Afghan Heroin: The Lost War

2008, Drugs  -   74 Comments
Ratings: 7.26/10 from 35 users.

Afghan Heroin: The Lost WarAfghan Heroin: The Lost War is a documentary which investigates how the war on terror in Afghanistan has unleashed heroin into the mainstream.

Heroin is one of the most addictive drugs on Earth. Some 90 per cent of the drug is grown in Afghanistan and this hard hitting documentary investigates how the War on Terror has inadvertently unleashed a massive supply of the deadly drug.

After the Western coalition troops started their hunt for terrorist Osama Bin Laden and his Taliban allies in late 2001, the country torn apart from decades of war once more became the world’s opium growing capital.

Many impoverished farmers had no choice but to grow the opium poppy to feed their families.

The documentary delve into the devastating effects of addiction that includes shocking scenes of a young Norwegian couple hustling, scoring and shooting up several times a day in order to appease the monster inside them.

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74 Comments / User Reviews

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  1. bluetortilla

    'ironically it's Afghan heroin that's flooding the streets of the same Western nations that are sacrificing soldiers to fight terror and lawlessness in Afghanistan'
    Couldn't bear to watch this. Five thumbs down. :(

  2. bluetortilla

    (Heroin is) 'an unintended consequence on the war on terror.' Give me a break. Blatant propaganda.

    I suppose the Golden Triangle was unintended as well.

  3. detox for heroin addiction

    great point

  4. jorge Gutierrez

    oops,I do not know why I added the g,my bad. I meant to write: win .lol.

  5. jorge Gutierrez

    They call it the lose war,I call it the wining war,cause either way they put it here in The USA they wing,either by catching the dealer,or the user,or even by catching the drug/s itself. What people think this Government do with the drugs they catch? Some say that they destroy it,I say they sell it, for: How are medicine produce? Isn't it with drugs? and does any one know how much money the State makes with each and every inmate they jailed? A lot,that's the answer,they make a lot of money for only one inmate they house for a year,now imagine how many Millions,if not Billions the state makes? I have to agree with Winston Smith,I hope the Government stop freaking lying to the people about a whole lot of BS that they are doing,and start been truthful,cause the People aren't stupid,and/or ignorant anymore as you may think. These is my humble opinion.

  6. indieisin

    The biggest problem here is one that can be found everywhere. Canada has been the model country in relation to heroine.. starting a government funded detox, needle exchange program, has SUBSTANTIALLY reduced not only overdoses and spread of disease but has also opened the door to addicts kicking the habit. In Russia and Ukraine, the government is so ignorant to drug addicts that they do not allow drugs like Methadone or Suboxone be distributed to help addicts quit. This has led to a new drug, affectionately dubbed Krocodil - russian for Crocodile - to be abused by addicts when Heroine supply is cut off due to drug busts. Google Krocodil addicts, the pictures speak for themselves -- cell necrosis and gangrene at the site of injection, people are literally wasting. There are close to A BILLION addicts in Russia alone.

    This is a sad state of affairs stemming from ignorance and incompetence. When countries like Canada implement needle sharing programs and advocate detox, they successfully show that IT WORKS! Why would you want to cripple your own population? I would think that in our day and age countries would be humanitarian and we would have left the dark ages behind us but.. apparently not.

    1. Space_Cadet_1952

      Question: How do you get a "BILLION" addicts from a population of 145 million? Google ''exaggerate". Perhaps you meant "MILLION""? Which is 1000 times less..?

    2. indieisin

      my apologies on the typo, yes.. it's a huge difference, I must have gotten overly excited while typing.

  7. paulcoggins

    excellent doco. It's an evil drug

  8. smackme420

    I LOVE Heroin. That's the problem. I am considered a good-looking guy, very smart, compassionate, considerate, generous, and sexy. (humble too) I have been using Heroin for over 35 yrs. Now, I have convinced my Doctors to give me Morphine as I am getting too old for the "chase". It just takes too much time and energy from me and although I miss Heroin very much, I simply can't do it any more. That said, I do remember the times when Heroin took over my life completely. I had to live with many women who were more than happy to support me, lend me their cars, etc. I never had anything too terrible happen to me as I took as much care of myself as possible. Heroin is NOT the problem, PEOPLE are the problem. When you loose control, THAT is where the trouble begins. It is us, humans that don't know how to manage drug use. From here on, nothing but misery and eventually, DEATH. I guess I was one of the lucky ones. I don't know.

  9. DeAndre OFWGKTA Gagan

    Jenna looked beautiful for the heroin addiction.
    Like a even better looking Mila Kunis.

  10. Miguel Castaneda


  11. woodenhead

    The war on drugs will always be waged because of the profits made by Dealers, and Government Agencies that are State funded and (even worse, self funded drug enforcement through seizure of property and assets of those convicted) give employment to 1000's of people in the Prison, Police and Welfare industries, which in themselves are Billion dollar turnovers. When the Government in the 1920's made alcohol illegal, city fathers everywhere celebrated the fact that they could make huge profits from the sale of banned produce. Its the same now with Weed, Smack and Meth and all the other Class A types of dope. As soon as you make something illegal it increases the black market value. Its a model that has been used since the opium wars where as one poster correctly wrote, China was forced to buy Afghanistan Opium from the English. Millions of Chinese were addicted and the Chinese wanted to stop it but the English were funding their Arms build-up at the time. In the 1940's Chang-Ki-Chek the leader of the nationalist army in China was backed by Pro western governments to fight the communist takeover after the second world war. Once defeated he took his remaining troops into Laos and Burma and began the Heroin production (With the implicate co-operation of the Western Governments) known today as the "Golden Triangle" to fund his war. The rest as they say 'Is History' and now the rest of the world is flooded with Heroin, Cocaine (We all know about the corrupt take over of small South American countries in C.I.A backed coups) and other less media demonized drugs while the legal (Alcohol and Tobacco) still kill millions of people through medical complications every year.
    Check out your History, Questions anyone?

  12. Kellie Fleming

    thats chemical warfare !

  13. Noah Hickman


  14. Noah Hickman


  15. Jamie Smith

    It's strange that when the taliban ruled afghan that a very small percentage of herion was the american backed regime runs afghanistan a staggering 90 odd % of herion comes from there??? wonder why??

    1. Elfie1225

      What does that tell ya.
      During the Viet Nam War- the US military were flying the heroin out of Viet Nam. Alot of GI's came home addicted. Even today - Viet Nam vets are admitted to rehab for the 60th or 100th time for heroin addiction. Note: 60 yr old heroin addicts survived addicted to heroin for 40 years. What is the human way to handle this? The US Govn't lets the drugs in and even harvest and transport drugs.
      Why not legalize and deal with functional addicts-- not everyone- but the average 10% will become addicts-- be it legal or illegal.
      Norway accepts there addicts -treat them as equals- help them -with clean needles, clean room to shoot up, places that feed them- food kitchens. Norway is very humane to there addicts -addicted to Afgan heroin. They know they can't stop it. The main reason they do this is to prevent drug crimes. So innocent ppl will not be robbed and killed by addicts, also prevent home invasions and broken car windows. It has worked so far for Norway.

  16. Nakor420

    I have done a lot of opiates. I have to admit that once you experience that "warm-blanket" that she described, it's hard to not want it again. It's SO seductive.Despite the good uses of the opium poppy that benefit mankind, Heroin is the devil.

  17. Randy Pascua

    afgan farmers sacrifice their beliefs on islam just to feed their family

  18. Deb Ackley

    Have to agree, the teenage sob stories don't add too much to the story, but it is again another truth we would rather not recognize or rather not see.

    1. testicularfortitude

      see my comment below, deborah...oh, and no we don't need no poppies to make no oxycontin which milligram by milligram offers a superior high

  19. Deb Ackley

    Heroin unregulated with no controls is a bd thing. Guess we need the crops for our legal pharmaceutical companies. Although there are synthetics now.

    1. testicularfortitude

      they need to teach them idiots how to grow poppies...give 'em poppy seeds instead of free needles and subsidized food, u know the old sayin', teach 'em to fish...

  20. juliangibson

    This documentary might have been good if it weren't for the overly dramatic music drowning out the information.

    Why do US made docs seem to feel the need to fill every second with a doomy soundtrack? It's as if they're afraid people will get bored and turn off.

    1. oklima

      I agree - I can instantly recognise American documentaries and turn the tacky, dumbed-down things off straight away. Even with a British narrator the thing is totally ruined.

  21. James del Valle

    Islamic propoganda would tell you that the Taleban banned Heroin production on religious grounds but they were in fact paid to reduce production by the USA, additionally Iran, Pakistan and Afghan are full of smack addicts so why do Muslims repeatedly bring down western society as being immoral? not to mention Rape being practically legal under sharia law, there are also regular public executions and amputations including for people who leave Islam or Homosexuals etc, however if a man has sex with a boy its not counted as being gay for some crazy reason and sexual gratification using young girls is also allowed, and many more warped worse than medieval activities, most people wont believe what I've wrote but no Muslim can deny it.

    1. Javeria Hussain

      No.1- rape is not legal in the sharia law or Islam.
      No.2- there are no executions or amputations for anyone who leaves Islam and neither is it allowed it Islam.
      No.3- As far as a man having sex with a boy is concerned, it is more culture than religion its not allowed in Islam and the same goes for "sexual gratification using young girls". google "truck art culture in Pakistan".
      No.4- There are immoral activities practiced in these countries but that doesn't mean they are allowed in Islam, they are just as immoral in Islam as they would be in other religions.

  22. Morsie

    An enormous amount of Afghanis are also addicted, especially the growers. So they don't go unscathed...

  23. James Pearson

    Good documentary if you ignore pretty much the last 15-20minutes, the teenage sob stories don't add much to it or your own knowledge.

    1. testicularfortitude

      don't feign perspicacity with ignorant cynicism....them young junkies are the r'aison d'etre for the war on drugs.

  24. wisedonkey

    If the real fight was against "terrorism" then we should be fighting in Saudi Arabia

  25. wisedonkey

    There is no oil there

    1. Jayne Pastel-Base Ede

      there's actually loads of oil in saudi arabia. however, they have a fairly decent air force (thanks to us continually keeping them sweet by selling them our fast jets) so we take the friendship route rather than the 'destroy everything and steal it out of the ground' one we pick in the footholds of iraq and afghanistan.

    2. Jamie Smith

      saudi arabia has nearly the biggest oile wells in the world...easily found out by some simple research.also if you look at the top 50 oil reserves in the world and look at the countries america has either attacked by force or economically you will see a strenge pattern emerge...america has theis weird propganda thing with iran wanting to conquer the world yet to me they are the only counrty threatening the world with their power hungry dominance.

  26. wisedonkey

    Haven't seen movie yet, but know that's why American troops are really there. Duh.

  27. princesspatricia

    Heroin...the lost war? No, heroin is an ongoing spiritual war, which only GOD can cleanse. We all have that something inside of us that is desperately seeking the ultimate "High"..... it can only be found by Christ. GOD has placed himself within each and every one of our hearts, unfortunately most people do not know that it truly is him whom we are seeking. Only Jesus can touch the places of sorrow.

    1. Jules

      I'm so sick of this Jesus garbage. I have never done heroin, never will, and there is no God or Jesus in my life. If that's what you need to get by, fine. But just let the rest of live without it if we choose.

    2. princesspatricia

      Actually, Jules, by your response, sounds like alot of hurt and anger within......... even in your non belief. One day, somehow, you will know of GOD's love and in that day, moment and time, you will thank him and think upon this post.

    3. princesspatricia

      Dear Jules;

      Sorry that you are so angry about a comment of something better and more
      loving than this world. One day something powerful will happen to you and
      you will know that it the LORD who has kept you in the precense of his love
      and free from harm.

  28. TheTruthforyou

    In this world, we are all dependent on each other, which we do not often recognize.... Should the Taliban have stayed in power, Europe and America will have benefited from the opium control. And this will go a long way to make heroin scarce and hence less or no addicts. Sometimes, it is good we consider everything thoroughly before taking decision, for you will never know the adverse effect of your own decisions on you and your society as a whole.

    1. Drew-Jordan Maharaj

      so the willingness of of a violent racist and sexist regime to torture farmers to prevent opium growing legitimizes their power? You would rather the Taliban were still in charge?

    2. Trey Galifinakis

      I like your open ended comment which leaves room for a thought experiment, however I like to remain neutral on political issues as I see no point in running around in circles talking about the same thing over and over every 4 years like it is the only problem there is. Onto the thought experiment, thank you for the inspiration Drew-Jordan Maharaj.
      I wish for anyone to ponder the following of what I have thought about upon reading the previous post and request that these thoughts be taken from here and recreated in the world in a manner that I know it has come from you, for we are all one and I can feel your vibrations from across the world.
      The willingness of a violent (they break arms instead of making tax payers feed and house prison inmates?), racist (everyone from the middle east are terrorists?), and "sexist" (Walt Disney and the Mickey Mouse Club - Jail bait?) regime (freedom fighters, just like George Washington was?) torturing (enhanced interrogation?) farmers (3% of the labor force there too?) to prevent (supply and demand, boom and bust, regulated trade, federal reserve, global monetary depression) opium (vicodin?) growing legitimizes (born free then my mom signed a certificate at the hospital then the hospital sold my immaterial essence to the federal reserve and I wasn't told how I could be freed now all i got is this 9 digit number and a fancy card where my soul used to be?) power(capital, money, the most wage slaves?)?
      Further What single individual (keep in mind a corporation is an individual and an individual with a social security card is a corporation - when have you ever seen a humans name written in all caps) in the entire world consumes the most opium? And isn't it far more profitable for said individual when the only legal way to obtain or possess any type of opioid is through a doctors order. i.e. You are starting to think too much about the war on "perceived enemy image" maybe you need something else to take up your time and energy - how about an addiction. Psychiatry - sheeple (baaaaahhd!) labeling unique or outspoken individuals as defective since the age of Aries.

      How come sociopathic corporations don't have to go to therapy? Because they wouldn't profit from the experience.

    3. Elfie1225

      makes you wonder what the hell the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA is doing.

  29. TomazZzz

    I am speaking in FIRST PERSON.. I am a junkie, sadly.. I am ashamed of it but its now far from just quitting in 5 minutes. I was never doing crime to obtain the drugs, I just spent all what I earned by hard work which is even more ridiculous.
    If there wouldn't be politics involved into it much would be different. I can tell you that since late 1990 the quality of heroin degraded by 90% in europe. Why? Because mexico can't supply whole us of A... I give my three hands if its not true that much of it is flown to america via army..
    Here they say that since 1996 its more pure, there was never so much of it... BS... Since few years its harder and harder to get some in our country while the quality is soon to be - non existant.

    1. far far

      You should join the army or go to America

    2. princesspatricia

      TomazZzz; What you are seaching for is not found in a pipe or needle or in a bottle. You do know this don't you? People do not choose to be addicted, they become addicted for the lack of love within their lives. Unfortunately, predators in this world are just waiting to pounce upon those in need. What you are really searching for in your life is meaning and fulfillment that only GOD can provide. Believe me, I know.

    3. Achems_Razor

      Why are you pimping your religion on this doc? If you are happy with your lot in life, then keep it to yourself, there are a lot of different ways to achieve happiness instead of resorting to telepathically talking to and believing in some invisible deity.

    4. princesspatricia

      How can I keep the love of GOD to myself when it is meant to be shared? And
      if you think the creator is invisible....... just take a look around. What
      do you think is holding you together?

  30. Jeronimo Tamayo Lopera

    legalize drugs

  31. Winston Smith

    So much propaganda in here. Total BS! Fact is: half a trillion dollars work their way into the coffers of the US banking system every single year and that is why drugs are treated like they are the problem when the reality is quite otherwise. Drugs would be cheap if medicalized. And the reality is that No substance or behavior is addictive on it's own; Addict required.

    This was no 'unintended consequence' of the (phoney) war on terror but clearly intentional. We are not "fighting terror and injustice in Afghanistan" We are the ones who preemptively attacked this sovereign nation. ALL the Taliban requested was the evidence of Bin Ladin's involvement in the 9/11 attacks! That's it. Show us the evidence and we will hand him right over to the US, they said. Bin Ladin, if youre even remotely properly informed, you know denied any involvement in the 911 attacks. (See Karachi Umat Interview from sept 29th 2001).
    No, we went there to unleash opium production, gain control the Caspian Sea pipeline (worth trillions) and piggy-backed Iraq (OIL) on 9/11.
    9/11 made it all possible.

    1. James del Valle

      you lot believe any old nonsense, get an education.

  32. Achems_Razor

    War on drugs? Maybe a little control, but a war that cannot be won. It is just a business, have to keep up a good front for the taxpayers to keep bilking them out of more money.

    1. mastorbatrix

      You can't wage a war against human nature. Humans want drugs, they want sex, fame, or whatever. You can only sort of control it and hope the least amount of people get harmed in the process.

  33. Teresa Alberto

    lets see the things as they are

  34. alans

    Someone said it best: "If there is a demand, there will be a supply." Until they fix the root cause of why people want to get high, they will not succeed in the war on drugs.

    1. Irishkev

      What's to fix man, everybody wants to get high? It's just that people have different ways to get there, drugs, religion, power, sex, exercise, money, we're all addicted to something. It's not a war on drugs, it's a war on people.

  35. Irishkev

    How about a documentary on benzodiazepines, synthetic opiates or any of the other "acceptable" drugs that are pushed on people by the pharma industry and their local dealers (doctors). It seems that it's ok to be addicted as long as you have a prescription.

    1. Heather Wade

      Well said, I agree.

    2. jacobella

      Yes, very well said...Track down the Dr. Feel Good who destroys peoples lives, the lives of their families and everyone else who cares about the person. These doc's will tell you they don't create addicts, but they do one hell of a great job making it possible...The problem...Afghanistan or your local doc???

  36. Guest

    I very much agree with Thomas Vestly's review here that the film does not deliver what it could. I would like to know much more about the role of heroin IN AFGHANISTAN, I would like to know how raising poppies relates to being a Muslim, I would like to know who raises it, how much they raise, how the government relates, etc. More on the Taliban. This is dealt with a little in the film, but not nearly enough. I think the segments on addicts are very good, and could easily make a film of their own, but much more about Afghanistan would have really enriched this film and made it more valuable.

  37. Guest

    The demand for heroin comes from the West, the supply comes from Afghanistan. The demand and the production work hand in hand.
    The bridge between the two is a load of $$$$$$$$.
    When the afghani was relaunched in 2002 to encourage economic stability, there were around 10, 000Afg to the US dollar; since then the currency has consistently floated at around 45Afg to 50Afg to the dollar.

    How many fields of poppies are needed to feed a village?

    1. DocLover247

      O WOW, took alot of digging to check your info.
      All my digging, I found this...(note i can't even GET a chart of USD/AFA) on a 10 year scale...
      In April, 2000, the Afghani traded at 6400 AFA per USD.
      By 2002, the Afghani was valued at 43,000 AFA per USD.
      By 2009, the Afghani was valued at 45 AFA per USD

      No subdivisions have been issued. It replaced the previous Afghani at two distinct rates. Issues of the government of President Burhanuddin Rabbani were replaced at a rate of 1000 to the NEW Afghani, whilst the issues of Abdul Rashid Dostum (the Northern Alliance) were replaced at a rate of 2000 to the NEW Afghani, The new Afghani was valued at 43 Afghani to the U.S. dollar. Prior to the reissue, there were more than 15 trillion Afghani in circulation after unrestrained printing under Taliban rule and during wars and occupation

      Essentially...nothing has changed..currency was replaced at 1000:1 ratio and 2000:1 respectively. 1000 and 2000 dollars worth of buying power was replaced with the same buying power of less bills.
      This was done to reign in the fraudulent dollars printed by the Taliban and others.

      Def a great comment tho, as a currency trader (tho the Afgahani dollar isn't something I would touch)..was great to learn about this.
      They did this as well with the Dinar, and every scam artist selling them by the people who hope to get rich. Sad stuff

      As for the rest of your comment, I totally agree

    2. Guest

      Thank you....Proves that good research comes up with right facts!
      I never was in Afghanistan but was in Pakistan Peshawar during the time the two ancient buddha were destroyed.

  38. yttkaaa

    Thomas Vestly, Indeed..

  39. Thomas Vestly

    Started out to be an OK NG doc about poppy growers and smuglers but got spun around addicts and there hopelessness. I was fooled by the title that promised some inside into the failure on the war on drugs.

    NG clearly didt see the bigger picture. They just marked the afgani people as the sinners and didt care to look at the errors inn our systems..... I say stop the failed war on drugs!

  40. far far

    In 1800s the British used to openly export opium from places like Afghanistan to China.

  41. moonwaterz

    As if there is a war against drugs. The pharmaceutical industry will do whatever to protect their poppy fields...

    1. 0zyxcba1

      And the CIA is probably the biggest trafficker of heroin on the face of the Earth. Every time the shadow government wants to fund some secret, and illegal, operation, they turn to drugs as their source of untrackable $$$.

    2. alans

      We cant forget that its OK to do whatever you want as long as its legal.