Revista UNISCI (May 2018)

The Blunders in the Western cross-cutting policies in Afghanistan: The Opium economy as a case of study

  • Francisco Berenguer-López

Journal volume & issue
no. 47
pp. 177 – 208


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In Afghanistan, opium cultivation was part of an economy of survival in the decades preceding the Afghan resistance war against the Soviets and, during the subsequent civil war, cultivation and trafficking of opium poppy became one of the main methods of financing the so-called warlords. However, the Taliban regime would be the first to convert the cultivation and trafficking of this drug into a state business stimulating cultivation and production and the corresponding taxation. Finally, the international community has allowed that cultivation and trafficking become a substantial part of the current Afghan political structure, given its inability to understand the problem in its real and proper dimension and to define an integrated anti-drug strategy.