Fatal Distraction: The War on Drugs in the Age of Islamic Terror

Referred to as the ‘father of drug policy reform’ and the ‘Shadow Drug Czar’ and according to the inside jacket of the book, Arnold Trebach has been writing books about reforming the drug prohibition laws for almost 70 years… nearly as long as drug prohibition itself.
I’ve never heard of him nor, save for this one, have I read any other of his books with titles like ‘The Heroin Solution’ and ‘The Great Drug War’, both of which show statistics and facts that call for the end of a failed drug war. He has even been pursued for a
Nobel Peace Prize for his writings and lectures on the need to end prohibition. But that was then and this is now. Now I guess we are in The Age of Islamic Terror!

The first two thirds of the book are all about the war on drugs. It is meticulously researched and covers every aspect of the far-reaching damage this single policy has on our society. He documents how drug prohibition got started, who was involved and every single important event that has taken place up until the present that has affected the policies and actions that have been taken around the world in the name of this insane war.

His figures are probably as accurate as you can get and they will astound you. The real monetary cost of the drug war is astronomical. He also shows, in the face of this certain failure, how the prohibitionists cook the numbers to conversely claim success. The history lesson he lays out shows how the prohibition of drugs has never had anything to do with health or safety, it is all about politics and world control. His case for the complete legalization of all drugs is overwhelming.

And then, something goes terribly wrong.

Interspersed with the drug war information is a continuing thread that alludes to the threat of Islamic terror and the need to divert the money being wasted on the drug war into that looming new war. Even the title of this book fell awkwardly on my eyes. The War on Drugs has always been a fatal distraction, distracting from almost everything else… education, health care, and the environment, just to name a few. By why is it now distracting from terror, and why is the terror only Islamic? I can’t imagine that Trebach’s anti-prohibition message has changed much in all these years, maybe this terror angle is just a way to broaden his market. After all, drugs sell themselves and hey, what’s more popular today than terrorists?

His previously exhaustive research now is replaced with only telling of “terrorist” attacks that have taken place. He no longer delves into history to show us why any of these things may be occurring. Nor does he cross reference and make the same kind of connections to indicate who’s involved in this and why. It’s only Islamic terrorists bent on destroying the United States.

He even goes so far as to say that, “there is no sound evidence that the major cause of the jihadist war on the United States and on the West and on any nation somewhat friendly to America may be found in any American policy, including that toward Israel. – It is our very being, our very existence as a free and open society, that and that alone is at the very core of the war being waged upon us.” Wow, that’s quite a statement. He’s already pointed out with the drug war alone that he does not live in a free and open society and to flatly ignore American policy like that is probably why he doesn’t include any history of their policies or that of the Middle East conflict whatsoever.

The only references to Palestinians that I saw portrayed them as, you guessed it, terrorists. Increasingly his use of the words anti-semetic in defense of Israel?s activities, may well suggest that he hasn’t questioned any of this because his policies are the same.

You can’t fault his idea of disbanding the DEA and ending the drug war completely, but to just plug that nightmare into another war makes no sense. That?s like slipping pot into a crystal meth bill. Hasn’t he even read his own books? Prohibition is prohibition, whether it’s on cannabis or brown skinned people who believe in a different god than you. He continually warns us of this Islamic threat, when in reality the actions of the United States government would suggest that the scariest religious fanatics on earth are Evangelical Christians.

In the end, it seems that Fatal Distraction was aptly named, in that the author was so distracted by ‘terror’ that his book became the fatality. It just goes to show you that you should never put bombs on the cover.