Smugglers who were mainly from Europe played an important role in the drug business as they recruited people who ultimately became the transporters of the drugs. Some of the key players in the smuggling business included Charles Cabot from Boston, he purchased opium and secretly sold it in china. John Cushing who was from America, acquired his vast wealth from smuggling opium to Canton. John Jacob Astor also smuggled Turkish opium and transported it to canton. This was a serious and dangerous business that that put china on the limelight. Opium was mainly used for medicinal purposes until Europe discovered that it could be mixed with tobacco and smoked. China became the main exporter of the drug mostly to Europe and India. Warlords, who were Chinese, were endowed with the power to protect the cargo that was being sold illegally. The trade in opium and more especially to Europe granted smuggles favours with the European leaders. There immerged resistances where the state withheld diplomatic rights to opium traders, which led to an opium wars.
Spies were like ambassadors who monitored the business. The Japanese mostly played the role of spies. There is however, a strong connection between the central intelligent agency (CIA) and opium trade across the world. It is in fact insinuated that one of the causes of the Vietnam War was opium trade. Afghanistan and other middle Asian countries were the biggest producers of opium. With the growing use of the product and its high income, united states wanted a share of the national cake. With the Arabs, Indians and Portuguese joining the trade network, there was tight competition for the product. Lucky Luciano who was a drug mafia was once arrested and later released after promising to corporate with American authorities. He organised and established a black market for opium, which he imported from Middle East and processed it in Italy. There were calls to legalize the trade due to high revenues especially from overseer market. It was considered that if the commodity was taxed, then it would generate more income for the country. This was however ignored as it involved top ranking government officials. The network that was maintained by major states of Europe, Japanese and china ensured that the business was carried out without suspecting that the main drug dealers were involved.
Despite the condemnation that comes with the illegal trade of opium among powerful nations, it is worthwhile to note that they had some significant effects individuals and nations at large. United States and Europe are examples of nations that benefited from opium trade and used it to advance their personal goals. For instance, America not only used government officials to protect the trading activities but also employed its intelligent service. Middle East was considered the largest producer of the commodity and the only way that United States could benefit from it was to wage war against the region. Opium presence in Afghanistan is majorly one of the reasons that took the Vietnam War long before it was resolved. America had to protect the illegal trade through war. The trade, which was mostly carried out in china, boosted the economy and uplifted the life of individuals. Opium also had some medicinal values where by those that used it reported good performance. Before its addiction concerns, opium was just like any medicine that minimized on stress and boosted individual moods. The revenue that came from trading opium also increased psyche among key players, which was generally good for the growth of the economy.
The war on terror is closely associated with the worldwide trade of opium. There is a strong resistance in the Middle East nations of the U.S’s invasion of its trade practices. United States and Britain have been on the forefront to identify key lucrative regions of trade, which they do, all they can to establish relations and control the resources. Of all the nations, the Middle East that is the biggest producer resist such stands which has subsequently led to frequent wars.