What a coinkidink — just as Sir Change-a-Lot is getting ready to yet again defend (and ask for money for) the continued and increasingly unpopular American involvement in Afghanistan in spite of any measurable progress (unless American soldiers killed in combat and billiions of tax payer dollars spent is “progress”), down the pike comes this little nugget of exploitative potential, courtesy of the New York Times:
U.S. Identifies Vast Riches of Minerals in Afghanistan
So, not only is Afghanistan key to moving oil & gas from the middle of nowhere to a market conveniently near us, it also turns out it’s the next great location for some good ol’ environmentally devastating mining and all-out looting and pillaging of mother nature’s riches. Nothing is more American than that, is it now, so of course we have to stay for the party and make away with our “fair” share of the spoils of our war.
What’s really frightening, however, is that we have to hear about this new discovery from Vice Roy Petraeus, America’s favorite son, the macho man in charge of all the US carnage in the region. ““There is stunning potential here,” he says. Really? Silly me, I thought we’d hired the general to run our war on those pesky brown people who insist on inhabiting the neighborhood — since when did Petraeus become so interested in minerals and geology? As a matter of fact, why does the Pentagon have a bunch of geologists running around Afghanistan exploring the potential for mining? Why, it’s almost as if they were charged with finding some plausible justification & potential profit for a long-term US military involvement in (aka occupation of) Afghanistan…
Oh, but with an upstanding guy like Hamid Karzai in charge, surely the riches from this potential windfall will end up benefiting the Afghan people rather than, say, foreign interests (aka American mining companies) and their local cronies (aka Hamid Karzai’s wealthy friends). Right? Right?
(Photo by Lihee Avidan)