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SquirrelEStuff's avatar

Do you think the US government has any involvement in the surge of Heroin throughout the world?

Asked by SquirrelEStuff (8998points) July 16th, 2014

“In July 2000, Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar, collaborating with the United Nations to eradicate heroin production in Afghanistan, declared that growing poppies was un-Islamic, resulting in one of the world’s most successful anti-drug campaigns. The Taliban enforced a ban on poppy farming via threats, forced eradication, and public punishment of transgressors. The result was a 99% reduction in the area of opium poppy farming in Taliban-controlled areas, roughly three quarters of the world’s supply of heroin at the time. The ban was effective only briefly due to the deposition of the Taliban in 2002.”

Since the US invasion/occupation of Afghanistan, opium production has broken records and become the world’s leader in opium production, year after year, and is now ravaging countries surrounding Afghanistan, as well as the US itself.
Iran is seeing addiction rates soaring and they blame the US for the influx of heroin.

The link provided above shows a few videos, as well as photos of US troops guarding opium fields.

What do you feel is the US governments role in this surge?

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10 Answers

zenvelo's avatar

Opium production was actively not discouraged by the US military as a means of winning the hearts and minds of the Afghan people. It was recognized as a quick means to get cash into a devastated economy.

This hasn’t been a secret at all. It’s been well documented by mainstream media such as Time magazine.

elbanditoroso's avatar

I imagine that the US does. They did during the Viet Nam war, particularly in laos and Cambodia.

So why would today be any different?

But there’s the larger question that always looms here.

Why isn’t the US legalizing and monetizing heroin sales? Legalize it and the high prices go down it is no longer the object of smuggling.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Well you can herd the goats and survive for five years, or make the same money in just a few months. I don’t know which I prefer.~ I think a bigger part of it is the idiot doctors passing out the opiate painkillers like candy. Get the patient hooked then caught off the prescriptions.

rojo's avatar

@elbanditoroso If it is legal, the gov makes a little money and spends less on enforcement, manpower and prison costs and those who provide and sell it make less. So, the question is who profits from keeping it illegal? Not the farmer, not the mules but those who own them.

LuckyGuy's avatar

No. Conspiracy theorists say “follow the money”, so let’s do that.

Afghan farmers make more money per acre by growing it.
Afghan and Chinese (and maybe N Korean) labs process it for a large mark up.
High level sales are handled by well connected (to corrupt government officials) organized crime in Russia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and China.
Intermediate level sales are handled by organized crime
Lower level sales handled and sold by gangs
Street level sales are by gang members.

The government does not get a cut in all this. In fact, users cost the government a fortune in health care, lost productivity, increased crime, addiction treatment, birth defects, etc.

Here’s a conspiracy for you. If I wanted to weaken a strong country that provides assistance for the underprivileged, I would produce and sell heroin at prices approaching the price of cigarettes. If necessary I would subsidize the product for a few years to entrap and hook as many people as possible. I would occasionally make the purity so high I could kill on average of 100 people per year. Every death takes at least $1M in lost wages and productivity out of their economy. and, as an added bonus, it targets youth.
I would finance my religious cause and army with the profit from product sales.
I’ll start the rumor now.. Islamists are responsible for the increased sales.around the world. I heard it on Fox news!

janbb's avatar

I suspect there is complicity on all levels.

Dan_Lyons's avatar

Absolutely YES!

Not only is the US in a war in Afghanistan to protect the poppies, we are there to harvest them and make as much opium as possible and turn that into heroin and opium and percodans etc…etc.

Do you think Air America was a one time thing?

Of course the governments get a cut on the profits. How stupid and gullible are people, anyway?

ragingloli's avatar

Would not surprise me in the least.
More heroin means more heroin smuggled into the US, means more money for the “war on drugs” and the private prison industry.
(and remember how the colonies intentionally smuggled weapons into mexico? what a hoot)

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