Afghan poppies could help NHS

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by PartTimePongo, Jan 23, 2007.

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  1. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/6287975.stm

    Without getting too tinfoil titfer about it, why is there a shortage of diamorphine, forcing the NHS to take more expensive alternatives?

    Secondly, what is the reason for destroying the Poppy crops again?
     
  2. Difficult issue isn't it? The US paid for some of its afghan support against the Ruskies by allowing them to grow smack. The US then 'assisted' with the shipment of said smack to the streets of Europe (not America) whereby loads of people became addicted and loads more people got robbed by smackheads. Good move.

    I don't think anything has changed. Maybe the US (and perhaps even the UK) think that they cn pay for ops this way, and they'll get more money for the smack from drug dealers than they will from the NHS. Supply and demand see?

    If the NHS and other medical services in Europe have need of the smack, then fair enough, let it be cultivated (though I suspect that the amount currently being cultivated is WAY more than hospitals need), and if they don't have a need for it, flatten the crops, kill the growers, kill the families of the growers and their neighbours too.

    Alternatively, give them something equaly profitable to grow, like coca plants, or weed. Oh bugger, we're back to the same old same old if we do that aren't we? Mind you, coca works awfully well for the CIA.
     
  3. Because as well as a "war on terror" our political masters over the water have a "war on drugs". The problem with being oversimplistic about "drugs" means that it's hard to sell a volte-face on a constructive use for Afghanistan's opium, even though, IMO, it would significantly contribute to clearing up the mess over there.
     
  4. The thinking man's move here would be to buy the entire opium crop, lock stock and barrel, and come down like a ton of bricks on anyone selling it to any point other than the government. Then, make nice clean gear, and give it to any junkie who wants it. And all your hospitals of course.
    Result? No more drug-related robbery and prostitution, happy smackheads not dying of septicaemia or AIDS, and no more drug-dealers. And happy Afghan villagers, who are now onside and won't go turning to the Taliban 'cos you've pished them off by cutting their poppies down.
    Of course, such logic is wasted on our politicians, who will fight the war on drugs to the last Afghan.
     
  5. The main reason behind a slump in production of diamorphine is the drive by the US health authorities to move away from diamporhine, to other stong pain relieving drugs. In contrast, Europe still views diamorphine as the safest and most effective form of strong pain relief.

    Whilst this is all very well coming from the BMA, they obviously have no concept of the drug trade, or how a country like afghanistan works. Do they honestly believe that the taliban and the narcs are going to let the afghanis farmers sell their gear to the UK/US without kicking up sh!t? The first farmer to do it would be made an example of, and most likely made to eat his own genitals for working with the infidels.
     
  6. As much as what Agent Smith is say is true if NATO and it's member governments did buy the whol harvest for medical purposes. Once it's gone it's gone and no amount of punishment torture and executions can change that. And thus giving Health agencies access to cheap a source of opium, while still giving the Afghan farmers money to survive.
     
  7. Do you think the taliban would just sit back and let the NATO forces take it all?

    It's not like it's all packaged and stored in a central location, easily accessible for rapid heavy transport.

    Once it's gone, the punishment and torture dished out will still be fresh in the farmers mind come the next harvest.

    Trust me, it WON'T work!
     
  8. At present, we're not enjoying the co-operation we need to make Afghanistan work.

    We're slashing and burning, and now the Ameicans want to air deliver weedkiller onto the Poppy harvest.

    The Taliban and the druglords are using these actions, to persuade the locals, that they should be siding with them.

    So we change the dynamic.

    We take control as Smoojalooge points out, once it's gone it's gone.

    We then, to paraphrase the Kingo's CO in Iraq "Show them just who is the biggest, baddest, tooled-up tribe hereabouts"

    We move aggressively , to protect farmers growing OUR crops. We institute 0800-DOB , promising terminal retribution on anyone fc*king with OUR farmers. We pay them a good rate, better than the Taliban do, and we make sure they are paid. Payment of Afghans keeps it all tickety-boo. It's already been proven historically, what happens when we don't pay them. Afghan War 1, Afghan War 2 etc etc

    Once we can properly demonstrate to the locals, that we can and will protect them, or if it all goes tits, extract bloody revenge on behalf of their families and pay compensation , we will force a sea-change in Afghan loyalties.

    Right now, we seem to be viewed at best as an embuggerance, at worst as people who want to starve them, and you can bet the Talibunny PR machine is making that point.

    So, we look for a mission change, to one of encouragement and protection, and get Poppy harvested.

    The starting point, is banging up ever corrupt bast*rd working under his worship, the Mayor of Kabul. Get them out of the way, if they're complicit in the drug trade, they're working with the Taliban. Get them banged up, or having terminal accidents.

    Next, get the PR campaign moving, on what a great idea it would be, to grow Poppy for dA mAN, and the rewards - Roof over the head, full bellies, kids educated, cash on the hip come Friday night, not held in bondage to a druglord, tooled up suntanned heroes of democracy omni-present etc. Every happy poppy producer, is one less producer for the Taliban.

    Get the pressure ramped up on Pakistan to get the ISS singing off the same hymn sheet as the rest of us.

    Benefits to us?

    1.Whole villages, wishing to join the gravy train move properly under our sphere of influence, making the job easier. Friendly villages provide a benign environment for NGO's and re-build teams to do their stuff. It also leads to an increased willingness of the locals to protect 'their turf'. Once the next village along sees the very visible benefits of getting with 'The Afghan Poppy co-operative' (Y'allah, nice Shogun Achmed) we'll get a domino effect going. If we can get the inertia really winding up, I feel the timeline for change will be dramatically shortened.

    2. Dramatically increased revenue from Poppy exports (Controlled by us) substantially defrays costs of the operation. Sounds good doesn't it Gordon?

    3. Afghan Old Bill and ANA get PROPERLY paid , and decide it's worth going that little step further to ensure security. So relieving the pressure on us to babysit people who are more than capable of visiting violence on their enemies themselves

    4. Cheaper Opiates for the NHS, Free gear for smackos and drug dealers sidelined. Cheaper opiates available in quantity for the 3rd world and Africa. Another factor that should get Gordon stroking his chin , the noo.

    5. Afghanistan moves forward, as the revenue from opiates leads to greater provision of welfare and education. Why should we pay for the rebuild, when Afghanistan are more than capable of paying for it themselves?

    6. Increased social spending, and a greater GDP lead to a reduction in violence and insurgency. With a full belly and cash on the hip, you are less likely to take up arms.

    7. Increased public support in the West for the operation and lengthening timeline thereof. as we can very visibly demonstrate very real change for the better in Afghanistan. We can make a success story out of this.

    8. An erosion in manpower and support of the Taliban. Why be cold and miserable, on some hillside with every danger of being vapourised by a passing A-10 , when you can work at home, getting paid well?

    9. A revitalisation of national pride and self-determination. If the changes made, are visible and ongoing, you as an Afghan, can feel your part in making your country a better place. A slightly ethereal point I know, but never underestimate the 'force mutiplier' of giving an Afghan his pride, and the feeling he is directly contributing to making life better for his children.

    10. Increased self-detemination and revenue, lead to a lessening influence of other players in the area, who are more interested in keepig Afghanistan a backward, lawless year zero sh*thole, free of our 'corrupting' influence. Yes, I'm talking about you Pakistan.

    Against?

    Will the American drug companies actually let us?

    Will the Pakistani ISS let us?

    Will Karzai sack up and let us?

    I won't say will the Taliban let us, of course they won't, but we can drive them out again.

    If we don't start funding the locals properly , then it will be all for naught.
     
  9. Bl00dy well said pongo!!
     
  10. it is a great idea, i think this needs to be addressed somewhere.

    someone should start a petition about it.

    this really is a great solution to a shit mess!!

    Jamie
     
  11. I agree wholeheartedly with the concept Pongo, but i fear the problem will be making it pass muster with regards to our voters. They will see the words opium, drugs, herion, etc and immediately reel against it regardless of the wisdom involved. Somehow i don't think any of todays politicians are willing to put there heads on the line that much.
     
  12. PTP-Cracking ideas there, but this could provoke the Celestial Mong and/ or McCyclops to invade the Golden Triangle. Hell of a lot of smack being produced there. No doubt end up like the Forgotten 14th ( a la Victor Stylee).
     
  13. You're all barking up the wrong tree.

    All I'm saying is that the British Legion is keeping very quiet about all this.
     
  14. It never ceases to amaze little old moi, that every one accepts that corruption is a foreign thing and good old UK and its political masters are squeaky clean.
    Where I live the Drugs problem exsists because of high level involvement, very high, always did. The eternal emnity here between Police and Army goes back to Drug wars of the 50s and probably earlier.
    I have met Yanks who claim that the DEA exsists to keep the Drugs War going, too much of a good living for all thoes civil servants with life time jobs doing the right thing.
    Anyone care to explain why UK must have this new Massive explosion in The Gambling / Casino industry why the presant Government is rushing this into Law.
    Opium! Tom will fight and die to enforce any Brit Government policy and the Hospitals massively funded will still go short and patients suffer.
    john
    What a lousy way to start the day.