Khat, pleasure or addiction?
The Somalis are almost all Sunni Muslims. I do not specifically speak of Islam in this article because it is ubiquitous in Somali society, but he will return repeatedly. For cons, I dwell on khat or qat, a plant particularly appreciated in the region and containing amphetamines. With the camel, losing speed, it is one of the three pillars of Somali society today.Civil war could be the fourth, but far from that of wisdom. What is especially exciting, beyond the pirates, massacres and military exploits, it's the war economy that paradoxically enjoys a certain way at home. It is far from self-indulgent litany of Frederic Mitterrand, both in his film in his book. Finally, there are clans because without clans, the Somali society would not exist.
Khat is ashrub of the family Celastraceae (Catha edulis or stafftree edulis) which grows mainly in Ethiopia at an altitude of 1 500-2 000 meters to the freshness and moisture and which only the leaves are chewed and chewed by Somaliland, the people of Djibouti (which frequently use the word salad), some Ethiopians, Eritreans and Yemenis. The effects are those of amphetamine base, the active ingredient iscathinone, an alkaloid, only stable in fresh leaves, which restricts the transport leaves to be consumed within three days of harvest. Excitement, pressure of speech, insomnia and after excessive use, disorientation or delirium are unfortunately the price to pay in case of overconsumption. Khat potentiates the effects of alcohol, cannabis and Valium, which can then lead, in addition to the delirious,real psychosis sometimes irreversible. But used sparingly, once or twice a week and no more than two bundles each time is a way like another to socialize, exchange ideas and overcome shyness and reserve.
Khat is not a hallucinogen when taken in reasonable doses. In Somalia, Somaliland, Puntland, Djibouti and Yemen, it has become a lifestyle. In Kenya and Uganda, it is also present, butparticularly in its miraa, which are chewed stems thinner than that of Ethiopian khat, and in these two countries, the component is less compulsive. It's the drug of truck drivers who are under its influence can join Mombasa on the Indian Ocean in Burundi in eastern Congo, in one go, except customs, three to four days of driving uninterrupted. After they collapse and go to sleep more quietly for thereturn. But in the Horn of Africa, sedentary fans, mostly men but some women (not girls) are awaiting the arrival of the planes flown by Russians (private companies are increasingly involved in this trade and have gradually replaced Ethiopian Airlines, which had a virtual monopoly), trucks and pickups loaded with the precious cargo. Some can not do anything without being chewed, others spend more thanhalf their income. In short, khat is a real institution, an essential requirement for several million people. By cons, Kampala and Nairobi, young women's clothing as light as the manners, sit down and browse khat on the terrace of some bars that authorizes consumption.
With khat, nothing to do with drunkenness ethyl, cannabis, nor anything comparable to the trapping crack or heroin. Only possiblecomparison, speed and a little cocaine in its dimension of knowledge, power and endless talk of wanting to remake the world. The descent is less brutal, but we found enough slack, the day after a session of six to ten hours of continuous use. As for amphetamines, khat thirsty and dry throat, then we drink tea and chewed gum to help to salivate. Some add Coke or Fanta. I have already spoken ofthose who mix with alcohol, especially with gin Ethiopia, but there it runs very poorly.
Find themselves naked in the street shouting "Goul ed dinn" I almost fed the Faith, is what can happen to a better believer. And then there are the burrs, it quickly gets annoyed by talking and when we have in hand an AK 47, it can end very badly. Often, it also apologized for unintentionally killing someone...
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