Make your own free website on Tripod.com
Blog Tools
Edit your Blog
Build a Blog
RSS Feed
View Profile
« July 2009 »
S M T W T F S
1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31
You are not logged in. Log in
Entries by Topic
All topics  «
Misc.
Poker
Politics
Religion
Television
Sleepless in Fulham: Rambling and gambling by David Young
Saturday, 11 July 2009
Can we lose the war on drugs and win the war in Afghanistan, please?
Topic: Politics

Could we have got where we have in Iraq if we'd gone around burning Iraq's oil fields? Hardly. So why do we expect to win in Afghanistan while wrecking the country's poppy fields? I'm getting increasingly annoyed at the senseless prolongation of this conflict.

Just who is this pointless war on drugs protecting? Don't ask me. I've seen people dealing drugs (I suspect it's heroin) right under the block where I live. Thanks to prohibition, I've got criminals plying their trade right under my nose. I don't feel safer knowing that what they are doing is illegal. I'd rather the addicts could get their fix legally at low cost somewhere else.

I do know who the war on drugs is hurting: British soldiers in Afghanistan, whose popularity with the local populace is wrecked because they are forced to stop the Afghans making the one thing that would get them out of poverty faster than anything else. What a gift for the Taliban!

Check out this map:


Notice anything?

The province where British soldiers are fighting and dying is also the major opium production area. The areas of the country where security risks are low are those that don't cultivate the crop in meaningful quantities. If we could only see sense and end this insance prohibition. Crushing the Taliban (who murder girls who go to school and plan attacks on the west and India) is a worthy cause. Stopping some moron in the UK from wasting his life isn't. Innocent people are dying so that others can pose as 'tough on drugs'.

Let's focus on the war that's worth winning.


Sunday, 12 July 2009 - 2:09 AM BST

Name: "James Feeny"

Normal 0 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0cm; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;}

David,

 

The Taliban acquire their weapons through the selling of opium. It is not a coincidence that the Taliban are the weakest in the North, thus the poppy cultivation is virtually non-existent. In the South where the Taliban are the strongest, taxes are imposed on poppy-producing farms and villages.

 

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601085&sid=a_W5Knv2UWRo&refer=europe

 

Monday, 13 July 2009 - 1:16 PM BST

Name: "anonymous"

A very misguided post.

If you don't care about the drugs trade and wish people could get drugs more cheaply then that says a lot about your character or lack thereof.

As the other poster says, the multi-billion opium trade is the life-blood of the terrorists. Smashing that trade is a double win, making it harder for terrorists to equip themselves and harder for the weak-minded in the UK to ruin their lives and those around them.

There is only one way to 'defeat' an insurgency, which has been proven throughout history, and that is to negotiate a settlement. The coalition has neither won militarily in Iraq or Afghanistan and will never do so.

Run-down drug addled areas usually breed hopelessness and negative views of life so I would suggest you moved and improved your situation. You might have a brighter outlook on life and care more for your fellow citizens.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009 - 4:42 PM BST

Name: overlay_uk3
Home Page: http://members.tripod.com/overlay_uk3

I stand by every word I wrote, with one exception. It didn't occur to me at the time I wrote it that some soldiers who've died in Afghanistan may have felt that disrupting the flow of heroin was worth the risk to their life. I've not heard soldiers themselves say that however. Most are more concerned about fighting fanatics. But aside from that. I think it's your reply that is misguided.

You say: "If you don't care about the drugs trade and wish people could get drugs more cheaply then that says a lot about your character or lack thereof."

My best friend during my teenage years and 20s was a guy called Tony. He died at the age of 29 in 1998 and is buried close to the school we both went to. His cause of death was cirrhosis. Although I should have realised it at the time, it's only in retrospect that I realise that by his mid twenties he was an alcoholic. For a few weeks after his death, I couldn't bear to look at booze and didn't drink any for a long time, because it had killed the life of a close friend.

But nobody suggested burning French vinyards or Scottish whisky distilleries. The only interference the government took in the trade that killed Tony was to make sure it got its tax revenues. No soldier risked his life. No foreigners were threatened. Booze kills far far more people than heroin or cocaine. It's not even a close contest. Prohibition of alcohol was tried in the USA in the 1920s and early 1930s and was an unmitigated disaster.

But at least the lawmakers of the 1930s had the sense to admit defeat.

You say: "the multi-billion opium trade is the life-blood of the terrorists. Smashing that trade is a double win, making it harder for terrorists to equip themselves and harder for the weak-minded in the UK to ruin their lives and those around them."

and you miss the point. The trade is the life-blood of the terrorists because we let it be. By making heroin legal, prices would fall as supplies would increase. The 'weak-minded' would pay less, steal less and indeed die less (cheaper supplies would mean users would smoke it rather than inject, leading to fewer infections). We could be friends with the Afghan farmer instead of being his enemy. Counter-insurgency warfare is all about ending each day with fewer enemies that you started with.

As for uers; I know an ex-heroin addict. He quit long before I first met him and if you met him today you'd never think he'd been a user. He told me he quit because 'eventually you get fed up with being a zombie'. That's it. The user stops when he's ready to and there's nothing that anyone else can say or do.

You say:

"There is only one way to 'defeat' an insurgency, which has been proven throughout history, and that is to negotiate a settlement."

Is that what happened in Sri Lanka last month? Do you even watch the news?

You say:

"Run-down drug addled areas usually breed hopelessness and negative views of life so I would suggest you moved and improved your situation. You might have a brighter outlook on life and care more for your fellow citizens."

So I'd care more for my fellow citizens if I ran away from them. Hmmm.

"Drug addled" areas become run down because users end up spending a large amount of their time getting hold of the drug and a large amount of their resources paying for it. Legalisation would help matters by making the drugs cheaper and more available. Users would have more time to work and more money to spend on other shops in their neighbourhoods. Drug dealers would become a thing of the past if people could get what they wanted legally. The incentive to 'push' would cease.

Many senior police chiefs share my views.

So in general, you really don't know what you're talking about. But thanks for your contribution. It's helped me to understand why this stupidity has persisted so long.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009 - 5:57 PM BST

Name: "anonymous"

"There is only one way to 'defeat' an insurgency, which has been proven throughout history, and that is to negotiate a settlement."

Is that what happened in Sri Lanka last month? Do you even watch the news?

The war in Sri Lanka was open war not an insurgency. The Tamils wore uniforms, had an airforce and a navy. It did use some suicide bombers but mostly it fought (mistakenly) an open war against a superior force.

You cannot defeat terrorists/insurgents/freedom fighters. You will not find one insurgency that has been defeated. Insurgents do not wear uniforms. They blend into the general populace and use hit and run until conventional forces give up.

Surely you have read the history of Afghanistan. Britain has already been given a bloody nose there, twice already in the 19th century, and the Soviets in the 1980s

ANC, Mau Mau, IRA, Zanu PF and many more. All insurgents and all brought superior forces to the negotiating table.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009 - 6:52 PM BST

Name: "James Feeny"

Normal 0 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) } /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0cm; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;}

Anonymous,

 

You are taking the left-wing ‘run away’ idea. America and Britain’s role in Iraq will be proven to be a success in the years to come. They are training the Iraqi forces to take care of their own county. The people of Iraq will embrace freedom and not side with the suicide bombers who kill innocent people. The attacks are still happening today and people will side against this, it will not last forever. I am sure you were part of the crowd that said we must cut and run after we went in to Iraq. If that happened God knows what Iraq would be like now. FWIW, I wasn’t ever keen on the invasion, I wanted to concentrate on Afghanistan, but I was definitely not part of the crowd who wanted to pull out of Iraq once we were there, that would have been one of the greatest mistakes ever.

 

When you make statements such as "If you don't care about the drugs trade and wish people could get drugs more cheaply then that says a lot about your character or lack thereof" this just shows the hate and misguided views you possess. The argument presented by David would probably help the drug users as the drugs they would get would be pure, lower priced, drug dealers would be smashed etc etc. This is a valid argument and I could possibly be wrong disagreeing with this as I am not 100% sure on this matter.

 

With regard to ‘You cannot defeat terrorists/insurgents/freedom fighters’ I disagree. The issue here is Pakistan (which I have been saying for more years than anyone I know). There are people in Pakistan who are strongly against the Taliban and this Al-Qaeda mentality. There are also people who are not. Serious pressure needs to be put on Pakistan to clamp down on the brainwashing that takes place there. Pakistan must do more. As the Taliban suffer big losses and take a battering in Afghanistan they can simply run over the boarder to Pakistan to regroup. This must stop. The Taliban can and must get smashed. It is the brainwashing and recruiting of this crazy fanatical religious ideology in Pakistan which must stop. Now Iraq is almost out of the way (which will become successful and the people will be free and live in peace, hopefully soon) more troops can concentrate on Afghanistan. As we will not nuke or drop an atomic bomb on them due to the innocent people, repercussions etc, we need much more manpower. I believe this is happening but this war takes time.

Wednesday, 15 July 2009 - 5:33 PM BST

Name: "anonymous"

I love your world David, and in many ways, I envy it. It must be great to get up in the morning and post with such authority and certainty about any given subject. The glass is always half full.

Incidentally, this war (the one with the Taliban) is like every other war that's been fought in Afghanistan. It's unwinnable. Just take a look at the size of the country and study the terrain. Do you seriously think a conflict on tht scale can be won by a few thousand squaddies?

Bring our boys back home and save them for something worthwhile. 

Friday, 17 July 2009 - 11:28 AM BST

Name: "anonymous"

At last a sensible post from a fellow 'evil' anonymous writer.

I love watching debates on television with do-gooder liberals justifying their actions in Afgahnistan. "Education for girls!". WHAT... THE... FUCK???

Just as in the first three Anglo-Afghan wars, the locals will bide their time and reverse everything the UK and its allies do.

When will dumb liberals get it into their thick heads? Everyone is different and has their own way of doing things. You cannot impose liberal western culture on anyone, if they don't want it. And our pseudo-democracy is an aspect of western culture.

Islam will outlive anything that comes out of this country. Muslim men are macho and if they want their women to cover up and be as thick as two short planks then who are we to tell them otherwise?

I don't give a shit if Afghan girls don't get an education. I just don't want the little fuckers growing poppies and ruining our girls lives.

We need to fight a war in this country to build a caring society and then nobody would be interested in buying opium from the Afghans. Obviously, there are plenty of people lacking an education in this country, if all they have to live for is drugs. Put our troops into our inner cities and clear them of detritus before sending them abroad.

Saturday, 15 August 2009 - 4:48 PM BST

Name: "anonymous"

A sign of what is to come http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/-/1/hi/programmes/from_our_own_correspondent/8199576.stm

You can't force western culture upon non-western people.

When you have 'won' your piric victory and leave the Afghans will be their usual selves.

Sunday, 16 August 2009 - 1:38 PM BST

Name: "anonymous"

More lame attempts at running Afghanistan just to please minority interests.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/8203830.stm

How can you force a people to accept your western ideas of democracy when people in the Afghan government would prefer chess was banned.

I know, you should have a sit in and a leaflet campaign until those Afghans jolly well come to their senses.

For a Tory boy you have some pretty daft liberal ideas.

 

Sunday, 16 August 2009 - 7:17 PM BST

Name: "anonymous"

What we are fighting for

http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/rss/-/1/hi/world/south_asia/8204207.stm

Sunday, 16 August 2009 - 11:48 PM BST

Name: "anonymous"

Before properly reading through these links I will say that the BBC  probably has the most biased reporting anywhere. Just look at how they report the Israel/Palestine situation!

An anonymous poster also says 'for a Tory Boy you have some pretty daft liberal ideas'. It seems that the anonymous poster is confused between what right and left wing actually is. 

Socialism which is left wing, is much more likely not to be for liberal ideas. They are for power to the state and government. The Right, and Capitalims, is for freedom of the individual and is more tuned in with liberal ideas.

 

Sunday, 16 August 2009 - 11:51 PM BST

Name: "James Feeny"

Appologies, I wrote the above.

View Latest Entries