'The War On Drugs Show' – How Ketamine Took Over the World

Charting the drug's journey from the medical tents of the Vietnam War, through the nostrils of ravers at nightclubs and after-parties, and back to the world of medicine.
August 25, 2020, 2:59pm

In The War On Drugs Show, we examine the social implications of drug prohibition – how it plays into user harms, arrest and incarceration rates, drug seizures and the destruction of criminal networks.

Whether, basically, prohibition works or not.

In this episode, we take a look at the world’s most infamous horse tranquiliser. It may lack the glamorous associations of cocaine and the hedonistic kudos of ecstasy, but ravers, doctors and therapists worldwide are united in their love for ketamine.

The trippy anaesthetic has thrived despite global attempts to ban it, and has overcome PR damage caused by teenage incontinence and knocked-out horses. Since it was first used by US field surgeons in the Vietnam War, the drug has quietly been winning battles in the War On Drugs across the planet, and today is used by club kids zoning out at afterparties and pioneering psychotherapists alike.