bureaus all over the world. The government strategically introduced that term in order to cast doubt upon the public and influence the narrative.

So many people blatantly cast off different topics, deeming them “conspiracy theories” without ever actually looking into them. This is precisely why the CIA introduced this term in the first place, to encourage the public to cast doubt upon subjects that seemed too corrupt or disturbing to be true, favouring government programs like MK Ultra and propaganda campaigns like the war on terror and the war on drugs.

At this point, there are so many government documents, whistleblowers, and high-level politicians and government employees who have exposed the war on drugs that MSM can no longer deny it. The History Channel’s special about the war on drugs was surprisingly informative, especially for those who are unfamiliar with the topic, and ultimately seemed to be a step in the right direction toward increased transparency and disclosure. However, the docu-series (unsurprisingly) left some elements of the war on drugs out.

Background Information: What is the “War on Drugs”?

The war on drugs was a propaganda campaign that was created by U.S. President Richard Nixon in 1971. Disguised as a tactic to decrease drug usage across the nation, it was actually a strategy to incarcerate people by the masses, particularly black citizens. Even the elite were in on this plan, as some of the regulations that helped mass incarcerate people became known as the “Rockefeller drug laws.” Between 1970 and 1980, the U.S. prison population increased from around 300K to 500K.

John Ehrlichman, Nixon’s former Domestic Policy Chief, explained:

The Nixon campaign in 1968, and the Nixon White House after that, had two enemies: the antiwar left and black people. You understand what I’m saying? We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin, and then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities. We could arrest their leaders, raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.

Ronald Reagan’s era was no different, as police continued to arrest people by the masses for minor crimes, and the U.S. prison population grew to 700K in 1985 and reached approximately 1.2 million by 1990. With the rise of the Clintons, the situation worsened significantly. Bill implemented the “three strikes” rule, whereby an individual, once convicted of three crimes, would go to jail for life. At around the same time, Hillary Clinton coined the term “super-predators,” a racially-coded word for black criminals.

By 2000, the U.S. prison population had almost doubled, skyrocketing to over 2 million. By the time Bill Clinton left the Oval Office in 2001, the U.S. had the highest incarceration rate in the world. Despite the fact that Bill has apologized for playing a substantial role in mass incarcerating Americans, he recently exposed his true colours by defending his and his wife’s actions. This was briefly addressed in the docu-series, mentioning the effect that the three-strike rule had on hippies and black people, but ultimately did not go deep enough into it to truly understand the gravity of the situation.

The irony of all of this is that the U.S. government and many corporations were benefiting heavily from the rise in drug usage in the U.S. because they were the very institutions perpetuating this system. The CIA was actually one of the most prominent drug traffickers/dealers in the world, and they were ultimately to blame for the rise in heroin, LSD/acid, and many other drugs.

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was even created in part to increase drug trafficking. When the volume of trade increased, it got easier for cartels and the CIA to traffic drugs across the border because U.S. border control wasn’t able to perform searches as thoroughly as they could before. The History Channel actually did a wonderful job of explaining this and criminalizing the CIA, highlighting its role as one of the most powerful drug dealers in history.

The CIA is no stranger to money laundering, performing dangerous tests on unwilling patients, and even committing murder over drugs. Two of the drugs the CIA had focused on for decades were LSD, through a CIA-sanctioned program called MK Ultra, as well as heroin, which is created using opium. Though the History Channel did accurately portray parts of the CIA’s role in mass distributing both of these drugs, they left key elements of these programs out.

What Did the Docu-Series Leave Out Regarding LSD/MK Ultra?

The CIA designed LSD with a Swiss manufacturer as part of the MK Ultra program in hopes that they could force people to take it and convince them to do unspeakable acts, all of which they’d forget the following morning, once the drugs wore off. Testing started with unwilling participants being lured into a hotel room by prostitutes, who would then slip the drugs into their drinks. A CIA agent would then watch the test subjects as they tripped out behind a wall of the hotel room.

The particular project within MK Ultra that the prostitutes were involved with was called Midnight Climax. This eventually turned into full-blown brothels in the U.S. run by the CIA, whereby the women working there would lure men into them, but instead of receiving sexual favours, were unknowingly drugged and then observed by CIA agents.

The CIA then started to test willing patients in lab settings, observing their reactions to LSD and asking them questions. To their disappointment, instead of helping them control their patients’ minds, LSD actually freed their minds. Despite the propaganda campaign on the war on drugs, whereby the government was telling people they were against all drug use, it was the government who brought LSD over and put it in the hands of the public. This was actually very well documented by the History Channel, which is remarkable given that MK Ultra was one of, if not the, most corrupt program in the history of the U.S. government.

However, the History Channel left out a lot regarding MK Ultra and the role that drugs had on its participants. The History Channel made it seem like the test subjects were tripping out on LSD peacefully, as doctors observed them and asked them questions. In reality, “The drug program was part of a much larger CIA program to study possible means for controlling human behaviour. Other studies explored the effects of radiation, electric-shock, psychology, psychiatry, sociology and harassment substances,” as a 1975 document addressed to the President stated.

Many of the participants were unwilling adults and children, subjected to different methods of sexual abuse and physical abuse including intense electroshock therapy and sensory deprivation. What these victims were forced to endure was cruel and inhumane, and many of the participants didn’t just walk away unaffected like the History Channel made it seem. Many victims are still under mind control today or are still suffering the effects from the experiments, and some people were severely injured or died. You can read more about what the History Channel failed to disclose regarding this subject in a CE article I wrote here.

What Did the Docu-Series Leave Out Regarding Opium & 9/11?

The CIA actually owned and operated a covert drug smuggling airline, referred to as Air Americawhich was used to transport numerous goods, including heroin. In Southeast Asia (SEA), during the Vietnam War, the CIA worked alongside Laotian general Vang Pao in an effort to help make Laos the world’s largest exporter of heroin. The CIA then flew drugs all over SEA, allowing the Golden Triangle (parts of Burma, Thailand, and Laos) to become the world hub for heroin.

Agents from the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs managed to seize an Air America aircraft that contained large amounts of heroin, but the CIA ordered the agents to release the plane and halt any further investigations.

The CIA wasn’t just involved with the transportation of the drugs, however. The heroin was refined in a laboratory built at the CIA headquarters in Northern Laos. After about a decade of U.S. military intervention, SEA represented 70% of the world’s opium supplier. Unfortunately, many of the operatives became addicted to the heroin themselves. At the same time, SEA also became the main supplier of raw materials for the U.S. heroin industry. Though Air America apparently stopped operations in 1976, the CIA’s involvement in the opium and heroin industries continued in other parts of the world.

This is where the History Channel’s explanation of the CIA’s role in the heroin industry got a little blurry. Thus far, the series had been fairly transparent in its explanation of Air America and the CIA’s operations in Laos, but when it came to the next world leader of heroin, Afghanistan, the series sort of fell short. Yes, it did address the war on terror and how the opium trade only increased since the U.S. government invaded Afghanistan, but it didn’t discuss the why.

This is where the opium trade involves false-flag terrorism, specifically 9/11, so it’s no surprise that the History Channel didn’t discuss the truth behind 9/11 and how that related to the war on drugs. It’s interesting because it did discuss the war on terror and how it intertwined with the war on drugs, almost encouraging viewers to look deeper into the motives that the U.S. government had for 9/11.

Let’s start with a brief history of the opium production and trade in Afghanistan. In the 1980s, CIA-supported Moujahedeen rebels were heavily involved in drug trafficking heroin. The CIA supplied trucks and mules, which were used to transport opium. In addition, many of the individuals trafficking the drugs in Afghanistan were actually trained, armed, and funded by the CIA at the time.

Opium production came to a gradual halt thanks to Taliban rule. By 2000, the Taliban had completely banned opium production, practically eradicating 90% of the world’s heroin. The following UN diagram outlines the history of opium production in Afghanistan:

After 9/11 occurred and the U.S. invaded Afghanistan, opium production suddenly skyrocketed. There have been tons of photos of U.S. soldiers guarding the opium fields, yet today, more than a decade later, they still have not destroyed them (view some of the photos here). The CIA is no stranger to drug trafficking, so it’s possible they saw this as an opportunity to commit a false flag terrorist attack (9/11) in order to justify the invasion of Afghanistan so they could take over the opium drug trade. The motive would make sense, as the American war on drugs was still raging in 2001.

To read more about the 9/11 link to the opium trade and the CIA’s involvement in the heroin industry, read this CE article I wrote here.

What Was Left Out Regarding Corporate Involvement?

By the fourth and final episode of the docu-series, the show discussed Big Pharma’s involvement with fuelling the war on drugs. It was actually refreshing to see the History Channel paint a picture of Big Pharma in a more accurate light than what we often see on American television. The series referred to pharmaceutical drugs as the “elephant in the room” that’s “silently killing” thousands of Americans.

In case you didn’t know, prescription drugs are the 4th leading cause of death in America, as stated by Harvard University. Many Americans are completely unaware that new prescription drugs have a 1 in 5 chance of causing serious reactions, even after being approved by the FDA. Approximately 1.9 million people are hospitalized annually due to properly prescribed medication (not including any overdoses, self-prescriptions, or mis-prescribing) and 128,000 people die every year in the U.S. from drugs prescribed to them.

Doctors are paid by Big Pharma to prescribe drugs (and you can actually see how much your personal doctor makes here), Big Pharma heavily lobbies the government, and the U.S. is one of the only countries that’s allowed to advertise for pharmaceutical drugs. Countless issues surrounding misinformation and propaganda through these advertisements have arisen, yet the U.S. government allows this to occur and rarely steps in. All of these actions taken by Big Pharma are motivated by profit and have directly contributed to the war on drugs, as these companies secretly drug more and more Americans.

The docu-series expressed many of these issues in the documentary, but didn’t necessarily highlight the true gravity of the situation as they mostly focused on the overly prescribed oxycodone/opium epidemic. Big Pharma is not looking to heal you, but rather profit off you. It makes sense that these drugs have adverse side effects, because they benefit from your illnesses. It’s not just opiates, it’s practically all drugs, even those that are prescribed to children (read more about that here).

However, Big Pharma isn’t the only industry that profited off the war on drugs. Many corporations reap the benefits from the privatization of prisons, particularly thanks to ALEC (American Legislative Exchange Council), a private special interests group of politicians and corporations. ALEC often plays a significant role in influencing, and in some cases even writing, laws.

Some of the legislation ALEC helped develop supports harsher and longer prison sentences as well as the privatization of prisons. It’s important to note that one of the organizations that funds ALEC is Corrections Corporations of America (CCA), which means that the more bodies that are in prisons, the more CCA profits, and thus the more money ALEC gets.

The American Bail Coalition (ABC), an organization that profits from the privatization of bail, also holds close ties to ALEC. ABC was one of the few corporations that actually stayed with ALEC after their involvement in creating the Stand Your Ground law in Florida came to the spotlight. This law was particularly controversial because it essentially allowed George Zimmerman to get away with stalking and murdering a black teenager, Trayvon Martin.

The entire U.S. prison industrial complex is a money-making machine, producing a grand total of $80 billion per year. Many corporations also profit from prison labour, which could reasonably be considered slave labour in North America, as some prisoners are paid as little as 12 cents an hour for their services. Examples of corporations that “employ” prisoners and pay them practically nothing include Victoria’s Secret and Walmart.

ALEC and the corporations that profit off the prison system were never mentioned in the History Channel’s docu-series, despite being directly correlated to the war on drugs. You can read more about ALEC here.

Final Thoughts

All in all, the History Channel’s America’s War on Drugs is a great place to start in your research of this propaganda campaign. They actually covered a lot of grounds for only a four-part series, and much of the content was probably honest enough to upset the powers that be.

However, it’s interesting to note that the History Channel is owned by A&E, which is in turn owned by Disney. Disney is one of the six corporations that control over 90% of the media, and so the motive behind this type of transparency is questionable. This could be the government and the elite’s way of informing the public of their past wrongdoings, maybe things just got so bad that they could no longer hide it from the public, or perhaps they’re just giving viewers a drip of information in order to keep the truth at bay.

Either way, this is a step in the right direction and hopefully this docu-series and this article inspire people to look further into this subject!

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