Afghanistan. Why are we there ? Heres a reason ......

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by dogs_bollox, Dec 10, 2009.

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  1. Very very old news, first came out in the 1950s when the Yanks built the roads, Dams ect
     
  2. The Pentagons prime mission is to safeguard US energy supplies…

    Nothing new here.
     
  3. But it's not though is it? Control of Afghan will not give us control of the oil and gas. It might help protect the pipelines running through, but that's no bad thing. This isn't like Iraq where the argument could be made as there are actually oil fields, this is just a routing country. Non-story made up by anti-war gimps to fire people onto the outrage bus.
     
  4. There is very little fact in that story, just lots of rhetoric and guesswork.
     
  5. "The Pass beyond Kashmir" a 1960 novel is based on a similar hypothesis. Good read actually. :)
     
  6. Quite honestly, the USA has a long history of allying with oil rich states, however ghastly their governments. They would have happily have dealt with the Taliban, (who, in many ways, are the Islamic equivalent of the snake-juggling loons found in some areas of Pentecostal Christianity in the States), and which grew out of US support during the Soviet war.

    So, why didn't they? Why did they go to war 'over oil'?

    The answer is simple. They didn't. They went to war because 1) the Taliban were too medieval to be able to think of dealing with any outsiders, US or otherwise, on any subject apart from their odd interpretation of religion and 2) Said Taliban were harbouring an organisation that had just murdered 3000 people on US soil.

    Now, I don't doubt that future energy profits are of interest to the US. Note however, that under the Texas oilman Bush the US was charging towards non oil renewables, to reduce the US strategic reliance on people who wear towels on their heads. Oil wasn't the driver for the US to enter this war.

    Sometimes, the simple answer is the right one. The Taliban were stupid enough to host a lunatic who declared war on the US. They COULD have simply bagged him up, and delivered him and his cohorts for trial. They chose not to, and chose to enter a conflict that they didn't have to, with dreadful consequences.


    Shock horror- Soldiers are based around a notional pipeline route. Could that not be due to natural geography? Pipelines are laid along sensible routes, not drilled through mountains for the fun of it. Roads and towns lie on sensible routes. Therefore soldiers defend them.

    Shock horror- The Afghan government includes businessmen with links to the oil and gas industry. Afghanistan was a major gas exporter in the 1970's and therefore a lot of afghans worked in it. Now they are of an age to be politicians.

    The article is underpined by the classic 'tinfoil hat' whinge that 'big energy' rules the US, and shapes global geopolitics to its own end. Well, 'big energy' is rapidly waking up to the fact that oil and gas were yesterdays technology. The big money nowadays, and this is driven by the Western public demand, is for clean, green energy. They aren't going to go against that trend.

    Afghanistan is really a scruffy little colonial police action. The Taliban aren't an army. They are a passing ideological cult. This is a case for nation building and investment, not full blown warfighting for a hypothetical oil benefit that may never materialise.

    As the thread states 'Here's a reason...'. It is a reason. it's just not the right reason.
     
  7. I appreciate it's old news and I've known it for a long time myself but I saw this article and thought it might provoke some debate/views. It's one of those things that get my gander got every time I read something about it.

    Like I said (and one poster at least noticed) it is A reason but not the only reason.

    D_B
     
  8. This is just another tin foil hat theory which has no basis in reality, the excellent post by HectortheInspector says it all really.

    I just wish the press would pay more attention to the good work the troops are doing out there instead of JUST paying attention to the bad news.


    But remember this fact: The Army with the cheaper uniforms always wins ! :(
     
  9. my uncle who works with a major drilling company, have done sideways drilling in from Pakistan, and they say that Afghanistan is sitting on a massive seam of oil. Most of the major drilling companies have secretly been bribing the government to be the first into the country to stake their claims. So maybe their is some truth in it!
     
  10. The old “sideways drilling story.”

    Drilling a well is very difficult and expensive, the deepest well I have ever heard of is 12 km. So, even if you put the drilling rig on the border and went sideways, that would still only get you 12 km into the other country. The chances of that being where the oil is is microscopic.

    Also the Pakistan/Afghanistan border is currently very dangerous. So if you want to drill into an Afghan oil field it would be safer and cheaper to put the drilling rig in Afghanistan.

    Does you uncle also sell tinfoil hats?
     
  11. Well put Hector, but not really needed - the article kills itself:

     
  12. To really put this to rest, here is an analysis from September 2001, just days before 9/11.

    http://www.institute-for-afghan-studies.org/ECONOMY/natural%20resources.htm

    The US were already in deep negotiations with the Taliban over a multinational pipeline project (Unocal) . They pulled out because the Talibs were simply too unreliable and aggressive, and were refusing to comply with UN sanctions dating back to 2000 arising from Osama's actions.

    So- If the US had really wanted it, it had already had access to this oil.
    It lost access because the US refused to do business with the Taliban while they sheltered Osama BL.
    Remember, this was in 2000.

    Conclusion- The oil wasn't that important. Nor were the Taliban worth talking to unless they chucked their guest out.

    Days later the planes flew into the buildings, and all bets were off.

    Edited- Unocal was an aggressive US oil co, working in central Asia.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unocal_Corporation
     

  13. Snipped for brevity.


    Agreed. :thumleft:

    There seems to be no limit to complex conspiracy "theories". Occam's razor is too often unemployed.