Two articles, one from 2001 & from 2017, highlight the affect U.S. occupation has had on opium production

Figures reveal dire trend in Afghan opium production

An Afghan farmer collects raw opium from poppies in Balkh province, Afghanistan. Heroin production in the country has increased significantly in recent years. Click to enlarge

An Afghan farmer collects raw opium from poppies in Balkh province, Afghanistan. Heroin production in the country has increased significantly in recent years. Click to enlarge

Afghanistan’s opium production has almost doubled this year compared to 2016, while areas that are under poppy cultivation rose by 63 percent, according to a new joint survey released Wednesday by the United Nations and the Afghan government.

The production increased by 87 percent and stands at a record level of 9,921 tons so far in 2017, compared to the 2016 levels of 5,291 tons.

Afghan Ministry of Counter Narcotics and the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime said the area under opium poppy cultivation has also increased to a record 810,488 acres in 2017, up 63 percent compared with the 496,671 acres that cultivated the poppy in 2016.

 

This has been heroin’s great heartland, where the narcotic came to life as an opium resin taken from fragile buds of red and white poppies. Last year, 75 percent of the world’s opium crop was grown in Afghanistan, with the biggest yield sprouting from here in the fertile plains of the country’s south, sustained by the meander of the Helmand River.
But something astonishing has become evident with this spring’s harvest. Behind the narrow dikes of packed earth, the fields are empty of their most profitable plant. Poor farmers, scythes in hand, stoop among brown stems.
Mile after mile, there is only a dry stubble of wheat to cut from the lumpy soil.
Last July, the ruling Taliban banned the growing of poppies as a sin against the teachings of Islam. The edict was issued by Mullah Muhammad Omar, referred to as Amir-ul-Momineen, the supreme leader of the faithful.
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Source Article from https://uprootedpalestinians.wordpress.com/2018/03/22/two-articles-one-from-2001-from-2017-highlight-the-affect-u-s-occupation-has-had-on-opium-production/

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