B - ~64% of the Afghan population participate in and rely on Opium related agriculture.
C - The Taliban and Al Qaeda rely on Afghan Opium export for much of their funding.
Is there a problem here? The Taliban, Al Qaeda, and the US seem to require the Opium trade to achieve their ends - the first two directly, the latter indirectly through the support of a significant portion of the Afghan population.
According to a report published today by StratFor, Afghanistan produces over 90% of the world's opium supply. It is a $2.3 Billion revenue source and represents a $65 Billion trade by the time it gets to end users - some of whom are presumably pharmaceutical companies (though a small percentage).
According to the World Fact Book, almost 80% of the population is involved in agriculture. The most important crop is Opium. Since the Fact Book doesn't include so-called "illicit" exports - the $ 547 M it cites as legitimate exports, implies that Opium represents 80% of all agricultural export dollars.
- Annual Afghani production (of Afghani Opium) : 6000 Tons, 12 M lbs Opium (equivalent to 1.2M lbs Heroin)
- Annual economic impact (to Afghanistan): $2.3 B, $191/lb. Opium, ($1,910/lb Heroin), about 20% of Afghanistan's GDP.
- Annual global economic impact: $65 B, $5,400 /lb. Opium, ($54,000/lb Heroin)
- 78% of the population is involved in Agriculture