Drug-Smuggling Power-Chuter Shot Down
The war on drugs hit new heights on the Afghan/Tajikistan border last month as Tajik officials boasted they'd finally stopped an aerial smuggler they'd been trying to shoot down for three years. That the aircraft of choice by the smuggler was a powered parachute apparently did little to diminish the sense of accomplishment by the ground-pounding border guards. The guards apparently got lucky sometime in mid August and brought the chute down but they didn't get the pilot, who was reportedly injured in the landing. He abandoned his cargo of 45 lbs. of heroin before hobbling away. However, Lt. Gen. Saidamir Zukhurov, commander of Tajik border troops, apparently has more confidence in his soldiers' abilities to track an earth-bound target. He said the smuggler has "little chance to escape" because the area was tightly secured. Tajikistan is a favored route for Afghan smugglers to get their products to Europe and it's not up to us to wonder why.