Normally Dabs Mag doesn’t write articles that advocate taking weed or hash away from adults. But, when it comes to ISIS, we’re willing to make an exception. The Islamic State currently makes a whole lot of cash on the hashish trade in Northern Africa. A new plan by an Italian government official would take all that hash and that cash away from ISIS. All we have to do: legalize weed.
Franco Roberti, the national head of Italy’s anti-mafia and anti-terrorism is down to legalize marijuana in Italy and hopes to convince the rest of Europe to do the same in order to weaken islamic terrorists and the mafia, according to an interview he recently gave Reuters.
“Decriminalization or even legalization would definitely be a weapon against traffickers, among whom there could be terrorists who make money off of it,” Roberti said.
Cannabis and hash nets $36.1 billion a year for Italy’s cosa nostra and some of that money is going to terrorist groups like the Islamic state, according to Roberti. In studying both the mafia and islamic terror groups, the Italian government has found not only financial leaks between the two, but similarities in how they fund their operations.
“International terrorism finances itself with criminal activities that are typical of the mafia, like drug trafficking, smuggling commercial goods, smuggling oil, smuggling archaeological relics and art, kidnapping for ransom and extortion,” Roberti told Reuters.
Legalizing cannabis, the official said, would not only cut off a supply of cash to these violent groups, but also allow the government to stop wasting money and energy on tracking the illegal marijuana market.
“We spend a lot of resources uselessly. We have not succeeded in reducing cannabinoid trafficking. On the contrary, it’s increasing,” he said. “Is it worth using investigative energy to fight street sales of soft drugs?”
The official, who has investigated organized crime for over 30 years, not only called on Italy to change its cannabis playbook, but believes other countries should be compelled to do the same. In his book Il Contraro della Paura (The Opposite of Fear), he argues that, “On decriminalization [of cannabis], there should be an Italian domestic debate, but also a European one.”
Photo via Flickr user killerbee11682