War on Drugs is an American term commonly applied to a campaign of prohibition of drugs, military aid, and military intervention, with the stated aim being to define and reduce the long-lasting drug trade.
The term "War on Drugs" was popularized by the media shortly after a press conference given on June 18, 1971, by United States President Richard Nixon—the day after publication of a special message from President Nixon to the Congress on Drug Abuse Prevention and Control—during which he declared drug abuse "public enemy number one".
That message to the Congress included text about devoting more federal resources to the "prevention of new addicts, and the rehabilitation of those who are addicted", but that part did not receive the same public attention as the term "war on drugs".
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The Drug Policy Alliance estimates that the United States spends $51 billion annually on the War on Drugs.
Government officials wonder why the War on Drugs has not been more successful.
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