Will Opium Be Harvested in Afghanistan This Year?

To watch "the memo" click here .

Hi, I'm Bill O'Reilly, reporting tonight from Boston.  Thank you for watching us.

We're here because I am speaking at Harvard this evening.  There will also be a Q&A, and we'll have a report on that tomorrow.  Should be very interesting.

And in just a few moments, a key question of the day, should President Bush intervene in the war between Israel and the PLO?

But first, the Talking Points memo, about a terrible decision that may come down in Afghanistan.

It now appears that the Bush administration will allow Afghan drug merchants to harvest tons of opium.  As you may know, the Taliban outlawed the opium traffic, but now the poppy fields are being cultivated again.  The United States fears that destroying the poppy fields will anger the warlords and destabilize the American-installed government in Kabul.

So the thinking is, it's better to flood the world with opium and heroin than to risk chaos inside Afghanistan.

That thinking is wrong on two counts.  First, there's already chaos in Afghanistan, and you don't buy loyalty with weakness.  These drug lords will turn against the Karzai regime anyway if it's worth their while to do so.

Second, you can pay the drug lords to plow under the poppy fields.  It's much cheaper to do that than to run around chasing all the heroin dealers.  And if the drug lords object to the payment, tough.  The USA has the power to destroy the poppy fields from the air and should do so immediately if the fields are not plowed under.

If America allows the drugs to be sold, any drug war credibility we may have goes right down the drain.  If those Afghan poppies are harvested, the USA should just shut down drug enforcement.

Now, some in the military say the war on terrorism is more important than the war on drugs.  Well, this is poppycock, pardon the pun.  Drug money fuels terror, and illegal narcotics undermine law enforcement everywhere.

Seventy percent of all the street crime in the USA is drug related.  The Bush administration will be making an enormous mistake if it shows weakness in the face of the opium harvest.  The corrupt Afghan warlords understand two things, money and power.  Give them the money, but if they don't plow under the poppy fields, show them power.

And that's the memo.

The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day

Time now for "Most Ridiculous Item of the Day."

The NCAA championship basketball game is tonight between the universities of Indiana and Maryland.  I'm rooting for Indiana because of this.  After the Terapins defeated Kansas, some rowdy fans started destroying things.  And this isn't the first time that's happened at the University of Maryland.

This is terrible behavior, obviously, and an embarrassment to a fine university.  Just two people were arrested.  And that's probably the problem.  Law enforcement is not being tough enough down there.  Anyway, go, Indiana.  Some Maryland fans are ridiculous and have spoiled sentiment for their team.

— You can watch Bill O'Reilly's Talking Points and "Most Ridiculous Item" weeknights at 8 & 11p.m. ET on the Fox News Channel. Send your comments to: oreilly@foxnews.com