Afghan poppy crop booms
From a publication across the pond, points out the logistics of dealing with this issue in this very difficult terrain. Would think with the presence of US and other troops that this would slow down, apparently not.
One Western official, who declined to be named, predicted a considerable rise, but not as extreme as that predicted by the UNODC. "The evidence collected so far indicates that the harvest will be significantly up on 2005 and perhaps around the 130,000hectare mark."
About one-third of this year's harvest has come from Helmand, where 3,300 British troops are heavily engaged against Taliban guerrillas. British troops have fought firefights with them almost every day for the past week in the north of the province.
Some military commanders argue that eradication operations in the south should be suspended for a year or more. "We may have to say to the farmer we are not yet ready to provide an alternative livelihood," a Nato officer told The Independent. "There may have to be a period of grace where we say that by a certain time frame there can be no more poppy cultivation and at that point we will eradicate your poppy."
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