Monday, March 30, 2009

Very Poppy Girls

An article in today's Straits Times newspaper talked about how US Vice-President Joseph Biden helped shape President Barack Obama's new focus in Afghanistan which was announced last Friday. The commanders in the field had wanted a firmer commitment of more combat troops beyond the 17,000 troops that Mr Obama had already promised to send (covered in an earlier post here), and a pledge that billions of dollars would be found to significantly expand the number of Afghan security forces.

Defence Secretary Robert Gates and Admiral Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, pressed for an additional 4,000 troops to be sent as trainers to Afghanistan. In talks over the US policy on Afghanistan, some officials favored transforming agriculture in the country away from the notorious poppy fields that have fueled the Taleban insurgency.

It included this picture. Although the two ladies (female soldiers) in the picture are from the British Army, they certainly looked very HAPPY or should it be POPPY - ha! ha! They really look like they are enjoying what they are doing. Could it be because they are completely surrounded by the Papaver somniferum (scientific name for Opium Poppy)?

For more on British soldiers in Afghanistan, check out this post.

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