People may be surprised to learn that illicit narcotics are almost as big of a threat in Afghanistan as explosives. As there are no Afghan laws against the use of the common drug hashish, and because poppy fields (from which the popular drug opium is derived) grow naturally in abundance, narcotics are rampant.
Since 2005, when American K-9 Detection Services, LLC (AMK9) Contract Working Dog (CWD) Teams were first deployed to the Middle East, the United States (U.S.) Government contracted almost as many Patrol Narcotic Detection Dog (PNDD) Teams as Patrol Explosive Detection Dog (PEDD) Teams. During their time in the Middle East, AMK9 PNDD Teams have discovered hundreds of pounds of illicit narcotics across multiple regions and have been recognized for ousting local drug traffickers at U.S. bases.
The following photos are examples of typical AMK9 CWD Team Narcotics Finds.
January, 2013: AMK9 CWD Team discovers a suspicious substance concealed in a plastic baggy and hidden under a bush during a routine patrol in Eastern Afghanistan.
October, 2012: 39 grams of narcotics found by an AMK9 CWD team on an individual attempting to enter a Forward Operating Base in Western Afghanistan.
September, 2012: A staggering 604 grams of narcotics discovered by an AMK9 CWD Team during a routine vehicle inspection in Western Afghanistan.
August, 2012: In Western Afghanistan 18 sticks of Opium weighing 55 grams were discovered by an AMK9 CWD Team during routine vehicle inspections at the Entry Control Point of their Forward Operating Base. The narcotics and cell phone where uncovered after the AMK9 CWD alerted on an air vent in the dashboard of the vehicle. The Military Police took over the search, removing the entire dashboard to locate the hidden contraband.
July 2012: Approximately 70 grams of Methamphetamine and 3 grams of Hash discovered by an AMK9 CWD Team in Eastern Afghanistan.
May 2012: 132 grams of Methamphetamine found by AMK9 CWD Team in Southern Afghanistan.
May 2012: Opium found by AMK9 CWD Team in Western Afghanistan.
August 2011: Some of the more than 120 grams of narcotics discovered by an AMK9 CWD Team while conducting a vehicle inspection at their Forward Operating Base Entry Control Point in the southern region of Afghanistan.