Despite the regrettable disappearance of the French Observatoire géopolitique des drogues (OGD, commission monitoring the international drugs trade) in April 2000, the researchers and correspondents are continuing their major and valuable work (in particular through the Association géopolitique des drogues and the Observatoire géopolitique de la criminalité internationale). Alain Labrousse, a former director of OGD, provides proof of this in an article surveying recent trends in areas such as the manufacture of drugs, the destinations of income derived from the drugs trade, the collusion between drug-trafficking and local conflicts, as well as the efforts to control the supply networks and the producing countries. Despite recent major programmes to tackle the drugs trade, Labrousse notes that the ambitious aims of the various UN agencies are still far from being achieved.
This is the third time that Labrousse has written on this subject for Futuribles. Almost ten years ago, he concluded that "proof of real political will means, when the requirements of the war on drugs conflict with economic, political and geo-strategic interests, being able to make the former prevail over the latter. Yet nearly always and everywhere the opposite is what happens." Again today, his article confirms the fragile nature of policies to tackle drugs, and he stresses the constant pitfalls of instrumentalising them -so that sometimes "the pretext of combating drugs is used in countries that are not involved in the drugs trade or even are making praiseworthy efforts to deal with it".
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