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NEWS: Allies split by US plan to crop-dust poppy harvest

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posted on Nov, 20 2004 @ 06:52 PM
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It is being reported that the US government are planning a "quick fix" in eradicating poppy fields in Afghanistan by aerial spraying them with herbicides. This has caused concern amongst US allies and environment NGOs. The UK Government believe in a longterm approach, as do the World Bank and the Afghanistan president.
Envionment groups are worried that the herbicides are largely untested. There are also concerns that the aerial sprayings wil not discriminate between Poppy fields and food crops.

 



www.sundayherald.com
Advanced plans by the United States to halt Afghanistan’s poppy production by spraying the crops from the air are being challenged by the UK government, the World Bank and by Afghanistan’s newly elected president, Hamid Karzai.
The confrontation threatens to expose Karzai’s limited political control in Afghanistan and could see him challenge for the first time the US masters who effectively delivered him to power. It will also test US and UK co-operation in joint efforts to limit the flow of heroin coming into Europe and the US.
Robert B Charles, the assistant secretary of state for international narcotics and law enforcement affairs, recently said: “We intend to be very aggressive, very pro-active.”

Farmers in Afghanistan fear food crops will be sprayed alongside poppy fields. Environmental organisations say quantities of largely untested herbicides could damage both human health and the wider environment. The World Bank fear “aerial eradication” will increase levels of poverty, rural rebellions, instability and a regeneration of Taliban support.

Karzai recently set up a commission to investigate rumours that American helicopters have already dusted poppy fields in test runs.



Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


This is not the first time that the US has proposed aerial spraying of Afghanistan's poppy fields. There was talk a few years ago that the US were co-operating with former Soviet Union BW plants in developing new forms of bacteria which could be sprayed on the poppy fields thus causing disease in the crops.
This type of aerial spraying has also been proposed for use by the US in various South American countries.




posted on Nov, 20 2004 @ 07:58 PM
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I wonder if that experimental herbicide is anything like the Monsanto product they are using in Colombia, which is causing problems.



Alternet
According to the report, some farmers have willingly eradicated their coca plants to comply with Colombian law and taken advantage of alternative development programs, but these farmers still have their legal crops destroyed by chemical drift.

According to Philip Cryan, a Witness for Peace volunteer who lived in Bogotá for two years, the fumigation has had significant health effects on the populations of subsistence farmers. "People have had skin rashes, diarrhea, and all sorts of health complications such as fevers, eye irritation and even psychological problems. In three cases, children have died after exposure."



[edit on 20-11-2004 by AceOfBase]



posted on Nov, 20 2004 @ 08:11 PM
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I wonder if that experimental herbicide is anything like the Monsanto product they are using in Colombia, which is causing problems.



quote:
Alternet
According to the report, some farmers have willingly eradicated their coca plants to comply with Colombian law and taken advantage of alternative development programs, but these farmers still have their legal crops destroyed by chemical drift.

According to Philip Cryan, a Witness for Peace volunteer who lived in Bogotá for two years, the fumigation has had significant health effects on the populations of subsistence farmers. "People have had skin rashes, diarrhea, and all sorts of health complications such as fevers, eye irritation and even psychological problems. In three cases, children have died after exposure."


The symptoms listed above do seem very similar to those being reported in Afghanistan

Source: Reuters

HELICOPTERS IN THE NIGHT

Ludin said the government had sent experts to investigate the spraying reports, given concerns about health effects and reports that children had suffered diarrhoea and skin rashes.

Faizanulhaq, a spokesman for the provincial governor, said helicopters had sprayed Achin and Khogiani districts, on Nov. 7. "People said they heard the sound of helicopters at night, but they could not tell where they came from," he said.

The U.S. military has the most helicopters in Afghanistan, but said it had not used them to spray crops.

A spokesman, Major Mark McCann, said the military was "not involved in the eradication business" but added that troops were authorised to destroy or confiscate drugs if they came across them in the course of routine operations against militants.

The Washington Post said this month the United States had devised a more aggressive strategy aimed at greater eradication, crop substitution and prosecution of traffickers.

It said this would require shifting over $700 million from other Afghan programmes to counter-narcotics in 2005, against $123 million spent by the Pentagon and State Department in 2004.

The Senlis Group, a Paris-based think tank, said the surge in opium cultivation showed international policy had failed.

It warned that if Washington launched the sort of aggressive pesticide spraying programme used in Colombia, Afghanistan could join that country as a narco state.

It said farmers should not be targeted, and that the focus should be on the warlords responsible for creating and fueling the market.


www.alertnet.org...


zero lift



posted on Nov, 20 2004 @ 09:58 PM
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Crop-spraying is a terrible solution. It sprays chemicals on people and plants that have nothing to do with the people who are planting poppies, and it sure as hell hasn't stopped coc aine production in South America.



posted on Nov, 20 2004 @ 10:20 PM
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The atrocities continue, here we have agent orange part II.



posted on Nov, 20 2004 @ 10:23 PM
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Amazing now US is going to gas the people in afghanistan so they can not make money in the drug business.

We should demand this president to get a test for mental disabilities.



posted on Nov, 20 2004 @ 10:33 PM
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Originally posted by marg6043
Amazing now US is going to gas the people in afghanistan so they can not make money in the drug business.

We should demand this president to get a test for mental disabilities.


I thought Bush was backing the "food for opium" plan in Afghanistan. Must have gotten a better offer from Monsanto


--Saerlaith



posted on Nov, 20 2004 @ 11:08 PM
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Who's committing the atrocities? Those who grow the crops and produce the drugs or those who are doing what they can to stem the flow of the toxins to the cultural centers of the world? If Afghanis don't want their fields sprayed with herbicides, they should start reporting poppy fields and their growers.



posted on Nov, 20 2004 @ 11:15 PM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
Who's committing the atrocities? Those who grow the crops and produce the drugs or those who are doing what they can to stem the flow of the toxins to the cultural centers of the world? If Afghanis don't want their fields sprayed with herbicides, they should start reporting poppy fields and their growers.



Well that would make sense now wouldnt it?

I do not like the idea of spraying but something has to be done and I think spraying will bring new problems to bear.....



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 12:01 AM
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NEWS: Allies split by US plan to crop-dust poppy harvest

man,what a bad idea.



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 01:13 AM
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Originally posted by Samhain
NEWS: Allies split by US plan to crop-dust poppy harvest

man,what a bad idea.


I Agree! Very bad idea. If they wanna get rid of it, just do it like they do it in the US and that is to chop it all down and burn it. Or is that too much effort?



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 01:29 AM
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It's too much effort and it's needlessly dangerous. The illegal drug trade not only weakens societies, but it also fuels terrorist organizations. We should give the growers and traffickers of these toxins no quarter.

[edit on 04/11/21 by GradyPhilpott]



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 02:02 AM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
It's too much effort and it's needlessly dangerous. The illegal drug trade not only weakens societies, but it also fuels terrorist organizations. We should give the growers and traffickers of these toxins no quarter.

[edit on 04/11/21 by GradyPhilpott]


Let's keep pain killing drugs out of the hands of the common man and make them the sole province of heartless multinational companies to sell for exhorbitant prices to people so wracked with pain they will gladly pay it.



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 02:06 AM
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GOD FORBID THAT SOME POPPY FARMER IN AFGHANISTAN SHOULD GET A DOLLAR OR TWO THAT MIGHT GO TO SOME AMERICAN BASED DRUG COMPANY. Buy their poppies. They can still be made into narcotics and used legally in hospitals.


[edit on 11-21-2004 by groingrinder]



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 02:25 AM
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Economics 101. Destruction of those crops only will maintain a higher market price for the producers whose crops are not sprayed. Collateral damage? That's an acceptable price of doing business so long as others have to pay it. Get the pricture?



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 02:29 AM
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That's an excellent point groingrinder. Does anyone know what, if any, legal markets exist for opium poppy crops? If they exist, why are they not made available to the Afghani opium farmers? It's about time we do something better than spread more and more death, destruction, disease, and hatred in the Middle East.



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 03:37 AM
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Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
Who's committing the atrocities? Those who grow the crops and produce the drugs or those who are doing what they can to stem the flow of the toxins to the cultural centers of the world? If Afghanis don't want their fields sprayed with herbicides, they should start reporting poppy fields and their growers.


Heh. The growers don't give a # if the crops are sprayed. The spray is unlikely to hit all their crops, and if it does, the next time they grow them they get more money for the product. The families downwind from the spray might care when their food is wasted. Collaterall damage comes from laser-guided bombs, which are dead balls accurate. Spraying stuff by plane is going to be more accurate?

Here is an example of market forces trying to be controlled, which they cannot be. As long as there's a market for heroin and opium, there will be heroin and opium, period. Eradication of crops does not and will never work.



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 08:52 AM
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This is a press release by the Biological Warfare oversight group, The Sunshine Project. It was published in December 2002


US Legislators Renew Calls for Bio-Attack on Illicit Crops

Global Ramifications: The potential use of biological eradication agents in Colombia is of global importance. Many other countries have problems with illicit crops. US officials have repeatedly said that their biological strategy is global. That is, the agents are intended for use in many countries. The US exercises particular power over Colombia because of its heavy dependence on US aid. If it is successful there, pressure will mount to use the strategy in other countries, doing immense damage to arms control and with ecological and human effects that are likely to be severe.

Appearing with Colombia on the US target list is Afghanistan, the major producer of opium poppy for heroin. Afghanistan's opium poppy crop is recently resurgent. Also on the firing line are other countries with coca and opium poppy production in South Asia, Southeast Asia and Latin America. The US has a huge illicit cannabis crop; but efforts to use the agents there were quashed by environmental regulators from Representative Mica's own state of Florida.

Agent Green Background: The US plan is to use airplanes to spray massive quantities of crop disease agents (specially formulated pathogenic fungi) in efforts to eradicate opium poppy and coca crops. Critics say that the plan proposes illegal acts of biological warfare, poses major ecological risks in the world’s 2nd most biodiverse country, and will increase the human damage of a failed eradication policy. The agents have been developed by the US Department of Agriculture in Beltsville, MD, and – by two others with US government funding - a private company in Montana and a former Soviet biological weapons facility in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The lead agents are types of Fusarium oxysporum (to kill coca and cannabis) and Pleospora papaveracea (to kill opium poppy). Their ecological and human health safety is very poorly tested, and they are known to impact non-target species.

The fungi are designed to be more powerful than the chemical agents currently used for the same purpose. Termed 'mycoherbicides' by supporters, they are better known as "Agent Green", as the Sunshine Project dubbed them. Proponents say that their goal justifies the agents; but as the history of the South African Apartheid regime's bioweapons reveals, claims of law enforcement ends can conceal heinous biowarfare plans. If Agent Green is used anywhere, it will legitimize agricultural biowarfare in other contexts. Reasoning in a similar manner as the US, others might prepare a biological attack on the US tobacco crop, which poisons millions worldwide, or those opposed to alcohol might target grapes or hops. Opium poppy, cannabis, and coca are also cultivated for legal industrial and pharmaceutical purposes, and by indigenous peoples and traditional farmers for reasons unrelated to narcotics. These uses of these crops are also threatened.

www.sunshine-project.org...


zero lift



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 09:15 AM
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ahhhh, once agin the great and might democracy of the U.S.A. asserts its democratic rule. i'm sure certain select poppy fields would be missed or'there's just not enough spary to hit THOSE fields'....wink wink. ah, what a tangled web we weave...............



posted on Nov, 21 2004 @ 09:28 AM
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Tasmania has legal crops.
www.valmont.com...

Sanc'.




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