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Ours is a culture of guilty eschatology: hereafter is real, and here is fake, but we are more here-bound than hereafter-bound; we are not genuine Muslims because we are not Arab. We live in Pakistan, but we belong to the holy lands in the Middle East. Our political-economy is borrowed, stolen, and fake.

Refuge of failures – Abbas Zaidi – 11/7/2013 – ViewPoint.

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We gave those camels [a derogatory Afghan term for Arabs] free run of our country, and they brought us face to face with disaster. We knew the Americans would attack us in revenge.

Haqqani as quoted by Sami Yousafzai and Ron Moreau – The Taliban’s Oral History of the Afghanistan War – Newsweek – 9/25/2009.

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Their base of operations logically became FATA, and they began to establish (or re-establish keeping in mind the 1980s) training camps in Pakistan. These camps included not only Afghans, but also constituted many new Pakistani recruits, and the Pakistani militant groups were actively involved, especially in South Waziristan. The organizing effort also brought an influx of money to the region, coming from various international sources hoping to help the resistance (Yousafzai & Moreau, 2009). Fighting against the foreign troops in Afghanistan and re-establishing Taliban rule served as the primary motivations, as well as profiting from control of drug routes out of Afghanistan (Acharya, 2009)

(30) Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan: Reaction or Revolution? | Muneeb Ansari – Academia.edu – Pp. 5-6 – 5/2/2011.


The reading, whether for background, retrospective analysis, or, frankly, pleasure proves illuminating.

If you are a BackChannels irregular, 20/20 hindsight rehashes of the Lal Masjid tragedy (2007) and more recent battles in the Afghanistan-Pakistan theaters may summon old memories, directly experienced or mediated.

Web searched first-page reference  to data on the Taliban’s narcotics trafficking seems to trail off for 2013, but relayed at the bottom of this post, there’s combat footage from early 2013 posted just six days ago.

Afghanistan supplies 90% of the opium and heroin global markets.

The Afghan farmer who grows opium poppies could earn as much as $230 for a kilo to opium. Processing the opium into heroin turns it into one of the world’s most profitable commodities, fetching between $175,000 and $850,000 wholesale depending on the level of purity and availability.

The Illicit Drug Economy & The Case Against Cornflakes – 6/7/2013.


The authors, Rachel Ehrenfeld and Walton Cook, discuss western attitudes toward “war on terror” countermeasures and high-tech agronomy.

Related Reference

International Institute for Counter-Terrorism.  “The Taliban’s Assets in the UAE”.  (WikiLeaks Project, 2012).  Related: US embassy cables: Afghan Taliban and Haqqani Network using United Arab Emirates as funding base | World news | theguardian.com – 12/5/2010: “Mendelsohn praised the UAE for its contribution to building a stable and moderate Afghanistan. He thanked the SSD and GDSS for its commitment, per the directive of Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, to disrupt any Taliban-related financial activity that can be identified in the UAE.”  The upshot from the IICT piece: organized crime — drugs, extortion, kidnapping, etc. — provides Taliban funding with cash (!) assembled and carried by courier out of the UAE.

Middle East Policy Council | Protecting Jihad: The Sharia Council of the Minbar al-Tawhid wa-l-Jihad – 2013.  “This article analyses al-Maqdisi’s efforts to protect jihad by looking at his actual criticism of certain jihadi militants and, conversely, at his attempts to support and praise “good” jihadis in several countries. The article then focuses on the successful attempt by al-Maqdisi to set up a council of like-minded scholars in order to provide guidance and advice to youngsters dealing with religious questions about a host of issues, including jihad, and what advice this council has actually given. Using mostly Arabic primary sources taken from the internet,11 including the collections of fatwas published by the council, this article argues that these radical scholars may well have an important impact on the future of jihad and as such are worthy of both scholars’ and policy makers’ attention.”

Malhot, Aditi.  “Understanding the Ghazi Force.” Center for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS), November 15, 2012: “Pakistan’s once feared terrorist group, the Ghazi Force is back in the limelight. This time for the reported revival of their funding sources and its resurrection to inflict greater damage on the Pakistani state. a recent report from the Pakistani intelligence agency obtained by BBC urdu states that banned jihadi groups are reviving their local and international funding sources, after their affiliates started opening local and foreign currency accounts under pseudonyms.”

TTP— from Deobandi link to Salafi influence – DAWN.COM – 9/7/2013.

WikiLeaks Project — Afghanistan: A Haven for Low-Budget Terrorists.  Related: British troops seize £50m of Taliban narcotics | World news | The Guardian – 2/17/2009.  Related: How Opium Profits the Taliban – United States Institute of Peace – August 2009.  Related: US adds Taliban shadow governor of Helmand to narcotics kingpin list – The Long War Journal – 11/16/2012.  Related: Narco-Terrorism in Afghanistan: Counternarcotics and Counterinsurgency | International Affairs Review – n.d. but 2008 or later (A World Bank paper cited dates to March 2008: “Responding to Afghanistan’s Opium Economy Challenge: Lessons and Policy Implications from a Development Perspective.”


▶ Marines Storm Taliban Opium Factory In Helicopter Raid | Part 1 – YouTube – Posted 11/5/2013 (from Helmand Province, Afghanistan, early 2013).

Related: ▶ Narcotics and Corruption in Afghanistan – YouTube – video (40:56), Posted by U.S. Army War College, posted 6/24/2012.  Col. Lou Jordan asks, “What is the relationship between the poppy and the money?”

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Cannabis was found to be the most commonly used drug in Pakistan, with by 3.6 per cent of the adult population, or four million people, listed as users. Opiates, namely opium and heroin, are used by almost one per cent of overall drugs users, and the highest levels of use are seen in the provinces which border principal poppy-cultivating areas in neighbouring Afghanistan.

Drug Use in Pakistan 2013 Summary Report reveals high levels of drug use and dependency.

The Whole Business Romanticized

Posted to YouTube by MI5MI6GCHQ February 21, 2015.


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