I'm very skeptical however about CNN's assertion that krokodil is 'gaining popularity' in the US. Such a thing is always declared about a 'new' drug and this rarely turns out to actually be the case. I remember how during the first 1990's wave of ecstasy the drug was portrayed as some sort of ultra-dehydrating cocaheroin superkiller, or more recent rumors about shit-gas drug 'jenkum' spreading here from Africa to 'gain popularity' among our kids when really there have never been any Africans doing such a jack-assed thing either. (Africa does have its own local equivalents of MD 20/20 etc people. There's poverty there sure but not fantastic alien poverty from beyond the mists of time. Yeesh.) And finally I most certainly remember sitting in school and having it taught to me as fact that crack-cocaine was something like 130 times stronger than the rich WASP friendly powder form.
There are some people who simply want to believe that bad drug habits, and public morals in general, are forever on a irrevocable downward slide and that people these days are at the lowest we have ever been until tomorrow. Mass media have often been bizarrely willing to tell these doomsayers what they want to hear , especially in regards to the class-shaming sex appeal of street drug addiction,