Qat and U.S. research [Archives:2008/1159/Community]
By: Fathyeah Hailan
As 90 percent of Yemenis use qat and in light of the latest U.S. laws and regulations regarding qat, I was amused to read this result from research the United States did on qat (which means they have no reason to speak against it):
Khat Plant May Enhance Male Fertility
Even with such a large population, as compared to others in our region, Yemen is a low user of any other drugs such as heroin or alcohol.
Yemen is suffering from a lack of water, most of which is used to water qat, which simply entertains the population, rather than watering fruit and vegetables to feed its 20 million citizens.
Yemen imports most of its food from outside, but because most qat is consumed locally, there are no statistics regarding how much qat Yemen exports.
There's no government assistance for those farmers who don't grow qat and therefore, are forced to accept lower incomes from their crops, which they struggle to sell, while at the same time, those farmers who grow qat make triple the income and aren't taxed for their abusive use of water to grow qat crops. Marketing qat also is extremely easy.
Finally, if we fight qat, it should be for our own reasons, such as being self-supporting in providing food for our 20 million compatriots.