August 18th, 2010
06:05 PM ET

'Alarming' rate of drug use among women, children

KABUL — The 18 women sit cross-legged on metal beds, wearing long, loose dresses and nightgowns, their heads completely covered with shawls. They do not want us to see them. Some of them are holding babies in their laps.

They are addicted to heroin and opium, products of Afghanistan's richest and cruelest crop, poppies. Some of their infants are addicted, too.

We are in a treatment center hidden away in a back street of Kabul. It is administered by the Afghan government and funded by the U.S. State Department, through the Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. The U.S. is the primary and largest donor for drug treatment programs in Afghanistan.

A counselor gives a health lecture to women in the treatment center.

The physician in charge, Dr. Latifa Hamidi, tells me that most of these women got hooked because their husbands smoked heroin. Injecting heroin is not as common here in Afghanistan as it is in the West.

The children, the staff tells us, became addicted when their mothers blew heroin smoke at them to calm them down when they cried. "Because all their family members are addicted, their child also gets addicted," the doctor says. "When their child is in pain the family doesn't give them medicine, they use the narcotics."

Children as young as two are hooked. It's the youngest drug-addicted group ever identified worldwide, according to the U.S. State Department. There are no established protocols for treating children this young.

I talk with 22-year-old Zainab. She nervously shifts her scarf so I can barely see her eyes. She tells me she got hooked when she and her husband were refugees in Iran. "My husband got me addicted," she says, "When I was feeling pain or had a cough I would smoke."

It's a story counselors are hearing more and more. The U.S. State Department calls the prevalence of drug use in Afghanistan "alarming." It quotes tribal chiefs who, in some cases, report that half the population of their villages consumes opiates.

Heroin and opium are cheap and readily available in Afghanistan, a country that produces 94 percent of the world's opiates. The United Nations estimates there are close to a million drug addicts in the country, more than seven percent of the population. Yet there are only 40 residential drug treatment centers in the entire country, helping a little more than 10,000 users per year.

The women in this center go through a 45-day program which the physicians are considering increasing to 90 days. It's voluntary; counselors and social workers go into the community, promoting an awareness campaign about the dangers of narcotics.

They encourage women who are addicted to enter the treatment program. Some must go through detox; the doctors say they do not use Methadone, only drugs that might be needed to help someone suffering from the pains of physical withdrawal such as vomiting.

Detox lasts for 10 days and then the patient moves on to Rehab. Children who are addicted are treated in an adjoining child care center.

Prior to U.S.-funded treatment centers, the relapse rate was close to 100 percent, the State Department says. The doctors say the rate at this center is relatively low. The goal of U.S.-funded programs is to cut relapse rates in half over the next two years so that 50 percent of all clients will be drug-free.

Zainab peeks out through a slit in her scarf. She tells me she is feeling better, that the doctors are helping her. I ask her what she is hoping for, what will happen to her when she finishes treatment and goes home?

"I won't go back to smoking heroin," she tells me. "I want to start a new and better life."

soundoff (86 Responses)
  1. christ

    his is what jesus is for.die muslims

    September 9, 2010 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Mike

    "When their child is in pain the family doesn't give them medicine, they use the narcotics."
    Funny how, when a Fortune 500 pharmaceutical company sell opiates, they are "delivering medicine", but when anyone else does it, it's called "drug trafficking". Same opium poppy, same morphine base: the difference is, who gets to pocket the money.
    Those people are making use of the medicines that are available to them. They are dirt poor, so they rely on what they can procure via foraging. Opium poppies are feral and widespread, so that's what they use. Yes, it is a medicine with terrible side-effects, but if that's all you have that's all you have.
    I thought the tone of this article and the comments were shameful. I wish you dirtbags had to go live in that place for even 1 month to see what it was like, you wouldn't be so judgemental.

    August 25, 2010 at 6:28 am | Report abuse |
  3. Haroon

    Because they don't want to be like Paki girls, my dear.

    August 25, 2010 at 1:29 am | Report abuse |
  4. Adam

    A well-produced piece of propaganda. The problem is that the US helped the Taliban form back in the eighties to help fight the Soviets and left them in power after we left. And, through the ISI, Pakistan's intelligence agency, we indirectly fund them.

    And do you really believe that once we're gone (should that ever happen) that someone else won't come in to take the reins as evil warlord?

    This war on terror is a scam to keep our mitts in the cookie jar and validate the bloated military industrial complex.

    August 23, 2010 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
  5. m0t0rm0uth

    Why is the US funding drug treatment programs in other countries? Is the US government funding drug treatment programs in the states? This is part of the US government's problem with over-spending and not keeping money in the country!! We're so busy funding OTHER countries for this or that, that we can't even help ourselves with things that need to be done here, like drug treatment facilities, healthcare for the elderly, homeless shelters (instead of golf courses), and so on. Our government seriously has its priorities mixed up in a BIG way.

    August 23, 2010 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
  6. David

    Hey Megan, maybe if you had been a better parent your son would not now be a druggie. It's your failure that has caused this. Don't be blaming other people. If you were not on welfare we all would be better off.

    August 23, 2010 at 1:26 pm | Report abuse |
  7. lies

    U.S. Department of State report in 2009 estimated there are two million drug users in the country with at least 50-60,000 drug addicts in Kabul alone. Curbing the cultivation of opium poppies, which are used to make heroin, is the goal of a U.S. program that has doled out $80 million (54 million euros) since 2007. That includes the $38.7 million (26 million euros) the U.S. announced it is giving to 27 of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces that either reduced poppy cultivation by more than 10 percent or became poppy-free this year.

    Afghanistan is, as of March, 2008, the greatest illicit (in Western World standards) opium producer in the world, before Burma (Myanmar), part of the so-called “Golden Crescent”. Opium production in Afghanistan has been on the rise since the downfall of the Taliban in 2001. Based on UNODC data, there has been more opium poppy cultivation in each of the past four growing seasons (2004–2007) than in any one year during Taliban rule.

    August 23, 2010 at 9:38 am | Report abuse |
  8. Frank

    The best guess as to what was killing these addicts (aside from general infection, illness, and malnutrition) were the impurities in the drug, such as quinine, which produced adverse reactions in some injectors. A related likelihood which is more evident today is the mixture of drugs, or of drugs and alcohol. If users had a guaranteed pure supply of heroin which they relied on, there would be little more likelihood of toxic doses than occur with narcotics administered in a hospital. Public officials can generally say any bad thing they want about illegal drugs, And they feel no doubt that labeling deaths as overdoses should scare most young people away from drugs. But this message may not have the desired effect. A good example of public policy would be the heroin maintenance program in Switzerland which has had incredible results but yet has been blacklisted by the main stream media. In addition, Methadone is 10x more deadly than heroin itself and is hailed as a "treatment" (big pharma). There are numerous situations in America where the term "social drinker" or " functioning alcoholic" is used without stigmatization. The same can be applied for other substances which humans feel the need or desire to injest.

    August 23, 2010 at 9:08 am | Report abuse |
  9. Frank

    Bob your comment is extremely simplistic and childish. When you referr to "drugs" please also keep in mind those people who come home from work and choose to have a glass of wine or those who reach for an aspirin when they have a headache. As a person who has worked in the medical field for 13 years I can tell you with sincereity that a person who comes in with a heroin OD into the ER can be assisted with an aspirin and some water along with a watchful eye. If a person comes into the ER with alcohol withdrawl or Benzo withdrawl they must be closely monitored along with IV lorazepam and other advanced medical intervention or they will die. Interesting to note that both those "drugs" are legal. The ONLY way to solve this drug problem is as a health issue and not a criminal issue. My professional advice is to legalize, decriminalize and educate and not incarcerate. To look at it from an even more human perspective, I ask the question; who owns your body?

    August 23, 2010 at 9:02 am | Report abuse |
  10. Smith in Oregon

    More proof of the utter corruption of the Pakistani ISI and America's CIA. Seven month's ago, I commented on high level Taliban leaders and commanders meeting with UN envoys and Karzai envoys in a very determined attempt to forge a peace treaty between the Taliban fighters and Karzai's Afghanistan government.

    America's CIA and Pakistani ISI agents burst into the peace talks, and arrested those assembled. Both the UN and Karzai were shocked that the CIA would destroy a ongoing peace meeting that was taking place. For weeks CIA propaganda fed to the News Media outlets touted the arrest of Mr. Baradar, the 2nd. highest ranking Taliban leader and as many as 23 Taliban commanders and leaders.

    The problem was, all of those Taliban members were under the complete protection of the Pakistan government for years in various Pakistani ISI safe houses. The lucky break by the CIA was all a lie, a complete fabrication on what occured. Pakistan had learned that the peace treaty being crafted had excluded Pakistan and Pakistan had simply pulled the plug on the peace treaty and detained those that had attended.

    “We picked up Baradar and the other Taliban commanders because they were trying to make a deal without us,” said a Pakistani ISI official speaking anonymously. "We (Pakistan and principally Pakistan's ISI) protect the Taliban. They are dependent on us. We are not going to allow them to make a deal with Karzai and India (to build the trans Afghanistan pipeline, TAP).

    As for Mr. Baradar, he is now living comfortably in a safe house of Pakistan’s ISI, the Pakistani ISI official said. “He’s relaxing,” the official said. Nearly all of the Taliban commanders that were rounded up were given lectures by the Pakistani ISI and released to fight in Afghanistan again.

    Hundreds of American soldiers have died because that UN-Karzai-Taliban peace treaty was disrupted by America's CIA and the Pakistani ISI agents, it is really shameful how Western News Media were fed the initial false story by the CIA and ran with it for weeks as if it were gospel. It took seven months until the proof was published by Islamabad's Pakistan news outlets and people wonder why the world and America needs Wikileaks!

    August 23, 2010 at 2:53 am | Report abuse |
  11. Bob

    hasnt anyone ever heard of the song "Jackie Blue" by the OMD? lol

    August 22, 2010 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Why are the Middle East People not Standing up For themelves?

    United States to clean its own house! They're like the Pastor and the Pastor's kids. The Pastor's Kids are the most dysfunctional, because the Pastor negelcts them to focus on others outside their home! The Pastor doesn't know what he's doing anyway, and can't fix others lives either

    August 22, 2010 at 6:05 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Bob

    America needs to say no to Drugs, whether here or abroad..

    August 22, 2010 at 4:41 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Frank Johnson, Milwaukee WI

    No one is required to take drugs. It is the sign of a weak person. To blame the USA for the disasters in Afghanistan is beyond dumb. That country has been a basket case forever. No education, or raw materials, and a religion designed to keep people ignorant is a recipe for failure. They have no transportation system and are isolated into small tribes scattered throughout the country. We need to be careful in this country that we do not create small isolated groups of people who are left outside the mainstream. We are approaching balkanization in this country–Hispanic SW, Black intercity, and white middle America will lead to disaster. New comers to this country need to be assimilated by the requirement of knowing the English language, standards of behavior, and work ethic. Allowing newcomers to maintain a foreign language and customs keeps them from becoming a part of America, and keeps them in poverty.

    August 22, 2010 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Onesmallvoice

      Now we know why the NATO forces are fighting! It certainly isn't over moral issues and again,men will be men!

      August 23, 2010 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Smith in Oregon

    Under the watchful eye's of the CIA who have given standing orders to the US Commanders, 'hands off the Opium-Poppy fields', the photo in this article of a Afghanistan Heroin addict mother with child could just as well be Russian, Middle Eastern and American Heroin addict mother with child. Under protection by America's Shadow Government agency's Heroin production in Afghanistan has skyrocketed resulting in a tidal wave of Heroin flooding the earth. It appears a bulk of the Heroin is being moved by the Karzai Clan to Kyrgyzstan's Manas Airbase to the Chinese Triad's (world's largest crime syndicate) who move and distribute that Heroin around the world for tremendous profits.

    August 22, 2010 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
  16. Phil

    No wonder the Afghanis are such crazy fighters, addicted to heroin while still nursing. What a cruel life. No wonder suicide bombing seems like a good idea to them. God have mercy.

    August 21, 2010 at 3:19 am | Report abuse |
  17. Michael

    I'd want drugs too if I were living there. Allah must be condoning it, or it wouldn't be so. And, who are we in the West to disagree with the will of Allah? Live and let live.

    August 21, 2010 at 1:56 am | Report abuse |
  18. Slack-Jawed

    My carriers of message (righteous) are in the form of CNN forum conversations (idiotic) designed to enrage people (morons) sitting at their computers.

    August 20, 2010 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Dan in Lafayette,IN

    I prefer the German language myself.It possesses much more beauty than most other languages in the world today including French and English and those who disagree with me do so only because they never learned German.

    August 20, 2010 at 5:39 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Dan in Lafayette,IN

    Hey Acmed,when are you going to stop posting this photo?We already know just how much harm the NATO forces are doing over there, therefore,your photo isn't necessary.

    August 20, 2010 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse |
  21. tea party

    U.S.A deserves the precious minerals and rich poppy from afgahnistan. the victor goes the spoils...

    August 20, 2010 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dan in Lafayette,IN

      I strongly disagree with that.We have a moral obligation to vacate that country and how!

      August 20, 2010 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
      • tea party

        Dan , agree but man black tar heroin is great and would be soooo cheap if we farmed all those poppy fields...also I want more afganistanis killed

        August 20, 2010 at 5:51 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Mark

    Thank you for someone thinking the same thing I am Yeah it is a sad thing but why cant our government put money towards rehab for our own people . You can not get free rehab in this country unless you are arrested and charged with a felony then you got a record that keeps you from getting one of what little jobs that there are in the US. I wonder how much money they gave them?Probably don't want to know .We really need to realize that the " War on Drugs" is the worst and most expensive war in history and realize addiction should be treated medically not criminally. But hey even if we all did the US gov. probably still wont help . What is wrong with this government.

    August 20, 2010 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  23. Dave M

    US Funded Drug Treatment Centers???? Are you kidding me?? With all of our drug problems and debt problems in this country! How many Pakistani Funded Drug Treatment Centers are in operation in the US?

    August 20, 2010 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Jeff

    Yet no article about men using or being addicted to drugs. Same with the homeless. The double standards on these gender issues proves that the media really DOESN'T think women and men are equal.

    August 19, 2010 at 10:33 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

    They should have quit before they got started!!! They stink...

    August 19, 2010 at 8:33 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

    It just shows how smart the Muslin are!!!

    August 19, 2010 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

    That is really smart to shoot the gun in the air!!! Don't they know what goes up has to come down again???

    August 19, 2010 at 8:20 pm | Report abuse |
  28. MN

    I am an Afghan woman who was born and raised here in the US...for me this article is heart breaking! No one knows what these women have been through or why they turned to drugs (other than the fact that there's been war and chaos going on around them since before they were even born) but there are drug addicts EVERYWHERE so how can we judge these women harshly when these situations exist all around the world? The rich and famous, the poor, the homeless and the everyday Joe become addicts but for some reason the women in this article are being with disgust...enough for "Kati" to say they should just kill themselves...ridiculous! I praise the US for their assistance in helping these poor women who dont know how to help themselves and their children...but I do understand the frustration that some feel about the lack of funding for such programs here. All I can say is that if you feel so strongly about something then fight for it and make it happen...dont just blog about it and hate on others.

    August 19, 2010 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

      None of the Muslin Woman are treated right in any part of the Middle East!!! That is one of the things we are trying to change over there... We are still trying to get woman in This Country so that they would be equal with Men here!!!

      August 19, 2010 at 9:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Slanted


      August 20, 2010 at 6:27 pm | Report abuse |
  29. Brandi

    What I don't understand is why the US is always funding everything for these other countries, but yet in our own country, people who need help do not get it or get tossed aside? We have to cut back on education, but we have money to give to other countries? We need to help ourselves first, then we help other countries.

    August 19, 2010 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Military-Industrial-Complex

      Again, where are you getting this translation for Hindu? Because it sure as hell ain't Latin.

      August 19, 2010 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • lesann

      Owl head??? HAHAHAHA, barely going to be able to sleep tonight after that! Good luck with your drivel spout! Take care and go play in traffic. 🙂

      August 19, 2010 at 6:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

      Because the Ta Party and republicans think the Americans are just lazy People!!! The People of the Other Countries are just stupid!!!

      August 19, 2010 at 8:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

      Why do you think the Rich and Corporations back the Republicans!!! They were against getting rid of slavery in the first place...

      August 19, 2010 at 8:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      All I got to say is AMEN !!

      August 20, 2010 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |
  30. Kati

    Just let them kill themselves. Clearly this is natural selection and God's will at work.

    August 19, 2010 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
    • tea party

      Kati, I agree .....We need to leave Afganistan and bring our brave troops home to protect our own boarders and sovergnty.

      August 19, 2010 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

        If we need protection from anyone it is the Tea Party and the Republicans!!!

        August 19, 2010 at 8:31 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Jonathan

    Why aren't these drug treatment centers providing these women with suboxone???? The pill (placed under the tongue till it dissolves) blocks heroin cravings and withdrawl sypmtoms and prevents any drug high if they should relapse because it blocks the receptors. The dosage is slowly lowered until the patient is off all drugs. Babies born to mothers on suboxone (or subutex) do much better than babies born to a mom on heroin or methadone. Come on – this is the 21 century!! We're spending so much on the military intervention – give these treatment centers some funds to provide this treatment!. Heroin is brutal drug – suboxone could improve the treatment outcomes!!

    August 19, 2010 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

      They should be helping the Veterans before they bother with them!!!

      August 19, 2010 at 8:30 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Michael

    "My husband got me addicted," she says, "When I was feeling pain or had a cough I would smoke."

    Does anyone in that country ever take personal responsibility for anything?

    August 19, 2010 at 9:05 am | Report abuse |
    • tea party

      Michael, no this country has become a liberal socialist cry baby nation...Thank God for the Tea Party!

      August 19, 2010 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
      • Bledsoe

        Are you serious???This country is in the grip of the right-wing MIC(military-industrial-complex) and you call this a socialist nation!You're incredible!

        August 19, 2010 at 2:06 pm | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

        thank GOD The TEA PARTY can't doing anything to this Country!!! The People unless They are a Republican is to smart for Their lies!!! Of Course the Republicans will believe anything that is said about Obama so what else is new???

        August 19, 2010 at 8:27 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Andrew

    By most of these post I read little of a understanding of addiction, the drugs are used to deal with something much deeper although they don't help the underline problem that is not being dealt with.

    August 19, 2010 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
  34. Frank

    "The U.S. is the primary and largest donor for drug treatment programs in Afghanistan." Interesting how we never havve money for drug treatment in the U.S. but we have more money for putting non violent offenders in prision. My take on the situation is education, legalization and not incarceration.

    August 19, 2010 at 7:43 am | Report abuse |
  35. The Dirty Paki

    August 19, 2010 at 6:50 am | Report abuse |
  36. The Dirty Paki

    Speaking of women, what do you think of this Pakistani McDonald's ad?

    August 19, 2010 at 4:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

      Personally I don't care about it!!! I like IN & OUT BETTER...

      August 19, 2010 at 8:21 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

    I sure wouldn't be bragging about that on here!!!

    August 18, 2010 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Dan in Lafayette,IN

    I am sure that the American government and/or NATO is not making a dime off the sale of heroin or opium in or from Afghanistan. As the article says we Americans are the only country trying to help these addicts with rehabilitation programs. Also one couple had admitted that they got hooked in Iran. As for who makes money from these poppy fields it is those who farm the land with it and the Taliban who force these farmers to pay them taxes for growing the poppy fields. Yes I do believe that it is the criminal activity from the Taliban that is causing many Afghans to become hooked on heroin or opium. It is better for the Taliban the more addicts there are. They would be more likely to fight for the Taliban than the Afghan government.

    August 18, 2010 at 9:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

      It is to bad they aren't helping Our Veterans Here that has a Drug Problem!!! It doesn't make sence that This Country will Help People from other Countries before that take care of Their Own!!!

      August 18, 2010 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
      • Andrew

        Around the country the VA system offers help for drug addiction some better than others, the help for vets is so much better than that for john Q public you have been misinformed.

        August 19, 2010 at 8:27 am | Report abuse |
      • tea party

        Larry , I agree you can thank liberal socialist American hating democrats and trial lawyers for this problem...God bless the tea party!!!

        August 19, 2010 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
      • You

        The people who really rule this country are members of the MIC(military-industrial-complex) with the help of you ignorant Tea Partiers.No wonder we have a problem!

        August 19, 2010 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Iboga

    Governments should fund research into an anti-addiction medicine called ibogaine. Studies have shown that ibogaine treatment reduces craving for opiates, stimulants (like cocaine or methamphetamine) and even alcohol after a single dose. What is especially intriguing to scientists is the fact that this effect can last a long time (anywhere from ten days to a few months), allowing the person to experience a state of mind they may not have anticipated experiencing again.

    August 18, 2010 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Andrew

      you bumped your dammmmmmmmm head

      August 19, 2010 at 8:31 am | Report abuse |
  40. G

    Does who started it even important? NO! Did you read that 2 yr old addicts, that is HORRENDOUS!!! We should be doing stuff to help start more treatment centers. And by the way America is an awesome country!!! But I respect your opinions even though I agree with kh.

    August 18, 2010 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  41. ShareFacts

    Must Watch eye opener Interview by Former Pakistani ISI Chief Hamid Gul on Alex Jones radio show.

    Google: Former Pakistani ISI Chief Hamid Gul: "God Help America!!" – The Alex Jones Show

    August 18, 2010 at 8:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

      If The Mothers were using drugs when they were Pregnant??? Know wonder the Children are addicts!!! How stuopid can they be???

      August 18, 2010 at 10:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jill Yeomans

      The US supports a facility over in Afghanistan? Are you kidding me? Why do they not fund rehab facilities in the US? There are plenty of addicts right here in the US that are not able to get the help they want because they have no money! Sure there is some funding at the state level, but that runs out by the first quarter of the year and then they have to wait until the next year. I speak from experience being an addict myself and searching for a place to get help. After a long and hard search for help I did find a faith based program that was free run solely on contributions from the community. Today I am a recovered addict and have gotten my life and career back, I am a Human Resources Manager at a multi-million dollar company. These rehab facilities work for those who truly want to change their life! Yes, there are those who the programs don't work for also, but I am sure they have the same problem in Afghanistan. The To me a little more help from the government would be nice!

      August 19, 2010 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Adam

      Seeing as how they are living in impoverished areas with obviously not too many doctors around to let them know the effects. Your only as smart as the education capabilities of your country. Which by Afghanistan's standards are zero.

      August 19, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Megan

      Yet another reason for our government to funnel money we don't have to foreign countries. We don't take care of our own people here in the US with these types of problems along with poverty, starvation, etc. I know this first hand as I have a son who is currently incarcerated because of drug addition. He's been in 4 years and has another 3 to go. This type of news makes me crazy because there was no type of free government help offered to my son at any time. Our system believes that locking a person up is going to cure the problem. I'm not lessoning his responsibility for his actions but he is an american citizen and worthy of help. I guess this logic by or government is along the same lines as lets go to war, blow everything up, and then pay to rebuild it. What has our nation become?

      August 20, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tommas

      @Jill, the US likes to fund police forces and jails over treatment centers in this country. It creates "more jobs" for the uneducated.

      August 22, 2010 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
  42. kh

    @ Willie,
    It is NOT another by product of American intervention. Did you even read the article? Countries such as China, Afghanistan, India have had Opiates since before America was even a country.

    August 18, 2010 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Willie 12345

      Back in 1949,China had the biggest drug problem in the world just when their civil war drew to a close and all the Western countries were boycotting it.China overcame it no thanks to any Western power! I know that a lot of right-wing idiots are going to try to argue otherwise but that doesn't change a thing!

      August 18, 2010 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
      • Billy1971


        The reason that china overcame their opiate problem was not due to western influence, that is correct, but it is because they would just execute you if you were considered an addict. Problem solved(according to them).

        August 22, 2010 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

      They don't know how to read!!! All They know is how to comment on what is there!! What more can You expect from these illiterates???

      August 18, 2010 at 10:35 pm | Report abuse |
  43. Willie 12345

    Another by-product of American intervention but do the right-wing thugs in Washington really care?They do care,however,about making a profit.

    August 18, 2010 at 7:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bledsoe

      Well said,Willie.

      August 18, 2010 at 7:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • moondoggie

      I do not see why this is a by product of American intervention. Are you saying that this was not a problem before? I somehow doubt it. We are only hearing about it now because the news is getting out.

      August 18, 2010 at 9:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.US Army Forever...

      What do You expect the Americans to do about it???

      August 18, 2010 at 10:33 pm | Report abuse |
      • Bledsoe

        Get out of Afghanistan,of course,the way they should just like the Russians did in 1989.

        August 18, 2010 at 10:56 pm | Report abuse |
      • lisa

        i agree... we cant even fix what is going on in america... why are we trying to fix everyone else? nevermind the unemployment rate and the gigantic oil spill, people commiting suicide and families getting ruined, business going bankrupt and the poverty in america, but lets make sure the country we are at war with gets all our money... seriously????

        August 20, 2010 at 9:19 am | Report abuse |
      • Fred Evil

        End the utter failure of the 'War on Drugs.' The reason that opium is such a rich product over there, is because it is so popular HERE! We continue to consume the largest amount of drugs on the planet, and the DEA and ONDCP continue to pretend they are effectual. The Prohibition of drugs has created VAST black markets, which the DEA and ONDCP have ZERO control over. Those markets sell to whoever they want, they don't check our kid's ID before selling them whatever poison they have on hand. These black markets increase the value of the crud they sell exponentially, making very very bad people, very very rich.

        END the FAILED 'War on Drugs!'

        August 20, 2010 at 6:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • CnvenientAmnesia

      @Bledsoe Russians did not "get out" of Afghanistan in 89 they were ran out by Afghans supplied w/ US artillery and training 🙂

      August 19, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
      • Bledsoe

        Exactly what do you take me for?My memory is not that short!!! Gorbachev made the unilateral decision to pull out of there in 1988 and not all the right-wing bla-bla-bla in the world is going to change that!

        August 19, 2010 at 2:02 pm | Report abuse |
      • You

        When did you decide that,CnvenientAmnesia?What happened happened and none of your "decisions " will alter that.I'm quite sure you know better than that.

        August 19, 2010 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
      • 1Russian

        Hell no, we did not get run out of there.

        We've QUIT the country out of our own accord.

        As in, we simply realized that there's no point in staying in this backwards country.

        Plus the war became super unpopular at home due to all the coffins coming back and the huge financial investments made into something that will never pay for itself.

        Also consider that we had the Draft back then, like you did in Vietnam war. Young people simply didn't want to fight in another senseless war after they saw their buddies coming back with missing limbs, etc.

        Military-wise, even with all the weapons the USA supplied to talibs (which they're using on you these days – as in, guess where those talibs got their Stingers which they now use to shoot down NATO helicopters? You need only one guess!) we were still winning the fight. The rate of casualties was around 1 killed Russian soldier vs. 10 killed ragheads.

        Matter of fact is that short of nuking it, there's nothing anyone can do to help Afghanistan. It's a cursed, god forsaken country that is more than happy to live in complete poverty, illiteracy, corruption, public executions, and smoking drugs.

        You'll remember my words when USA withdraws from in Afghanistan in X years – that's when talibs will take over the country again, execute everyone that fought against them, blow up the schools and hospitals and revert back to their natural style of life as described above. After all, that's what they did as soon as the Russians have quit....

        August 24, 2010 at 8:39 pm | Report abuse |