War and Drugs: The Role of Military Conflict in the Development of Substance Abuse

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9781594518959: War and Drugs: The Role of Military Conflict in the Development of Substance Abuse
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War and Drugs explores the relationship between military incursions and substance use and abuse throughout history. For centuries, drugs have been used to weaken enemies, stimulate troops to fight, and quell post-war trauma. They have also served as a source of funding for clandestine military and paramilitary activity. In addition to offering detailed geopolitical perspectives, this book explores the intergenerational trauma that follows military conflict and the rising tide of substance abuse among veterans, especially from the Vietnam and Iraq-Afghan eras. Addiction specialist Bergen-Cico raises important questions about the past and challenges us to consider new approaches in the future to this longest of US wars.

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About the Author:

Dessa K. Bergen-Cico, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Department of Public Health and Nutrition, and lead faculty of Addiction Studies at Syracuse University; she teaches international courses on drug policies and holds a research appointment at the Syracuse Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Dr. Bergen-Cico is a Certified Addiction Specialist (CAS) and has worked in the field of alcohol and other drug prevention and treatment for nearly twenty years. Prior to becoming a member of the faculty she served as the director of a sexual assault services center and director of substance abuse prevention and counseling programs. From 1996 -2000 she directed the National Security Studies health promotion programs for senior civilian and military leaders. In addition to her research on the effects of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and substance abuse, Dessa teaches and studies the benefits of cognitive behavioral stress reduction and mindfulness-based practices for those affected by violence, trauma, anxiety, and substance abuse. On a personal note Dessa has competed in several marathons, holds a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, and lives in Manlius, New York with her husband John. Their daughter Rachael works in education policy reform, and their son John is a cinematographer.

Review:

“Department of Defense and U.S. Army reports observe that the prolonged operations tempo with rapid redeployment stresses active duty service members, threatens troop readiness, and challenges resilience. Dessa Bergen-Cico’s analysis in War and Drugs echoes these observations and sets the current challenge in historical context. Readers concernced with the health and safety of soldiers, sailors, marines, and aviators will find her book of value.” ―World Medical & Health Policy Journal

"War and Drugs weaves a meticulously referenced exposé that implicitly links most major armed conflicts and political unrests with drug abuse and addiction...The information presented in War and Drugs is...powerful, gutsy, and disturbing."
--Darryl S. Inaba, Director of Education Training for CNS Productions and one of the original founders of the Haight Ashbury Free Clinic in San Francisco

"War and Drugs views the drugs, war, and soldiering nexus through a diverse set of lenses. At a time when the war on drugs is reaching a terrible nadir, it provides a timely contribution to the drug war discourse."
--Danny Kushlick, Head of External Affairs, Transform Drug Policy Foundation, United Kingdom

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