All Israel

Highly addictive drug Captagon found in pockets of Hamas terrorists who committed massacre on Oct. 7

Dubbed 'cocaine for the poor,' Captagon is mainly produced in Syria and easily accessible throughout Middle East region

Illustrative - A customs officer displays confiscated Captagon pills (Photo: REUTERS/Nikolay Doychinov)

A synthetic amphetamine-class stimulant known as Captagon was found in the pockets of Hamas terrorists who committed the brutal surprise attack on Israel's border with Gaza on Oct. 7, according to Israel's Channel 12 news.

The drug, known to be highly addictive, produces feelings of euphoria, suppresses the appetite, reduces the need for sleep and can illicit psychotic reactions.

Dubbed as “cocaine for the poor,” Captagon was originally produced in Germany during the 1960s to treat attention deficit disorder, narcolepsy and depression. In the 1980s, Captagon was taken off the market because of its side effects but was later seized by criminal networks in Bulgaria and Turkey, which then smuggled to consumer markets throughout the Arabian Peninsula.

Lebanon and Syria then began making and distributing the drug, which medical professionals in the region have said is commonly used by members of terror groups, but also used by civilians who are looking for an escape from their difficult situation and circumstances.

The sale of the Captagon drug has since become a multi-billion dollar industry for Syria, far exceeding those from the country’s legitimate exports. Syrian exports of the addictive drug reportedly reached $3.5 billion in 2020, an amount five times higher than their combined export industries.

According to a report published in The Washington Post, 80% of the world’s supply of Captagon is produced in the Syrian Arab Republic, with three times the combined trade of the Mexican cartels.

The U.S., the United Kingdom and the European Union have accused Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and the Lebanese-based Hezbollah terror organization of producing and selling the drug.

In an interview with Sky News Arabia in August, Assad denied that he and his government had any involvement with the drug. Instead, the dictator blames “the countries who contributed to the chaos in Syria.”

According to an article in the Jerusalem Post, the Syrian government uses “local alliance structures with other armed groups such as Hezbollah for technical and logistical support in Captagon production and trafficking”.

As for other Arab nations, more than 600 million Captagon pills are consumed annually in Saudi Arabia alone, producing up to $12 billion in revenue.

In Jordan, Captagon is easily accessible at low prices and has become popular among impoverished youth.

In the last two years, large quantities of the drug have been confiscated from Greece, Malaysia and Egypt.

$380 million worth of pills were discovered in a shipment of lemons in Dubai and 7 million pills were intercepted in a shipment of oranges in Kuwait in 2021.

Also in 2021, Saudi Arabia placed a ban on all Lebanese products due to drug smuggling activities and the issue has become a top concern for Arab countries seeking a solution to Syria’s war, according to Reuters.

In May of 2023, Arab nations allowed Syria back into the Arab League in exchange for a termination of the production and smuggling of Captagon.

However, according to intelligence sources, the drug is still being produced in factories along the Syrian-Lebanese border and exported throughout the region.

Unfortunately, the drug has reportedly found its way to the streets of Israel, where it sells for NIS 50 (about $12) per pill.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

All Israel
Receive latest news & updates
    A message from All Israel News
    Help us educate Christians on a daily basis about what is happening in Israel & the Middle East and why it matters.
    For as little as $5, you can support ALL ISRAEL NEWS, a non-profit media organization that is supported by readers like you.
    Donate to ALL ISRAEL NEWS
    Popular Articles
    Latest Stories