Patrick Elie went into law enforcement at the political, rather than at the operational level, because he came to realize that drug trafficking organizations with their immense war-chest represented a serious threat to democracy and were able to unleash havoc in his country. He was in charge of coordinating the fight against drug trafficking in Haiti in the early 1990's. A coup, in which drug traffickers played a significant role, forced him into hiding and then exile. During this time, he had the opportunity to witness not only the penetration of the Haitian Army by drug trafficking organizations, but also the dubious relations between such organizations and the US intelligence community.
Later, President Aristide appointed Elie as his Secretary of State for Defense, and President René Préval has appointed Elie to lead a Presidential Commission to Strengthen National Security, and as such, drug transit through Haiti is his concern.
Several factors have influenced Elie's position regarding the failure of current drug policy. These include the degree of corruption within the very Haitian units entrusted with fighting drug trafficking, and the blatant double game being played by the CIA and the DIA, often finding themselves on the opposite side of the DEA and the Justice Department. Also, he has witnessed first hand the vast majority of inmates which are from minorities, most of them on drug-related charges.
The high cost of the War on Drugs includes not only the colossal financial cost, but regrettably the cost in lost or ruined human lives, the destabilization of governments in many countries and the infringements on civil liberties. More importantly, the whole concept is failed and even perverse, given the known consequences of alcohol prohibition.
Elie is convinced that statistics will prove that the WOD has completely rolled back the progress in enfranchisement made during the Civil Rights movement.