Marijuana Legalization Violates US Gov Obligation to International Treaties
January 3, 2013
The US government, in conjunction with Department of Justice (DoJ) lawyers, are considering suing states that have passed marijuana legalization laws. For now, the federal government is observing how recreational laws will affect punitive measures and how the federal laws in place are applicable.
Illegal drugs from Mexico will be directly impacted by the legalization of marijuana in the US. Attorney General Eric Holder explains: “We have treaty obligations with nations outside of the US. There are a whole variety of things that have to go into the determination that we are in the process of making.”
The UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reports research on drug trafficking in the World Drug Report. The UN is monitoring the world heroin market and opium trade from the Lao People’s Democratic Republic to Afghanistan and tracing the flow of drugs through markets in the Russian Federation along its way to Easter Europe.
Opium and heroin markets are estimated at $33 billion annually.
Global cocaine market that travels through the Near and Middle East, on to South-West Asia and Western and Central Europe is worth about $88 billion. This cocaine is shipped from areas in the European Union to Colombia, Mexico or Central America. The shipments then make their way into the US.
In November of 2012, Raymond Yans, president of the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) asserted that the US government has treaty obligations that preclude the legalization of marijuana in Colorado and Washington State. In fact, Yans points out that “these developments are in violation of the international drug control treaties.”
Stated in the 1961 UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs (SCND), the new legalization of marijuana laws in Colorado and Washington must be overridden by the federal government because there was a limit “of the use of cannabis to medical and scientific purposes”, according to the SCND. Therefore narcotic drugs must be made available for medical purposes to all the States who signed the treaty. This fact would be reflected in national laws within each sovereign nations and be fully in-line with international mandates. Treaty obligations would also ensure that nations would comply with the SCND.
The SCND is a combination of many international drug trade treaties which outlines the limitations of the “production, manufacture, export, import, distribution of, trade in, use and possession of” opiates, marijuana and cocaine to “medicinal and scientific purposes.” In Schedule 1, heroin, cocaine and cannibus are the most restricted narcotics. The INCB was established to monitor nations and maintain compliance with the SCND.
The legalization of marijuana in Colorado and Washington State, according to Yans and the SCND, is a contradiction to the international law set forth in the treaty.
Yans made it clear that his organization was seeking to have the US government come back into compliance with the SCND with regard to the legalization of marijuana which is a violation of international drug control treaties for the sake of “protect[ing] the health and well-being” of American citizens.
The Global Initiative for Drug Policy Reform states that: “Although the objectives of the 1961 Convention made it clear that its aims were the improvement of the health and welfare of mankind, the measures of success which have been used in the ‘war on drugs’ approach have been the number of arrests, size of the seizures or severity of prison sentences . . . these indicators may tell us how tough we are being, but they don’t tell us how successful we are in improving the health and welfare of mankind.”
In essence, the Obama administration is facing the choice of knowingly violating the SCND or finding a legal remedy against Colorado and Washington for allowing marijuana for recreational use within state limits.
The propaganda of pro-marijuana and anti-marijuana claims all method of reasons for justification of their argument which serves to confuse the public while keeping the truth of the UN treaty out of the social meme while Obama figures out which side of the fence he wants to be on.
Noscapine is derived from the opium poppy plant; the same source of heroin and the painkiller, morphine.
Since 1998, a new study by scientists at the University of York and funded by pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline, proves that synthetic noscapine (engineered opium) can be created by cross-breeding poppy plants and enhancing the production of noscapine by clustering together 10 genes responsible for its production.
Most of the opium grown in Afghanistan is under the supervision of the Taliban and US troops in the region. While the Taliban has imposed a ban on opium production just after the US invaded Afghanistan in 2001, the Northern Alliance, (which was supported by the US military) began protecting the fields where the raw production of opium was most prevalent.
The UNODC oversee the UN Drug Control Program (UNDCP) which estimates that in 2006, Afghanistan supplied 92% of the world’s opium. In conjunction with the CIA, NATO and British military forces, Afghanistan has been forced to continue its opium growing operations.
Writer William Blum said: “CIA-supported Mujahedeen rebels [who in 2001 were part of the Northern Alliance] engaged heavily in drug trafficking while fighting against the Soviet-supported government and its plans to reform the very backward Afghan society.”
However, the UN and WHO are more concerned with keeping the supply of opium flowing for “medical purposes” which is extremely profitable.