Old China Had The World’s Biggest Drug Problem ..
Before Mao’s revolution won, in 1949, the people of China were miserably poor, ruled by a handful of rich landowners, warlords and foreign capitalists.. There were 70 million junkies in China, addicted to opium, morphine and heroin.. The people of old China suffered terribly from this drug addiction.. Many poor people used their pennies on the pipe instead of food.. Addicts often abandoned their children or even sold their children to buy more drugs.. Addicted women were often forced to become prostitutes and many died of diseases.. Drugs were forced on China by the rich colonialists of Europe and America.. The British Government even waged the famous Opium War in 1839 to force China to accept opium brought on English ships.. Malcolm X wrote, “Imagine !.. Declare war upon someone who objects to being narcotised !”
This drug trade started because big capitalists could make fortunes selling addictive drugs, and because colonialist governments needed that trade to finance their takeover of China itself.. Corrupt Chinese officials profited too, by helping the foreign capitalists enslave the people.. This is similar to the way the U.S. ruling class helped create today’s worldwide plague of drug addiction.. The U.S. ruling class is tied into the drug traffic at all levels.. They often organise it, finance it and defend it.. In the 1960s, the CIA flooded heroin into oppressed communities to pay for their secret war in Laos.. Then, in Reagan’s 1980s, the CIA expanded cocaine traffic to finance their secret war against Nicaragua.. U.S. drug companies make profit off speed and downers which are sold in both legal and illegal ways.. The official connection goes down to the street level, where cops demand their ‘cut’ of drug profits.. In China, the Maoist revolution ended drug addiction quickly.. Mao’s revolutionary armies defeated the oppressors’ armies in 1949.. Three years later, in 1952, there were no more addicts, no more pushers, no more opium poppies grown, and no more drugs smuggled in.. In only three short years China went from 70 million drug addicts to none.
In the United States today, ending drug addiction seems impossible.. The system claims to be ‘fighting drugs’, with cops, new medications, religion, new therapies, and ‘just say no’ campaigns.. But despite all of this the drug problem won’t go away, while armed police enforcers harass and brutalize the people.. The production, transportation and sale of drugs is a multi-billion dollar business.. It is run by big-time capitalists who have ties throughout the U.S. government, the CIA and the police.. Meanwhile, the top rulers of this system blame the people for the ‘drug problem’, especially poor ghetto youth.
( Extracts from an article by C. Clark Kissinger )
Drug Use In Victorian Britain ..
Today it is hard to believe, but in early and mid-Victorian Britain it was possible to walk into a chemist’s shop and buy without prescription laudanum, cocaine, and even arsenic.. Opium preparations were also sold freely in towns on market stalls and in the countryside by travelling hawkers.. Until 1868, the sale of drugs was practically unrestricted, and they could be bought like any other commodity.. During the Industrial Revolution drug use in England grew rampant, particularly among the working classes.. Drugs were brought to Britain from every corner of the expanding British Empire and the amount of opium sale was particularly staggering.. Dangerous drugs were commonly used for making home remedies and less frequently as a recreation for the bored and alienated people.. The recreational use of opiates was popular particularly with pre-Victorian and Victorian artists and writers.. There was no moral condemnation of the use of opiates and their use was not regarded as addiction but rather as a habit in the Victorian period.. However, when in the 1860s, ‘Dark England’ with its opium dens in London’s East End was described in popular press and books, various individuals and religious organisations began to campaign against unrestricted opium trafficking.. In 1868, the Pharmacy Act recognised dangerous drugs and limited their sale to registered chemists and pharmacists, but until the end of the nineteenth century few doctors and scientists warned about the dangers of drug addiction
The trade in opium to China was begun by the Portuguese and the Dutch as early as the seventeenth century, but it did not attain major proportions until after the British had taken Bengal in 1757.. By 1830, the British had become the major drug-traffickers in the world.. The British Empire supported opium trafficking to China, which was an enormous market.. The Opium Act of 1878 strengthened the role of opium as a cornerstone of the British imperial economic policy in the Far East.. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, as a result of the expanding British Empire, opium also became available in Britain and soon it was as popular as alcohol.. However, the bulk of opium imports to Britain came not from India but from Turkey.. Turkish opium, noted for its strength and high quality, usually provided between 80 and 90% of Britain’s total import of the drug, only losing some of its preeminence in the late seventies and eighties when the Persian variety was more widely imported.. Opium and opium derivatives were widely recognised in Victorian Britain as a ‘cure all’ and the range of opiate preparations on the market was enormous.
( Extracts from an article by Dr Andrzej and D. Litt, Contributing Editor )