Does Obama Want to Stay in Afghanistan to Harvest Its Opium?
By Sherwood Ross
Is the real reason President Obama would like to keep U.S. troops in Afghanistan until 2024 to allow the CIA to cash in on its $50 billion annual opium crop?
When the Taliban ruled Pakistan, if nothing else, it suppressed the opium trade. It is indisputable this situation radically worsened after the U.S. invaded.
Professor Michel Chossudovsky of Global Research, Montreal, wrote: “The Taliban prohibition had indeed caused the beginning of a heroin shortage in Europe by the end of 2001.”
Indeed, noted Canadian journalist Eric Walberg wrote in his “Postmodern Imperialism”(Clarity): “Within two years of the CIA operation in Afghanistan,the Pakistan-Afghanistan borderlands became the world’s top heroin producer.”
He writes, “opium production has increased 33 fold from 185 tons in 2001 to 6100 tons in 2006. In 2007, Afghanistan provided approximately 93% of the global supply of heroin…”
If the Central Intelligence Agency was not involved fang-and-claw in the Afghan drug trade it would be acting out of character. The CIA’s history of dope peddling is well documented. The practice yielded tidy sums the CIA could spend at will, without going to Congress.
Keep in mind, too, that President Obama,a former CIA payroller, said when the CIA asked to expand the drone bomber fleet, “The CIA gets what the CIA wants.” His relationship with the Agency is more than cozy.
In the Fifties, writes William Blum in “Rogue State” (Common Courage Press), the CIA organized defeated Chinese Nationalist troops in Burma to wage war against Red China. The Agency closed its eyes to the fact the soldiers “were becoming the opium barons of The Golden Triangle,” (parts of Burma, Thailand, and Laos.) The CIA’s private Air America, “flew the drugs all over Southeast Asia, to sites where the opium was processed into heroin, and to trans-shipment points on the route to Western customers,” Blum reported.
Former Rep. Ron Paul (R.-Tex.), according to the “Huffington Post, told a gathering of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, that the CIA was involved in trafficking drugs as part of the Iran-Contra debacle.
Drug trafficking is “a gold mine for people who want to raise money in the underground government in order to finance projects that they can’t get legitimately,” Rep. Paul claimed. “It is very clear that the CIA has been very much involved with drug dealings,” the Huffington Post quotes him as saying.
Paul said: “The CIA was very much involved in the Iran-Contra scandals. I’m not making up the stories; we saw it on television. They were hauling down weapons and drugs back.”
In an interview on RT television on August 20, 2009, Russian General Mahmut Gareev, a former commander in the Russian invasion of Afghanistan, said, “The U.S. is not going to stop production of drugs in Afghanistan as it covers the costs of its military presence there.”
Gareev added, “I don’t make anything up. Americans themselves admit that drugs are often transported out of Afghanistan on American planes. Drug trafficking in Afghanistan brings them about 50 billion dollars a year – which fully covers the expenses tied to keeping their troops there.”
The general asserted, “They (the Americans) engage in military action only when they are attacked. They don’t have any planned military action to eliminate the Mujahideen.”
This last observation may go a long way to explain why the U.S. defeated Italy, Germany and Japan in World War II in just three and a half years while it has so far spent 12 years in comparatively tiny (30-million people) Afghanistan and can eke out no “victory.”
Is it possible the U.S. has no intention of “winning” the War on Terror? But instead sees it as a profit-center for milking the Afghan opium crop? Put that in your pipe and smoke it.#
(Miami-based Sherwood Ross formerly reported for major dailies and wire services and currently runs a public relations firm for worthy causes. Reach him atSherwoodross10@gmail.com)
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