Poppy Plants Could Upset US Afghan Strategy

One-third of Afghanistan’s poppy crop has died from a mysterious blight. Love|Peace The US military is denying that they have anything to do with the mysterious destruction of one-third of Afghanistan’s poppy harvest, which has been destroyed by a mysterious disease. The talk out of Washington may be that we’re making progress with the Taliban, but today’s NYTimes reports the local power brokers are telling agitated, concerned locals that America is destroying the crop.

Besides fueling the propaganda war, the blight might also help the insurgency by giving prices a boost. Reduced production is causing prices for fresh opium to soar as much as 60 percent, after years of declining prices, according to the executive director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Antonio Maria Costa.

The disease is expected to wipe out as much as 2,500 tons of opium production, mostly in Helmand, Kandahar and Oruzgan Provinces, Mr. Costa said in an interview in New York.

If it’s true that the US military isn’t at work here, then Mother Nature may be upsetting the entire geopolitical apple cart in the region, undoing all efforts to promote peace in the region. The UN says this is a singular event and there’s no reason to believe the blight will return next year.

Without a doubt, conspiracy theories will spread far and wide in the region about who is destroying the poppy crops. So far, no Conservative figure is claiming that this is God’s work. Presumably an announcement will be made by the weekend.