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Successfully fighting the war on drugs

Regarding the Nov. 4 news article “Mexican drug cartels establish networks in U.S. cities”:

Since March 2009, the Obama administration has placed an unprecedented amount of personnel, infrastructure and technology along the southwest border. The U.S. Border Patrol has doubled in size, we’ve bolstered operations at our ports of entry and we’ve expanded successful partnerships with the Mexican government that are cracking down on cross-border crime. These actions have improved our ability to disrupt drug-trafficking across the United States.

As drug seizures have increased due to smarter enforcement, the U.S. consumption of cocaine and methamphetamine has also plummeted. Since 2006, cocaine use has dropped by more than 40 percent, and meth use has fallen by a third. The demand for these drugs in the United States has fallen substantially, and the market for cocaine in particular is in disarray. 

While serious challenges remain, we recognize that no single nation is exclusively a producer of illegal drugs, a transit country or a consumer country. We are all in this together, and by working to reduce both the demand and supply of drugs, we can continue to make progress in making our communities safer and healthier. 

Gil Kerlikowske, Washington

The writer is director of the White House’s National Drug Control Policy.

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