Not that this is a revelation or anything...
Well, for those who have argued there is no smoking gun linking the Taliban to opium production, the jig is now up. NATO forces discovered 11 tons of processed opium in a Taliban stronghold in Afghanistan, meaning the opium was at the stage where it can be converted to heroin on about a one-to-one ratio. In other words, it was almost 11 tons of heroin.
This explains in large part, as I have written about over the past year, why the Taliban and the Arab/foreign fighters allied with them, have greatly increased their firepower and tactical and communications capabilities.
This is only the latest sign of the merging pipelines and blurring of the distinctions with terrorists and transnational criminal organizations. The great equalizer in this is the drug trade, which offers relatively easy access to huge amounts of money. Few seem able to resist it, from the thugs running Burma to the Central American gangs and criminal groups that control the Central America-Mexico pipeline
The question: does one attempt to eliminate the markets (drug-users), the pipelines (via interceptions) or the sources (farmers)? All of them?
Once that decision is made, the next question: How?
HT: Counterterrorism Blog
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