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A photograph on a bag full of Fentanyl.

Links between drug trafficking and violence are plentiful.

Narcotics and Terrorism

July 2010, Number 01.03

“The Taliban is making some $100 million a year from drugs in Afghanistan while waging a war against the Afghans and their coalition partners. Afghanistan provides a new case in an old pattern: insurgency and terrorism often go together with drug production and trafficking.

This nexus is not new but has been common in certain conflict zones. Also, the linkage is not universal: Many terrorists neither use nor deal in drugs. some are quite puritanical; others have very different vices. this should be kept in mind because once a month, it seems, a commentator declares that the nexus between crime and terrorism is “growing” or “strengthening.” Most offer no evidence of growth or even attempt an argument about growth. Perhaps the problem is not new, but new to them.

What is demonstrable is that the nexus is real, and really important. These two phenomena — drugs and terrorism — have been responsible for wrecking certain societies and the emotional and physical laceration of many others...”

Excerpt from Christopher C. Harmon, “Narcotics and Terrorism,” per Concordiam: Journal of European Security Defense Issues 1, No. 3, 2010: 20-27.

Dr. Christopher C. Harmon is curricula director for the Marshall Center’s Program on Terrorism and Security Studies, or PTSS, in the College of International and Security Studies. An expert on terrorism and counterterrorism, insurgency and revolutionary warfare, counterinsurgency and international relations, he has taught courses at five graduate schools. In 2000, he published Terrorism Today, which the London Times Literary Supplement called “a masterly survey of the big picture of worldly violence.” He co-wrote the PTSS textbook Toward Grand Strategy Against Terrorism. He graduated summa cum laude from Seattle University and earned his doctorate in international relations and government from Claremont Graduate University, Calif.

This article reflects the views of the author and are not necessarily the official policy of the United States, Germany, or any other governments.