Is narcotic khat funding terrorism?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by cavemandave, Mar 7, 2012.

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  1. (CNN) -- It's an oval-shaped, bitter tasting leaf that makes you chatty after chewing it, while inducing a feeling of euphoria and alertness.
    The East African plant khat, a mild narcotic, has been chewed for centuries by people in the Horn of Africa and parts of the Middle East for its stimulating effects. The green leaf is central to cultural and social activities for many communities across the area and key to the economic survival of thousands of khat farmers who grow it legally.
    In recent years, high demand for the herbal stimulant by the Somali diaspora -- despite it being illegal in several western countries, including the U.S. -- has helped open up a booming industry in fertile parts of Kenya, such as the Meru county.
    But now the livelihood of these farmers is under threat after the Netherlands, which has a vibrant Somali community and is a key khat hub to other European countries, announced a ban on all imports of the plant in January.
    Until now, the Netherlands and Britain were the only major European countries allowing the trade and consumption of the flowering shrub.

    Is narcotic khat funding terrorism? - CNN.com

    what? how are legal highs etc at the top of the gov't ban list, yet this shit is freely available on a London market stall? :|
     
  2. Oh, I don't know... Because the authorites are focusing on more powerful drugs like caffeine, perhaps?
     
  3. It's perhaps worth bearing in mind that CNN have an agenda - it is a US News Channel and Khat is illegal in both the US and Canada; if we ban it here, I can guarantee one thing - it will definitely be funding terrorism as an illegal commodity with all the profit margins that that entails. Just a thought.
     
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  4. As with Heroin funding arms purchases for the Taliban, why can't we simply charge dealers with Treason and execute them when found guilty? This country is so fuc*ing weak!!!!
     
  5. Oh, and before someone comes on and whines on about legalising drugs, legalising would simply end up with drugs in the shops which are taxed - like fags. What currently happens with taxed fags? Duty free or counterfeit fags from Eastern Europe and China are bootlegged across non existant borders, avoiding tax and flogged off to people who don't give a fu*k.
     
  6. Is it any good?
     
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  7. Pissed now and off to my scratcher, however, I had a final thought. When the fellas out in Afghan come across a consignment of Heroin, couldn't they just mix in some strichnine and let it go it's merry way? Sort out a number of problems that would. Less druggies, less dealers and no money going to the Talibs. Everyones a winner - well, apart from the junkies, dealers and the Taliban.
     
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  8. Not really. I'd rather have some spas kid's ritalin. Or geranamide. Or barring that, ephedrine.
     
  9. I'd rather have a nice cup of tea, before that gets banned too.
     
  10. Radio 4 "The Report" recently did a programme on this, apparantly Khat is banned just about everywhere in the EU, with the Dutch banning it imminently. Reasons for the banning is that it is being supplied by gangs, and it is likely that the proceeds are working their way to Somalia where it funds Al Shabab.

    BBC - BBC Radio 4 Programmes - The Report, The Drug Khat

    Here is the link if you want to listen for yourselves.
     
  11. There's a mutual dependance between people who want to blow things up and people who make money.

    It's free market economics in action, which means the khat trade is actually the most efficient economic sector in the whole of East Africa. They have 'Just in time' delivery down to a fine art.
    Basically, terrorism will fund itself by leeching onto any successful economic activity.The highest profit margins are in 'unregulated' or illegal products. So- Smuggling, counterfeiting, drugs, prostitution are all successful economic sectors, so the terrorists batten on to it for funding.

    In exchange, the terrorists have contacts, transport, and reliable 'enforcers' to protect the product. The drawback is that the wealth usually erodes the 'ideaological purity' of the terrorists, and they eventually decay into just another organised criminal gang.

    Khat is (by modern standards) a pretty rubbish, old school drug. It's nowhere near as dangerous as say, crack cocaine or crystal meth. If the khat merchants of East Africa were prevented from shipping the shrub, they might very well take their skills and start shipping something much worse.

    BBC News - Frenetic pace of Ethiopia's khat boomtown

    The problem might go away fairly shortly though. The farming of Khat is now so widespread and profitable, it is driving other crops out of the market, and sucking up most of the declining water supply. They'll all be happily high as they starve to death.
     
  12. Al Jazeera documentary from 2007 "The Khat barons of Sheffield"

    Witness - Qat Barons of Sheffield - Part 1 - YouTube

    I do remember seeing something on Al jazeera to the extent that Khat production in Yemen was why the water was in such short supply as it was diverted to Khat production.
     
  13. Legalise it, package it (with a warning on the box - "Indulging in this weed could make you very talkative and laid back"), sell it in pharmacies, tax it, same with marijuana - they're relatively harmless drugs no more dangerous than cigarettes and alcohol. Perhaps we could fund OUR armed forces from the proceeds.
     
  14. I believe it is useless once dried. Instead of making yet more laws, why not just put a 30 day quarantine on the stuff at all ports due to "pests" and therefore ruin it, making it worthless to the skinny apes?
     
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  15. Hmm that seems rather, er, Shababy.




    Yep thats my geography teachers tweed jacket with leather elbows. And me ratcatchers titfer. TTFN.
     
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