The general in chief of the NATO led operation in Afghanishtan has ordered the coalition troops to kill all drugsellers. Wether or not they are a part of the armed resistance. General Craddock sees that all narcotics manufactories meet the terms of military targets.

This reflects the new american military thinking. So according to this everything and everyone in a military target are to be executed? It has to be seen in conjunction with rather simple logic. If factory workers may be killed by massive bombardment to an enemy city like in WWII or bombing a bicycle factory during the Jugoslavian operation, would it not be dual moralism, not to kill narcotics manufactors by shooting? After all it is criminal and so much harm is caused by the narcotics. It is the poppy farming that finances all the taliban armament and ultimately the defeat of coalition forces in Afganistan.

A british and a german general have declined to follow this order because it violates the ISAF-mandate and universal justice. There is a difference here that the british and german troops may be taken to answer war crimes charges in the international tribunal, while US troops (and especially the commanders) are untouchable. To order soldiers to gun down unarmed people is a lapse of morals, that may lead into complex problems. Of course we may assume that every afghan male has a gun, and drugs producers propably have even little armies of their own, but the nature of the order puts the soldiers on the field to make their own judgement. None of the soldiers however are “Judge Dread”, so they will have to deal with this responsibility. This may end up turning regular fighting men into SS troops. An order like this will cloud their morals for the rest of the campaing and afterwards, when they have returned to their civillian lives (as if that was not hard enough, allready).  How many veterans end up as drug addicts?

All this is a part of bigger broblem of narcotics. Is it possible to stop narcotics by simply destroying the poppy and coca fields? It is a strategy tried and measured, and found wanting. The fields can allways been resown no matter how much napalm has been poured over them. When one druglord has been killed ten will contest his place. As long as there is a great poverty in the so called third world there will be working force to produce narcotics, because the abusers mound in millions.

The narcotics have been deemed illegal in most of the world while alcohol is illegal only in some islamic nations. Yet the difference is not so clear. While alcohol causes addiction quite slowly in comparrison to so called hard drugs like heroine and cocaine, it does the same faster than for example cannabis. The many ways alcohol and illegal narcotics damage health are imminent. They also cause terrible toll as social problems. We treat junkies as criminals and send them to prisons where they will continue their abuse and possibly turn to harder stuff. This is not helping!

In my opinion drugabuse and alcoholism are mental illnesses or cause of such. So logically the people whith these problems should be treated accordingly. If we find it logical to put a “lunatic” into forced treatment, so should we do whith people who are “lunatics” because of chemical selfabuse. We have treatments that can help abusers, but at the moment these treatments have been reserved to the wery rich. Society should start recognising as many junkies or alcoholists as possible and send them to instituions build and designed for their treatment. If you say we cannot afford this, I have to ask how can we afford to send such a large number of people (potential workforce) to prisons? How can we afford all the crimes and other problems caused by this phenomenon. It is the fact that narcotics are illegal, which causes their high price. That causes the junkies to do so much robberies and even murders.

There is a way to save so many lives from ruin and ultimately a death in shame.