There is growing evidence that the fundamentalist Taliban regime is heavily involved in Afghanistan's booming drug market. Afghanistan, believed to be the world's second-largest opium producer, has increased its poppy cultivation from 49,500 acres in 1992 to 99,200 acres in 1997. During that period, the Taliban seized control of over 90% of Afghanistan.
The Taliban has enjoyed huge profits by taxing both those who grow poppies and those who refine the poppy into opium. A U.S. official stated that, "The Taliban tax opium, they tax morphine, and they levy fees on transport. They reap tens of millions of dollars a year from the drug trade..."
In 1996, after the capture of Afghanistan's capital city of Kabul, the Taliban made promises to do away with all poppy cultivation. Nothing has been done to fulfill these promises, and opium production continues to thrive.
Media Resources: Washington Post - October 5, 1998
10/31/2014 Federal Judge Exempts Another Catholic University from Birth Control Coverage - A federal judge ruled Tuesday that Ave Maria University, a Catholic university in Florida, does not have to comply with federal rules meant to ensure that covered employees can exercise their right to obtain birth control at no cost.
The Affordable Care Act requires all new health insurance plans to cover all FDA-approved contraceptives - such as the pill, emergency contraceptives, and IUDs - without charging co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance. . . .
10/31/2014 Women of Color in Tennessee Are United in Opposition to Amendment 1 - Just days before the general election in Tennessee, a coalition of community leaders, clergy, and advocates led a press conference encouraging women of color to vote no on Amendment 1, a dangerous and far-reaching measure on the state's ballot.
SisterReach, a grassroots organization focused on "empowering, organizing, and mobilizing women and girls in the community around their reproductive and sexual health to make informed decisions about themselves," organized the press conference "to call attention to the unique concerns Black and poor communities throughout Shelby County and across the state of Tennessee face on a daily basis" and to emphasize how the upcoming election "could further limit [black women's] reproductive, economic, political, and social autonomy."
"We assemble today to impress upon black women and women of color, many of whom are heads of households, to get out and vote," said SisterReacher Founder and CEO Cherisse Scott at the event.
SisterReach has been educating voters about the particularly dangerous impact of Amendment 1 on women of color. . . .
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .