Ross Kemp currently has a programme showing on Discover Channel called “Battle for the Amazon”
This was the first episode I have seen from the series but the one thing that stood out the most was the damage criminalization of Cocaine was doing to the country.
The damage it was doing to the health, the safety, the finances and freedom of the Peruvian people.
You have isolated villages in the middle of the Peruvian rainforest with tens of heavily armed police and possible army mulling around sheep and goat farmers.
The arming and training of these forces must be costing the Peruvian taxpayer a fortune.
You then have these heavily are soldiers manning road blocks and randomly stopping people going about their business for no reason other than they people might have drugs.
And we are not talking about quick checks here. In the episode the soldiers/police where literally emptying the vehicles of all their contents to search for Cocaine. No sniffer dogs were present to speed up the process or to make the process more thorough.
As if the roads were not bad enough already the Peruvian people are further delayed and inconvenienced by a militarised police force.
These heavily armed men were in complete contrast to the poor people they were searching. You can see where taxpayers money is going in Peru and it is not back to the people.
Then you have the people farming Cocaine. Cocaine is illegal in Peru despite coco plants appearing to grow everywhere in the country.
This criminalization of cocaine has led to hundreds if not thousands of farmers and people having to work underground in order to process the coco leaves.
The processing of the coco leaves involves highly toxic chemicals which in turn are dumped in rivers and the processing of cocaine also involves small children.
It is the criminalization of cocaine that is forcing people to work in dangerous and hard to reach locations so they can be as isolated as possible from local law enforcement.
If cocaine were legal these farmers could set up more permanent locations as they would not have to hide which would in turn make it easier for them to develop suitable storage and disposal systems.
At the moment they have to be constantly moving meaning the processes are completely basic and have minimum investment to make the process more efficient.
Freedom is self-explanatory. Peruvians are exposed to random stops by heavily armed police in the name of fighting drugs.
And you have to ask, why is cocaine illegal? What purpose does it really serve?
No purpose that I can see of yet cocaine is illegal and you can see the complete carnage and damage it causes to the Peruvian environment and to Peruvian people.
When looking at criminalization of drugs and these heavily armed soldiers in the midst of the rainforest with people with little technology it paints a really absurd picture.
Soldiers with the last automatic weapons next to shepherds moving their goats.
The soldiers are living in a completely artificial reality from the people of Peru. A reality which is completely fictional and created by arms manufacturers and foreign governments.
If you look at these heavily armed police and soldiers as drug traffickers you can see the criminalization of Cocaine serves one purpose.
From that perspective the criminalization of Cocaine in Peru serves one purpose and one purpose only and that is to rid the government’s of competition in the cocaine production market.
I am not saying the government of Peru is involved in the smuggling and production of Cocaine. What I am saying is that it does give an interesting perspective to the observer if you imagine that these heavily armed police and soldiers are in the drugs industry and are in fact doing the opposite of what they claim.
From my perspective it makes much more sense for the government to arm the police if they wish to control the supply of cocaine rather than eliminate it. That makes the pictures of armed police shown by Ross Kemp make much more sense.
It is hard to image what purpose the criminalization of Cocaine serves apart from restricting supply, driving up prices and giving governments the excuse to spend millions of dollars on military equipment.
When you look at all these armed government personnel in the Peruvian rainforest it appears, at least to me, like one giant drug production facility which is tightly controlled by the Peruvian government in order crush the competition.