In 1968, the federal drug enforcement budget was $60 million. By the end of fiscal year 1999, that same budget had exploded to more than $17 billion. Yet despite the United States' vast efforts during the past three decades to stop the flow of illegal drugs, the use of heroin, cocaine, marijuana and other illicit drugs remains essentially unchanged. FRONTLINE presents the first television history of America's war on drugs as told from both sides of the battlefield in a special four-hour report. Part I recounts the origins of the anti-drug campaign, from the Nixon administration's drug control efforts to the rapid rise and fall of the Colombian drug cartels.
In Part II of "Drug Wars," FRONTLINE examines the impact of crack cocaine on our city streets and our criminal justice system. The report also investigates Mexico's role in supplying drugs to meet American demand.
Producer(s): Martin Smith
Awards: 2001 News and Documentary Emmy - Oustanding Background/Analysis of a Single Current Story