Dr. Abdullah Abdullah has withdrawn from participation. Karzai brothers triumph.
The country's central government is expected to remain under control of narcotics cartels, as allied with the major tribal factions.
Meanwhile U.S. and Europeans continue to suck up to the Heroin Biz, following a pattern identified originally in an episode of "WKRP":
"As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly!!!"
"Turkey Drop" -- perfect analogy to George Bush going down with the Heroin Biz.
Eight years later, we pretend that the world is not seeing a flood of cheap Afghan heroin. We pretend that this Karzai narco-regime has not cut the worldwide street price of heroin to 1/3 and less of what it was in 2000.
We run around screaming, "Taliban, Taliban !"
We fly our helicopters and drop them turkeys.
News BTF :::
Here's the tip of the iceberg. Dr Abdullah Abdullah quit yesterday, citing election fraud and the absence of EU/US ASIF controls on the election process.
The Afghan Independent Election Commission (IEC) responded today, under diplomatic pressure from the West, by calling off the vote scheduled for Saturday. Daoud Ali Najafi, the IEC chief officer, gave no details to explain the legal process expected to usher Mr Karzai back into power, but Ban Ki-moon, the UN Secretary General, was in Kabul to negotiate a possible power-sharing deal between Mr Abdullah and Mr Karzai.
A few minutes before the announcement, Mr Ban said: "If and when the Independent Election Commission makes a decision consistent with the constitutional procedures... the United Nations will respect and support that decision.
Fact is, the Karzais have been open participants in the Afghan poppy system. That looks to be a $3- to $4-billion a year operation, based on inflows to Afghanistan.
Poppy growers get an estimated $600 to $800-million, based on a presentation at the U.N. earlier this year.
One would think that buying up the poppies at the field would make more sense -- to anybody.
How hard can that be ???
$1,000-million =EQ= $1-billion-a-year. A small fraction of what is being disgorged to military expense these days.
How hard could it be to register poppy farmers and pay them cash ???
But that's not even on the table. Never has been.
Its not like dropping turkeys from helicopters. So buying up the poppy crop at the fields ain't gonna be done... no matter how simple, how cheap, how easily done.
Gotta drop them turkeys........
BTW: Turkey Dropping is the rule, every part of U.S. decision making.
Simple fact is that the money for running the "insurgent" side of this mess is out of the narco-gangs. They pay for this war, so's they can weaken central government and force a hands-off policy for the poppy fields.
We've been pushing for some time for our Department of Defense to wise up with respect to using bloodhounds for complex tactical missions:
-- Detecting IED bombs
-- Back-tracking "insurgent" attack squads to bases
-- Parsing villagers to combatants and non-combatants
Best... to develop Combat Tracking Team technology, so's to generate offense against the narco-gangs in Afghanistan
All violence in Afghanistan is tagged "Taliban" in ASIF/Pentagon press releases and the daily jargon. That is pernicious nonsense.
Sure, there's religious fanatics in Afghanistan. They got no money.
Direct action to prevent growing poppies was tried by ASIF in 2005. Stupidly... trying force. Really-really turkey-dropping stupidly.
Buying up the crops... not turkey-dropping stupid, so it was not done.
FOLL0W THE MONEY.
In Afghanistan, all the money is poppy money.
Either we can drop turkeys or not. We can combine efforts to buy up the poppy crops -- do it over the winter. This combines stanching the worldwide plague of cheap heroin with stopping the income flow to the large-scale narcotics gangs.
Afghanistan produces 90% of this world's $80,000,000,000-a-year heroin biz. U.N. figure. Antonio Maria Costa, head of the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, back 2006. Deflation effects vs. massive increase to volume.... not recalculated.