West looked the other way as Afghan drug trade exploded

Last year, Helmand and Kandahar provinces accounted for about 75 percent of Afghanistan's poppy cultivation, and Helmand alone was the world's biggest supplier of opium. Afghan and Western officials say that's because U.S. and NATO-led forces failed to take the drug problem seriously for more than six years after the U.S.-led invasion in 2001 ousted the Taliban regime.