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Opium and Afghanistan

Lipetz, Eli; (2007) Opium and Afghanistan. [Letter]. ISYP Journal on Science and World Affairs , 3 (1) pp. 1-14. Gold open access


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The Afghan opium economy presents a clear and present danger to international security as it enhances the chances of failed states emerging, of stable regions destabilising, and of human poverty, addiction, and disease proliferating. The root cause of the Afghan opium economy is the great number of domestic farmers who cultivate the crop. Thus, the factors that compel rural farmers to cultivate opium cause the manifestation of the opium economy in Afghanistan, and the subsequent insecurity that afflicts the international community. In this article, the root causes and security implications of the Afghan opium economy are analysed, and several policy options and recommendations are presented and evaluated. The illegal opium economy in Afghanistan is not a recent phenomenon. To date, there has been a reliance on traditional approaches to combat the drug problem in the country. This must stop. There are no quick and easy solutions. Instead, there are only long and multi-layered solutions, which need commitment, support, and open-mindedness. The world community must understand this, and act upon it. Otherwise, the opium economy will continue to dominate in Afghanistan, and insecurity will continue to plague much of the international community.

Type: Article
Title: Opium and Afghanistan
Open access status: An open access publication
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > STEaPP
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1540396
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