Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Governments Lies About 911 Dust and Hundreds Die

More people will eventually die of cancer and lung disease because the Government lied about air quality after 911, than the number of people who died when the towers and building 7 collapsed. Do you think those that lied should be tried for manslaughter and sent to prison? You Decide!

Christie Whitman lied about Ground Zero air quality, 9/11 victims' lawyers say.
Tuesday, December 11th 2007, 2:40 AM
Christie Whitman
·         ARTICLES

Christie Whitman lied about air quality after the 9/11 attacks and should have to pay for medical monitoring and a cleanup, lawyers for lower Manhattan residents told an appeals court Monday.
The lawyers urged a three-judge panel of the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold a lower court decision declaring the former head of the Environmental Protection Agency can be held personally responsible for her deceptive comments.
Five days after the attacks, Whitman told reporters, "The good news continues to be that air samples we have taken have all been at levels that cause no concern."
In their class-action suit, residents, workers and students living around Ground Zero say they relied on Whitman's comments in deciding whether to return to an area coated with dust from the twin towers' collapse.
"If she had not said this, they probably would have made their own decision," Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-Manhattan) said after the hearing. "She was telling people it was safe when she knew damn well it wasn't."
Manhattan Federal Court Judge Deborah Batts suggested in a February 2006 ruling that Whitman's comments were irresponsible.
A Justice Department lawyer warned the appeals panel that if Whitman can be held personally responsible, public officials will remain mum after future disasters.
"The consequence would be a default to silence," lawyer Alisa Klein said. "If you speak, you will be potentially held liable. Then the clear message for government officials is to say nothing."

Hundreds of 9/11 First Responders Die of Cancer

Published: 24 August, 2009, 08:49
Edited: 09 February, 2010, 02:44

Firemen and emergency rescue teams on site after attack on World Trade Center. September, 11, 2001 (Neville Elder)
New York's emergency services were among the first on the scene of the 9/11 disaster but put their personal safety in jeopardy. Those involved in the rescue and clean-up operation quickly became national heroes.
But now 85 per cent of them are suffering from lung diseases which they say were caused by the huge clouds of dust. Those people are now calling on the state for medical support.
NYC firefighter hero
John McNamara is the most recent ground zero first responder to die from cancer. He battled to save lives that day but lost his own battle aged just 44 – a victim of his own bravery.
His courage was commemorated at St. Patrick’s cathedral, where McNamara’s funeral took place.

Today his son Jack McNamara is still too young to understand his father’s actions that day. All he knows is that dad was a firefighter.
“I and the other families of the victims are so devastated that so many of these valiant firefighters who struggled to find my son and to save others are now paying the price,”says Sally Reigenhardt whose son died in the 9/11 attacks.

City, state and federal officials have not acknowledged a direct link between the cancer cases and ground zero toxins. Congress has yet to approve 9/11 health legislation calling for federal financial coverage of health costs for rescue workers.
John McNamara spent about 500 hours at ground zero aiding in rescue and recovery. Nearly eight years later, the scene here is all about rebuilding. But as the hole in the ground grows smaller the list of 9/11 related deaths is growing longer and longer.

The government pays for these and I pay for these”

Retired police officer Mike Valentin has had four biopsies for a precancerous tumor in his throat and has to take 15 pills a day. He calls 9/11 America's Chernobyl.

“The people that will die from illnesses will surpass the number of people that were killed on 9/11. I am talking about thousands, tens of thousands of people that will come down with cancers,” forecasts 9/11 first responder Valentin.

Valentin says he spent four months digging through debris at ground zero, after US officials announced the air was safe.

Valentin, the father of three, says he spends $15,000 a year on medication the government won’t cover and that the US leaders have turned their backs on the heroes they promised never to forget.
“Our families are not looking to put Mercedes Benz on the front yard. We’re not looking to take European trips,” says Valentin, “We’re looking to take care of our families when we die.”
With the time he has left, Mike Valentin vows to continue fighting for the compensation he believes 9/11 first responders deserve.
Valentin founded a 9/11 police foundation to help retired first responders in need of medical assistance – among them Patrick Triola who spent months searching the ground zero and then became a victim of kidney cancer.
During those days, Stephen Grossman’s son Robert was also aiding in rescue and recovery. He was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer in 2006, at just 39 years old. Today, he remains in a coma.

Ground Zero firefighter dies of lung disease after battling toxic dust on 9/11

Tuesday, January 18th 2011, 11:17 PM

Courtesy of the Quick family
Retired FDNY Firefighter William Quick, 55, of Long Island, died Tuesday of lung disease.
A retired city firefighter who spent two months toiling at Ground Zero died of lung disease Tuesday, his wife said.
William Quick, 55, a veteran of 23 years with the FDNY, survived 9/11 - but he could not escape Ground Zero's toxic dust.

"He was there when both towers came down," his wife, Lisa Quick, said last night, her voice trailing off in tears as she began to tell her late husband's tragic story.
The Quick family, of East Atlantic Beach, L.I., has a picture of the veteran firefighter standing amid World Trade Center rubble. His shirt, hat and gloves are covered in dust.

Quick worked at Ground Zero every day from Sept. 12, 2001, until mid-November of that year, when he blew out his knee at the pile. Shortly after he returned to work in January 2002, he began to develop lung infections - one after another.
"He never had issues before with his lungs," his wife said.
By January 2003, the lung disease forced his retirement from the FDNY, and he reluctantly left his comrades at Ladder 134 in Far Rockaway, Queens.
"They told him he had to retire, which he never wanted to do," his wife said, crying again.
Before he passed away, he was hooked up around the clock to a machine that gave him the oxygen that his lungs no longer could take from the air.
In addition to his wife, Quick leaves behind 17-year-old  twins: Ryan Mary and William Henry.

A wake will be held Thursday and Friday, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., at Macken Mortuary in Island Park, L.I. His funeral is at 9 a.m. Saturday at St. Ignatius Martyr in Long Beach, L.I.

Lisa Quick said she is happy Congress finally passed the Zadroga bill last month.
"I hope that maybe it will help my children, because I don't know what happens now," she said.

Read more:

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Secrets of The Federal Reserve

Most people think the Federal Reserve is part of the Government. Well here is a news flash for you, The Federal Reserve is no more Federal than Federal Express. The federal Reseve is actually a private bank that is incorporated in Delaware. They are the ultimate crime family that make the Mafia look like boy scouts. They are responsible for depressions, wars and untold suffering.  Ron Paul wants to End the FED, and see if you agree. If you do, get in touch with your congressmen or women and tell them to END THE FED?

If you want to learn more about this crime family then here is where you can start your education about the FEDERAL RESERVE. A Book called The Secrets of the Federal Reserve is a book the FED wished it could burn. Here is a PDF link to the book.

Here is a very informative video to watch by Estace Mullins about the Federal Reserve.

Federal Reserve quotes

Thomas Jefferson: "I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. Already they have raised up a monied aristocracy that has set the government at defiance. The issuing power (of money) should be taken away from the banks and restored to the people to whom it properly belongs."--Thomas Jefferson, U.S. President.

"Give me control of a nation's money and I care not who makes it's laws" -- Mayer Amschel Bauer Rothschild

"Banking was conceived in iniquity and was born in sin. The Bankers own the earth. Take it away from them, but leave them the power to create deposits, and with the flick of the pen they will create enough deposits to buy it back again. However, take it away from them, and all the great fortunes like mine will disappear and they ought to disappear, for this would be a happier and better world to live in. But, if you Wish to remain the slaves of Bankers and pay the cost of your own slavery, let them continue to create deposits".- SIR JOSIAH STAMP,(President of the Bank of England in the 1920's, the second richest man in Britain):

From the Federal Reserves Own Admissions: "When you or I write a check there must be sufficient funds in out account to cover the check, but when the Federal Reserve writes a check there is no bank deposit on which that check is drawn. When the Federal Reserve writes a check, it is creating money." -- Putting it simply, Boston Federal Reserve Bank

"Some people think the Federal Reserve Banks are the United States government's institutions.    They are not government institutions. They are private credit monopolies which prey upon the people    of the United States for the benefit of themselves and their foreign swindlers" -- Congressional
   Record 12595-12603 -- Louis T. McFadden, Chairman of the Committee on Banking and Currency (12 years) June 10, 1932 

   "This [Federal Reserve Act] establishes the most gigantic trust on earth. When the President Wilson signs this bill, the invisible government of the monetary power will be legalized....   the worst legislative crime of the ages is perpetrated by this banking and currency bill."  "From now on, depressions will be scientifically created." -- Congressman Charles A. Lindbergh Sr. , 1913

"We have, in this country, one of the most corrupt institutions the world has ever known. I refer to the Federal Reserve Board. This evil institution has impoverished the people of the United States and has practically bankrupted our government. It has done this through the corrupt practices of the moneyed vultures who control it". -- Congressman Louis T. McFadden in 1932 (Rep. Pa)

"The regional Federal Reserve banks are not government agencies. ...but are independent, privately owned and locally controlled corporations." -- Lewis vs. United States, 680 F. 2d 1239 9th Circuit 1982

"The [Federal Reserve Act] as it stands seems to me to open the way to a vast inflation of the currency... I do not like to think that any law can be passed that will make it possible to submerge the gold standard in a flood of irredeemable paper currency." -- Henry Cabot Lodge Sr., 1913

"Whoever controls the volume of money in any country is absolute master of all industry and commerce." -- James A. Garfield, President of the United States

   "A great industrial nation is controlled by it's system of credit. Our system of credit is concentrated in the hands of a few men. We have come to be one of the worst ruled, one of the most completely controlled and dominated governments in the world--no longer a government of free opinion, no Longer a government by conviction and vote of the majority, but a government by the opinion and duress of small groups of dominant men." --President Woodrow Wilson
"It is well that the people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning." -- Henry Ford

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Washington's Hidden Agenda: Restore the Drug Trade

The Spoils of War:

Afghanistan's Multibillion Dollar Heroin Trade

by Michel Chossudovsky 5 April 2004

Since the US led invasion of Afghanistan in October 2001, the Golden Crescent opium trade has soared. According to the US media, this lucrative contraband is protected by Osama, the Taliban, not to mention, of course, the regional warlords, in defiance of the "international community".
The heroin business is said to  be "filling the coffers of the Taliban". In the words of the US State Department:
"Opium is a source of literally billions of dollars to extremist and criminal groups... [C]utting down the opium supply is central to establishing a secure and stable democracy, as well as winning the global war on terrorism," (Statement of Assistant Secretary of State Robert Charles. Congressional Hearing, 1 April 2004)  
However, they fail to explain why the Taliban banished the production of Poppy in 2000 and made it a crime punishable by death to grow poppy.
After the US invaded Afghanistan in October 2007, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reports that, opium production in Afghanistan has steadily increased from that time and in 2003 is estimated at 3,600 tons, with an estimated area under cultivation of the order of 80,000 hectares. (UNODC at ).An even larger bumper harvest is predicted for 2004.
 The State Department suggests that up to 120 000 hectares were under cultivation in 2004. (Congressional Hearing, op cit):
 "We could be on a path for a significant surge. Some observers indicate perhaps as much as 50 percent to 100 percent growth in the 2004 crop over the already troubling figures from last year."(Ibid)
"Operation Containment"
In response to the post-Taliban surge in opium production, the Bush administration has boosted its counter terrorism activities, while allocating substantial amounts of public money to the Drug Enforcement Administration's West Asia initiative, dubbed "Operation Containment." 
The various reports and official statements are, of course, blended in with the usual "balanced" self critique that "the international community is not doing enough", and that what we need is "transparency".
The headlines are "Drugs, warlords and insecurity overshadow Afghanistan's path to democracy". In chorus, the US media is accusing the defunct "hard-line Islamic regime", without even acknowledging that the Taliban  --in collaboration with the United Nations-- had imposed a successful ban on poppy cultivation in 2000. Opium production declined by more than 90 per cent in 2001. In fact the surge in opium cultivation production coincided with the onslaught of the US-led military operation and the downfall of the Taliban regime. From October through December 2001, farmers started to replant poppy on an extensive basis.
The success of Afghanistan's 2000 drug eradication program under the Taliban had been acknowledged at the October 2001 session of the UN General Assembly (which took place barely a few days after the beginning of the 2001 bombing raids). No other UNODC member country was able to implement a comparable program:
"Turning first to drug control, I had expected to concentrate my remarks on the implications of the Taliban's ban on opium poppy cultivation in areas under their control... We now have the results of our annual ground survey of poppy cultivation in Afghanistan. This year's production [2001] is around 185 tons. This is down from the 3300 tons last year [2000], a decrease of over 94 per cent. Compared to the record harvest of 4700 tons two years ago, the decrease is well over 97 per cent.
Any decrease in illicit cultivation is welcomed, especially in cases like this when no displacement, locally or in other countries, took place to weaken the achievement" (Remarks on behalf of UNODC Executive Director at the UN General Assembly, Oct 2001, )

United Nations' Coverup

In the wake of the US invasion, shift in rhetoric. UNODC is now acting as if the 2000 opium ban had never happened: 
"the battle against narcotics cultivation has been fought and won in other countries and it [is] possible to do so here [in Afghanistan], with strong, democratic governance, international assistance and improved security and integrity." ( Statement of the UNODC Representative in Afghanistan at the :February 2004  International Counter Narcotics Conference, , p. 5).
In fact, both Washington and the UNODC now claim that the objective of the Taliban in 2000 was not really "drug eradication" but a devious scheme to trigger "an artificial shortfall in supply", which would drive up World prices of heroin.
Ironically, this twisted logic, which now forms part of a new "UN consensus", is refuted by a report of the UNODC office in Pakistan, which confirmed, at the time, that there was no evidence of stockpiling by the Taliban. (Deseret News, Salt Lake City, Utah. 5 October 2003)

Washington's Hidden Agenda: Restore the Drug Trade

In the wake of the 2001 US bombing of Afghanistan, the British government of Tony Blair was entrusted by the G-8 Group of leading industrial nations to carry out a drug eradication program, which would, in theory, allow Afghan farmers to switch out of poppy cultivation into alternative crops. The British were working out of Kabul in close liaison with the US DEA's "Operation Containment".
The UK sponsored crop eradication program is an obvious smokescreen. Since October 2001, opium poppy cultivation has skyrocketed.   The presence of occupation forces in Afghanistan did not result in the eradication of poppy cultivation. Quite the opposite.
The Taliban prohibition had indeed caused "the beginning of a heroin shortage in Europe by the end of 2001", as acknowledged by the UNODC.
Heroin is a multibillion dollar business supported by powerful interests, which requires a steady and secure commodity flow. One of the "hidden" objectives of the war was precisely to restore the CIA sponsored drug trade to its historical levels and exert direct control over the drug routes.
Immediately following the October 2001 invasion, opium markets were restored. Opium prices spiraled. By early 2002, the opium price (in dollars/kg) was almost 10 times higher than in 2000.
In 2001, under the Taliban opiate production stood at 185 tons, increasing  to 3400 tons in 2002 under the US sponsored puppet regime of President Hamid Karzai.
While highlighting Karzai's patriotic struggle against the Taliban, the media fails to mention that Karzai collaborated with the Taliban. He had also been on the payroll of a major US oil company, UNOCAL. In fact, since the mid-1990s, Hamid Karzai had acted as a consultant and lobbyist for UNOCAL in negotiations with the Taliban. According to the Saudi newspaper Al-Watan:
"Karzai has been a Central Intelligence Agency covert operator since the 1980s. He collaborated with the CIA in funneling U.S. aid to the Taliban as of 1994 when the Americans had secretly and through the Pakistanis [specifically the ISI] supported the Taliban's assumption of power." (quoted in Karen Talbot, U.S. Energy Giant Unocal Appoints Interim Government in Kabul, Global Outlook, No. 1, Spring 2002. p. 70. See also  BBC Monitoring Service, 15 December 2001)

History of the Golden Crescent Drug trade

It is worth recalling the history of  the Golden Crescent drug trade, which is intimately related to the CIA's covert operations in the region since the onslaught of the Soviet-Afghan war and its aftermath.
Prior to the Soviet-Afghan war (1979-1989), opium production in Afghanistan and Pakistan was directed to small regional markets. There was no local production of heroin. (Alfred McCoy, Drug Fallout: the CIA's Forty Year Complicity in the Narcotics Trade. The Progressive, 1 August 1997).
The Afghan narcotics economy was a carefully designed project of the CIA, supported by US foreign policy.
As revealed in the Iran-Contra and Bank of Commerce and Credit  International (BCCI) scandals, CIA covert operations in support of the Afghan Mujahideen had been funded through the laundering of drug money.  "Dirty money" was recycled --through a number of banking institutions (in the Middle East) as well as through anonymous CIA shell companies--, into  "covert money," used to finance various insurgent groups during the Soviet-Afghan war, and its aftermath:

"Because the US wanted to supply the Mujahideen rebels in Afghanistan with stinger missiles and other military hardware it needed the full cooperation of Pakistan. By the mid-1980s, the CIA operation in Islamabad was one of the largest US intelligence stations in the World. `If BCCI is such an embarrassment to the US that forthright investigations are not being pursued it has a lot to do with the blind eye the US turned to the heroin trafficking in Pakistan', said a US intelligence officer. ("The Dirtiest Bank of All," Time, July 29, 1991, p. 22.)
Researcher Alfred McCoy's study confirms that within two years of the onslaught of the CIA's covert operation in Afghanistan in 1979,
"the Pakistan-Afghanistan borderlands became the world's top heroin producer, supplying 60 per cent of U.S. demand. In Pakistan, the heroin-addict population went from near zero in 1979  to 1.2 million by 1985, a much steeper rise than in any other nation."

"CIA assets again controlled this heroin trade. As the Mujahideen guerrillas seized territory inside Afghanistan, they ordered peasants to plant opium as a revolutionary tax. Across the border in Pakistan, Afghan leaders and local syndicates under the protection of Pakistan Intelligence operated hundreds of heroin laboratories. During this decade of wide-open drug-dealing, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency in Islamabad failed to instigate major seizures or arrests.
U.S. officials had refused to investigate charges of heroin dealing by its Afghan allies because U.S. narcotics policy in Afghanistan has been subordinated to the war against Soviet influence there.  In 1995, the former CIA director of the Afghan operation, Charles Cogan, admitted the CIA had indeed sacrificed the drug war to fight the Cold War. 'Our main mission was to do as much damage as possible to the Soviets. We didn't really have the resources or the time to devote to an investigation of the drug trade,' I don't think that we need to apologize for this. Every situation has its fallout.  There was fallout in terms of drugs, yes. But the main objective was accomplished. The Soviets left Afghanistan.'"(McCoy, op cit)
The role of the CIA, which is amply documented, is not mentioned in official UNODC publications, which focus on internal social and political factors. Needless to say, the historical roots of the opium trade have been grossly distorted.
According to the UNODC, Afghanistan’s opium production has increased, more than 15-fold since 1979. In the wake of the Soviet-Afghan war, the growth of the narcotics economy has continued unabated. The Taliban, which were supported by the US, were initially instrumental in the further growth of opiate production until the 2000 opium ban.
This recycling of drug money was used to finance the post-Cold War insurgencies in Central Asia and the Balkans including Al Qaeda. (For details, see Michel Chossudovsky, War and Globalization, The Truth behind September 11, Global Outlook, 2002, )

Narcotics: Second to Oil and the Arms Trade

The revenues generated from the CIA sponsored Afghan drug trade are sizeable. The Afghan trade in opiates constitutes a large share of the worldwide annual turnover of narcotics, which was estimated by the United Nations to be of the order of $400-500 billion. (Douglas Keh, Drug Money in a Changing World, Technical document No. 4, 1998, Vienna UNDCP, p. 4. See also United Nations Drug Control Program, Report of the International Narcotics Control Board for 1999, E/INCB/1999/1 United Nations, Vienna 1999, p. 49-51, and Richard Lapper, UN Fears Growth of Heroin Trade, Financial Times, 24 February 2000). At the time these UN figures were first brought out (1994), the (estimated) global trade in drugs was of the same order of magnitude as the global trade in oil.
The IMF estimated global money laundering to be between 590 billion and 1.5 trillion dollars a year, representing 2-5 percent of global GDP. (Asian Banker, 15 August 2003). A large share of global money laundering as estimated by the IMF is linked to the trade in narcotics.
Based on recent figures (2003), drug trafficking  constitutes "the third biggest global commodity in cash terms after oil and the arms trade." (The Independent, 29 February 2004).

Moreover, the above figures including those on money laundering, confirm that the bulk of the revenues associated with the global trade in narcotics are not appropriated by terrorist groups and warlords, as suggested by the UNODC report. There are powerful business and financial interests behind narcotics. From this standpoint, geopolitical and military control over  the drug routes is as strategic as oil and oil pipelines.

However, what distinguishes narcotics from legal commodity trade is that narcotics constitutes a major source of wealth formation not only for organised crime but also for the US intelligence apparatus, which increasingly constitutes a powerful actor in the spheres of finance and banking.

In turn, the CIA, which protects the drug trade, has developed complex business and undercover links to major criminal syndicates involved in the drug trade. 
In other words, intelligence agencies and powerful business syndicates allied with organized crime, are competing for the strategic control over the heroin routes. The multi-billion dollar revenues of narcotics are deposited in the Western banking system. Most of the large international banks together with their affiliates in the offshore banking havens launder large amounts of narco-dollars.
This trade can only prosper if the main actors involved in narcotics have "political friends in high places."  Legal and illegal undertakings are increasingly intertwined, the dividing line between "businesspeople" and criminals is blurred. In turn, the relationship among criminals, politicians and members of the intelligence establishment has tainted the structures of the state and the role of its institutions.
Where does the money go?  Who benefits from the Afghan opium trade?
This trade is characterized by a complex web of intermediaries. There are various stages of the drug trade, several interlocked markets, from the impoverished poppy farmer in Afghanistan to the wholesale and retail heroin markets in Western countries. In other words, there is a "hierarchy of prices" for opiates.
This hierarchy of prices is acknowledged by the US administration:
"Afghan heroin sells on the international narcotics market for 100 times the price farmers get for their opium right out of the field".(US State Department quoted by the Voice of America (VOA), 27 February 2004).
According to the UNODC, opium in Afghanistan generated in 2003 "an income of one billion US dollars for farmers and US$ 1.3 billion for traffickers, equivalent to over half of its national income.”
Consistent with these UNODC estimates, the average price for fresh opium was $350 a kg. (2002); the 2002 production was 3400 tons.  ( ).
The UNDOC estimate, based on local farmgate and wholesale prices constitutes, however, a very small percentage of the total turnover of the multibillion dollar Afghan drug trade. The UNODC, estimates "the total annual turn-over of international trade" in Afghan opiates at US$ 30 billion. An examination of the wholesale and retail prices for heroin in the Western countries suggests, however, that the total revenues generated, including those at the retail level, are substantially higher.

Wholesale Prices of Heroin in Western Countries

It is estimated that one kilo of opium produces approximately 100 grams of (pure) heroin. The US DEA confirms that "SWA [South West Asia meaning Afghanistan] heroin in New York City was selling in the late 1990s for $85,000 to $190,000 per kilogram wholesale with a 75 percent purity ratio (National Drug Intelligence Center, ).
According to the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) "the price of SEA [South East Asian] heroin ranges from $70,000 to $100,000 per unit (700 grams) and the purity of SEA heroin ranges from 85 to 90 percent" (ibid). The SEA unit of 700 gr (85-90 % purity) translates  into a wholesale price per kg. for pure heroin ranging between $115,000 and $163,000.
The DEA figures quoted above, while reflecting the situation in the 1990s, are broadly consistent with recent British figures. According to a report published in the Guardian (11 August 2002), the wholesale price of (pure) heroin in London (UK) was of the order of 50,000 pounds sterling, approximately $80,000 (2002).
Whereas as there is competition between different sources of heroin supply, it should be emphasized that Afghan heroin represents a rather small percentage of the US heroin market, which is largely supplied out of Colombia.

Retail Prices

"The NYPD notes that retail heroin prices are down and purity is relatively high. Heroin previously sold for about $90 per gram but now sells for $65 to $70 per gram or less. Anecdotal information from the NYPD indicates that purity for a bag of heroin commonly ranges from 50 to 80 percent but can be as low as 30 percent. Information as of June 2000 indicates that bundles (10 bags) purchased by Dominican buyers from Dominican sellers in larger quantities (about 150 bundles) sold for as little as $40 each, or $55 each in Central Park. DEA reports that an ounce of heroin usually sells for $2,500 to $5,000, a gram for $70 to $95, a bundle for $80 to $90, and a bag for $10. The DMP reports that the average heroin purity at the street level in 1999 was about 62 percent."  (National Drug Intelligence Center, ).
The NYPD and DEA retail price figures seem consistent. The DEA price of $70-$95, with a purity of 62 percent translates into $112 to $153 per gram of pure heroin. The NYPD figures are roughly similar with perhaps lower estimates for purity. 
It should be noted that when heroin is purchased in very small quantities,  the retail price tends to be much higher. In the US, purchase is often by "the bag"; the typical bag according to Rocheleau and Boyum contains 25 milligrams of pure heroin.( )
A $10 dollar bag in NYC (according to the DEA figure quoted above) would convert into a price of $400 per gram, each bag containing 0.025gr. of pure heroin. (op cit). In other words, for very small purchases marketed by street pushers, the retail margin tends to be significantly higher. In the case of the $10 bag purchase, it is roughly 3 to 4 times the corresponding retail price per gram.($112-$153)
In Britain, the retail street price per gram of heroin, according to British Police sources, "has fallen from £74 in 1997 to £61 [in 2004]." [i.e. from approximately $133 to $110, based on the 2004 rate of exchange] (Independent, 3 March 2004). In some cities it was as low as £30-40 per gram with a low level of purity. (AAP News, 3 March 2004). According to Drugscope ( ), the average price for a gram of heroin in Britain is between £40 and £90 ($72- $162 per gram) (The report does not mention purity). The street price of heroin was £60 per gram in April 2002 according to the National Criminal Intelligence Service.
The Hierarchy of Prices
We are dealing with a hierarchy  of prices, from the farmgate price in the producing country, upwards, to the final retail street price. The latter is often 80-100 times the price paid to the farmer.
In other words, the opiate product transits through several markets from the producing country to the transshipment country(ies), to the consuming countries. In the latter, there are wide margins between "the landing price" at the point of entry, demanded by the drug cartels and the wholesale prices and the retail street prices, protected by Western organized crime.
The Global Proceeds of the Afghan Narcotics Trade
In Afghanistan, the reported production of 3600 tons of opium in 2003 would allow for the production of approximately 360,000 kg of pure heroin. Gross revenues accruing to Afghan farmers are roughly estimated by the UNODC to be of the order of $1 billion, with 1.3 billion accruing to local traffickers.
When sold in Western markets at a heroin wholesale price of the order of $100,000 a kg (with a 70 percent purity ratio), the global wholesale proceeds (corresponding to 3600 tons of Afghan opium) would be of the order of 51.4 billion dollars. The latter constitutes a conservative estimate based on the various figures for wholesale prices in the previous section.
The total proceeds of the Afghan narcotics trade (in terms of total value added) is estimated using the final heroin retail price. In other words, the retail value of the trade is ultimately the criterion for measuring the importance of the drug trade in terms of revenue generation and wealth formation.
A meaningful estimate of the retail value, however, is almost impossible to ascertain due to the fact that retail prices vary considerably within urban areas, from one city to another and between consuming countries, not to mention variations in purity and quality (see above).
The evidence on retail margins, namely the difference between wholesale and retail values in the consuming countries, nonetheless, suggests that a large share of the total (money) proceeds of the drug trade are generated at the retail level. 
In other words, a significant portion of the proceeds of the drug trade accrues to criminal and business syndicates in Western countries involved in the local wholesale and retail narcotics markets. And the various criminal gangs involved in retail trade are invariably protected by the "corporate" crime syndicates.
90 percent of heroin consumed in the UK is from Afghanistan. Using the British retail price figure from UK police sources of $110 a gram (with an assumed 50 percent purity level), the total retail value of the Afghan narcotics trade  in 2003 (3600 tons of opium) would be the order of 79.2 billion dollars. The latter should be considered as a simulation rather than an estimate.
Under this assumption (simulation), a billion dollars gross revenue to the farmers in Afghanistan (2003) would generate global narcotics earnings, --accruing at various stages and in various markets-- of the order of 79.2 billion dollars. These global proceeds accrue to business syndicates, intelligence agencies, organized crime, financial institutions, wholesalers, retailers, etc. involved directly or indirectly in the drug trade.
In turn, the proceeds of this lucrative trade are deposited in Western banks, which constitute an essential mechanism in the laundering of dirty money.
A very small percentage accrues to farmers and traders in the producing country. Bear in mind that the net income accruing to Afghan farmers is but a fraction of the estimated 1 billion dollar amount. The latter does not include payments of farm inputs, interest on loans to money lenders, political protection, etc. (See also UNODC, The Opium Economy in Afghanistan, , Vienna, 2003, p. 7-8)

The Share of the Afghan Heroin in the Global Drug Market

Afghanistan produces over 70 percent of the global supply of heroin and heroin represents a sizeable fraction of the global narcotics market, estimated by the UN to be of the order of $400-500 billion.
There are no reliable estimates on the distribution of the global narcotics trade between the main categories: Cocaine, Opium/Heroin, Cannabis, Amphetamine Type Stimulants (ATS), Other Drugs.

The Laundering of Drug Money

The proceeds of the drug trade are deposited in the banking system. Drug money is laundered in the numerous offshore banking havens in Switzerland, Luxembourg, the British Channel Islands, the Cayman Islands and some 50 other locations around the globe.  It is here that the criminal syndicates involved in the drug trade and the representatives of the world's largest commercial banks interact. Dirty money is deposited in these offshore havens, which are controlled by the major Western commercial banks. The latter have a vested interest in maintaining and sustaining the drug trade. (For further details, see Michel Chossudovsky, The Crimes of Business and the Business of Crimes, Covert Action Quarterly, Fall 1996)
Once the money has been laundered, it can be recycled into bona fide investments not only in real estate, hotels, etc, but also in other areas such as the services economy and manufacturing. Dirty and covert money is also funneled into various financial instruments including the trade in derivatives, primary commodities, stocks, and government bonds.

Concluding Remarks: Criminalization of US Foreign Policy

US foreign policy supports the workings of a thriving criminal economy in which the demarcation between organized capital and organized crime has become increasingly blurred. 
The heroin business is not  "filling the coffers of the Taliban" as claimed by US government and the international community: quite the opposite! The proceeds of this illegal trade are the source of wealth formation, largely reaped by powerful business/criminal interests within the Western countries. These interests are sustained by US foreign policy.
Decision-making in the US State Department, the CIA and the Pentagon is instrumental in supporting this highly profitable multibillion dollar trade, third in commodity value after oil and the arms trade. 
The Afghan drug economy is "protected". The heroin trade was part of the war agenda. What this war has achieved is to restore a compliant narco-State, headed by a US appointed puppet. The powerful financial interests behind narcotics are supported by the militarisation of the world's major drug triangles (and transshipment routes), including the Golden Crescent and the Andean region of South America (under the so-called Andean Initiative).

Who is Really Growing the Poppy in Afghanistan?

Chart of Poppy Production 1994 to 2007. 

It's curious that we now hear that the Taliban are now a big narco trafficker of Poppy in Afghanistan and are supervising the growing of all this poppy there. I just watched a piece on Fox News with Geraldo and he was saying we are really now at war with the Taliban to stop them from growing Poppy to fund their war effort. So I did a little research and am posting two articles on my blog written in 2001 and 2003 that I found on the internet. It appears that in 2000 the Taliban outlawed the growing of Poppy and opium production and made it punishable by death. The next year in 2001(see chart to the left) there was  virtually no Poppy being grown in Afghanistan according to the UN and the US. Now mind you this was before 911. 

The US then went into Afghanistan in March of 2001 with the most sophisticated equipment and tens of thousands of troops, in the eight years since the US has been there the Poppy production rose every year and now stands at an all time high. How can the Taliban that is being bombed everyday and on the run, manage and control the growth, harvest and marketing of a multibillion business right under the United States Military nose while being targeted every day? It's almost incomprehensible. 

In the piece today with Geraldo, he was in a military compound and he said let me show you the problem here. He walked to the door of the compound and opened it and low and behold right outside the compound there were Poppy fields as far as you could see.  Of course being the astute reporter that he is, he failed to ask the commander of the base why the US military hasn't destroyed all those Poppy fields. What is wrong with this picture?  Here what’s wrong with it, in 2000 the Taliban was able to virtually wipe out the production of Poppy and Opium in one year.  After 8 years of the US military and the Karzi Government in power 

Poppy production is at an all time high. How is that possible? Why were those hundreds of acres right outside the US military compound still growing like wheat fields in Kansas? Why weren’t they destroyed by the US Military? Why hasn't there been a systematic destruction of the Poppy fields?  They certainly know where they are.  The rumors are that Karzi and his criminal brother are the ones really behind the production and marketing of the Poppy crop, which is now worth billions of dollars. Karzi has just called for 20 billion in foreign aid to help the farmers. Sure. Where do you think that money will end up?

Did you know Karzi spends very little time in Afghanistan, he runs the Government from a Penthouse in Dubai. A few months ago the US caught one of his representatives leaving Afghanistan with 500 thousand dollars in his bag. They let him go. What do you think if you or I was stopped with that kind of money it our bag? Do you think we would be in jail and charged with money laundering?  All these billions of dollars that we give in foreign aid every year never reach the people, 90 percent of it is stolen by the corrupt leaders that we support.

Here are the facts; you can make up your own mind. But it's hard for me to believe how a rag tag group of terrorists being pursed and bombed everyday by over 120 thousand US and Nato forces can pull off such a huge enterprise, that requires a high degree of organization, logistics and manpower to first plant, then harvest and then market the product.  If you can figure it out please let me know, I would love to hear about it.

Here are the articles.

Afghanistan, Opium and the Taliban

JALALABAD, Afghanistan (February 15, 2001 8:19 p.m. EST

U.N. drug control officers said the Taliban religious militia has nearly wiped out opium production in Afghanistan -- once the world's largest producer -- since banning poppy cultivation last summer.

A 12-member team from the U.N. Drug Control Program spent two weeks searching most of the nation's largest opium-producing areas and found so few poppies that they do not expect any opium to come out of Afghanistan this year.
"We are not just guessing. We have seen the proof in the fields," said Bernard Frahi, regional director for the U.N. program in Afghanistan and Pakistan. He laid out photographs of vast tracts of land cultivated with wheat alongside pictures of the same fields taken a year earlier -- a sea of blood-red poppies.

A State Department official said Thursday all the information the United States has received so far indicates the poppy crop had decreased, but he did not believe it was eliminated. Last year, Afghanistan produced nearly 4,000 tons of opium, about 75 percent of the world's supply, U.N. officials said. Opium -- the milky substance drained from the poppy plant -- is converted into heroin and sold in Europe and North America. The 1999 output was a world record for opium production, the United Nations said -- more than all other countries combined, including the "Golden Triangle," where the borders of Thailand, Laos and Myanmar meet.

Mullah Mohammed Omar, the Taliban's supreme leader, banned poppy growing before the November planting season and augmented it with a religious edict making it contrary to the tenets of Islam. The Taliban, which has imposed a strict brand of Islam in the 95 percent of Afghanistan it controls, has set fire to heroin laboratories and jailed farmers until they agreed to destroy their poppy crops.

The U.N. surveyors, who completed their search this week, crisscrossed Helmand, Kandahar, Urzgan and Nangarhar provinces and parts of two others -- areas responsible for 86 percent of the opium produced in Afghanistan last year, Frahi said in an interview Wednesday. They covered 80 percent of the land in those provinces that last year had been awash in poppies. This year they found poppies growing on barely an acre here and there, Frahi said. The rest -- about 175,000 acres -- was clean.

"We have to look at the situation with careful optimism," said Sandro Tucci of the U.N. Office for Drug Control and Crime Prevention in Vienna, Austria. He said indications are that no poppies were planted this season and that, as a result, there hasn't been any production of opium -- but that officials would keep checking. The State Department counternarcotics official said the department would make its own estimate of the poppy crop. Information received so far suggests there will be a decrease, but how much is not yet clear, he said, speaking on condition of anonymity. "We do not think by any stretch of the imagination that poppy cultivation in Afghanistan has been eliminated. But we, like the rest of the world, welcome positive news." The Drug Enforcement Administration declined to comment.

No U.S. government official can enter Afghanistan because of security concerns stemming from the presence of suspected terrorist Osama bin Laden. Poppies are harvested in March and April, which is why the survey was done now. Tucci said it would have been impossible for the poppies to have been harvested already. The areas searched by the U.N. surveyors are the most fertile lands under Taliban control. Other areas, though they are somewhat fertile, have not traditionally been poppy growing areas and farmers are struggling to raise any crops at all because of severe drought. The rest of the land held by the Taliban is mountainous or desert, where poppies could not grow. 

Karim Rahimi, the U.N. drug control liaison in Jalalabad, capital of Nangarhar province, said farmers were growing wheat or onions in fields where they once grew poppies. "It is amazing, really, when you see the fields that last year were filled with poppies and this year there is wheat," he said.
The Taliban enforced the ban by threatening to arrest village elders and mullahs who allowed poppies to be grown. Taliban soldiers patrolled in trucks armed with rocket-propelled grenade launchers. About 1,000 people in Nangarhar who tried to defy the ban were arrested and jailed until they agreed to destroy their crops. 

Signs throughout Nangarhar warn against drug production and use, some calling it an "illicit phenomenon." Another reads: "Be drug free, be happy." Last year, poppies grew on 12,600 acres of land in Nangarhar province. According to the U.N. survey, poppies were planted on only 17 acres there this season and all were destroyed by the Taliban. "The Taliban have done their work very seriously," Frahi said. But the ban has badly hurt farmers in one of the world's poorest countries, shattered by two decades of war and devastated by drought.

Ahmed Rehman, who shares less than three acres in Nangarhar with his three brothers, said the opium he produced last year on part of the land brought him $1,100. This year, he says, he will be lucky to get $300 for the onions and cattle feed he planted on the entire parcel. "Life is very bad for me this year," he said. "Last year I was able to buy meat and wheat and now this year there is nothing." But Rehman said he never considered defying the ban. "The Taliban were patrolling all the time. Of course I was afraid. I did not want to go to jail and lose my freedom and my dignity," he said, gesturing with dirt-caked hands. Shams-ul-Haq Sayed, an officer of the Taliban drug control office in Jalalabad, said farmers need international aid.

"This year was the most important for us because growing poppies was part of their culture, and the first years are always the most difficult," he said. Tucci said discussions are under way on how to help the farmers. Western diplomats in Pakistan have suggested the Taliban is simply trying to drive up the price of opium they have stockpiled. The State Department official also said Afghanistan could do more by destroying drug stockpiles and heroin labs and arresting producers and traffickers. Frahi dismissed that as "nonsense" and said it is drug traffickers and shopkeepers who have stockpiles. Two pounds of opium worth $35 last year are now worth as much as $360, he said. 

Mullah Amir Mohammed Haqqani, the Taliban's top drug official in Nangarhar, said the ban would remain regardless of whether the Taliban received aid or international recognition.
"It is our decree that there will be no poppy cultivation. It is banned forever in this country," he said. "Whether we get assistance or not, poppy growing will never be allowed again in our country.

Source: Los Angeles Times
Date: 5 October 2003

Opium production spreading in Afghanistan
First-time growers lured by high prices
amid weak oversight, economy

Robyn Dixon

KABUL, Afghanistan - Mohammad Ashrafy waited for the death of the family figurehead, a respected mullah, before he finally planted opium poppies this year for the first time.
And sometimes, when he gazed out over the huge stretch of poppies he grew in the Ghor province of central Afghanistan this spring and summer, he felt guilty, recalling the admonishments of his late uncle, Mullah Mortaza Kahn.

"We know growing opium is against Islam, but we have to do it," said Ashrafy, 38. "I was the only person left here not growing it, and there was no mullah telling me to stop." The United Nations estimates that half of Ghor's farmers don't earn enough to cover basic needs. So exhortations to plant alternatives seem doomed when a grower can make about $5,200 from an acre of opium but $121 from an acre of wheat.

Ashrafy and his brother support 35 relatives, including the widows and children of two other brothers killed in the country's long wars. Last year, Ashrafy grew wheat, but it provided only half of what the family needed. "If I don't grow [opium]," he said, "I'm sure we'll die because we cannot grow enough wheat for ourselves." So he prays to make peace with Allah.

Throughout Afghanistan, thousands who never grew opium began harvesting their crops in May, taught by experienced poppy farmers who have been traveling to new areas to share their skills.
Afghanistan regained its position as the largest opium country last year, producing 3,750 tons, and this year, production is expected to be as high, according to the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime. Seventy-five percent of the world's heroin, obtained from opium poppies, comes from Afghanistan.
At a congressional hearing in Washington in June, Bernard Farhi, chief of the operations branch of the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, said opium brought Afghanistan $1.2 billion last year - equal to the international aid to Afghanistan in that period. In a recent report, the International Monetary Fund said opium accounted for up to half of Afghanistan's gross domestic product, amounting to $2.5 billion in exports.

Early in the era of the Taliban, the radical Islamic regime that allowed the al-Qaida terror network to flourish in Afghanistan, opium cultivation was permitted. But in July 2000, more than a year before the United States knocked it out of power, the Taliban banned the crop and introduced the death penalty for opium crimes, leading to a sharp decline in production.

Now, the regions outside Kabul are under the control of warlords, many of whom benefit from the trade. Last year's production was nine times higher than during the final year of Taliban rule.
Without a national police force or army, President Hamid Karzai's interim government cannot enforce its poppy ban, leaving drug-eradication workers exposed to retaliation. In June, seven of them were mobbed and killed by enraged poppy farmers in Oruzgan province, 250 miles southwest of Kabul, where authorities were making a major effort to reduce the poppy crops.

Security in Afghanistan has deteriorated sharply in recent months with an increase in attacks by anti-government militants. Many argue that without better security in the provinces, efforts to control poppy-growing will fail. "The fact of the matter is you can't stop opium production when the warlords control the regions and when we don't expand security beyond Kabul," Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr., a Delaware Democrat, said at a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee on drugs and terrorism in May. "It was a power vacuum created by warlords and drug-traffickers that enabled the Taliban and al-Qaida to turn Afghanistan into an international swamp. ... And now we're back in the same situation again." Even before the death of his uncle, who had not been involved with the Taliban, Ashrafy learned to harvest poppies by helping with his neighbor's poppy harvest last year.

Ashrafy and his surviving brother are large landowners. In the past four years of devastating drought, many smaller farmers went into debt. This year, many of them were given loans and seeds by drug traders, to be repaid upon harvest. The political fate of the governor of Ghor province, Ebrahim Malakzada, is a telling example of what can happen to those who try to stop farmers from growing poppies.

"This year, the only person who said not to grow opium was the governor," said Ashrafy, the Ghor poppy farmer. "He met with the elders and told them not to let people grow poppies. Then a commander chased him out, and he had to flee." The deputy governor, Mulladin Mohammad Azimy, seized the official governor's residence, and Malakzada, an ally of Karzai's, was forced to live in Kabul for a time. 

An expert on the international drug trade, Rensselaer Lee, told the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing that the control of drugs has taken a back seat to fighting terrorism, building consensus and strengthening alliances. "To build these alliances, unfortunately, we've had to make some arrangements, compromises with people who, frankly, may have some history of involvement with the drug trade and may be even currently protecting the drug trade," said Lee, president of Global Advisory Services, a Virginia-based research group. 

In early June, Karzai called for $20 billion in foreign aid, warning that without an economic boost, people would have to live on the opium trade. Afghan Finance Minister Ghani Ahmadzai has also warned that without more international aid, Afghanistan could become reliant on the drug trade and crime - a problem that would be more expensive to fix than giving short-term aid.