“In the span of a few short years, fentanyl, a synthetic painkiller 50 times more powerful than heroin, became the drug scourge of our time. Fentanyl has played a key role in reducing the overall life expectancy for Americans.” WaPo: The Fentanyl Failure. “Between 2013 and 2017, more than 67,000 people died of synthetic-opioid-related overdoses — exceeding the number of U.S. military personnel killed during the Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan wars combined.” Fentanyl was originally used with anesthesia. As it became a national emergency, American leadership was asleep at the wheel.