Sunday, August 2, 2009

The Conundrum of Afghanistan Poppy Production

Fine reporting from USA Today. The Afghan government's US-mandated destruction of poppy fields is leaving farmers impoverished, unable to support their families, and faced with very bad choices. The authorities are saying, "sorry, too bad, some pain is needed now if the country is to move ahead." This may be an excellent recruiting tool for the Taliban; it may also, on the other hand, drive some to enlist in the Afghan army or police, but if they're sent far away to train (see an excellent report about this from the WaPo's Pamela Constable here), what about the women and children left behind without support?

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