RealNews

Rumsfeld urged to alter Afghan drug trade policy

A leading House Republican is urging Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to revamp the U.S. strategy against heroin production in Afghanistan, saying record opium poppy harvests show efforts to target farmers are not working. Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill., chairman of the House International Relations Committee, said in an Oct. 12 letter to Rumsfeld that the U.S.-supported poppy eradication program in Afghanistan is a failure. In the previously unreported letter, provided by Hyde’s committee office, Hyde urges the military to help agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) take out drug kingpins and heroin processing centers. The current program, backed by the State Department and international agencies, focuses on low-level poppy farmers. Full Story

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