(Your work is a tough job and at times your work was unsuccessful, why?) Well in the north and east where there's relative stability there's a lot more political will to eradicate poppy production. But in the south there are more problems with thatï¿½the Taliban controls about 40% of the poppy fields down there and it's difficult to go after them. The other 60% controlled by the government is a network of well connected people who profit immensely from the poppy trade. so there needs to be political will to get rid of that. (How much personal responsibility can be pegged to Karzai?) I understand he has a difficult situation. It's a complex group of factions and tribes and you have to cut deals all the time and there's a lot of corruption. But my point is that the drugs are undermining everything else that happens in Afghanistan, and we can't cut deals on that issue. (How do you respond to Karzai's criticism that most of the Afghan drug trade is connected to the international mafia?) He's right, but the problem is there are remaining provinces in his power base where the poppy trade has grown despite the fact that other provinces have totally cut down. (What steps could be taken to cut down on poppy production?) Karzai needs to issue a zero-tolerance decree for poppy, we will guarantee the high price of wheat, and if you don't grow wheat we will eradicate your poppy fields, and we'll arrest corrupt officials. (What's the likelihood of any of that happening?) if the dialogue changes, it's possible. 85% of the people in Afghanistan are not connected to the poppy trade so it's possible to spin this as a political positive.
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