Indulge me for a moment if you would. Can you say with certainty that you know why we are still fighting the longest war in the history of our country? I’m speaking of Afghanistan of course. It was October 7, 2001. That’s when we launched airstrikes under the label of “Operation Enduring Freedom”. We succeeded in toppling the Taliban government. We did not succeed in eliminating the Taliban insurgency. They merely went underground (literally) and have since then relocated and re-emerged as a moving target. We are now committed to staying in Afghanistan until at least 2014. There is reason to believe that this timeframe will be accurate. But not for the reasons advertised.

I write this post knowing full well I may be labeled a conspiracy theorist. That’s fine. I never much cared about labels anyway. I do believe in reading between the lines to find the real reasons for events. As you can tell by reading other posts I have written, I generally don’t accept things at face value. I’ve always felt a dose of skepticism is healthy. With that in mind, I have been questioning the progress of this war for years.

I simply don’t accept the premise that we can’t locate Bin Laden after all these years and take him out. The same goes for the Taliban insurgency. We are told that the terrain in Afghanistan is extremely difficult and harsh, which it is, and this is one of the main reasons we simply can’t go in and end the war quickly. Another reason has been the fact that we are fighting two wars and don’t have the resources to send into Afghanistan. People forget that the Iraq war didn’t begin until March 20, 2003. That premise is false. Bush just recently did his rounds promoting his book and he stated that this was as much a humanitarian effort as well due to the abuses Afghani women face. I don’t disagree with this premise, however, these types of abuses occur all over the globe and we aren’t actively engaging in stopping those, so it doesn’t hold water.

What I’m getting at is that we made no serious attempt at eradicating Bin Laden and the Taliban. Why? Some would say it’s so we can fight the perpetual war and continue to funnel money to defense contractors and those that profit from war. I have no specific knowledge supporting or discounting that theory, so I don’t know. But I always believe in following the money, particularly when government is involved.

Another theory that has been around since the start of the war has been economic gain. This seems more plausible to me the more I look into this issue. The reason behind it is China. The wars of the future are not only going to be due to the old stalwarts like land and religion, they are going to be fought over food, water and raw materials. Raw materials, in particular precious metals, is where China has the upper hand. Currently, China mines more than 95% of all rare earth minerals. Yes, over 95%! These minerals are key in the future production of automobiles, computers, energy, medical, and military technology just to name a few. Plans are already in the works to at least extremely limit China’s exports of these highly in demand precious minerals. They claim they need them to meet their own demand. Maybe that’s true, but regardless, it means shortages and skyrocketing prices for the rest of the world.

Now it just so happens that Afghanistan is a treasure trove of precious minerals. Over 90 different minerals have been identified with over 1,400 potential mining sites in Afghanistan. In particular, they have significant reserves of Beryllium and Uranium. These are highly in demand for the key sectors mentioned previously. Needless to say, those who control these resources will have extreme leverage in future technology as well as military capabilities.

Turkmenistan, the neighbor to the north of Afghanistan, has extensive gas and oil reserves, possibly even the largest natural gas reserve in the world. Construction is underway on the 1,000 mile long TAPI pipeline to deliver gas from Turkmenistan through Afghanistan to Pakistan and India. Can you say huge cash cow? Trillions upon trillions in potential wealth is here between the minerals, gas and oil.  Turkmenistan is already the worlds 10th largest producer of gas while still in its infancy as it has potentially 20 trillion cubic meters of gas reserves.

As you can see by the map, the obvious path to get Middle East oil to thirsty countries like Pakistan and India would be Iran. I don’t need to go into the status of our relationship with Iran. What you can easily see is that Afghanistan is a key country, both for the precious minerals it contains as well as the location it inhabits directly in the path of the TAPI pipeline. The U.S. and its allies have huge financial interests at stake by securing reliable supplies of these raw materials.

The U.S. can’t get Osama Bin Laden and eradicate the Taliban from Afghanistan for financial and strategic reasons. We would no longer have the justification for maintaining a large military presence there. We can’t allow a Taliban controlled government to operate here and control the country. Intense security will be required to build the gas pipeline which is scheduled for completion when? Why 2014 of course when our occupation is scheduled to end. It’s the only logical conclusion to draw as to why we have never utilized our full capabilities and superior military advantage to finish the job. In my mind, that’s a reasonable solution to the question. As to the even more extreme theories floating around, I find them much more difficult to swallow. Some theorize that 9/1/1 was intentional so as to provide the excuse for our military occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. Further back, they theorize it’s why under Bush 41, we stopped just short of Baghdad and Sadaam Hussein, the reason being to keep the perpetual war and the military option open.

I have never bought into these type of New World Order, clandestine arrangements in which global events are manipulated. I do, however, as in the case of Wikileaks, believe that we have a government more than capable of capitalizing on opportunities presented. Yes, the good old “never waste a good crisis” mantra. They employ scores of people who do nothing but strategize about world events. With the knowledge of our situation involving raw materials and their availability, is it too much of a stretch to think that those at the top merely decided to kill two birds with one stone?

Our geo-political policy must take into account a  huge amount of factors. But these fit together nicely. Russia and China are constantly seeking to position themselves strategically for the long-term as well. Control of energy and raw materials are right at the top of the list. We are simply taking advantage of our war on terror and the hatred of Islamist extremists toward the west. Afghanistan is that opening which will accomplish several goals. Following the money explains the financial opportunities presented by the abundance of natural resources in this under-developed area of the world. Watch and see which corporations with U.S. interests step in and develop these opportunities. Securing access to the precious minerals available will negate the power-play China wishes to capitalize on. And of course, having more options open to us for gas and oil is a method of negating the power and influence of Iran.

Those are my “conspiracy theories” if you wish to label them as such. I don’t believe our government is an active participant in the more extreme unsubstantiated theories of controlling the world. But I absolutely believe that we have people who work night and day weighing our options on how best to capitalize on world events that help lead to accomplishing our national interests. Wikileaks is a perfect example of taking advantage of opportunities presented. Of course they want more control over the media and the internet. This is a means to an ends. Afghanistan is as well.

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22 thoughts on “Why we still fight in Afghanistan

  1. Hmm, very interesting stuff. I knew nothing about the pipeline or the date of its completion – it is a rather interesting coincidence that it and our “withdrawal” from Afghanistan happen in 2014. Very interesting indeed.

    One question i have, and I struggle with this myself. If these actions are meant to ensure our national security, are they bad? For example, Churchill hated Stalin and did not want to side with Russia in WWII, but we thought it was necessary to beat Germany, i.e. it was in our National Interest. So were we right, or was Churchill right? You could argue if we did what Churchill wanted, we might have lost the war, but that would be mere conjecture. And one could also argue, if we didn’t side with Russia, the USSR might never have existed, assuming Hitler could have beaten Stalin, but that still would have left us with a very powerful Nazi state to contend with.

    Conjecture is just that, educated guesses. Is securing minerals in the Middle East a good reason for us to prolong a war? I would say no, if we just end up turning them over to fascist dictators.

  2. Thanks for checking in Fleece. I would say this. I believe that access to these precious minerals is extremely important to our national interests long-term because we need them in so many critical areas including national security. It’s a story that merits much greater emphasis from the media, but hasn’t yet received it for whatever reason.

    The problem is you can’t sell it to the public that way. How can you justify sending American troops to their graves for what would generally be perceived as economic reasons? The American people wouldn’t stand for it.

    Which leads into your question. Is the government acting on our behalf doing what is good for us even if we don’t realize it? You can draw that parallel along with what Churchill faced.

    It is just my opinion, but it is one shared by a growing number of people. I guess maybe you need to flip it around and ask the other question. Why did we not go into Afghanistan to win? Why even today do we not send the troops and technology required to swiftly end this? I don’t buy the rough terrain angle for a minute. I don’t need to tell you that our troops are the best in the world and can certainly handle that challenge.

    If we continue to fight wars not to win, it gives credence to the arguments of perpetual war for economic reasons. Frankly, it pisses me off. We know we have the boys to go over there and kick some serious ass quickly and save many more lives in the long run. I think there is a reason for it and this thinking makes perfect sense from our national interests perspective. Like I said, it would never be popular with the masses, but I really hope it is why as there is rational to it.

  3. There are enough connections here to make one wonder about what you are saying. The real question for me is if anyone is willing to pay the cost in blood and coin to stay there and extract those minerals?

  4. Not the public which is why I think the government must go at it from this angle. In the “national interests” encompasses some very unpleasant activities.

  5. Very interesting article, 5etester, in which you raise some very important questions and some very interesting points. Like fleeceme said, I had no clue about the natural gas or the pipeline. After looking at the time line and how things are going down, one has to wonder if there is not more truth to this than any of us would like to believe.

    I have often wondered why the greatest military in the world couldn’t end this war and more efficiently than is taking place. As you said in your reply to fleeceme, we know how this would turn out if we would just turn our military loose and tell them to take care of the problem, with no restrictions. We are unwilling to pay the price to do that, both in public opinion and in the lives it would cost on both sides of the fight.

    Again, you have given us all food for thought.

  6. Thanks LD. It’s always a dicey subject when you question government’s motives. This appears to be another scenario in which we can’t handle the truth, so they must walk a fine line. My theory may not be correct, but neither is the company line they’re handing us.

  7. I don’t buy the company line either. I think being a fly on the wall in some of their behind-the-scenes discussions would provide for some very interesting insight.

  8. It’s borderline criminal that we allow the progressives to weaken us both economically and in the interest of national security.

    “No blood for neodymium!”. That would make a great motto.

    Here’s another. Drill, baby, drill & mine, baby, mine!

  9. I don’t believe our government is an active participant in the more extreme unsubstantiated theories of controlling the world.

    I’ll say it! Call it a new world order, global governance, or whatever you want, the subject shouldn’t be considered controversial anymore. Politicos, pundits, and “advisors” all across the globe, including here in America openly discuss this stuff. PM Gordon Brown said the taking out Saddam was part of the new world order in testimony. Global taxation and wealth redistribution is common political talk. We the People should no longer be afraid to address this subject head on!

    A war for a pipeline is a war for corporatism. So let’s call it that, or at least openly question it as you have done in this post. There are politicians and bureaucrats in the bowels of our government openly committed to a post-American world. We the People need to question everything, with boldness! Trust in government leads to despotism, not freedom. And we should especially question with boldness government adventures that result in lost American lives. Pro-life extends to the living too.

    Considering the countless bases and soldiers stationed across the globe, coupled with the trillions of taxpayer dollars spent, I believe our “foreign policy” is a global wealth distribution scheme with global governance as its ultimate intent. People can call me crazy for saying so, but looking at what we do, global governance and redistribution makes more sense than claiming this is all about so-called “national security.”

  10. Well, I certainly don’t trust our government one iota. But I still take the position that they are more inclined to play the role of vulture and take advantage of opportunities presented to them. I can’t buy that events such as 9/1/1 are dreamed up and executed solely by our government. Far too many people would have to be involved. Somebody would blow the whistle. However, I can easily see them “allowing” events to occur despite having the intel to stop them.

  11. If we are in Afghanistan because of rare earth minerals and gas in Turkmenistan, we won’t be leaving in 2014.

    I have no data but I suspect that we have much greater reserves of rare earth than we know. Mining companies just need to be given a chance to explore regions like the Mojave desert and the Dakota Badlands and other areas. Because of the EPA it has been easier to develop mines in other countries.

    Between shale gas deposits for natural gas and thorium deposits for ultra safe thorium reactors, the United States could be energy independent in less than 10 years. It’s not going to happen. Why?

    I’m afraid there is some other agenda at work here. And it is not for the good of We The People.

  12. You are correct on our deposits here at home. But we can ask the same question on lots of other commodities as well such as natural gas and oil. We have the natural resources but won’t extract them. In the case of oil, we also refuse to develop the refineries required to handle the increased demand. And we could always approve the laundry list of nuclear projects that are pending, but we won’t.

    If you read my post, you know that this is not my theory. It’s been circulated by others virtually ever since we entered the Afghan war. Given the state of domestic policy on natural resources, we need foreign access to these natural resources. I simply can’t come up with any logical conclusion as to why we continue to extend this war. I am convinced it’s not because we lack capability. That only leaves some policy of national strategic gain. This theory simply fits that.

    Other than that, you are left with the theory that the war machine as an economic tool for defense contractors and the like dictates our foreign policy. If that really is the case, the collusion and corruption is so ingrained from top to bottom that we are in serious trouble as a country. Thanks for commenting and stopping by.

  13. You are dead on, not only for the reasons you stated. We are ALSO continuing in the illicit drug trade that we have been involved in for four decades. The suicide of the officer in the Philippines over drugs smuggling is just ONE example of the fact that this is STILL occurring.
    In addition, the U.S. has ALWAYS gone to war for reasons OTHER than those stated.

  14. Thanks for the comment. Glad you stopped by. It makes you wonder at what point our war machine realized its economic potential. We certainly didn’t come out of the gate like this. Now we are at the point of no longer being able to win a war.

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