Category: Drugs & Organised Crime

Using the Colombia Model in Afghanistan

by Paul Wolfowitz and Michael O’Hanlon

Why the Colombia model — even if it means drug war and armed rebellion — is the best chance for U.S. success in Central Asia.

President Barack Obama made clear this week that the remaining troops will soon come home from Iraq. Some 10 years after the first troops landed in Afghanistan, we’re now nearly back to a one-front war. But where are we, really? It’s clear that both citizens and Washington alike are collectively weary of war and frustrated by this particular mission, with its interminable timelines and uncertain partners in Kabul and Islamabad, even if it has only been three to four years since the United States intensified its collective focus and resources on this mission. 

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War and Drugs in Afghanistan

by Vanda Felbab-Brown

Since 2001, Afghanistan has become synonymous with the term “narcostate” and the associated spread of crime and illegality. Though the Afghan drug economy peaked in 2007 and 2008, cultivation this year still amounted to 325,000 acres, and the potential production of opium reached 6,400 tons (.pdf). Narcotics production and counternarcotics policies in Afghanistan are of critical importance not only for drug control there and worldwide, but also for the security, reconstruction and rule of law efforts in Afghanistan. Unfortunately, many of the counternarcotics policies adopted during most of the past decade not only failed to reduce the size and scope of the illicit economy in Afghanistan, but also had serious counterproductive effects on the other objectives of peace, state-building and economic reconstruction.

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Gamble responsibly? A mantra for profit

by Noel Preston

In an earlier piece critical of the social impact of gambling in Australia, I wrote: “Gambling creates a thirst for itself in the individual and spreads like a bushfire throughout the nation…Where is it all to end? Every added gambling facility has an effect like a rotten apple in a case…Australia faces a major problem in trying to stop a spreading contagion.

In fact I wrote this in an essay during my final year at Secondary School in 1959 – when there were hardly any pokies (or Electronic Gaming Machines as they are properly known). Fifty two years later my schoolboy forecast sounds contemporary as the Australian community debates policy proposals, spear-headed by Independent MP Andrew Wilkie, to limit the harmful impacts of pokies.

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How Financial Markets Finance Terrorism

by Hugh McDermott

 

 

 

 

 

The securities industry is no stranger to terrorists.  While criminals use the markets to launder their funds, terrorists make money by speculating.  If terrorists had ‘inside information’ about an imminent attack, they could purchase financial derivatives before the attack and make millions from the subsequent market movements.

What happens to financial markets after a terrorist attack and how terrorists make money from these market movements if they knew the attacks were about to occur is illustrated by the  suspicious trading that occurred immediately before the successful New York, Madrid and London attacks.

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South Australia’s socially regressive sex trade laws need reform

By Chris Duluk (ON Line Opinion)

 

State Labor MP Stephanie Key has renewed the call to reform the legislation governing prostitution in South Australia. She has been backed by the Sex Industry Network, whose manager Ari Reid described the current legislation as outdated saying: “The laws governing sex work in this state haven’t changed in more than 60 years.”

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