Skip to comments.As Afghan Opium Blight Spreads, Farmers' Lives Wilt
Posted on 05/19/2010 1:15:42 AM PDT by Brugmansian
LASHKAR GAH -- Aziz Ahmad is a deeply worried man. With two wives and seven children at home, the 30-year-old farmer depends entirely on his opium-poppy crop to make a living.
This year, it's proving to be an increasingly difficult task. First, falling water tables stunted his crop. Then a mysterious blight emerged to destroy most of what remained.
In a normal growing season, Ahmad's 4-hectare plot in the Washer district of Afghanistan's southern Helmand Province yields 100 kilograms of opium -- enough to cover his debts and ensure his family's survival over the winter.
This year he managed to bring in a mere 25 kilograms . . .
(Excerpt) Read more at rferl.org ...
Can it be?
A genetically-engineered disease?
If so, better hope it doesn’t hop onto food grain- and fruit-bearing plants.
Opium crops are failing?
Oh nooz! Im so sad! Not.
Agent Orange ?...
Yup, could be the end of the world.
Maybe it’s nanobots and all biological matter is about to be reduced to grey mush.
But how do we know this isn’t a plant disease that has afflicted Opium poppies in the past?
I recall from the Smithsonian’s 1993 Seeds of Change exhibit that the potato blight was especially devastating because Ireland’s potato economy was based on barely two strains of the plant so one disease could wipe them all out. Could it be that Opium has become similarly inbred?
There would have been reports of mysterious planes in the night were that the case.
If GWB had had any guts we would have seen an Operation Ranch Hand II years ago.
And this, ladies and gentlemen, is exactly why they tell you not to plant the same crops in the same spot year after year. This goes for home gardens as well.
Blights are a nightmare to solve.
Roger Dat !,,,
I guess they could spray places now too...
what we are too cowardly to do, maybe God is doing
We can only hope..
Could be. But opium is an old crop, and probably available in several strains.
Opium has indeed been around for a very long time, but I should imagine that it too has been bred and crossbred intensively during the twentieth-century for maximum yield. I’m way out of my horticultural depth here but it seems quite unlike, say pot, in that the only objective is to produce as much milky sap as possible. Now, maybe it’s like the apple tree, in that there is very little man can do to change it but maybe, just maybe it has come down to a few varieties that maximize the goo output.
Let us not forget that the article said 90% of the world’s opium is grown in Afghanistan so whatever strain dominates there is the strain in question.
We’ll know just how devastating this turns out to be when the street price of happy dust goes through the roof.
Forgive me if I don’t weep for these “poor” farmers.
They’re going to need a bail out...
O can show them how it’s done.
“Could it be that Opium has become similarly inbred?”
Like the people that grow it.
It is hard to feel any sympathy for a towel head that makes his living growing opium poppies.
Feb 16, 2001- UN drug control officers said The Taliban religious mafia has nearly wiped out Opium production in Afghanistan — once the world’s greatest producer— since banning poppy cultivation last summer.
They started growing poppies when the Taliban were forced out.
This can't be attributable to the ignorant horticultural practices of Afghanistan's opium farmers, it simply can't. It must be the fault of a super secret conspiracy involving an even more secret cabal of former Haliburton officers.
Obama will offer them citizenship.
a “mysterious blight” indeed
This year, it’s proving to be an increasingly difficult task.
First, falling water tables stunted his crop. Then a mysterious blight
emerged to destroy most of what remained.
Shades of the Irish potatoe blight.
I probably shouldn’t be suprised (due to the highly addictive
quality of opiates), but some parts of the Islamosphere do have drug problems.
I can’t remember which of the “-stans” of the former USSR, but I did
see a documentary that featured interviews with some Muslims that
were addicted to opiate products.
Oh, well... Life sucks, Aziz. Your perverted “religion” prohibits it anyway, so just chalk it up to the will of “allah.”
Deal with the Devil I suppose
CIA germ warfare?
Which, IMO, is the basis of islam (yes, small "i").