New Homeland Security Department Appoints First-Ever Counter Narcotics “Czar”

Washington, DC: The Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have named former CIA operative Roger Mackin to coordinate federal anti-drug efforts between the two agencies. The position will combine the existing duties of the United States Interdiction Coordinator (USIC), a currently held position within the ONDCP, with those of the newly established DHS Counter Narcotics Officer.

According to an ONDCP press release, the Counter Narcotics “Czar” will “ensure that all DHS counterdrug policies, initiatives, efforts, andresources are aligned with the President’s National Drug Control Strategy,” among other duties.

NORML Foundation Executive Director Allen St. Pierre criticized the formation of the new federal anti-drug bureaucracy under the umbrella of the DHS. “Adding another ‘anti-drug’ technocrat to the acronym soup of federal agencies already charged with drug law enforcement at this time of heightened security and federal belt-tightening is the embodiment of government waste and redundancy,” St. Pierre said.

Though the ONDCP’s press release alleges that Mackin has “unmatched experience” in coordinating anti-drug efforts and drug policy, an internet search-engine query under his name revealed virtually no references to his background. Mackin has worked as an intelligence officer for the CIA in Vietnam, and later in South America.

For more information, please contact Allen St. Pierre of The NORML Foundation at (202) 483-8751.