THE FIRST OPIUM WAR
(Source for the following is *Dope, Inc.* by the Editors of
Executive Intelligence Review. I neither necessarily agree nor
disagree with all or portions of the following.)
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1601 -- Original Jesuit mission is established at Beijing, China.
The Jesuits, having achieved positions of "unquestioned
authority" at the Chinese royal court, hold the key to the opium
trade. They are later followed by the Portuguese and then the
1659 -- The Dutch now control the ancient dope trade routes. In
exchange for taxes paid to the Mogul court, Dutch traders are
allowed to force Indian peasants to produce dope for them.
1715 -- The British East India Company opens an office in Canton,
1750 -- By now the Dutch are shipping more than 100 tons of opium
per year to Indonesia. Besides business advantages, the Dutch
have discovered that opium is "a useful means for breaking the
moral resistance of Indonesians who opposed the introduction of
their semi-servile but increasingly profitable plantation system.
They deliberately spread the drug habits from the ports... to the
(How were the drug habits "deliberately spread"? The book,
*Dope, Inc.*, does not exactly say. Nowadays, certain
"rebellious" rock and roll songs serve as advertising jingles
which help lure in potential consumers. Censorship, however, is
not the answer. But be aware when you hear lyrics such as
"Ritalin is in. Ritalin is in," that "somebody" might be trying
to sell you something.)
1757 -- Military victories make Bengal a British colony.
1783 -- Lord Shelburne, who concluded peace negotiations with
America after our Revolutionary War, is the power behind William
Pitt the Younger, British Prime Minister. Shelburne is allied
with the Jesuits, the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem, and the
East India Company.
Both the British Empire and the East India Company are
bankrupt. Lord Shelburne and associates take over the East India
Company, and makes it "the central instrument of loot for the
maintenance of the British Empire." Shelburne proposes to use
"free trade" as a cover for both subverting the United States and
expanding the opium trade into the Far East.
Lord Shelburne is allied also with Francis Baring, an
1787 -- British Secretary of State Dundas has proposed that
Britain force itself more into China so as to help augment the
opium market there. The East India Company, acting in a manner
reminiscent of our own American Central Intelligence Agency
(CIA), establishes "cut outs" -- intermediaries -- to handle the
export of opium from India to China.
1830 -- Number of chests filled with opium being brought into
China has increased fourfold since late 1700s: 18,956 chests.
1836 -- Number of chests filled with opium being brought into
China: greater than 30,000 chests.
1839 -- China launches its own version of a "War on Drugs". Lin
Tse-hsu is appointed drug czar. He cracks down on the "Society
of Heaven and Earth," also known as The Triad Society, which had
been recruited by the East India Company into the opium business
in the early 1800s.
But Lin goes too far. He tries to arrest a British national
connected to the dope trade. British warships intervene. Lin
responds by holding British tea for ransom, until and unless
merchants turn over their opium stockpiles. Britain's Lord
Palmerston, backed by the powerful British Navy, demands (1) full
legalization of opium trade into China; (2) compensation for
opium stockpiles confiscated by Lin; and (3) British sovereignty
over several offshore islands.
June 1840 -- The British fleet arrives in force and lays siege.
Chinese forces are relatively weak, due partly to drug addiction
within their Imperial Army. The Chinese Emperor asks for a peace
1842 -- The Treaty of Nanking, among other things, gives Hong
Kong to the British. To this day Hong Kong is said to be the
capital of British drug-running.