China might be entering the modern world in ways it might have not wished to. With its new found wealth and mobility come some unexpected and dreadful consequences.
One of the newest dangers in the evolution of the once mostly agrarian country, is the influx and ever growing demand for illegal drugs.
Newfound wealth means that people are finding new and more extreme ways to party. One of the things they turn to more and more is illegal drugs. In a strange twist, China seems to harken to the devastating years of the opium trade, for which China waged and lost a bloody war with the British.
Drug enforcement in China is becoming overwhelmed with intercepts of Meth and the basic ingredients to make it. The caches they uncover measure in the metric tonnes.
Most of the trade stems from neighboring Myanmar, a country still struggling to emerge economically, and currently engulfed by sectarian strife.
Heroin and other hard drugs are also pouring in from Myanmar. Wealthy Chinese are allowing the influx, which soon also engulfs small towns and poorer Chinese. A deadly culture of drug consumption among the destitute is becoming one of the growing concenrs in the Chinese mainland.
Already the illegal drug trade has spread east and north. Shanghai is becoming awash with it. Numbers tell the tale: from 70,000 drug addicts in 1990, today the city can count more than 2,000,000, with the unregistred number of drug users over 12 million. The incredible vastness and numbers of the Chinese country makes it an enormous prospect for those drug dealers in Myanmar who have taken up the supply chain.
Although Chinese authorities have stepped up checkpoints to stem the traffic and identify mules, it is impossible to stop the trade.
With the Chinese culture expressing a 'ravenous' desire for illegal drugs, there is little hope that the trade will be contained or reversed.
Source : Al Jazeera 1.3.14