June 5th, 2009
01:12 PM ET
6 years ago

White House unveils plan to combat drug trade at border

Rising drug violence in the United States is one of the administration's top domestic concerns.
Rising drug violence in the United States is one of the administration's top domestic concerns.

(CNN) - Top Obama administration officials were in Albuquerque on Friday to announce new efforts to combat the flow of illegal drugs from Mexico.

The White House released a summary of its National Southwest Border Counternarcotics Strategy, aimed at not only stemming the trafficking of illegal narcotics, but also slowing the flow of cash and illegal firearms into Mexico.

The plan involves increased intelligence and enhanced technology. It also includes "targeted financial sanctions to disable drug trafficking
organizations," as well as heightened cooperation with Mexico, the White House said.

Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, Attorney General Eric Holder, and White House Drug Policy Chief Gil Kerlikowske planned to discuss the strategy at a news conference.

Rising drug violence in the United States is one of the administration's top domestic concerns.

–CNN's Terry Frieden contributed to this report.


Filed under: Mexico • White House
soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    It is nice to stop the stuff coming into the country. We also need to stop the demand for it. We need both ends of it. Drug treatment and prevention is never sexy enough to get continued funding is a major problem.

    June 5, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  2. Dave

    This is all fluff. There are people in very high places in this country that profit from the drug trade.

    June 5, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  3. J.P.

    I'm a very conservative republican and even *I* say LEGALIZE IT ALL.

    The government has no authority to tell adults what intoxicating chemicals they can/cannot injest.

    Further, we should not send America's police officers to be chewed up into the middle of a war for dope profits.

    BUT, after it's all legal, if someone intoxicated commits a crime, hurts someone, kills someone, drives intoxicated... THEN you can throw the book at them. Honestly though, the most dangerous thing potheads have ever done is kill bags of Doritios and packages of pink Hostess Snowball cakes.

    June 5, 2009 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  4. panem et circenses

    "Top Obama administration officials were in Albuquerque on Friday to announce new efforts to combat the flow of illegal drugs from Mexico."

    Janet Napolitano is supporting "increased intelligence and enhanced technology"? I guess this means she has found a device that can scan illegals crossing the border so that the Border Patrol only picks up those carrying drugs.

    She has no interest in stopping the flow of illegal PEOPLE over the border...

    June 5, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  5. Henry Miller

    Yeah, right, let's waste more money on yet another scheme that can't possibly work. I guess the morons in Washington just can't accept the lessons of Prohibition.

    The only thing harsher interdiction will do is raise the price of drugs, thereby making the violence worse.

    June 5, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  6. Mississippi Mike

    How about this for a plan: Stop illegal immigration. You want to stop illegal smuggling of drugs, weapons and people? Simple, build the fence and man it. If people can't cross illegally, they can't smuggle.

    June 5, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  7. Robin from Florida

    Legalize marijuana and tax it. The government would realize more revenue ffrom the sale of this stimulant, than tobaco cigarettes. JR Reynolds, Phillip Morris and the rest should diversify in marijuana cigarette production. It would be good for the counrty then Law Enforcement could concentrate their efforts and resources on the coca leaf derivitive.

    June 5, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  8. Adam

    END THE WAR ON DRUGS. This will save billions of dollars, reduce boarder violence, create new industry, and will clean out prison system that is currently full of non-violent offenders.

    June 5, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  9. The lonely Libertarian of Liverpool NY

    This will be another total waste of taxpayer money. The criminal gangs will adapt to this and it will be business as usual. Time to reconsider this failed drug policy.
    Even when prohibition against alcohol was repealed it was not done because alcohol was a good thing, we didn't tell everyone to give their babies a beer, and it was done to save lives.
    Our drug prohibition is costing Billions in taxpayer dollars and thousands of lives every year.
    Drugs are not a good thing either, but it is time to take on a different approach in its continued use in our country.

    June 5, 2009 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  10. David

    OK....if marijuana is the primary revenue generator of the drug trade, and we know that marijuana is less harmful than alcohol and tobacco......why is it not legalized like any other 'chemical' that gets approved.

    What makes marijuana so special that we are willing to allow the deaths of hundreds of men and women, and spend billions of dollars trying to keep people from getting it, and billions to house it's sellers and users in prisons all over the country??? For a drug that harms no one, but then again everyone because it's 'illegal' which gives it all it's value.

    Make it legal, remove the drug trade market. Not everyone want's to get high and we all don't get drunk or smoke cigarettes just because it's legal.

    June 5, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  11. conniesz

    Why does the photo show pot? Most of the marijuana in the US is grown right here. The illegal drugs that I'm worried about coming across the Mexican border are coke and heroin. Let's get real about stopping the bad drugs – pot is pretty insignificant really. It's media coverage like this that fuels the ridiculous war against pot. Show some white lines on a mirror if you want to show bad drugs – pot is considered a medicine in at least 16 states already with more on the way.

    June 5, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  12. Fred the Moderate

    I hope it has something to do with shutting down our southern border. The problem of supply is there, the problem of demand is here. Maybe law enforcement can step out from under the trees where they hide to catch speeders and start working on our side of the problem.

    June 5, 2009 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  13. Ennis, LA

    Yeah...meanwhile cities like San Francisco, Oakland, and New Haven
    want to give cartels ID cards to plie their trade! Preach to them, Janet & Eric!

    June 5, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  14. John

    Why don't they just shut the border down,roundup all the illegals,and start shooting anyone coming across illegally.Lets face it Mexicans are what are causing our countries downfall,nothing but a bunch of stinking BREEDERS!!!

    June 5, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  15. Pepper from CA

    One thing that would help in fighting the drug trade is for media to show what this issue is really about. The image here is of one rolled marijuana cigarette. The drug trade is major organized crime and marijuana is hardly the big issue here. We are talking major cash exchanges, narcotics, abductions, firearms, etc.

    June 5, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  16. mjm

    Wow, this is tough.

    How to keep the drugs out while allowing illegals to come in.

    I'd be willing to bet Obama will come up with a "historical" solution.

    How about closing the boarder?

    June 5, 2009 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  17. mjm

    Sorry, ment border.

    June 5, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  18. Peter E

    We are at war with Mexico already. Their incompetent, corrupt government can't get their economy back together or create jobs. That resulted in both millions of their excess labor being dumped on us, and also those remaining there to turn to a drug-based economy. (much like Afghanistan) They've attacked us. It is time we deposed their corrupt government. They have done more damage to our economy, committed more crimes against our civilians than the Taliban ever has! We need to stop excusing our enemies, and start protecting our land and our people!

    June 5, 2009 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  19. Peter E

    If you want to help fight drug trafficking, if you want to stop the senseless killing of thousands of innocent civilians each years in Mexico then STOP SMOKING THAT POT! The number one guilty party in all of this drug war is the consumer himself! Americans are the number one consumers of illicit (and legal ones for that matter) drugs in the world by a wide margin! So next time you think you are not harming anyone by smoking that joint, think of the families in Mexico who have been murdered so that you can 'escape' for a few hours from your problems. Problems that won't be solved by your smoking anyway!

    June 5, 2009 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  20. Ken in NC

    If the government burned the drugs and buried the drug runners the drug trade will dry up very soon. There would be no torture as long as one shot is used before burial and it is a lot more cost effective.

    June 5, 2009 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  21. history repeats

    legalize marijuana you backwards thinking morons!! its common sense!

    June 5, 2009 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  22. Hopeful Optimist

    After having lost my oldest son to an accidental drug overdose, and having experienced the ensuing HELL ON EARTH that it spawned, I say LEGALIZE drugs. Its the only sane approach. Just consider what madness prohibition wrought. Wake up America.

    June 5, 2009 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  23. history repeats

    lets spend all of our money on high tech junk and protection and policing to stop drugs that people are going to do ANYWAY!! legalize it and tax it! alchol is a thousand times worse than marijuana!! grow up !!!!! evolve!!!!

    June 5, 2009 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  24. realist

    now its obama time to get nowhere with this, bust one drug lord and there is one waiting in line to take their place. never ending cycle that comes from supply and demand.

    June 5, 2009 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  25. dan

    If we need an extra $20 billion or so:

    taxthechurches"DOT"org

    from the Bill of Rights:
    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof

    June 5, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
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