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Excerpt: "According to Russia's Federal Drug Control Service, a third of Afghan troops have deserted to join the country's drug trade industry."

An Afghan policeman destroys poppies during a campaign against narcotics in Kunar province. (photo: Reuters)
An Afghan policeman destroys poppies during a campaign against narcotics in Kunar province. (photo: Reuters)


A Third of US-Backed Afghan Forces Involved in Drug Trade

By teleSUR

28 April 15

 

Several reports show the production of opium has sky-rocketed since the 2001 U.S. invasion.

ccording to Russia's Federal Drug Control Service, a third of Afghan troops have deserted to join the country's drug trade industry.

“A concentration of foreign forces and fighting in a drug-producing state has ensured a climate of rampant desertion from the local armed forces and police,” Viktor Ivanov, director of the federal body, explained.

Afghanistan is known to be a primary source for opiate production, including heroin. The country is also a large producer of marijuana.

Speaking at the Second Anti-narcotics Ministerial Conference in Moscow, Ivanov explained that most of the drugs produced in the Middle Eastern country end up in Russia and Eastern Europe, due to its closeness to the region.

Opium production in the country has steadily increased over the years, despite the presence of a United States counter-narcotics mission. Last year opium production reached record-high levels.

The anti-narcotics mission is headed by the private company Blackwater — now renamed Alumni — which received a contract from the U.S. government worth US$309 million for training the Afghan National Interdiction Unit, the Ministry of Interior and the Border Police.

According to Ivanov, the situation is particularly troubling since the Islamic State group is now financing itself from drug money, with an estimated annual income of US$1 billion from drug trafficking.

Reports of the IS group operating in Afghanistan have raised concern, and even prompted an outspoken rejection by the Taliban.

The United Nations will hold a General Assembly on drugs next year, to address the global problem.


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+14 # dbrize 2015-04-28 08:38
"The anti-narcotics mission is headed by the private company Blackwater..."

Reminds me of Bogies final line in Casablanca:

"Louis, I think this is the start of a beautiful friendship."
 
 
+12 # fredboy 2015-04-28 09:18
Isn't heroin really why we are in Afghanistan? To control the world heroin market? Seems pretty clear.
 
 
+3 # Radscal 2015-04-28 18:56
One of the many lucrative reasons, for sure.

Afghanistan also has what may be the world's largest quantities of lithium. Combined, Africa and Afghanistan may hold up to 75% of that "rare earth" mineral necessary for so many of our electronic devices.

Just like gold being randomly "discovered" in California the year after the U.S. conquered it from Mexico, shortly after invading Afghanistan, the U.S. just happened to discover vast reserves of valuable natural resources.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/14/world/asia/14minerals.html?_r=0&gwh=0A0FA8109306351CEFB155927AE1238A&gwt=pay
 
 
+10 # fredboy 2015-04-28 09:20
Did I just read 'Blackwater' in that article?

You've got to be kidding!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!
 
 
+8 # Romesh Bhattacharji 2015-04-28 10:19
Time to consider legalisation of opium poppy cultivation. It will cost less than paying Blackwater! How can America return to these crooks?
 
 
+8 # PABLO DIABLO 2015-04-28 11:31
The CIA is the largest drug dealer in the world. They keep getting caught, but all they do is pay BLACKWATER to insure they continue. Wake up America. Why do you think we were in Vietnam? The poppy crop was moved to Afghanistan after we agent oranged as we were losing Vietnam. Now, why do you think we are in Afghanistan? DUH
 
 
+6 # Dust 2015-04-28 11:42
Given that the GOP and right-wing folks want to privatize everything including prisons, this is perfect for them: they get to prance and preen about the war on drugs, and then get an endless supply of prisoners from which to make money both as slave labor as well as prison funding.

Now that marijuana is becoming legal, and now that big rich white men can make money from it, will all the young black men thrown in jail for 20 years for possession of marijuana be released?
 
 
+5 # HarryP 2015-04-28 12:10
As long as you have highly paid, private companies engaged in the war on drugs, the war will limp along. Why try and win the war when it generates such lucrative contracts?
 
 
+5 # Anonymot 2015-04-28 13:02
I've been writing for years that the reason The CIA went into Afghanistan was drugs just like going into Iraq was oil. The reason we had to dump Karzai was that as he settled into power he wanted all of the massive new heroin crop and the brand new und huge production of marijuana for his family & friends, 600 Billion bucks worth less the Taliban's 10%.

Of course our current political crop got the message, stayed intimate with Columbia and Mexico, and tried to put their arms around the shoulders of the rest of the world's suppliers, the Generals of Burma.

Eric Prince and the Blackwater scum, by any of its other names, are pretty good at targeting where the black money comes from. It's all untaxed, untraced, and fairly apportioned to the deserving people in America and the self-serve laundries.
 
 
+3 # Granny Weatherwax 2015-04-28 18:42
"Opium production in the country has steadily increased over the years, despite the presence of a United States counter-narcoti cs mission. Last year opium production reached record-high levels."

Under the Taliban, opium poppy was almost eradicated in Afghanistan.
Then the US barged in and allied with the warlords in the north to get to Kabul.
What could go wrong?
 
 
+1 # geohorse 2015-04-29 06:23
Why doesn't the US govt just buy up all the drugs for use in our major drug industry then offer the Afghans some alternative for making money? The farmers don't get much for the poppies compared to what the middlemen receive (same old story here) so we should be able to pay them more thus putting the dealers out of business. This would be so much cheaper than war. We could use the war money to build schools, health clinics and support food production so as to really give the locals a leg up.
 

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