Sunday, March 27, 2011

Battleship Code in LC-3 Assembly

                                             .ORIG x3000 ;This program Runs a game of battleship between two players ;There are Subroutines for Displaying the Board,Checking of player wins ;Getting Input from user,Checking if input is valid and updating board ;The program calls these subroutines whenever required ;R1 is the Flag for Player, if R1=0, ; it is player 1, and its board will be loaded ;If R1=1, it activates all subroutines for Player 2   AND R1,R1,0  ;Initialises R1, the flag  LEA R0,PLAYER1  ;Loads R0 with "Player 1" String  TRAP x22  ;Prints String  JSR display  ;Jumps to Display Subroutine(Player 1 Board)  LEA R0,PLAYER2  ;Loads R0 with "Player 2" String  TRAP x22  ;Prints String         ADD R1,R1,1  ;Adds 1 to R1         JSR DISPLAY  ;Jumps to Subroutine Display(Player 2 Board)         ADD R1,R1,-1  ;Subtracts 1 from R1, makes it 0         JSR CHECK_WIN  ;Check win for Player1         ADD R1,R1,1  ;R1<-1         JSR CHECK_WIN  ;CheckWin for player1         AND R1,R1,0  ;R1<-0  ;This Subroutine Controls the whole program, Calls Various Subroutines ;And updates value of R1 and decides whose Turn it is MAINPROG  ADD R1,R1,0  ;R1<-R1+0  BRp PL2   ;Jumps to PL2 if Positive  LEA R0,PLAYER1  ;Loads R0 with "Player 1" String  TRAP x22   ;Prints String  JSR DISPLAY  ;Jumps to Display Subroutine  BRnzp INPUT  ;Jumps to Input Label PL2 LEA R0,PLAYER2  ;Loads R0 with "Player 1" String  TRAP x22  ;Prints String  JSR DISPLAY  ;Jumps to Display Subroutine   INPUT   JSR GET_INPUTS  ;Jumps to GET_INPUTS Subroutine UPDATE  JSR UPDATE_BOARD ;Jumps To Update Board Subroutine            AND R5,R5,0   ;Initiliazes R5          LD R5,GUESSED  ;Loads r5 with Valid/Invalud guess notice          BRnp INPUT  ;Branches to Input if Invalid        ADD R1,R1,0  ;Add 0 to r1         BRz FST_PLY  ;Branches to Nest Player if zero         JSR DISPLAY  ;Jumps to Display Subroutine   JSR CHECK_WIN  ;Jump to Check_WIN Subroutine   AND R1,R1,0  ;Initializes R1          BRnzp MAINPROG  ;Branches back to MAINPROG  FST_PLY     JSR DISPLAY  ;Jumps to Display Subroutine      JSR CHECK_WIN ;Jump to Check_WIN Subroutine               ADD R1,R1,1  ;R1<-R1+1      BRnzp MAINPROG ;Branches back to MAINPROG    ; DISPLAY subroutine ;I have decided to run 2 loops,labelled LOOP1 and LOOP ;LOOP is the inner LOOP and will first check memory address if it is X0000 ;Using z condition code  ;If Zero. it jumps to label ELSE3 and prints " " on screen ;If not 0, there may be 3 numbers, x0010,x0011, or x0001 in database address; ;x0001 should print M for Miss,x0002 should print " " space, ;X0011 should print H for Hit ;The program then subtracts 2 from the value stored in memory location, ;after it is put in R1,    ;Subtracting 2 from x0001 gives us a negative no, ;using n condition code, we direct it to print "M" ;Subtracting 2 from x0011 gives us a positive no, ;using p condition code, we direct it to print "H" ;Subtracting 2 from x0010, gives us zero, ;using z condition code, we direct it to print a space " " CELL .STRINGZ " |" CELL1 .STRINGZ "|" COLUMN_NUMBERS .STRINGZ "\n     0   1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9\n" HORIZONTAL_RULE .STRINGZ "   +---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+---+\n"  NEWLINE .FILL x0A       ; \n CHAR_H .STRINGZ " H" CHAR_M .STRINGZ " M"                        ; 'M' CHAR_SPACE .STRINGZ " "    ; ' ' DOUBLE_SPACE .STRINGZ "  "  PLAYER1 .STRINGZ "\nPlayer 1" PLAYER2 .STRINGZ "\nPlayer 2" PLAYER1_WIN .STRINGZ "\nPlayer 1 wins\n" PLAYER2_WIN .STRINGZ "\nPlayer 2 wins\n" PLAYER1_BOARD .FILL x4000        ;stores address x4000 for player one's board PLAYER2_BOARD .FILL x5000        ;stores address x5000 for player two's board  SAVER0 .BLKW 1 SAVER1 .BLKW 1 SAVER2 .BLKW 1 SAVER3 .BLKW 1 SAVER4 .BLKW 1 SAVER5 .BLKW 1 SAVER7 .BLKW 1  GUESSED .BLKW 1 DISPLAY    ST R0, SAVER0 ;Stores Values Of all registers in LaBels   ST R6, SAVER1       ST R2, SAVER2   ST R3, SAVER3   ST R4, SAVER4   ST R5, SAVER5   ST R7, SAVER7      ADD R1,R1,0   ;R1<-R1+0            BRp PLAYER_2           ;Branches to Player_2 of positive            LD R3, PLAYER1_BOARD   ;3 is pointer to memory X4000, PLayer1 Board     BRnzp DONE    ;Branches to DONE, Skips next line  PLAYER_2   LD R3, PLAYER2_BOARD   ;3 is pointer to memory X4000, PLayer1 Board  DONE    LEA R0, COLUMN_NUMBERS      ;loads R0 with column nummbers 0 to 9            TRAP x22         ;Prints the string of column numbers on screen               LEA R0, HORIZONTAL_RULE     ;loads R0 with horizontal rule             TRAP x22                    ;prints first horizontal rule on string            AND R0,R0,0                 ;Initializes R0             AND R5,R5,0                 ;Initializes R5- Counter for Loop1              ADD R5,R5,10               ;Adds 10 to R5, Loop 1 will run 10 times            LD R2, CHAR_LC_A                 ;Loads r2 with ascii character 'a'                                ;Will be incremented to show b,c,d and so on LOOP1      AND R4,R4,0                 ;R4 is counter for LOOP, Initialized=0            ADD R4,R4,10                ;Sets R4 to 10, Loop will run 10 Times            LEA R0, CHAR_SPACE           ;Loads R0 with char_space            TRAP x22                    ;prints a space on screen            ADD R0,R2,0                 ;Loads R0 with value of R2                                        ;R2 contains ascii character            TRAP x21                    ;Displays character on screen            ADD R2,R2,1                 ;Increments R2                                        ;next character will be displayed            LEA R0, CHAR_SPACE           ;loads R0 with space                TRAP x22                    ;Displays " " on screen            LEA R0, CELL1               ;Loads R0 with Cell1 string "| "            TRAP x22                    ;Displays "| " on screen  LOOP       AND R6,R6,0                 ;R1 is initialized                  LDR R6,R3,0                 ;R1 <-R3(contains address to memory"            BRnp ELSE                   ;If not zero, jump to ELSE conditon                                        ;checks wether the memory contains 0 ELSE3      LEA R0, DOUBLE_SPACE           ;Fills R0 with space value            TRAP x22                    ;Prints space on screen            BRnzp PRINTCELL             ;Prints " | " for divider                                        ;Skips labels ELSE and ELSE2   ELSE       ADD R6,R6,-2                ;Subtracts 2 from R1            BRp ELSE2                   ;Jumps to ELSE2 if positive             BRz ELSE3                   ;Jumps to ELSE3 if Zero            LEA R0, CHAR_M               ;If negative, Fills with M            TRAP x22                    ;Prints M for Miss            BRnzp PRINTCELL             ;Prints " | " for cell divider                                        ;Skips label ELSE2       ELSE2      LEA R0, CHAR_H               ;ELSE 2 - Fills R0 with H             TRAP x22                    ;Prints H for Hit PRINTCELL   LEA R0, CELL                ;Loads R0 with Cell divider         TRAP x22                      ;Prints cell string " | "             ADD R3,R3,1             ;Increment pointer R3, Address to memory                                        ;Next memory Location is stored in R3            ADD R4,R4,-1                ;Decrements R4 with 1,                                         ;R4 is counter for inner loop               BRp LOOP                   ;If R4 is not zero, Jumps to LOOP,                                        ;LOOP runs again if R4 is not zero ;End of inner labeled LOOP, Horizontal Spaces filled with Hit miss or Space             LD R0, NEWLINE              ;Loads R0 with new line "\n"             TRAP x21                    ;Displays next line on screen             LEA R0, HORIZONTAL_RULE     ;Loads R0 with Horizontal Rule String             TRAP x22                    ;Prints Horizontal Rule on screen             ADD R5,R5,-1                ;Decrements R5, Counter for LOOP1             BRz RETURN              ;Jumps to exit if R5=0             BRnp LOOP1                  ;Jumps to LOOP1 and runs it again                                         ;If value of R5 is not zero,runs LOOP1    RETURN  LD R0, SAVER0  ;Loads Back register Values                 LD R6, SAVER1                 LD R2, SAVER2                 LD R3, SAVER3                 LD R4, SAVER4                 LD R5, SAVER5                 LD R7, SAVER7                 RET   ;return To Program  INV_GS_MSG .STRINGZ "\nCell has been guessed already.  Choose another cell.\n" CHAR_ZERO .FILL x30     ; '0' CHAR_LC_A .FILL x61     ; 'a'    ; CHECK_WIN subroutine  SAVER01 .BLKW 1 SAVER11 .BLKW 1 SAVER21 .BLKW 1 SAVER31 .BLKW 1 SAVER41 .BLKW 1 SAVER51 .BLKW 1 SAVER71 .BLKW 1 CHECK_WIN                  ST R0, SAVER01 ;Stores register values in labels                 ST R6, SAVER11                 ST R2, SAVER21                 ST R3, SAVER31                 ST R4, SAVER41                 ST R5, SAVER51                 ST R7, SAVER71      ADD R1,R1,0  ;R1<-R1+0          BRp CHECK_PLAY2  ;Branches To CHECK_PLAY2 if positive           LD R2,PLAYER1_BOARD ;Loads Player 1's Board in R2   BRnzp LOAD  ;Skips next line, Branches to Load CHECK_PLAY2     LD R2,PLAYER2_BOARD ;Loads Player 2's Board in R2            LOAD  LD R6,HUNDRED  ;LOADS VALUE OF HUNDRED IN R1,COUNTER WINLOOP  AND R4,R4,0  ;INITIALIZES R4    LDR R4,R2,0  ;LOADS VALUE OF R2 ADDRESS IN R4    ADD R4,R4,-2  ;SUBTRACTS 2 FROM VALUE STORED IN ADDRESS   BRz NOTWIN  ;JUMPS TO NOT WIN, AS IF 10 IS THERE,    ADD R2,R2,1  ;SHIP REMAINS UNGUESSED   ADD R6,R6,-1  ;DECREMENTS R1(COUNTER)   BRp WINLOOP  ;RUNS LOOP IF POSITIVE,I.E. NOT ZERO   ADD R1,R1,0  ;R1<-R1+0           BRp PLAY2_WIN  ;If R1 is +ve, Branches to PLAY2_WIN                 LEA R0,PLAYER1_WIN ;Loads Player 1 wins Message           TRAP x22  ;Prints String           TRAP x25  ;Halts Program PLAY2_WIN   LEA R0,PLAYER2_WIN ;Loads Player 2 wins message            TRAP x22  ;Prints String           TRAP x25  ;halts Program  NOTWIN   LD R0, SAVER01  ;Loads Back Register values                 LD R6, SAVER11                 LD R2, SAVER21                 LD R3, SAVER31                 LD R4, SAVER41                 LD R5, SAVER51                 LD R7, SAVER71   RET   ;returns to where it was called from   ;your code goes here  HUNDRED .FILL x64  ROWVAL .BLKW 1 COLVAL .BLKW 1  ; UPDATE_BOARD subroutine ;ROWVAL AND COLVAL CONTAINS INPUTS OF ROW AND COLUMN TAKE FRM USER SAVER72 .BLKW 1 UPDATE_BOARD    ST R7, SAVER72   LD R5,COLVAL  ;LOADS COLUMN VALUE IN R5   LD R4,ROWVAL  ;LOADS ROW VALUE IN R4   LD R6,CHAR_LC_A  ;LOADS R1 WITH ASCII CHARACTER a   NOT R6,R6  ;PERFORMS NOT ON R1   ADD R6,R6,1  ;ADDS 1, THIS GIVE NEGATIVE VALUE   ADD R6,R6,R4  ;SUBTRACTS 'a'VALUE FROM ROWVAL ;THIS IMPLIES THAT WE HAVE VALUES 0-9 CORRESPONDING TO a-j(REDUCED ROW VALUE) ;WE WILL MULTIPLY THIS VALUE BY 10 AND ADD 0-9 CORRESPOINT TO COLUMN VALUE ;I.E. REDUCED COLUMN VALUE ;THIS WOULD GIVE ADDRESS OF SQUARE     LD R2,CHAR_ZERO  ;LOADS R1 WITH ASCII CHARACTER a   NOT R2,R2  ;PERFORMS NOT ON R1   ADD R2,R2,1  ;ADDS 1, THIS GIVE NEGATIVE VALUE   ADD R2,R2,R5  ;SUBTRACTS '0'VALUE FROM COLVAL ;THIS IMPLIES THAT WE HAVE VALUES 0-9 CORRESPONDING TO ASCII 0-9       AND R4,R4,0  ;INITIALIZES R4   ADD R4,R4,10 ;R4 IS COUNTER TO MULTIPLY ROWVAL BY 10   AND R5,R5,0  ;WE WILL SAVE MULTIPLIED VALUE IN R5 MULTIPLY ADD R5,R5,R6  ;LOADS REDUCED ROW VALUE IN R5   ADD R4,R4,-1  ;DECREMENTS COUNTER   BRp MULTIPLY  ;RERUNS MULTIPLY LOOP IF COUNTER +VE   ADD R5,R5,R2  ;ADDS REDUCED COLUMN VALUE TO ;10*REDUCED ROWVAL. EG. j,9 WILL GIVE US x63        ADD R1,R1,0  ;R1

Monday, December 13, 2010

Class Conflict in Machucha - Movie Reaction

Machuca: Bridging the gap over troubled waters

There are many examples in literature where children’s eyes are used to envision an intensely difficult times. Anne frank’s The Diary of a Young Girl on the holocaust, young favela boys in City of God and City of Men or the young boys and girls from Mumbai’s slums in SlumDog Millionaire. Machuca is no different. Machuca explores a variety of social relations Chile in the year 1973 through the eyes of protagonists, kids Pedro Machuca and Gonzalo Infante.
The movie revolves around the friendship of these two boys, how they come together under the socialist regime of Salvador Allende. Their friendship shows as a breaking barrier between classes under socialist times. But their friendship is only temporary and comes to an end with the Allende government collapsing due to a military coup d’état.
With this paper I plan to describe how the class and social conflict present in the Chile is addressed in the movie through their friendship and political events of the time. This paper will also attempt to discover how the use of visual metaphors emphasizes this topic in a subtle manner in the movie.
The movie is broken down to three parts for discussion via a specific scene. The first part show how socialism is budding in the Chilean society under Salvador Allende’s Unidad Popular government. The second part will discuss how these socialist policies are not well received, and there are troubles and friendship between Gonzalo and Pedro begins to break. And the third part will discuss the events of Augusto Pinochet’s military coup d’état.
According to Britannica, “Marxists in particular tend to depict social life in capitalist society as a struggle between a ruling class, which wishes to maintain the system, and a dominated class, which strives for radical change.” This forms a basis for a social conflict theory.
The initial parts of the movie show how the socialist government is bridging this gap between ruling and dominated class. The Unidad Popular government of Allende is trying to transform the society from a capitalist to a socialist one, and somehow trying to overcome the prevailing social and class conflicts present in the society. There are socialist headlines in the papers, and we see words such as ‘Death of Capitalism’, ‘right wing end’, ‘right wings beware’.
Gonzalo Infante is a rich pre-teen boy studying in an upper class school. The priest, Father McEnroe is the principal of his school and is trying to implement socialist policies of Allende’s government.
Class conflict is apparent when Father McEnroe introduces the kids from shantytown to the upper class school. Boundaries are clear, rich v/s poor, uniform v/s ragged torn clothes. On asked whether any student knows any of the new student’s, a boy identifies a shantytown kid as the son of a lady who washes his clothes. This distinction is amplified by this revelation. On being asked his name, one of the poor kids Pedro Machuca answers in a low timid voice. Father McEnroe is angered, and asks him to speak louder until he shouts his name out. Father McEnroe hence tries to thrust power to the repressed class, another socialist act. This new found power is later exercised by Machuca when he is bullied; he says “Take it up to the priest.” Signifying that Father McEnroe is a source of power to him, just as Allende was fighting for the empowerment of the poor. Father McEnroe places the students randomly and Machuca happens to be seated behind Gonzalo. This is the first step towards friendship between them.
These acts of Father McEnroe such as empowering the poor and social mixing in the school can be considered analogous to acts of Allende’s Unidad Popular socialist government; with the friendship serving as a metaphor for breaking the barrier between classes.
While Gonzalo helps Pedro in school, his family problems lead him to come close to Pedro and his cousin Silvana. For a small time, they share growing up experiences together; first experiences of sexuality and alcoholism. Machuca falls in love with the rich lifestyle which includes Adidas shoes, comic books and bicycle.
As the movie progresses class distinction become more prominent with the rising political tensions.
While selling flags at a rally, the three of them are jumping to mock ‘mummies’, chanting ‘jump if you’re not ‘mummie’. Gonzalo asks about what ‘mummies’ mean – to which Silvana replies “someone rich and spoilt like you.” Gonzalo is taken aback by this pointing of distinction by Silvana.
Tensions include Silvana’s fight with Gonzalo’s mother and her derogatory remarks about his mother, and Pedro’s alcoholic father blatantly pointing out what the future hold for them. How Gonzalo would be successful and Pedro would be cleaning toilets all his life.
In the scene in which parents are meeting with father McEnroe defines the second part of the movie, exemplifying the growing class conflict and how the socialist regime cannot handle it. Gonzalo’s mother talks about how it is difficult to mix apples and pears, not because either one of them are bad, but because one is different form the other. But the main crux of the matter comes into picture when one of the parents explains how he donated pigs to the school farm, and pigs are becoming ill and dying. He points out that because the funds meant for the pigs are being diverted to accommodate the poor children.
Pedro’s mother has a very strong statement in a reply to these comments.
“When I was a child I lived at a farm near San Nicolas, in the south. My father was one of the workers who took care of the cattle. If something happened to an animal, we got it discounted from the provisions we got at the end of the month. It didn’t matter what the reason for loss, my father was always the guilty one. I came to Santiago when I was 15, because I didn’t want my children to be always guilty of everything. But it seems that in here in the city things are the same. We are always the ones who are guilty.”
She says this because here also they are being blamed for the dying pigs.
Later on we see that the all the pigs die due to illness, which serve as a metaphor for the fact that the social system is not working, there are problems the government was failing. Gonzalo and Pedro’s friendship had come to an end with the act that Pedro and Silvana taking his bicycle without permission and him insulting them.
Paul Virilio states that (as cited by Martin-Cabrera and Voionmaa, 2007, p. 69) Velocity, is linked to wealth and power, and here both sneakers and the bicycle are instruments of velocity.
As long as Pedro, the poor took permission for access to the bike and sneakers, Gonzalo, the rich was ok with it. This parallels the Chilean way of socialism which according to Cabrera and Voionmaa “had to be peaceful and within the parameters of parliamentary democracy” they suggest “Machuca’s temporary ride echoes Allende’s attempt to give hegemonic velocity to working class.”
With the end of their friendship, and military coup d’état of 11th September 1973, we enter into the third phase of the movie.
While Gonzalo is in his mother’s lovers apartment, the right wing supporting old man. He sees that people are catching dogs and taking them away. He gets scared, to hear the dogs bark and whine in pain. It is unclear why the dogs are being taken away, possibly for food as the resources for poor are scarce, but it sure is cruel nonetheless. He goes and knocks hard on the door in which his mother is sleeping with her lover, because he is scared, but the lover and his mother are calm about it and ask him to remain so. This in fact serves as a metaphor for the second last scene, in which the military is mercilessly killing and taking people of the shantytown in trucks. Gonzalo rides his bike up to the shanty- town. Pedro and his family are being taken away just as the people and the streets were taking the dogs away. Silvana dies of a gunshot in while trying to save her father, he is shocked and scared. Gonzalo himself is subject to military personnel cornering him, but he gets away showing his upper-class clothes and sneakers.
This whole scene depicts the military violence and human rights violation under Pinochet.
In the final scene, Gonzalo views Pedro’s slum from the opposite side of a soccer field. This was the soccer field separating them, and is an obvious metaphor for social and class conflict, which was diminishing during Allende’s time but couldn’t totally be extinguished. Martin-Cabrera and Voionmaa point out the 30 years on, these problems of poverty, and social conflict have increased. It is the wealth polarity that causes class conflict. According to Luis Eduardo Herrera, the “Chilean Miracle” of rising G.D.P. due to Chicago boy’s Policy is actually a myth.
Anderson states that (as cited by Larrain) “Poverty today is not because of the lack of jobs, since the unemployment rate is only 5 to 6 percent. The poor have jobs, but they have very low-paying jobs.” I.e. the rich have gotten richer, while the poor have gotten poorer. The attempt to bridge the classes and reduce social conflict was futile as the Allende Government toppled and the gap hasn’t been narrowed ever since. How much of this gap can be narrowed depends on the economic and political Chile employs in the future.
  • Boyle, Danny. 2008. Slumdog Millionaire. United Kingdom: Pathé Pictures International.
  • Frank, Anne. (1952). The diary of a young Girl (English Translation). Netherlands: Contact Publishing.
  • Herrera, L.E. (2010), Neo-liberalization as a practice: Case Study of Chile. Class Power Point Keynote 18. Slide 34.
  • Larrain S. (n.d.). The Case of Chile: Dictatorship and Neoliberalism. Third World Traveller. Retrieved from:
  • Lins, Paulo. (2002). City of God. Brazil/France: O2 Filmes & Globo Filmes
  • Martin-Cabrerra L., & Voionmaa, D.N. (2007) Class conflict, State of exception and Radical Justice in Machuca by Andres Wood. Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies,pp.63-80.
  • Morelli, Paulo. (2007). City of Men. Brazil: Fox Filmes do Brasil & O2 Filmes.
  • Social change. (2010). In Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved November 16, 2010, from Encyclopædia Britannica Online:
  • Wood, Andres. 2004. Machuca. Chile: Andres Wood Producciones.

Coca v/s Coke


Polarization exists everywhere. The basic nature of our existence deals with polarization of particles, Electron-Proton, Matter-Anti Matter, and Communism-Capitalism! Polarization in a non-scientific context would mean a difference of ideas in a population of group. The extreme views of communism and capitalism is an example. As the proverb goes – “One man's meat is another man's poison.” But what about drugs like cocaine and heroin? I am sure no one in the world can argue that Cocaine is good. Cocaine is addictive, destroys lives, and is simply poisoned. Cocaine being made illegal is justified.
In my recent Latin American Studies Class, I learnt that the president of Bolivia is campaigning against roll-back on a ban of coca leaf production. I was initially shocked to see a head of state promoting such a product. Reading on I realized that coca is not equal to cocaine and the major economies of Andes region are dependent on coca leaves production. Coca has been a staple crop and a part of daily life of The Andean region for more than 2000 years compared to cocaine which has only been around for less than 200 years. It also has a social importance and used in religious practices for thousands of years. Moreover, growth of other crops is not suited for this region. Rather than banning coca production, say coca supporters, a solution is developing legitimate uses for coca.
Here we come across polarization of thoughts once again. On one hand, The United States is spending billions of dollars every year for coca leaf eradication, and in South America- There are vast campaigns to legalize it.
This paradox of coca plant as a good and evil has social, political, economic and geographical aspects to it; which makes me want to learn more, who is correct? Is the ban on coca leaves justified? I am not questioning whether cocaine should exists in society, but is the ban on coca leaf serving an answer or does it just increase the economic hardships of already poor countries.
I turn to three scholarly journals which serve as secondary sources for my research on this topic.
The first secondary source talks about the drug enforcement in Latin America and the American war on drugs, while the second source is related to what the war on drugs means for the common people of the Andean region and how it negatively affects them. The third source is a scientific journal that discusses legitimate traditional and illegal uses of the coca plant.
The first secondary source an article appearing in the journal NACLA Report on the Americas; titled - "The only war we've got": drug enforcement in Latin America, by Coletta Youngers. I would like to quote the first line on the article to explain the complexity of the situation. Youngers starts with saying “To date, U.S. taxpayers have provided nearly $290 billion for the war on drugs, yet cocaine and heroin are more readily available, and at cheaper prices, than ever before.” Yes, even I was shocked at the figure of $290 million. In my opinion, instead of going to war on the Coca producing countries, if this money was spent on economic development of those countries, there would be less incentives for them to rely on coca as a crop.
There are many reasons the author states for this – First and foremost, coca required for the cocaine production is very small and just about 14% of worlds total coca production can satisfy U.S. Cocaine demands. Analysis has shown that just 20 square miles of coca crop is required to produce enough cocaine for the United States market. Also eradication policy has no effect on the farmers – they have no other options. In Colombia, aerial spraying has been tried to curb coca production but - As bluntly stated by the local Bishop, Belarmino Correa, "The people fear that if they stop growing coca, they will die of hunger." For those whose crops have been affected by eradication policies in Colombia they have two alternatives - to go deeper into the jungle to grow more coca or to join the ranks insurgency groups such as the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). Youngers compares coca production to a balloon. This balloon theory is simple enough: squeezing it in one area merely causes it to flourish somewhere else.
I my opinion, economic development of Coca producing countries is the first step to eradication of cocaine, rather than going to war on drugs. As cocaine produces will find a way to get drugs always.
The author explains the profit paradox on the war on drugs: The war on drugs focuses on cutting the coca production from the supply side, .i.e. South America. But majority of cocaine sale money goes to the traffickers and not the growers. Former Rand economist Peter Reuter calculates that doubling the cocaine export price would raise the street price by no more than 5% - hardly enough to have an impact on cocaine use. Therefore concentrating on cutting the supply is just an easy means of acting tough on drugs.
This seems obvious, even a person like me who has little knowledge of economics understands that, I believe that more of the spending on cocaine eradication should be on the demand side, rather than just going to war with the plantation societies.
The author cites surveys that show increasing trends in drug use act as a motive for the opposing parties to critcise the government of US. During Clinton’s administration, Republicans pointed to the lack of presidential leadership as the key factor explaining the drug-use survey results. Thus making them spend more on the war on drugs to “show” their efforts on paper. Increased military spending in Latin America attributed to war on drugs doesn’t necessarily stop drugs. In the authors words “ In the name of the drug war, a coherent human rights policy is thus disappearing from the Administration's approach to Latin America.”
I agree to this belief and the author’s stance on the US governments policies. I further add - Is going to war any better that cocaine use?
The second source, focusing primary on the drug wars in Bolivia also appears in the journal NACLA Report on the Americas is titled - THE PRICE OF SUCCESS: Bolivia's War against Drugs and the Poor, by Ben Kohl and Linda farthing.
This source points out that the war on drugs by USA described by the first source has been most successful in Bolivia, with the destruction of three fourths of its crop. Also leaving the economy devastated, thus making the economy of Bolivia dependant on US. This source points out that $500 million is the annual loss to Bolivian economy due to coca eradication, this is intriguing as compared to the $290 Billion spent on eradication programs and war on drugs.
The peak of coca production was 1970’s, the author says “For every acre eradicated under voluntary programs that offered some limited financial incentives, another acre was planted.” This is in accordance with the balloon theory of Youngers.
The US administration is pleased with the results of war of drugs in Bolivia - "Bolivia has done in the past two to three years what no other country has done in the drug war in Latin America," said Manuel Rocha, U.S. Ambassador to Bolivia since July 2000. "In Latin America, this is the success story." But this success comes at a cost of the level actors in the economic pyramid – the workers. Imagine a country whose economy single most important crop is reduced to one fourth of its growth.
In the early 1990s, alternative agricultural development projects encouraged farmers to shift to other crops, such as pineapples, pepper or turmeric. Yet there was no market for these crops, more than 35,000 families are displaced by eradication programs according to this source.
The authors quote - "Cocaine is not a Bolivian problem," says grower Adrian Martina. "I've never even seen it. Cocaine is an American problem. Our problem here comes from those who treat us like criminals because we grow coca, which we have done for thousands of years."
The authors say that the indigenous people are angry at the US for labeling this crop as a poison, whereas it has been around for more than two thousand years. They also describe how the coca leaf is socially important in religious practices, traditional use such as dulling hunger and fatigue, aiding digestion and providing minerals. Andean people have chewed coca and sipped its tea for thousands of years. There are also medicinal uses. These and other traditional uses are confirmed by the next secondary source which is a scientific journal article. Coca is celebrated and has references in ancient Andean poetry, which came in much before cocaine:
This source also talks about how peasants earn just 1.5 % of the sale of coca, justifying the profit theory of the first source. Also meeting the balloon theory of the first source – this source talks about the fact that if Colombian eradication policies were to be effective- cultivation would again increase in Bolivia.
The authors include lines from "Legend of Coca," an oral Andean poem, that show how much coca is revered in the local community.

"Guard its leaves with love. And when you feel pain in your heart, hunger in your flesh and darkness in your mind, lift it to your mouth. You will find love for your pain, nourishment for your body and light for your mind."
For majority of the workers, coca has been a livelihood, a means to fend off starvation caused by economic collapse.
In my Latin American Studies class, I learnt about how Evo Morales, himself a farmer was the head of coca growers union and led resistance to eradication programs. He is now fighting to increase the cap on legal coca production and new developing products which include coca.
My Third Secondary source shows the importance and uses of coca. The article is titled “"Cocaine and the coca plant: traditional and illegal uses." And is by Douglas H. Boucher. It presents illegal uses and traditional – legal uses. How it reduces hunger pangs and keeps one active for hours. Much like modern day coffee drinkers use it to keep active – only coca has been around since 1500 B.C.
Coca teas has been popular since ages, and modern day cola also has coca extract.
Illegal uses of course are known to all; cocaine is a very harmful drug and can potentially cause death. It is also one of the most addictive common drugs, next to heroin
Even this source talks about the balloon theory and failure of eradication policy. “In Bolivia, when 2500 hectares were eliminated by a major government effort in 1988, another 6800 hectares of new production began.
This source does however conclude that the evils of cocaine far outweigh the goods of coca leaf. Coca is no longer used just by peasants and cocaine industry is thriving. I agree to that, but banning coca production has no effect on cocaine production and the market. There must be other means to stop this trafficking – like perhaps greater punishments, and social awareness among teens.
It has a long history of traditional and medicinal uses, but the duality of use makes coca a complicated matter, can coca exist without cocaine? I believe not, but certainly going to war and forced eradication is not helping. In my the US should promote other crops and economic development rather than going to war. This research makes me conclude that the ban on coca leaf production is not justified.
Source Citation
Youngers, Coletta. "'The only war we've got': drug enforcement in Latin America." NACLA Report on the Americas 31.2 (1997): 13+. Academic OneFile. Web. 5 Nov. 2010
KOHL, BEN, and LINDA FARTHING. "THE PRICE OF SUCCESS: Bolivia's War against Drugs and the Poor." NACLA Report on the Americas 35.1 (2001): 35. Academic OneFile. Web. 5 Nov. 2010.

Boucher, Douglas H. "Cocaine and the coca plant: traditional and illegal uses." BioScience 41.2 (1991): 72+. Academic OneFile.