Skip to comments.U.S. Discovers Vast Riches of Minerals in Afghanistan
Posted on 06/13/2010 6:27:46 PM PDT by americanophile
WASHINGTON The United States has discovered nearly $1 trillion in untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan, far beyond any previously known reserves and enough to fundamentally alter the Afghan economy and perhaps the Afghan war itself, according to senior American government officials. The previously unknown deposits including huge veins of iron, copper, cobalt, gold and critical industrial metals like lithium are so big and include so many minerals that are essential to modern industry that Afghanistan could eventually be transformed into one of the most important mining centers in the world, the United States officials believe.
An internal Pentagon memo, for example, states that Afghanistan could become the Saudi Arabia of lithium, a key raw material in the manufacture of batteries for laptops and Blackberries.
The vast scale of Afghanistans mineral wealth was discovered by a small team of Pentagon officials and American geologists. The Afghan government and President Hamid Karzai were recently briefed, American officials said.
While it could take many years to develop a mining industry, the potential is so great that officials and executives in the industry believe it could attract heavy investment even before mines are profitable, providing the possibility of jobs that could distract from generations of war.
There is stunning potential here, Gen. David H. Petraeus, commander of the United States Central Command, said in an interview on Saturday. There are a lot of ifs, of course, but I think potentially it is hugely significant.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
It’s a double edged sword. Now the US will be accused of wanting to exploit those minerals.
And note Kyrgyzstan conveniently blew up again this weekend, giving Vladimir Vladimirovich an excuse to get back in there pronto and get us out of Manas, etc.
Thank you all for answering my question. It was somewhat rhetorical to point out the chinese always have the option to take what they want.
There, that help it any?
<opening scene in mountain meadow>
"Salih, Salih! It is I, Mahmud, your neighbor!"
"Yes, yes, I see you there, neighbor -- come near! How have you been?"
"I bring you great news! I was in your upper pasturage yesterday, and I discovered -- AAAAAGHHHH!!" <dies>
"Brother, what was it he said to you? What did he discover?"
"He discovered the price of trespassing in my upper meadows! Behold, my enemy, the son of a dog named Mahmud, is dead!! Allahu akhbar!!"
"Allahu akhbar! Allahu akhbar! Mahmud the Enemy, Mahmud the son of a dog, is dead!"
<exeunt stage left>
And so ends a peaceful day in seventh-century Afghanistan.
China and Russia have been double-teaming the U.S. for a few years now in a big diplomatic effort to "expel" the U.S. from central Asia. This is just the latest evolution of the Sino-Soviet crowding campaign.
The objective would appear to be to impose political defeat by manufacturing a Taliban victory parade in Kabul starring Osama Bin Laden and Abu Ayman. They'll top things off with a festive stoning of 100 schoolgirls.
I'm going on little more than the brief story that appeared in Science Magazine at the time.
It struck me as important since there were few major sources of gallium back then.
The Bush policy (43 and 41 both, and under Reagan, too, thanks to 41's wide influence in the Reagan Administration) has always been, as long as the producer country is selling into a transparent market to which we have access, we don't care who "controls" the asset -- the market will "control" the price, and the access.
They then invent ocean going craft, or maybe even IRON WEAPONS and go get what they need from other places.
......critical industrial metals like lithium.....
China also has a corner on lithium I think.
Big effing deal, old news, diversionary tactics at work here folks.
Fact is every nation on earth wants an intact Afghanistan for its poppy fields, THAT is the real treasure.
China has already started thier “slant mining” operation, the minerals will be gone long before they afghan people get started ...
I knew it! Evil George Bush at it again! /sarc
Until the Afghan’s get off their lazy arses and start taking over the operations, we should take them.
In before “Pandora” reference. /sarc
I saw a documentary on that area of Afghanistan. Part of the border with China is a valley which indeed is very remote with a few tribal people living there. As you say the locals pretty much control the area as I’m sure government officials rarely visit the area because it is in so remote of an area.
Yes and not being hostage to single source supplier gives us option and leverage.