Pubdate: Sun, 10 Aug 2008
Source: New York Times Magazine (NY)
Page: MM6
Copyright: 2008 The New York Times Company
Note: The New York Times Magazine is a section of the Sunday edition 
of the New York Times
Author: Larry Vigon


The United States and NATO cannot be faulted for increased poppy
cultivation in Afghanistan since in the final analysis it is up to the
Afghan people to eliminate this scourge from their midst. President
Hamid Karzai has spoken many times about the need for international
assistance, acknowledging that pomegranate orchards and other legal
crops were being eradicated to make way for poppies. Unfortunately, he
apparently does not have any real power. The complex and complicated
nature of Afghan politics, so ably described by Schweich, probably
dooms whatever inclination Karzai might have to destroy the poppy
fields, as no amount of foreign aid is likely to halt the dynamics of
this multibillion-dollar drug trade.

Larry Vigon

- ---
MAP posted-by: Richard Lake