Just as the US bears much responsibility for the violence and instability of Near East countries due to our oil interests and because of our friendship with Israel, we also bear much responsibility for the drug wars and political instability in South East Asia and Central and South America.
As the most powerful country in the world and the self-appointed protector of Freedom and Democracy around the world we have flexed our military might and political influence everywhere we have any commercial or monetary interests. Not much has changed in the last thousand years when powerful European nations such as Spain, Portugal, Holland, France, and England conquered the world in the name of Christianity but in truth did so for their gold, spices, slaves and other resources. So do we conquer the world in the names of Freedom and Democracy but in truth do so to gain advantage for our commerce and our need for resources such as oil and minerals. We invest token amounts or nothing in nations which have little to offer us even though they may be in the greatest need of financial, medical, and commercial assistance. Where is our humanity?
There are also social interest of our own that will cause us to get involved in other governments. The greatest among these are drugs. Because of our anti-drug laws we create a huge and extremely lucrative demand for illegal drugs and industries both here and especially outside the US for supplying illegal narcotics. In many poor countries of South and Central America as well as South East Asia there is relatively easy big money to be made from the production and sales to the US of illegal drugs. Few consumed substances have such a sustainably high demand and bear such high prices per unit weight as illegal narcotics. It is their illegality that creates demands for such high prices, not the difficulty or cost of manufacturing. All illegal drugs could be made relatively easily and cheaply commercially if legalized.
So the US has provided the world an opportunity to make huge amounts of relatively easy US dollars. In response the US declares war on the drug trade and sends arms and money to these drug producing countries with the intention to slow down or stop trafficking. But all countries involved in the drug trade are poor and corrupt. That is the reason for their involvement in drugs in the first place. So much of this aid actually gets into the hands of corrupt officials and drug kingpins. It is a war we have fought for half a century and cannot gain headway. When we eliminate one source of drugs another pops up in its place. There is simply too much money to be made. So the war on drugs continues unabated and we never solve the drug problem, at lest not this way. For every kilo of drugs we seize a hundred get through our borders. But we are the actual source of the high prices and great demand. Stop making drugs illegal and the demand for high priced drugs will simply disappear. This is simply Economics 101 for Supply and Demand. The less supply and greater demand for a product the higher it is the price. Nothing drives the price higher than to make illegal a product in great demand.
The corruption opportunities that US aid against drugs and from the bribery of drug cartels results in governments that focus upon where officials can get the most money for themselves instead of governments which focus upon the needs of their people. This creates greater poverty, social unrest, and political instability and revolutions which are commonplace in Central and South America where the supply of narcotics is most prevalent.
So whether in response to the illegal trafficking of drugs or from our commercial self interests abroad we are responsible for a lot of unintended consequences all in the name of Freedom and Democracy, concepts that we ourselves often struggling with. The only difference between we and earlier colonialists is that we use the concept of spreading Freedom and Democracy in place of religion. We now have more powerful weapons and more sophisticated techniques and technologies to inflict greater harm.
I often wonder if civilization has progressed over the last thousand years or is it an illusion and only technology has progressed. Are we truly any better than our ancestors at humanity and in being civilized and bringing about peace and happiness to ourselves and to the world? Or is it only an illusion? Is the US any more moralistic than countries during colonial days? Are we fulfilling the vision of the founding fathers of this nation when they declared to the British crown “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.“? [Declaration of Independence]