President Elect Obama has many challenging issues before him than can neither wait or be put quietly on the back burner. The most pressing of issues of course is the “World Economic Breakdown”. This issue may occupy the good President to be for quite some time. Then comes the Israeli-Palestinian Two State Solution and perhaps the most difficult of all……”the War on Terror” and controlling the Taliban in Afghanistan! The President Elect has promised to withdraw the Lion Share of our Troops from Iraq and move them smartly into Afghanistan to get Osama Bin Laden and to take charge of the Taliban. An audacious challenge, that will be no easy task.
Interesting enough, all of these issues may be somehow inter-connected: The World Economy, The Israeli conflict, The Middle East and Afghanistan-Pakistan-Kashmir-Maylasia and India! Let’s start with Drugs and the World Economy: Black Pakistani Hash/Opium trade has been a cash crop since the days of Marco Polo and before. This is Big Phrama like no other! When we went to Afghanistan after 911 with a handful of CIA agents, A few GPS locators and some strong American Airpower…..we were asking the people of Afghanistan to rid themselves of the onerous control of their country by the Taliban. Being run by tribal Chiefs..it became no problem to divide and conquer. The tasks that followed included the prime goal of reunification, which has proven to be far more difficult…if not impossible.
Imagine this if you can: A world market which can be controlled by “Pure Speculation”. A market which is endemic and cannot be rooted out of the psyche. A market that causes the buyers to want more. A market that includes Armed Conflict constantly. A market that includes political pay offs, illegal activities and many deaths. No, not just the World Oil Markets, we are talking about the Opium/Cocaine World Dope Trade. Remember places like Columbia, South East Asia, Mexico, Afghanistan, Mayalsia and more! How has our “War on Drugs” faired for the last 40 years? Not well. The drug dealers and sellers simply pay off government officials to look the other way. The money can come from “in country or out of country” but it surely comes in great amounts consistently.
But, let’s start with Afghanistan. If we want to defeat the Taliban and World Terriorism…it will start by dealing with the Drug Trade in Afghanistan. The Taliban are buying and supporting the Big Phrama/Farmers in Afghanistan. As they buy more and more product, their strength becomes greater and the U.S. presence in Afghanistan becomes more marginalized. When we destroy the Opium Crops….we only ‘fan the fires or revolution”. Rather than destroy the Opium Crops….we need to Regulate them! That’s what Government does well….Regulate and Control the Distribution.
In the 1920’s in the United States…..it was Prohibition….the Roaring 20’s and the days of the “Revenuers”. Federal Agents spent endless hours chasing around after illegal stills and basically out of work and poor West Virginia citizens trying to make a buck. Here comes the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms! The system was awful, the wrong people died, organized crime got involved in a big way and it was the rise of the Mafia in the United States…because it offered a cash base and illegal products that people wanted. Finally, Prohibition was Repealed….and Government did what it did best: Regulate and Arrest the wrong doers! We need to do the same thing in Afghanistan.
The corrective action in Afghanistan will start by setting up a “Afghanistan Opium Farmers Association”. Here, all the players can start to set the price for all Opium Crops in Afghanistan. Here, they can send nasty letters to Farmers in Pakistan, Kashmir and India….regarding their Opium dumping and price reductions against world market suggested pricing. These Big Farmers would then volunteer to be taxed. The next step would be to set up the “Bureau of Opium Regulation”. Here, the Government could be contacted if other farmers or groups tried to militantly take, buy or control the Opium Market in Afghanistan.
We assure you that this is not “tongue in cheek”, “blue sky” thinking. We can then force Pakistan and India to follow suit. The unregulated markets would then be under great pressure to merge their regional markets and be offered protection and control by “Government”. This is how it works in the United States and this is how it must work in the rest of the world.
The great economic minds of our world had no qualms about setting up paper moons and false prophets of economics to make egregious profits and steal from the poor of our world. Hedge Funds, Derivatives and Short Term Credit Default Swaps took money out of the hands of small banks that could have loaned that money to regular citizens to start businesses and to borrow with a realized chance of repayment. We are now paying the price of those crimes. If we want to control the Taliban and World Terrorism….we now need to “Regulate” those world commodity markets that are being used for “World Mischief” and “Terror”.
We need to face the facts that Water, Energy and even Illegal Drugs….need to be Regulated by the Government. Having a flux in the cost of these items is guaranteed to cause no end of trouble. One thing is certain; we do not need to send more troops to Afghanistan without giving them the weapons they need to defend themselves. There are those that will argue that it is impossible to control Opium Farmers in Afghanistan. Alexander the Great did it – and now we can do it. We can then go country to country doing the exact same thing. Now we are talking progress! Price Stabilization hey?
We need to give every Opium Farmer in Afghanistan a laptop….so they can check the daily buy/sell price of their product in the World Market. They need to be able to pull up the number of their fellow farmers that broke the law that week. The “Afghanistan Opium Farmers Association”….needs to get busy helping their farmers develop various genetic variations and find out how many of their fellow farmers are growing their farms and want to buy out parcels around the country. They all need to be bought out by Merck and Johnson and Johnson…..and retire to the South Coast of France!
YES WE CAN…..Hamid Karzai….God Bless you! www.president.gov.af/