DEA Targets Afghanistan Heroin Production

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A joint effort lead by the DEA seeks to curb opium poppy cultivation and stop the production and trafficking of heroin.

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) joined with coalition partners, the State Department, and the Department of Defense (DOD), in announcing its involvement in the U.S. Embassy Kabul Counternarcotics Implementation Plan. This plan provides DEA opportunities as never before to reduce heroin production in Afghanistan and contribute to the stabilization and rebuilding of this war-torn country.

Afghanistan is the world’s leading opium producer. In 2002 gross income from the opium poppy crops in Afghanistan rose to $1.2 billion.

In an effort to curb the opium poppy cultivation Afghan farmers were offered $1,250 per hectare (about 2.5 acres) by the government to destroy their crops, but they are expected to receive $16,000 per hectare in profits from drug processors and traffickers for growing the poppies. More than 90,000 hectares are believed to be under cultivation..

Officials say that roughly 80 percent of the heroin found in Europe comes from Afghanistan as well as nearly all of the supply in Russia. However, an increasing amount continues to find its way to the U.S., and it is no secret that the heroin drug trade is a primary source of funding for terrorist groups coming from the Middle East.

The recent DEA plan will conduct investigations that will identify, target and disrupt illicit drug trafficking organizations involved in the Afghan opium trade. The combined effort will also build Afghanistan’s institutions of justice and strengthen internal counternarcotics capabilities.

Heroin use is the highest it’s ever been in the U.S., topping the 1970’s when it was a popular drug. There are approximately 120,000 new heroin users in the nation, with an increasing percentage of young joining the list. Overall, there are 2.9 million people in the United States that have used heroin, surging the treatment admissions for the toxic substance steadily through the 90’s.

“I became a statistic at the age of 20 when I started using heroin,” explains Erica, a beautiful young lady that ended her addiction by completing the Narconon Arrowhead drug rehabilitation and education program, which uses the life-saving technology developed by L. Ron Hubbard.

“There is no way to describe the daily misery and agony I went through while addicted to heroin.” In fact, withdrawal from heroin is one of the most severe of any drug, leading many to overdose and others to death in fear of the pain, sleeplessness, vomiting and diarrhea caused by the drug’s sudden absence in the body. By looking at Erica today, one would never guess that she was ever a drug addict.

Sadly, it is not unusual to find cases like Erica’s, but with effective rehabilitation programs like Narconon Arrowhead, drug addiction can be overcome. To find out more information about heroin or to get help for a loved one in need, call 1-800-468-6933 today or log on to

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Luke Catton
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