More Drugs, Fewer Narcs

Though the global drug trade is heating up, expect a lighter U.S. enforcement presence on the streets. The White House's Office of National Drug Control Policy estimates that opium production in Afghanistan, which not only provides 90% of the heroin consumed globally but also funds Taliban activities, rose 61% last year over 2005. Some 670 tons of heroin are expected to flood the market, and that should slash the street price of a kilo of Southwest Asian heroin, now about $90,000 in Los Angeles. Yet the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), which annually loses some 3% of its 5,000 agents to attrition,...

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