Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Could Afghanistan be the world's quarry?

Afflicted by years of civil war, Afghanistan is one of the world's troublespots. The situation there has particular relevance for Australia. We currently have troops deployed there, and fleeing this turmoil, thousands of Afghan refugees have either entered or attempted to enter Australia in recent years. Members of the terrorist group Jemaah Islamiah, which has carried out attacks against Australians and Australian interests, are believed to have received their training in Afghanistan. This article is posted here as a reminder to pray for stability in Afghanistan.

The Pentagon has announced that Afghanistan holds up to $1 trillion worth of untapped mineral deposits which could transform the $12 billion economy of the war-torn and poverty-stricken nation. It could however also be a negative according to U.S. officials. The deposits include huge amounts of iron, copper, gold, cobalt and other metals like lithium but observers caution that it remains to be seen what the effect will be. Officials are hopeful that mining will become the base of the Afghan economy, which is currently dependent on opium production and narcotics trafficking.

Some experts say the announcement is far too premature, because the actual recoverable amount could vary wildly from estimates and cannot be accessed whilst Afghanistan is a war zone. And while the mining possibilities could transform the Afghan economy, it also opens Afghanistan up to the possibility of abuse by giant corporations and an increased intensity in the Taliban's fight for control of the country and its resources. Pray that the mineral deposits in Afghanistan will eventually raise the standard of living and help stabilize the nation, not plunge it further into war.

Source: Intercessors for America


Kitty said...

Thanks for the reminder to pray for stability in Afghanistan Ross! God Bless!

JD Curtis said...

Yes, I will remember to pray for stability in Afghanistan. One of my former co-workers just went over with the National Guard. Her name is Janice should anyone want to remember her in their prayers.

Insofar as Afghanistan is concerned, I am reminded that it took us 3 generations to professionalize the South Korean armed forces. The main impediment being the ingrained, institutionalized, centuries old system of feudalism in their culture.

That however, pales in comparison to the obstacles faced trying to do much the same in Afghanistan as George Will wrote in a recent article...

"Time magazine reports that NATO trainers say 90 percent of Afghan enlisted recruits can't read a rifle-instruction manual, ANA officers routinely steal enlistees' salaries, soldiers "sell off their own American-supplied boots, blankets and guns at the bazaar -- sometimes to the Taliban" and "recruits tend to go AWOL after their first leave, while one-quarter of those who stay in service are blitzed on hashish or heroin," according to an ANA survey."

Ann Coulter nailed it in this recent article insofar as the Democrats handling of the war there. Link

His Lordship The Gun-Toting Atheist said...

In response to the Ann Coulter article linked to by JD, isn't it funny though that the first NINE years of the Afghan war were under the George W. Bush leadership? Sounds like he had plenty of time to end that war, yet he did not.

As far as I'm concerned though, mineral wealth or not, oil wealth or not, we should bring the troops home from both Iraq and Afghanistan. Those natural resources do not belong to the world, they belong to the natives of those countries.

Terrorists don't need Iraq or Afghanistan as home bases. They can find all the information they need on the Internet. Keeping troops in the Middle East is both fiscally irresponsible and morally bankrupt.

If the Afghan people are serious about exploiting those mineral deposits and request assistance from international mining companies, so be it. But we cannot keep troops there with the intent of appropriating what is not ours.

JD Curtis said...

In response to the Ann Coulter article linked to by JD, isn't it funny though that the first NINE years of the Afghan war were under the George W. Bush leadership?

Youre darn tootin' it's funny. Especially since Bush was only in office for EIGHT years and we didnt topple the Taliban until he had been in office for nearly a year.

His Lordship The Gun-Toting Atheist said...

JD, I don't say this often, but you are absolutely correct. What I said made no sense. I started out trying to say something to the effect that the war is in its ninth year and that Bush was in office for the larger part of that time period, but unfortunately, I blurted out something nonsensical and foolish.

My apologies.