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Thursday, January 25, 2007

A Coming Disaster: Afghans Won't Spray Poppy Crop

CINCINNATI (TDB) -- Heroin use in Ohio is a growing problem, and it will probably grow worse because of another Bush Administration foreign policy setback. Today, the U.S.-supported government of Afghanistan refused to chemically eradicate 407,000 acres of poppies that can produce heroin.

Bush Administration Drug Czar John Walters predicts Afghanistan will turn into a narco-state unless the crop is eliminated. Today, odds of his prediction coming true likely increased dramatically. The Karzai government balked at using Round-up, an agricultural herbicide it considers too dangerous to the country's environment, economic infrastructure and work force. Apparently, heroin trafficking is less risky.

In Dayton, Wright State University has published state-supported research data about increasing heroin use in Ohio. Small towns have been harmed the most so far. But big city law enforcement officers and judges say the heroin is back in urban communities, too.

On two fronts in the Muslim world -- the War in Iraq and the War on Drugs -- American foreign policy interests are flummoxed. The news from Afghanistan today is terrible.

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