Russia's Top Narc Blames Beatles for Drugs

Their 'mind-expanding' jaunts expanded problem: Yevgeny Bryun
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 25, 2012 11:50 PM CDT
Updated Jun 26, 2012 4:53 AM CDT
Russia's Top Narc Blames Beatles for Drugs
John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and George Harrison join the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, as they arrive by train in Wales, to participate in a weekend of meditation in 1967.   (AP Photo/File)

(Newser) – All you need is drugs, drugs, drugs. That seems to be the message the Beatles communicated to Russia's top narcotics-fighting official, who believes the Fab Four were largely responsible for kicking off the global drug problem. "After the Beatles went to expand their consciousness in India ashrams, they introduced the idea of changing one's psychic state of mind using drugs to the population," Yevgeny Bryun told a Moscow press conference. "When business understood that you could trade on that—on pleasure and goods associated with pleasure—that's probably where it all began." Bryun added that tough measures must be used to combat mass culture and advertising which promotes drug use today, reports the Telegraph.

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Beatles music was banned for a time in the USSR, and the state album manufacturer called them "musicians who have plunged to the depth of musical decline." But Russian President Vladimir Putin is a huge fan, and met Paul McCartney when he performed "Back in the USSR" on Red Square in 2003. (Read more Yevgeny Bryun stories.)

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