Seeds of Terror

Seeds of Terror

How Heroin Is Bankrolling the Taliban and Al Qaeda

Book - 2009
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Most Americans think of the Taliban and al Qaeda as a bunch of bearded fanatics fighting an Islamic crusade from caves in Afghanistan. But that doesn't explain their astonishing comeback along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. Why is it eight years after we invaded Afghanistan, the CIA says that these groups are better armed and better funded than ever?

Seeds of Terror will reshape the way you think about America's enemies, revealing them less as ideologues and more as criminals who earn half a billion dollars every year off the opium trade. With the breakneck pace of a thriller, author Gretchen Peters traces their illicit activities from vast poppy fields in southern Afghanistan to heroin labs run by Taliban commanders, from drug convoys armed with Stinger missiles to the money launderers of Karachi and Dubai.

This isn't a fanciful conspiracy theory. Seeds of Terror is based on hundreds of interviews with Taliban fighters, smugglers, and law enforcement and intelligence agents. Their information is matched by intelligence reports shown to the author by frustrated U.S. officials who fear the next 9/11 will be far deadlier than the first--and paid for with drug profits.

Seeds of Terror makes the case that we must cut terrorists off from their drug earnings if we ever hope to beat them. This war isn't about ideology or religion. It's about creating a new economy for Afghanistan--and breaking the cycle of violence and extremism that has gripped the region for decades.

Publisher: St. Martin's Press : Thomas Dunne Books, 2009.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780312379278
Characteristics: xvii, 300 p., [16] p. of plates : ill. (chiefly col.), map ; 25 cm.


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Nov 02, 2016

Amazing insight into a very difficult situation. Explained by the usual CIA hopelessly short-sighted efforts. How the massive drug trade could have been shrugged off and ignored for so long, in the face of increasing financial capabilities of al Qaeda and the Taliban, is dismaying.
It seems to be the same old story of throwing huge amounts of cash at all the wrong people for all the wrong reasons.
It is no wonder that the Americans are in a political drift and 'leaders' are displaying no moral compasses. And south Asia is left in the hands of wealthy thugs with no goals except more wealth at any cost. This is our world today.

Jan 22, 2011

A well-written, well-documented, persuasive book. I found the book illuminating in terms of understanding how heroin is financing the Taliban and Al Qaeda's terrorist regime. Overall, I thought this was an insightful look at the drug trade, the key players and smuggling/ politics in East Asia.

I have my doubts that the Americans will succeed in eradicating opium production or the heroin trade when as a nation they are (so far) unable to stop the flow of drugs or illegal immigrants across their borders, and cannot even keep up with the rest of the world in primary education!
Nevertheless! This book was an eye-opener to be sure. Most interesting.


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