(Transcribed by Nicole Heiden)
I think that there are forces, and I don’t know to whom we would best ascribe this, but there are forces within Afghanistan that want to prolong the war, that want to prolong the fighting. They’re making in one way or another a profit that they wouldn’t be able to make without the war, and I think as long as there is a justification being made for keeping United States and NATO troops in Afghanistan then there is a better possibility for US and NATO forces to eventually bring enough security for the development of a pipeline and of various roadways in order to control the pricing and flow of resources, that would be extracted from Afghanistan… they also now found in terms of mining deposits, and estimated 1 trillion dollars’ worth of copper, gold, and iron ore, and 1.4 million metric tons of what are called rare earth elements, R.E.Es. Those are the elements that are used for cellphones and computers, and whoever can control… those resources will have a huge advantage over the countries that are wanting to buy those resources; so we could think of China and Russia which are immediate neighbors to Afghanistan, as being places where there would be a desire to consume those resources. The US would like to make sure that they can’t get those resources at cheaper prices than what the US would pay.
Quite honestly 93% of the world’s heroin comes from Afghanistan, and the education system is terribly corrupt, healthcare delivery is very very poor, such that one out of every 11 women dies in childbirth. Rights for women are so bad that in 1,670 registered incidents of violence against women, only 7% of the cases even went through the judicial process, and 1 million children are suffering from acute malnourishment in southern Afghanistan… in Afghanistan the United States has tried to market the war there by saying that the troops are needed in order to protect the rights of women and children, but how can you have one million children suffering from acute malnourishment in the very area where there’s a huge concentration of U.S. troops, in Helmand and Kandahar, and talk about the rights of children being protected?
In general, any kind of assertion that, that the election would be, certainly free and fair is a little bit naïve. I think that you’re going to have a certain amount of fraud no matter what, and this has, this has kind of been a pattern in many countries that, where the oligarchy has held power for, for a very long time. So you have people who have been in struggles for many years, who for, for instance, have been trying to stop mining companies from taking over their land without their consent, from using open-pit mining methods, which contaminate the water with arsenic, like communities that have lived on the coast for several hundred years and now are being pushed out by multinational tourism companies, who want to create such an entity as a “model city”, which is essentially sovereign, outside of Honduran authority yet part of Honduran land. These people would say, you know, they expect the election to have some level of fraud, just because these interests are very entrenched, and they’re going to try to influence any kind of election result that could make it harder for them to continue the status quo.
“Through these gates pass America’s finest warriors”: Megan in light blue, crossing the line into Creech AFB
“On some positions, cowardice asks the question, ‘Is it safe?’ Expediency asks the question, ‘Is it politic?’ And vanity comes along and asks, ‘Is it popular?’ But conscience asks the question, ‘Is it right?’” she wrote.
“And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe nor politic nor popular, but one must do it because conscience tells one it is right.”
Dear friends on Jeju Island : Sung Hee, Paco, Silver, Sister Stella, Dr Park and many others at Gangjeong Village,
I lived in a gorgeous agricultural village in Bamiyan Province of Afghanistan for seven years and like yourselves on Jeju Island in South Korea, every morning, I woke up to a window scene of ‘heaven’.
No eyes would believe that wars had brought ‘hell’ to occupy this land.
My window scene in Bamiyan