Saturday, March 01, 2008

2 birds with one stone

Just finished reading the International Narcotics Report released by the State Department today (2.29.08). I tell you, the Taliban got it going on and it seems to be all charged by the hate of US – the United States and the West. According to the report:

"Narcotics production in Afghanistan hit historic highs in 2007 for the second straight year. Afghanistan grew 93 percent of the world’s opium poppy, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Opium poppy cultivation expanded from 165,000 ha in 2006 to 193,000 ha in 2007, an increase of 17 percent in land under cultivation... The export value of this year’s illicit opium harvest, $4 billion, made up more than a third of Afghanistan’s combined total Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of $11.5 billion. Afghanistan’s drug trade is undercutting efforts to establish a stable democracy with a licit economic free market in the country. The narcotics trade has strong links with the anti-government insurgency, most commonly associated with the Taliban. Narcotics traffickers provide revenue and arms to the Taliban, while the Taliban provides protection to growers and traffickers and keeps the government from interfering with their activities. During recent years, poppy production has soared in provinces where the Taliban is most active."

Now this tells me a few things. 1] the 32,000 troops we got in Afghanistan have not been able to reduce the opium trade nor convince farmers to stop growing Poppy in the region and 2] if they will blow up 2000 year old Buddhist statues out the side of mountian, they wont stop until they blow up all of our troops.

Now this means that the Taliban is rollin' in loot, 11.5 billion dollars worth. I know I would if i sold more than 90% of all the stuff that was the primary ingredient to make heroin. And I know, my senior chemistry seminar paper was how to make heroin #10 from Morphine (and i still got a copy, fol gave me an 89 n shit).

My main point of consternation is that the locations where cultivation of Poppy is the greatest is in areas that’s under the NATO forces’ control. LOL. So in essence, the Taliban is using this money to attack US and NATO forces as well as the U.S.-backed government. The report is called the U.S. State Department's annual International Narcotics Control Strategy Report. A Briefing on the report was given by Assistant Secretary David T. Johnson

We turned a blind eye to the plant when the Taliban was being funded and supplied by US when they were considered a way to make inroads into the country in 1979. But we can't blame them, because it easy money since i suspect that all the Taliban has to do is provide protection to growers and traffickers to collect. We supposedly reduced their power in 2001 but today still in 2008 we are locked in fierce battle with them folk.

All we do is talk about eradication of the plant when we know good and damn well that eradicating opium hurts already super, duper poor farmers. Meaning we talk about crop replacement but what crop gone replace the kind of loot that poppy can generate? Cocca or weed maybe, but not olive trees for sure. In 2003 it was estimated that poppy production according to the International Monetary Fund, accounted for 40 percent to 60 percent of the Afghan economy. So now I am speculating, since we have been there it now represents about 70 to 75% - is that an increase?

Here at home, heroin has made a combecak, albeit as LL Cool J said, "been here for years.". Based on data reported in the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse, there are an estimated 3,091,000 U.S. individuals 12 years of age and older that have used heroin at least once. Now even kids are being hooked on the stuff. In Texas for example, there has recently become a large corpus of kids as young as 11 geting hoked on the stuff. Really they are becoming addicted to a mixture of heroin and Tylenol PM , commonly called "cheese." News Reports suggest that they buy it at school with their "lunch money and snorted it through hollowed-out ballpoint pens."

I guess this will be another legacy of G.W. Bush. I mean, we suposedly making progress at least in the strong hold of the Taliban. But what do they do, they take us down with one stone, growing poppy to supply their military wing, and get our youth, the future military persons of our country, addicited to the same shit.

65 comments:

professor said...

HOLY SHIT...and we thought the war was about oil...oil can run out-they've just about tapped the earth for the next coupla hundred years...the refineries and pipelines can be destroyed but give folk some seeds and dirt and presto chango...CASH...
I was remarking to bigbear the other day that the number of folks nodding out on Lexington and 125th had increased significantly in the last few months...

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

Professor - i gave you a shout out in my prior coment section, thansk for te fire and dedication, and best of all humbleness

dc_speaks said...

and the list goes on and on.

geeeeez

professor said...

thanks...

The True Urban Queen said...

I don't know if this comment will make any sense. And, I don't know if this comment even goes with this blog. But, I'm going to give it anyway.
Drugs make the world spin. Kidding. I know it is gravity,(I think, really didn't pay attention in science class).
Anyhoo. .Without drugs where would the economy of America be? America can't wage war on drugs (even if supplied by the Taliban). Who would purchase the big screen tv's? (the drug dealers). And who would supply them with the money and also help the blood banks? (The addicts). How will the police earn their checks if it weren't for harassing low level dealers?
From Reagan (just say no) to Bush Jr., drugs have never been the problem.
Done rambling. Bye.

MsPuddin said...

damn aint this about a b*tch...we need a better leader and more money...wait, nevermind...

Sincere said...

What's going on big bruh!!!
I need to know where I send my tuition for this semester? lol I knew the whole war on terror was a front.. How can you fight terror when it's everywhere? Anyway the war on drugs has been going on since before my time! I remember growing up in DC and seeing the fiends on Heroin stretched out. I never dabbled in sales but I have plenty of friends who did. Why do we always pick battles we know we can't win? If they do somehow convince the farmers to stop growing opium, all they'll do isswitch to that yayo just like you said..

Jaded said...

I wish I could say I was shocked and dismayed. However, I can only say dismayed.

I know I sound like a broken record, but it's all about the money. There is no way that many crops can be grown in US and NATO territory without someone in power lining his pockets.

Thanks for your kind words, by the way.

Curious said...

This is the result of the misnomer knwown as a war on terror.

Since the overthrow of the Taliban, the installation of a weak President Karzai, a weak goverment and an increase in power of the Afghani warlords, poppy growing has increased mainly becuase there is no one force that is able or interested in controlling it.

Perhaps if we had treated the situation as a police action, bribed a few people for info, gone in there quickly, taken Bin Laden and his top aides dead or alive and then left even quicker than we had entered, maybe we wouldn't be where we are now.

Some sons should listen to their fathers. I think it was papa Bush who said that he didn't believe in nation building. I now see why.

Curious said...

BTW, if Janet Jackson can release a new album, isn't it about time for another Bin Laden tape telling us how well he's doing.

The Bear Maiden said...

I too, had noticed an extra amount of junkies on 'Two-Five (and we were there back in the day of the Pizza Connection, so I KNOW nod when I see one!), and was disturbed that they were looking mighty young. Funny that I hadn't mentioned it to you Professor.

It's ALWAYS about the money... has been for 400 years.

BuelahMan said...

The military industrial complex (Big Military) is fully aware of what is happening and must endorse it.
Without funds for their enemy, who would they kill?

For my bet is that there is more than enough napalm left over to wipe away every poppy field in the world, if we really wanted to do that.

Of course, Big Prison would never want that done.

Everyone is correct.

Its all about MONEY! And you ain't getting any of it.

Christina said...

Uhem needless to say, you have given me much to think about.
:)

KELSO'S NUTS said...

T: Since we're twins you know exactly where I come down on this issue. Just where you do. And to some extent where THE TRUE URBAN QUEEN does.

The problem is that 80 miles to the South of my apartment is a country you might have heard of called Colombia, which borders on Venezuela, and Peru and there's Bolivia and Ecuador...and if you go to SuziRiot's blog and read her "War On Drugs" piece you'll find a link to an interview with a Bush Administration diplomat in Colombia who's not real diplomatic. The Administration doesn't use the term "War On Drugs" anymore. It's now "narco-terrorism," and as with Afghanistan it's all conflated an the USA is hardly an innocent in this. In Colombia they have a piece of the ruling party's and the paramilitaries' share. They'd like to have the opposition party and FARC's share as well. And they like an excuse to invade Venezuela and Saddamize Hugo Chavez.

Condoleeza Rice [I don't know if she's a sacred cow to anyone here and I don't really care, to be honest] more or less let everyone in Latin America know about all that last March which is why she had to run out of Panama City after the Conference Of The Americas as fast as those little shoes would allow.

Banking and real estate are big business here and nobody's too excited by Uncle Sam messing it up with yet more war.

I'm neither a Christian nor a believer in the supernatural, but I did read the bible, both testaments and I sure would like to know where it says that cigarettes and alcohol are fine but cocaine and heroin aren't. I missed that part.

Sharon said...

Hey, I forgot I read that blog. The one you told me to go "read it". Hee. I am now about to order a book. And in today's blog I answered a question you asked once. P.S. I can cook my Great Aunts made sure of that.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

Torrance:

I went over to that INCOG place and it's left me in a quandry. Am I supposed to fire away or ignore?

The Bad Kelso is telling me that it's too much fun to resist. Not for any social good but because I can. And make it hurt.

The Good Kelso is telling me that it's a waste of time and the more goose-eggs he has for comments on his blog, the better.

IVENTBYBLOGGING said...

I never even thought about Taliban being drug czars! my goodness, they have the drug game on lock!

Even with a diff leader, the drug trade won't stop. it's been here for yrs and will continue. this is a silent partnership...and America will always be 25 steps behind Taliban...taliban will appear to be "elusive." How convenient...

coleman said...

torrance, what point are you making with this post?

Do you favor decriminalizing drugs like heroin?

Do you consider drug use a criminal problem? Or a medical problem?

What makes you think military forces in Afghanistan are DEA agents?

Furthermore, why would you think 32,000 -- if that's the number -- troops can fight the Taliban AND identify opium fields?

It would take little to cover large areas with defoliants. But as you said, that would put poor farmers out of business.

On the other hand, BUYING the opium crop at local prices would cost -- based on your numbers -- about $6 billion a year. There's room in the budget for that. Then our buyers could destroy their purchases.

Or we could offer to buy other agricultural products for the opium price. But,as you said, the Taliban is giving the farmers "protection>'

As I'm sure you know, it's not the military forces that threaten the farmers. It's those swell Taliban guys. The usual "protection" racket is humming in Afghanistan.

You raised important issues. What do you think the US should do about the problems you identified?

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

coleman - im sayin the Taliban are bad for America and want to see us dead via war or drugs. And that after all the time, we cant put a dent i the opium crop, thats all and that it is a shame. I think we shold burn that shit, its hitting our kids now. Thats how i would my tax money to be used and beter intel for the troops is a start, and nato, they aint doing it.

Bria - they making a lot of loot

Kelso - twin do what u must. But about the Taliban, it is money. We knew where the fields were back in the day

Sharon - thank u hon, tell others to support poor writers, independent and dont use AMAZON pls

Christina - im sorry lil sis LOL

BuelahMan - i wish everyone wasnt correct, cause that CHEESE is serious

Bear Maiden - u are so right

Curious - i agree, and they likely got the tape just waiting to release it with Puffs new album lol

Jaded - i know, i aint suprised either

Curious - they know that crime pays, huh

True Urban - queen, we would be up a hell hole, but not herion to the kids, thats foul

Mspuddin - yep, it is a bitch. i dont wanna get u mad lol

DC - and i know u talking about the legacy of GWB

Lovebabz said...

I rather like this post it gives room for thinking folks to follow the dots--which is time consuming and can be confusing. The notion of war on drugs was always something to pacify Mr. & Mrs Middle America. How else could The Bush Admin gangster roll--but before that, each persidency had this tongue and cheek roll-out of some type of war on drugs. ALL (illiegal & legal--read pharmaceutical companies..ie real terrorists) Drugs and the production and selling of are essential to our bottom line. We have to fund a great many things and taxes alone cannot do that. Now take the war on drugs and juxtapose the American prison complex system which is becoming a for-profit entity...I suspect to be traded on the Boards soon...but I digress. And you can get a sense that each feeds the other and no one is connecting the dots, because 1) most American are not well read, 2)and not well traveled and so they just think all the bad guys are being locked up. So with this mindset it is easy for American politicians to spin the Taliban as threats to American sensibilites--which may all well be true, but the larger issue is about the power of money and what countries and other agent provacateurs are willing to do for same.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

T:

When did you get in the business PREDICTING the future rather than just reading probabilities!

We've got a war going on 200 miles from me that started this morning.

I only hope that this story gets swamped by the Texas and Ohio primaries up there. It's just a question of time before Bush gets involved in this and there is a POSSIBILITY that it can be resolved given enough time.

In the US media, you are going to read about a lot of things: "leftist" guerrillas, communism, Hugo Chavez's dictatorship, "narco-terrorism," "instability in 'our' hemisphere," and so on.

Just pay it no mind. It is as everyone has written in these comments about three things ALL of which are a proxy for MONEY: crude oil, cocaine, and US imperialism.

The labels have no meaning. What is "leftist" or "guerrilla" or "dictaor" or "FARC" or "paramilitary" or "stability" or whatever. The crude oil, the cocaine, and that these same players io the Bush Administration "lost" Latin America. That's all it's about. Uribe has to sit down with Chavez and get this stopped NOW.

And if Uribe is scared to do it because of the CIA, then there has to be a no-confidence vote in Colombia and Cesar Gaviria has to take over and do the job. If Chavez wants to pump up his ego by being the main man who got all of the "secuestrados" freed by the FARC, so be it. Give him the credit and let him put on his military uniform and tri-color and go back across the border.

Then, Colombia has to think long and hard about how the cocaine is being divided and how many lives it's costing. And legalization must be on the table, as well as the Panamanian/Ecuadorean solution...good bye US military, we'll draft our constitution our way, but thanks anyway. It's been a blast. Buh-bye.

That way, the political extremes lose their appeal and both civil wars and foreign wars become unnecessary.

2sweetnsaxy said...

Wow! Great story!

PrettyBlack said...

Damn where do I start, the war on drugs is just about as much of a joke as the war on terror, how can you fight against your business partner. Dirty muthafucka's. The whole lot of 'em! haha.

I actually thought asia was the leading opium producer but I guess that's why I come here because I learn something new errrtime!

So let me get this straight. Reagan and Bush 1 provided Bin Ladens military with most of their weapons and Bush two is somehow providing them with most of their addicts. Is that why Haliburton can move over there and become tax free business?

The deeper you get into it the sacrier it gets.

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

Prettyblack - truth be told, Afghanistan is in Asia, so is Iran and Iraq, no coninent called the middle east & i agree it is a joke

2sweetnsaxy - thanks, so u have 2 blogs, me likes

Kelso - tel me more about ha ar folk

Babz - "1) most American are not well read, 2)and not well traveled and so they just think all the bad guys are being locked up." i could have not said it better in this cathode ray tube age.

Emmanuelle said...

I stand with "Curious" and completely agree with what he's saying, he made me chuckle at 6 AM that's a start for a great day. But i had no idea yet somehow i expected it...i guess I'm deceived.
mmmm i'm going to think a lot today.

Don said...

The Taliban must be saving all that money in their efforts to purchase something nuclear. I agree, no crop is going to replace one that generates billions of dollars. You're right, we cant call it a comeback. LOL.

GC said...

I'm wondering if the war in Iraq wasn't more of a distraction than we thought it was. So, Operation whatever it is in Afghanistan is really a poppy-cultivation mission.

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

GC - i wonder how much of that loot the CIA is getting?

Don - how ya living folk

Emmanuelle - i agree with him too, how is the book of verse coming, i likd that last one u posted, but i like 99 percent of what u write

The Black Snob said...

The United States is the largest drug market in the world. That's why you have Mexican gangs going to war with the Mexican military. How Colombian rebels FARC are paying their insurrection against the government with cocaine. It's why Afghanistan's poppy fields are so abundant.

American's need to get high. They will pay top dollar. People act like the drug wars start in the ghetto with some 17 year old black kid selling rocks on the street.

They never get to the head of the snake. You know with the billions upon billions of dollars in the drug trade if black folks were benefiting Compton, Calif. would look like Beverly Hills, Calif.

Ladynay said...

I love coming to your spot. You are always reading something that I'd probably never pick up on my own will. Digest it then break it down into one blog entry. LOVE IT!

T.C. said...

wow...i am totally addicted to your site now...i love reading and learning...and it seems like you are on top of your stuff...makes me want to do even more research on my own

jameil1922 said...

this story just made me sound extra smart at work today. thanks!

Aunt Jackie said...

A the golden Triangle comes to light. I was side-eye like a muthaf*cka when the US wanted to invade this territory for as we know there is a limit to how much crude oil can be produced, but not so much on the drugs.

It has been more than rumored that during the time of the original invasion the US wanted to create a pathway allowing easier expedition of "oil" directly through the Poppy crops...

Well here we are a few years down the road, with so much pure Hop (as we call it in East Oakland) hitting the streets that kids are over dosing on their first try.

It's said that because these rural kids aren't surrounded by seasoned junkies they don't have the street sense on what to do during in OD which is quite common amongst those who have been junkies for a while.

Great post again, reminding us that war is Gangsta..straight up!

Noushy Syah said...

Goshh!! Are you serious? I never knew about those Taliban's involvement in drugs!!

You really have good stuff posting here..love reading your blog my friend.

I think reading blog written by blogger like you is more interesting then reading from the news ..

A thumb up for the post!

Tha L said...

"We turned a blind eye to the plant when the Taliban was being funded and supplied by US when they were considered a way to make inroads into the country in 1979."

All-Mi-T, you never cease to enlighten me! It's a trip to once again see that the folks our country once supported with money and weapons as "allies" turn around later and use the same money and weapons to kick our asses. Some call it back-stabbing, but I call it uninformed and naive foreign policy. This shit is never gunna end until the folks we elect start learning more about history, and stop making the same stupid ass decisions.

VE said...

Where do they grow all these poppies? All the pictures I see of the place are mountainous piles of rocks.

Tony OH said...

Same ish, different day. Who else is gonna fund this Iraq war?

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

VE - where the NATO forces are concentrated LOL

ThaL - what u mean i never stop to amaze u?

Noushy Syah - y thnk u, and yep, im serious as a heart attack


Aunt jackie - i know Oak Towns story, from personal sources, and the death of Huey P. Newton, and thank u to hon.

jameil1922 - u are welcome btw u are extra smart.

tc - thanks folk, do that we ned all the warrior/scholar / scientist we can get in the world, especially in the USA and especially amon black folk

Ladynay - thank u hon, i try to kill m brain cells but they just keep on coming back

Black snob - aint that the truth , "it would lok like beverly hills, unless we keep buyin watches from jacob the jewler, fancy cars and sprewells to go on them

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

tony oh - LOL

KELSO'S NUTS said...

T: With me you get "ha ar folk" in every possible meaning. One can make a zillion and 1 deeply finessed puns on the phrase.

* How are you doing?

* "Ha'ar..etz" readers...

...and so on...

Me? I just write what I know. I don't want to steal Torrance's thunder at all. His post is about Afghanistan/Opium/USA but there's a "low-intensity" war going on now here as well that has to do with Andean South America/Cocaine/USA.

It behooves every thinking person to pay attention to both. I get that South America feels like "yesterday's news" and is boring. I get that I'm boring. I'll stipulate those things at the outset.

But please read stuff about what's going on here. It's only a 7 hour flight from JFK to Medellin but it takes a whole lot longer to get to Kabul.

These are global issues and very much intertwined.

If anyone who comments here is disregarding South America because of some vague idea that Latinos are a "good voting bloc" for Clinton, I doubt even a higher power can save you.

Clinton and Obama are 7-Up and Sprite.

The struggle for control of oil, cocaine, and heroin and all derivatives and proxies are our lives and the lives of all who came before and all who will follow.

And when I write "our lives" the last thing I mean is "don't do drugs." Gee whiz, DO them if they give you a moment's peace. A single person's USE of NOT USE of drugs is absolutely irrelevant to the issue.

It's the how the money gets carved up what matters.

What's so funny about peace, love and understanding, indeed. With that, you got a shot at economic justice coupled with growth.

Christopher said...

Before the Murikans were sent to Afghanistan, opium farmers were tending their crops much the same way they did in the 12th century. Oxen and wood wheels ruled the crops.

Then shortly after the occupation began, shiny new 21st century farm equipment was airlifted to Afghanistan and delivered in military transport planes. All under the watchful eyes of the CIA and the U.S. Army.

Naturally, this resulted in opium production soaring well beyond what rural Afghanis had ever seen before.

Now, what many braindead Murikans fail to understand about Afghanistan is that it allowed the United States to become the biggest drug dealer on earth. If you think this isn't so, consider this: the USA is spending 3 times more than the Dept. of Treasury takes in. Some of this is netted back in the form of Treasury notes sold to China and Japan but, there's still a shortfall.

The USA plugs that fiscal deficit by dealing in illegal opium. Isn't that some kind of ironic bullshit? American prisons are cheek-by-jowl with inmates convicted of dealing in illegal drugs that are made from opium and the government of the USA is itself the world's largest drug dealer.

Ain't the 21st century sumpin'?

KELSO'S NUTS said...

THE BLACK SNOB has it half right on Colombia. The FARC finances its insurrection with cocaine. The PARAMILITARIES & USA finance their control with cocaine. Uribe and Gaviria are caught in the middle.

THE BLACK SNOB has it spot-on about the money. I don't see any great grandchild of Papa Kennedy or Papa Bronfmann giving any of that money back.

And I know that Neither Papa Kennedy nor Papa Bronfmann were so shortsighted in days of yore quite similar to days like these to throw away money on toys.

I don't advocate that the main players in Compton, Gary, E. StL, Camden, Newark or wherever create family dynasties by peddling destruction, but the money's going somewhere.

It's a discussion that must happen openly. And, yes, very much why ALL cultures are in the discussion.

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

Kelos - lol, my fault i type w 2 fingers, and my post, i write them sraight out of my head and post them directly. Only takes about 5 or 6 minutes to write one, but about ten to find some links to suport what i wrote. I ws trying to say "tell me more about that war folk. but ive been reading since then. LOL and it aint my tunder, reading the report just made me mad.

and black snob be on point, chk hr page out kelso. I am glad u like it over here, u got some fans too

Christopher - u said a mouthful, now thats what im tlkin about, info (and pssy) is my drug of choice. Great addendum.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

Torrance:

FORTUNE'S FORMULA by William Poundstone is essential reading.

It's main focus is the nexus of finance, gambling and the evolution of higher mathematics but there is a great piece of economic history in it.

He traces back the evolution of the TIME-WARNER corporation not along the Henry Booth Luce line nor the Jack Warner line, but along the S Ross/C.P.Kimmel line.

It begins with a couple of young men in Hoboken, Kimmel & Zwilling, in the 1920s, needing to launder money, who bear a striking resemblence to the characters who populate the baroque rap songs -- and the city reality -- of today.

Just a question of a 90 degree turn of a color-wheel is all. It was NO different.

M.Kam said...

forreal? 11 years old?

damn

and this is just further proof that gwb has been doin nothin but scratching his ass...

KELSO'S NUTS said...

My apologies, CHRISTOPHER. I forgot to mention that I thought your comment was excellent.

The irony you cite is bitter indeed but it's worse still. It's a Triple-Winner for the government. Make that a Quintuple-Winner.

Please answer this trivia question: name one federal or large sized state penetentiary near an urban center. I can think on ONE. Rahway, NJ. Which was built a long long time ago before New Jersey was so populous.

And this is not a new phenomenon. Read Damon Runyon. There's a reason the "bloodhounds of Broadway" had a term "going to college." Lots of two kinds of instutional facilities in Upstate New York then and now, si o no?

Inmates may not vote yet they are counted as residents for census purposes. Whom does that help? Moreover, much of the federal and state systems of corrections are now privatized, as well.

5x-Winner for the government, you see. And "government" is the right word. Repeat after me: NO MATTER WHOM YOU VOTE FOR, THE GOVERNMENT ALWAYS WINS.

So, no, I do not think Senator Gumdrop is in a huge hurry to be putting any of this to rights if elected president. This is not exactly a criminal justice REFORM campaign he's got going.

I messed up and missed this one when Bush got elected, but I think CCA or WACKENHUT and any other private US prison contracting company will be AWESOME stocks to own a few months after Senator Gumdrop gets elected President.

There will be a natural sell bias on the incorrect assumption. Just wait. Do your math. Pick your target prices where the value of the equity plus the value of the debt just gets below the value of the assets and then...SEND IT IN AIR-FREIGHT.

Reality will set in with Obama's first budget. And when that money is allocated and spent...treat yourself to a bag of the finest!

You deserve it. You were right. The whole thing stinks. Yet, you crushed it. At least that's what I'm going to do, anyway.

LexyB said...

hey..thx for stopping by my site... I didn't forget about u!!!

Submariner said...

Raw, one thing that gets obscured with the focus on G.W. Bush and the War on Terror is how much these policies were inherited by the current White House occupant rather than something that was inspired by a malevolent genius. If you want to understand present America it's essential to go back to the Fifties. One of my favorite books detailing that era is Present at the Creation by Dean Acheson. The fateful choices that led us to where we are today arise from the Truman administration's decision to aggressively meet Communism. The enemy of my enemy is my friend logic led the Carter administration to back undemocratic elements like the Taliban and mujahadeen against the USSR. This support was maintained under Ronald Reagan. The current ascendancy of Republicans veils the fact that Democrats from Truman to JFK to LBJ and even the aforementioned Carter set the tone for foreign relations.

The current War on Terror, like the Cold War preceding it is a contest of elites. Whereas the Soviet and Eastern bloc nations used Marxist-Leninist language of egalitarianism, the East Asian actors use the language of Islam to mask their savagery. Political Islam whether in the form of Taliban or Al Quaeda or Islamic Republic of Iran is an undemocratic force that stifles humanity. In our country, there is little incentive for the beneficiaries of war socialism to see any abatement in the flow of narcotics and industries such as prison and welfare which are dependent on the drug trade intermediaries for survival.

Xavier Pierre Jr. said...

T. I appreciate the shout.

Damn it man! Too many comments to read so I'll just state my point: All naturally occuring drugs should be legalized and taxed at the State level with each state deciding the taxes to be levied. To get just a *small* idea of the consequences of my position, one need only look at the history of prohibition and its subsequent repeal. If this were implemented TODAY in coordination with law-enforcement, the effect on organized crime would be incalcuable. It would be their worst nightmare.

I have yet to hear a single argument for outlawing drugs that stand up to a thorough assessment of facts. I'll happily take on any challengers.

FULL DISCLOSURE: I've a recovering addict, 12 years sober. This is an issue I'm extremely well-informed about.

Peace and Love

Alizé (http://LoversA.blogspot.com)

Rose said...

What else is new? Where ever and whenever Bush is involved, it's about money and power of the people. My best friend is a drug counselor, especially heroin. In about six weeks she had 11 suicides (all heroin addicts) because it is one of the most difficult drugs to kick.

But I'm sure that wouldn't matter to some people.

VertigoVirgo said...

The drug trade will never be stamped out by the government because it is "Big Business"...almost a corporate institution, everything is so subversive and underground but its there, all you have to do is read...and that is the one thing the government doesn't count on the average American doing.

Pimpin' Pens said...

Those are some astronomical figures man. Their ballin in the desert, damn. Got to admit though, the afghan ish in a.m.sterdizzle was fire, but I am a bit salty their making all that cheese from seeds sold to our seeds who make "cheese".

-Los

Aunt Jackie said...

i have to give a shout out to Kelso because I am well aware of what the impact of the South American Drug cartel has on the economics of the US drug trade.

As a California native I have been privy to the direct trade between South American and Californian drug dealers. Now that I live in LA it is becoming more and more apparent that both US and Mexican border palms are greased by drug traffic. Texas is another great point of entry, thus some of the highest grade product is hitting kids at such a cheap price because it still available in a purer for at a low price but it's excessive.

Regardless to the fact that Poppies and Coco leaves don't grow in the United States, the industry that America really fattens its pockets off of is the criminalization of drug users. Our country has a contract until infinity with the company that build foundations for Prisons.

Rural areas in economic slumps bid to have Prisons built in their communities because Prisons create jobs, so there is no real incentive for America to stop drug trade as it is fuel for our economy the same way oil is fuel for our cars.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

T: Congratulations again on assembling an absolutely OUTSTADING bunch of thinkers here.

A very unconventional crew.

It's been a week for me and it feels like months. I only hope I've added something worthwhile.

TY also for the push to THE BLACK SNOB's site. She is indeed a scholar, my friend.

Aunt Jackie and I once again find an area of common interest frustration [last was the appalling treatment of NCAA athletes, I believe]. Of course, Xavier Pierre, Jr's solution is the sensible, logical and mature one and -- for crying out loud -- THE CAPITALIST ONE. But entrenched interests do not let go of their piece without a fight. Logic? Suskind's Times piece caught the key phrase, no? "The Reality-Based Community" is impotent.

But the alternative is hard to get one's mind around. In that sense, maybe as small a thing as it is, Blogovia is important. Maybe as much of a right-winger as he is, Obama's important, too.

Even with a war and multi-country conflict going on down here, it all STILL seems more sensible than the US way of doing things. Certain aspects of Colombian life under Uribe and life in Alan Garcia's Peru that are as common and natural as breathing would be considered maybe part of Kucinich, Dean, or Nader's loony-liberal platform.

Uribe and Garcia are not exactly what you'd call "enlightened" by any means.

And the war is being pushed by US interests anyway, so I guess I'd recommend some travelling to whereever. Just to see how other democratic republics arrange it.

mp1 v.8.0 said...

just means we're turning a blind eye to it. good ole American crimefighting!

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

MP - my query is if they realy do fight crime or if they know that crime pays?

Kelo - any time folk, you know u got some fans over here, glad to see u think the folks are scholars, thats what i want to promote, or at leas thinking

Aunt Jackie - prisons and drugs, are our econonmy in other words? great point

Pimpin penz - u dont wana go to afganastan folk believe that lol

Vertigovirgo - u may be right, it is consumer driven nd the customer is always right

Rose - it obviously dont matter to som folks

Xavier - congrats on the sobriet and honesty, and u right, there is no argument like i said in my reply to Vertigovirgo

Submariner - so true, but at least there was real enemy during the cold war. this war is a war against an emotion or fear

Lexyb - thanks for th drive through and anytime and do come back

M.kam - yep, damn LOL

BadTux said...

Okay, first of all, the Taliban isn't the biggest dealers in heroin in Afghanistan. In fact, we gave the Taliban a big award six months before we invaded Afghanistan for pretty much killing anybody they found growing heroin poppies, therefore pretty much eradicating the heroin poppy in all parts of Afghanistan under Taliban control.

The biggest dealers of heroin are the "Northern Alliance" warlords that we installed. They financed their insurgency against the Taliban from the beginning using money from heroin, and their goons still protect the heroin poppy fields.

Now, you gotta remember that there's three different major ethnic groups in Afghanistan. In the far South you have the Farsi (Persian) speaking Hazara, who look Mongolian and practice Shia Islam (as vs. the Sunni Islam of the rest of Afghanistan) and are looked down upon by "real" Iranians (Persians) and by other Afghanis both but so it goes. In the middle you have the Pashtun, who once ruled the whole lot as well as most of western Pakistan until they got mixed up in inter-clan warfare and the Brits came in and sorta pushed them around a bit to wedge western Pakistan into their control. Then finally you have our buddies and pals, the so-called "Northern Alliance", who are Turks (mostly Uzbeks and Tajiks) who don't even speak Pashtun. And we put these heroin-dealin' slimeballs on top of the Pashtuns, putting a Tajik or Uzbek warlord as the Big Cheese in every major town and city, then put a willing dupe Pashtun in Kabul as "President" who all the warlords simply ignore.

So anyhow, you got all these Turkish fighters and warlords roaming around and forcing Pashtuns to grow heroin for them but they don't even speak the language so it's easy for the Taliban to infiltrate fighters into mostly-Pashtun areas that the Turks control, you got Pashtuns who because they can't fight the Northern Alliance by themselves and NATO seems to be siding with the Turks instead turn to a resurgent all-Pashtun movement formerly called "The Taliban" for protection against the Turks, and "The Taliban" (only somewhat related to the original we kicked out in 2002, in that now it's turned into a Pashtun national liberation movement as well as a religious movement and dumped a lot of the religious overtones) has been kicking butt because, duh, the Pashtuns are 50% of the population of Afghanistan meaning that they got a heaping ton of manpower to go around and get plenty of money and weapons from their friends in the ISI (Pakistani Intelligence Agency -- yep, our helpful Paki "allies" are arming the Taliban at the same time that they supposedly are "fighting" the Taliban!). The ISI, not the Taliban, is actually who is running the heroin that the Taliban gets in "donations" from local farmers, the Taliban would rather have nothing to do with heroin, but the ISI needs the money to get them guns so they do it.

So when you hear about "the Taliban are growing heroin in Afghanistan", you're hearing bunk. *EVERYBODY* is growing heroin in Afghanistan. The Taliban certainly are taking their slice of the trade (or, rather, diverting shipments in the areas they control to their buds in the ISI for further resale on the world market), but they are by no means the largest growers of heroin poppies in Afghanistan. That dubious honor goes to our Turkish buds in the Northern Alliance, who not only grow heaploads of heroin poppies in their home valleys in northern Afghanistan, but also force the Pashtuns and Hazaras to grow heroin poppies for them under conditions of near slavery. And *those* are the slimeballs (the Northern Alliance) that *we* are supporting.

Is it any wonder that, with us supporting the scummiest of the scum in Afghanistan, the natives are getting restless? Duh! But to fix this would require a) brains, b) real democracy, c) more than a little luck. None of which are in evidence at the moment, and haven't been even before the Soviets marched in with 100,000 troops to overturn a Communist government that was going all Cambodia on the local population (yep, the Soviets invaded Afghanistan *TO OVERTURN A COMMUNIST GOVERNMENT!* -- funny, you don't hear anything about that in your "history" books, do you?!).

- Badtux the History Penguin

Big Man said...

How can we have that many troups over there and not be able to put a dent in the dope trade?

that deserves a massive WTF

no_slappz said...

A few points to consider:

It is believed that about 85% of the world's opium crop is NOW cultivated in Afghanistan.

Opium enjoys global distribution. The US is far from the only destination.

Second, Afghanis receive around $5 billion for the annual crop.

Production shifts around Afghanistan to stay ahead of eradication efforts, but opium poppies are cultivated in all 32 of Afghanistan's provinces.

If US citizens wanted to end the scourge of drug abuse, citizens would make decriminalization of illicit drugs a political issue.

The position of the US government on this issue merely reflects the desires of the population.

BadTux said...

Well, Big Man, the Soviets had four times as many troops in Afghanistan and didn't have any better luck with the dope trade. The Taliban today are the same people we were backing during the 1980's and were good at the dope trade back then, running the dope across the border to their CIA-funded ISI (Pakistani Intelligence) controllers for resale overseas. The Afghani government today, by and large, are the same people the Soviets were backing during the 1980's who were unable to take on the dope trade then, and in fact were getting Russian help as the "Northern Alliance" until 2001 when we suddenly decided that we were going to take out the Taliban, who were our guys from the 1980's. General Dostam, who is in charge of the Afghan army, is the same General Dostam who was in charge of Communist Premier s Najibullah's army in 1991 before the Second Russian Revolution cut off the payroll and he decided to go home with his entire army, thus allowing the Taliban to take over.

It's the 1980's all over again, except we're the ones in the place of the Soviet Union :-(.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

I forgot to praise two comments here.

In order:

SUBMARINER: Great points about Truman and Carter's use of anti-communism as a social distraction. I'd add JFK's push forward in Vietnam the same way.

But overall great point about social control. Soviets certainly did a super job too of taking a necessary scholarly work, Das Kapital, and the need for an end to Tsarist oppression, and turning it into a fascist (with Marx and Lenin's written words replacing the bible) state that just looked a little different.

And let's view 9/11 through your lens for a minute. What happened? The Saudi son of a business partner of the father of the President of the United States, attacks the United States with the final result being both the Saudi and American elites increasing their social control while making money hand-over-fist. A beautfully finessed plan, no?

Wow, a lot has changed since the days of the British and Ottoman empires. We now have the internet and the horse-less carriage!

VERTIGOVIRGO: Everything about the illegal drug industry is like regular industry. Infrastructure, economies of scale, various types of organziational structure, the need for a good sales force and good human resource management, the need to deal with suppliers, customers, government regulations, import and export issues, cash management and hedging, accounting, credit policy, corporate strategy, operations policy, receivables policy, marketing, the need for a strong legal department...I'll stop now.

The only thing that's subversive is that a sitation obtains in which customers cannot speak openly about either recreational use or downward spiraling addictions, with strangers or each other hardly,yet sometimes people do. That passes as SUBVERSIVE.

The taboos are wonderful for social control, going back to the central thesis of SUBMARINER's comment.

Blah Blah Blah said...

Title...2 birds with one stone.
I used to say that and my dad would get upset...
Finally I got in the habit of saying...
Feed to birds with one crumb.

He's against animal cruelty..::smile::

an average patriot said...

Amazing isn't it? Bush's success! I wrote about this last year as one of my sons was out in the field there. Next week back to Iraq. Just think about the Opium production! Bush is funding the death or our soldiers, Success?

Connecticut Man1 said...

Maybe we are twins? lol You are writing about where we are now in the heroin trade and I am writing on how we got there and the neocons and other crooks that are running the dope trade. That is what Sibel Edmonds is all about. Smuggling Dope, black market weapons and vast amounts of money for those that control it all. Not to mention the military industrial complex and oil interests that enjoy the perks too.

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