Today, through a decree by Taliban supreme leader, Sheikh Haibatullah, the cultivation of poppy / Hash across Afghanistan is banned now and the decree announced that if anyone is found cultivating or supplying poopy/hash, they shall be treated through “sharia law”.
Remember, Afghanistan right now produces 90% of world poppy and 90% of hash production, which is later used in recreational drugs, consumed by 95% of recreational drugs users in Asia, Europe, and Canada. This ban would skyrocket the prices of recreational drugs across these regions and severely affect the demand and supply gaps, which eventually would increase crime rates as high demands and low supplies always does in black markets.
In 2020, opium poppy was cultivated on some 224,000 hectares in Afghanistan, one of the highest levels of cultivation in the country and the world, provided jobs to around 500,000 afghans associated with the business, thus producing an export value of $4.5 billion a year.
With this ban, the Afghan Taliban would immediately shut down this hugely profitable business, making well over 500,000 thousand people jobless as this business, which they are now suffocating, made them (Taliban) survive for over 2 decades to fight the insurgency. All this is said and done with a stroke of a pen is just being done to gain international legitimacy.
Keep in the notice that in late 1999, the Taliban did issue a ban on poppy cultivation that resulted in the largest reduction of opium poppy cultivation in a country in any single year. Cultivation fell from an estimated 82, 172 hectares in 2000 to less than 8,000 in 2001. Globally, this reduction contributed to a 75% fall in the global supply of heroin for that year but the Taliban, in return, could not win international legitimacy and immediately reverted back to opium production by mid-2001, right before their fall in October the same year.
Now, I checked thoroughly and questioned my “insiders” at Kabul as to what exactly is the game plan, as this move would make a huge afghan population jobless and cut Taliban hands over a big chunk of revenue in dollars, and press hard the throat of the already stringent and nose-dived afghan economy. The collective answer came, “at this moment, we need international legitimacy for this move and we would see if we get it in the next 6 months or not. If not, we shall get back to business, which won’t be affected in that span of time, and if yes, then the world community shall come forward to offer alternatives to our jobless people from this business. So you can call it to bait, a trump card, or a gamble which is being played here. It shall work both ways for us (Taliban) in the end”.