America’s longest war isn’t the 20-year fight in Afghanistan. That struggle is dwarfed by the War on Drugs, started by President Richard Nixon more than 50 years ago and still raging.
The drug war—which has relied on both law enforcement and the military, at a cost of untold lives and hundreds of billions of dollars—has fared little better than the Afghan campaign. Since Nixon’s declaration of war in 1971, drug use has soared in the U.S. and globally, the range and potency of available drugs has expanded and the power of criminal narcotics gangs has exploded.
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