Corporate Motivation

It is impossible to establish a valid explanation for the USA’s invasion of Afghanistan, based simply on the premise of post 911 retaliation. However there are strong motivations, and psychological & political control within the Central Asian & Middle Eastern zones is paramount to strengthening the USA’s grip on world domination.

Cold War – America needs an enemy

War motivates Patriotism unlike any other political move. A nation in fear produces an easily manipulated citizenship and international conflict is big business for US corporations. A skeptic may go so far as to say that all the wars involving the USA in our lifetime have been economically motivated.

I am one such skeptic. Communism, as interpreted by the West (as opposed to the theoretical model of governance, of which I support), was the ‘bad-boy’ in the 20th Century, as illustrated by the mainstream media and it’s pro-Government propaganda machine. By design, Communism undermines all profitable business models employed by western industry. Therefore such political models that circumvent Capitalism must be stopped.

Communist governments during the Cold War era were of no threat to the safety of the USA’s population. It was a threat to economic agendas, which is why the USSR, Cuba & Vietnam were targeted. Who is to say the western model is better or worse? Cubans are existing in better conditions than your working class American family, and the post-war lifestyle for your average Vietnamese national is fast becoming a model for success & prosperity. The USSR has been dissolved, Cuba have done well despite the decades-long trade embargo, Ho Chi Minh is still admired as a revolutionary leader, so the West is running out of credible enemies.

President Jimmy Carter harnessed the influence of the media in maintaining a fearful nation, openly condemning the Soviet occupation, and even went so far in promoting the ‘bad boys of Communism’ propaganda by boycotting the 1980 Olympic Games. The Soviets subsequently boycotted the 1984 Los Angeles games, so this was prime media fodder. All of which embedded the ‘Commies are bad’ mindset amongst a gullible US citizenship who relied on mainstream media to tell them a well-crafted recreation of the truth.

Geostrategic Regional Control

Relations between the USA and the middle east are considered essential under the premise of corporate profitability. Let’s remain focused on President Jimmy’s reign for a moment longer.

The Carter Doctrine hinted towards the ultimate interests the USA had in the Central Asian region:

“Let our position be absolutely clear: An attempt by any outside force to gain control of the Persian Gulf region will be regarded as an assault on the vital interests of the United States of America, and such an assault will be repelled by any means necessary, including military force”

These vital interests aren’t borne from a humanitarian standpoint, nor are they suggesting any threat to the safety, peace & democratic system of governance that US citizens enjoy. It’s purely about gaining a foothold within the natural resources industry. In his 1980 State of the Union address, he elaborated further:

“The region which is now threatened by Soviet troops in Afghanistan is of great strategic importance: It contains more than two-thirds of the world’s exportable oil. The Soviet effort to dominate Afghanistan has brought Soviet military forces to within 300 miles of the Indian Ocean and close to the Straits of Hormuz, a waterway through which most of the world’s oil must flow. The Soviet Union is now attempting to consolidate a strategic position, therefore, that poses a grave threat to the free movement of Middle East oil.”

Nothing has changed in the last 30 years since Carter’s address. Neither Democrat nor Republican governance results in a change of stance, when the corporate agenda is the controlling force of politicians. The recent invasion of Afghanistan is still motivated by the edicts outlined by President Carter all those years ago.

Which leads us to the single biggest motivation behind the ongoing war against Afghanistan:

The TAPI Pipeline

Twenty years ago an engineering proposal was formulated for an astonishing project that would transport natural gas from the Caspian Sea (a landlocked ocean in Turkmenistan) to the Indian Subcontinent. With a forecasted global shortage of oil based fuel, not to mention an increased awareness of carbon emission destroying our planet, natural gas is the new ‘Texas Tea’, and major corporate interests can see a multi-billion dollar per year profit stream in the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline.

TAPI map

Considering the hyperstimulated Indian economy, and a rate of forecasted growth in an end-consumer market driven by a population explosion, the TAPI Pipeline is going to become a license to print money. It’s estimated that up to 30 BILLION cubic metres of gas will transit through the pipeline per year. The ongoing annual profits resulting from the completion of this project are enormous.

The pipeline needs to be laid through Afghanistan, there’s no other viable option. Fifteen years ago, The Taliban (no longer an insurgent militia, but the official Government, an then good buddies with the USA) were not only consulted on the project, but signed international development agreements for the pipes to be laid.This will not only lay the groundwork for ongoing wealth, but the creation of the infrastructure will stand to benefit American corporations.

Behind the scenes over the years, several major US corporate interests with ties to political characters have been identified as benefiting from the creation of the TAPI pipeline, including:

the gang

The Pipeline proposal has not been without issues. While the Taliban were ‘on-side’ with the developers, they seized the opportunity to change contracting firms (perhaps the allure of backsheesh was omnipresent, but we may never know). The Taliban also attempted to renegotiate the transit tariffs (an ongoing fee paid to the host countries annually for shipping gas through the region), and following their ousting from parliament, were contracted by Presedent Karzai, the Pakistani Government, and the project consultants to provide security for the build.

There has been countless hurdles in the roll-out, from it’s inception as an Argentinian-contracted engineering feat, Unocal Corporation’s subsequent counter-pipeline proposal (the Iran-Pakistan-India route) in alliance with Saudi Oil Sheiks, until a new consortium for the original TAPI was negotiated under the name of CentGas – of which Unocal was the largest investor. Presently, the project is being managed by state-owned resource consortium from India & Turkmenistan, after a 2012 formal approval from Hamid Karzai’s parliament.

As such, The 35 year war against Afghanistan will not be ending in the forseeable future.

Second Invasion of Afghanistan

After 21 years of CIA-funded support for Islamic Militant cells in Afghanistan, and ongoing relations with the official government of the country in the form of the Taliban, the air strikes that commenced on October 7th, 2001 came without warning. Severing airfields, disabling Kabul’s electricity grid and razing the cities of Kandahar & Jalalabad, the action was unexpected, considering the victims were chummy with the USA up until a month prior to the bombardment.

Incidentally, The first ground forces deployment of US forces were not military, but CIA-led combatants.

The Afghan Taliban government spokesperson, foreign minister Wakil Ahmad Muttawakil had previously made a public statement denouncing the September 11 attacks on New York, and the Afghan ambassador to Pakistan Abdul Salam Zaeef cryptically hinted that Osama Bin Laden, a former Saudi national, was exiled in Pakistan. Despite the lack of association between the Taliban government the New York attacks, US Military Commander-In-Chief George W. Bush insisted that the attacks were an ‘act of war’, and that retribution would be swift & relentless.

What the world was witnessing was a turn-around in relations between the United States of America & The Afghanistan Government, being the Islamic Militant Taliban, over a timeframe of less than a month. In the space of 26 days, the USA’s 21-Year support for Afghani extremists took a turn for the worse.

Lack of evidence often being ignored (ie; Iraq’s mythical and non-evidenced weapons of mass destruction), the United States required a scapegoat for 911, and they needed one fast, before the public and global perception crawled out of their state of shock and began questioning the weakness of a once mighty military nation and world superpower.

The biggest question here is why the USA commenced a war in Afghanistan at all.

Bearing in mind that:

1. The Taliban are not Al-Queda

2. Osama Bin Laden is not part of the Taliban

3. Osama Bin Laden is not an Afghani, but a Saudi Arabian national

4. 15 of the 911 hijackers were Saudi Arabian Nationals. Not a single one of them was an Afghani

talibantexasThe Taliban could not possibly be a threat to US Citizens, being a considerably poor Militant Government (at the time, they were the party holding power), having no organized military to speak of, and no ability to be trained in hijacking a large domestic aircraft. Furthermore, international relations between the USA and the Taliban were very strong. In 1997, Delegates were invited to Sugarland, Texas for a high level business meeting with energy company Unocal to negotiate resource transit tarrifs within Afghanistan.

image: Taliban delegates visiting Texas, USA in 1997 to discuss energy tariffs

The Taliban operated foreign offices in New York right up until the year of the World Trade Centre incident. Completely transparent, known to US Federal Agencies and the United Nations, the Taliban presence in the USA was NEVER questioned prior to 911. There is some suspicion surrounding their eviction only months prior to the WTC attacks, in that Government officials claimed it was a UN-forced eviction, however a spokesperson for the United Nations knew nothing about the request. We can only speculate on the motivations and the timing, of which falls into 911 conspiracy territory, a subject that I largely will avoid in this blog.

So here we have an aggressive invasion executed by a military superpower (the USA) against a poorly armed, tribal government (the Taliban) for not a single valid reason in relation to the WTC 911 attacks. Despite this, the war has been very long, very expensive (to the detriment of the US Economy) and utterly pointless.

The Taliban are actually growing in number as the war progresses. The death toll of Afghani civilians is closing in at the 20,000 count. POW’s have been treated to torture and human rights abuses, even homicide at the hands of US soldiers, and in violation of the tortureGeneva Convention terms of War. We are beginning to hear stories of private mercenaries contracted by the United States that are murdering and terrorizing local Afghani citizens. A covert US Government agency known as the Joint Special Operations Command, or JSOC, have been accused of terrorizing locals. Several books have been released outlining the dirty tactics used by US interrogators at Abu Graib, Bagram & Guantanamo detention facilities.

image: Afghani suspect terrorized with sensory deprivation, physical torture and electrocution

The Taliban don’t possess any modern, technological warfare devices, and they are still using US-Supplied surface-to-air missiles from 30 years ago as their most powerful defense. Osama Bin Laden wasn’t in Afghanistan after all, but in Pakistan. Yet the 12 year War in Afghanistan continues, despite questionable beginnings as to the reasons, and with even more questionable motivations behind the continued occupation.

The most likely motivation will be discussed in next weeks blog, and it has nothing to do with global terrorism, but corporate greed.

The Taliban are USA’s Creation

As with most US-led invasions of Sovereign land, there are many questions that surround the purpose of such operations. In the case of the Operation Cyclone proxy-war against the Soviet Union on foreign soil, very little was achieved for the host nation of Afghanistan. Some considerations may be:

  • The pro-Soviet PDPA Party of Afghanistan remained in power for a further three years following the withdrawal of US forces. Therefore the ‘fight against Communism’ failed, as it had done previously in Vietnam & Cuba.
  • The USA’s funding strengthened Islamic Militant guerrillas in the region, arming the Mujahadeen with tens of thousands of munitions & artillery. The argument for ‘freedom of a nation’ would prove to be irrelevant.
  • The post-war foreign aid into Afghanistan was funneled into the pockets of tribal warlords, creating factions within the Islamic Militant agenda, which would lead to the dissolution of the Mujahadeen and the formation of the Taliban as the majority influence over Afghanistan & it’s citizens.
  • The dark years of fundamentalist oppression that would soon follow is a direct result of the USA’s financial & military support for a militia that was fighting for strict Islamic Sharia Law.

talibFollowing the USSR’s retreat, a sense of unrest was dictating the public psych, and created internalized civil struggles between the remaining supporters of the PDPA, the new heroes of the militant Mujahadeen, and an increasingly wary following of emergent militant groups who believed the Mujahadeen’s rise was a dangerous, oppressive path.

It is around this time that the seeds of the Taliban were germinated. The cloud of homelessness, poverty & death lingered over the nation, and the misappropriation of continued foreign funding allowed new leaders with fresh agendas to charm potential followers.

Unlike western political party allegiances (such as those who say “I’m a Democrat/Republican/Libertarian forever”), the culture of Afghanistan is for a more practical outcome. Basically, your typical Afghan citizen will follow the next leader with the most to offer – be it money, personal safety, religious conservatism or an agenda for a bright future. Defection is so common, that it simply isn’t spoken about, and it is this cycle of support that creates new civil majority groups in the nation.

To Western observers, this is where our understanding typically ends, and the confusion commences, quite simply because such political defection is unheard of in our culture, and difficult to fathom. However, it follows as such:

The PDPA had overwhelming support from it’s citizens, until the cashed up & well armed Mujahadeen strengthened. Previous PDPA supporters became Mujahadeen guerrillas. Fearing the new ‘hard line’ Islamic code of conduct, new factions formed against the Mujahadeen, made up of many former proxy-war soldiers, and banded together as what we refer to as The Taliban.

Or, to keep it simple, the PDPA is the Mujahadeen, and the Mujahadeen is the Taliban. Only the leaders of the movement remain unchanged, while the followers are fluid.

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The Taliban’s rise to power in the early 1990’s was supported by Pakistan’s InterServices Intelligence Agency (the ISI), who only several years prior were intrinsically tied into the CIA’s arms shipments to Islamic militants. Such was Pakistan’s open support for the rise of the Taliban that Pakistan, along with the Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates were the only nations to give the Taliban diplomatic recognition.

Following on from the Mujahadeen’s theological agenda, the Taliban also adopted strict Sharia Law policy. With an almost limitless supply of land-based-conflict artillery & armaments (thanks to the CIA’s Operation Cyclone & post-war US foreign aid), it became easy to convince Afghanistan’s citizens that the future lay with them. The Taliban were the nation’s new heros.

poppyFurthermore, their initial policy on the eradication of opium poppy farms (the pre-cursor to heroin, and the source of over 70% of the world’s supply chain) was applauded by the USA – in fact the eradication was used as a PR exercise by American politicians to show the world how effective their prior support for Islamic Militants had been. As recently as May, 2001, only four months prior to 911, US Secretary of State Colin Powell announced a $40million aid package to the Taliban with the intention to subsidize farmers whose livelihoods had been destroyed by poppy eradication and drought conditions. The funding of course never reached the farmers, but was used to further strengthen the Islamic Militia+

Now holding the official seat of government (from 1994-2001), the relationship between the Taliban and the USA was never called into question prior to 911, and the arrangement was so cosy that, despite not being recognized internationally, US political and industry senior staffers hosted Taliban delegates in an all-expenses-paid meeting in Texas (the Bush family’s state of abode) to discuss a major engineering project+

The Taliban were entirely accepted by the United States that they occupied offices in Queens, New York between 1996 & 2001. Mysteriously, in the months leading up to the 911 attacks, the Taliban were requested to close their New York premises, with State Department Spokesperson Richard Boucher citing ‘United Nations sanctions’. It was quite odd that the UN envoy, when approached by the New York Times, had no such knowledge of the eviction.

These shifting agendas of the US Government are nonsensical. Some closing considerations:

  1. The USA have in effect created an Islamic Militia in Afghanistan since 1980, which was supported for 21 years by American taxpayer dollars.
  2. The USA have allowed Islamic Militants to operate a premises for the five years in New York leading up to 911.
  3. The USA have negotiated with Islamic Militants to fight the War on Drugs
  4. The USA have negotiated with Islamic Militants for significant engineering projects in the region.

Ultimately, the Taliban are a creation of the United States of America.

Note: The themes of both the war on drugs in relation to Afghanistan and the engineering project will be discussed in further detail over the coming weeks

Uncle Sam’s Foot Soldiers

To understand the formation of the Taliban, we must examine Afghanistan’s recent history, the decade-long battle with the Soviet Union, and the USA’s military arms & financial support for warlords and rebels.

In 1978, the Afghan Government (ie; the People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan, or PDPA), seized control of the country, led by socialist national policies and a vision to modernise the country by promoting state-based atheism, and the abolishment of Sharia Law (A strict Islamic code of conduct). This raised the ire of many, and promoted a growing insurgency movement – often referred to as The Mujahadeen.

Unwilling to have the seat of government seized from them by hardline militia, the PDPA strengthened relations with the USSR, and in 1979 requested military aid in the form of 20 armed military helicopters from their Soviet neighbors. Within two months, the USSR were rolling armoured tanks, amphibious infantry vehicles and soldiers into the capital of Kabul to Karmalprotect the PDPA from the growing anti-government militia.

Having signed a treaty with the USSR (the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Good Neighborliness) upon seizing power, the PDPA were simply requesting support against extremist, non-political factions. Inherently there can be no argument regarding the PDPA’s good judgement as a peaceful nation.

Image: Afghanistan’s General Secretary Babrak Karmal embraces Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev

Fighting ‘The Commies’

Elsewhere, this was a tense few decades for USA/Soviet relations, in the midst of the USA’s irrelevant worldwide war on non-Democratic nations. The Cuban Missile Crisis had American citizens fearing nuclear warfare, The CIA were operating covertly in Chile to overthrow pro-Marxist factions, and the Vietnam war had been an unmitigated disaster which failed to serve it’s intended purpose.

Fearing an alliance between Afghanistan & the USSR, the American Central Intelligence Agency formed the Operation Cyclone program to fund the anti-Government Islamic militant groups in order to  overthrow PDPA in a violent & bloody proxy-war. This funding began at $30million in 1980, and increased annually, with an estimated war-chest contribution of $600million in 1987 alone.

Furthermore, Operation Cyclone provided military support for neighboring Pakistan, via the InterServices Intelligence agency known as the ISI, who were actively supporting the Afghan insurgent guerrillas. $7.5billion was allocated to the ISI for the purposes of arming the Mujahadeen, along with the supply of 40 F-16 fighter aircraft. Non-US arms were provided to Pakistan via Israel to be funneled into the Afghani guerrillas, and a further $20billion was spent on training over 100,000 foreign insurgents to fight the PDPA, and subsequently the USSR. Saudi Arabia matched the United States military funding dollar-for-dollar.

Allow me to re-iterate the obvious. The USA were funding militant guerillas, against another country’s government.

Casualties of War

Despite the ability to deploy one of the world’s largest military into the region of Afghanistan, the USA instead fought this anti-Soviet war by proxy, thus avoiding negative public opinion on the loss of American lives. The impact of the USA’s covert involvement was not without casualties, but it was not American casualties. Despite this, over 100,000 deaths were recorded, consisting of 25,000 Soviet soldiers, 18,000 Afghan Army members, and 90,000 guerrillas of the CIA-funded Mujahadeen forces.
KarmalThe Mujahadeen extremists were so favored by the US administration, that delegates were invited to the White House to be met with President Ronald Regan.

Predicting a public relations goldmine in the fight against Communism, the arrangement was an attempt to show the nation of America that ‘the good guys’ were winning.

Image: President Regan meeting with extremist Mujahadeen in the Oval Office

Incidentally, President Regan offered the following statement praising his international guests:

“These gentlemen are the moral equivalents of America’s founding fathers.”

War is Over – 1989

To much embarrassment, international support was not forthcoming, and Operation Cyclone was widely condemned. In the decade-long war, the USA achieved nothing, but were determined to keep sending foreign soldiers to their death. It was only through Soviet withdrawal, under the leadership of USSR President Mikhail Gorbachev, that the conflict drew to a close.

Despite this attempt at restoring peace, pro-Mujahadeen forces continued to bombard the withdrawing Soviet Army via air attacks using American F-16 jets, and the white-flag exit was exploited, resulting in another 500 deaths of retreating soldiers. It would be another three years before the pro-Soviet Afghan Government would be overthrown, and the Islamic militant faction seized control. The year was 1992  and the United States of America were directly responsible for their creation of an Islamic Militant movement through their multi-billion dollar funding.

The Taliban – An Overview

The Tuesday morning of September 11th, 2001 triggered a new wave of global xenophobia. Not surprisingly, the mainstream media launched the juggernaut of misinformation and deception within moments, and in conjunction with the US Federal Government, are continuing to mislead a gullible public audience, still unwilling to accept that ‘News’ is no longer a trustworthy source of information.

It took merely four weeks following 9/11 for US & NATO military forces to begin the invasion of Afghanistan. With public fervor on home soil reaching manic proportions, the US government required a scapegoat, and to exercise a sense of vengeance for the world stage.

Suddenly, the world was talking about the Taliban. Otherwise ignorant and unworldly media slaves became self-proclaimed experts on international affairs, and the Taliban were bad guys of the highest order. Let’s examine some of the ridiculous mistruths and prejudice that enveloped the social mindset, before illustrating the Taliban’s history in detail:

The Taliban are ARABS: This is simply incorrect. The Taliban, and by extension native Afghani citizens, have lineage that may be traced back to the Persian Empire. There are also lineage traits to this day of Chinese & Mongolian ethnicity, a result of Genghis Khan’s armies settling in the northHazaraern region of both Afghanistan & Pakistan. The Afghan National Anthem mentions 14 ethnic groups, with Arab merely being one of them. Furthermore, the Arabic language is rarely used in Afghanistan, outside of a theological context, and the country is not one of the Arab States.

Image: A young family from Afghanistan, clearly showing genetic traits of Mongol ethnic origin.

The Taliban are MIDDLE EASTERN: While it’s a convenient tag, it’s not true. Afghanistan is inclusive of the continent of Asia, and the border definition of ‘the Middle East’ commences in the neighboring country of Iran. However, for geographically strategic purposes, the US Government often talk about the entire Persian Gulf region and surrounding areas as such. This blog will touch on these references in the posts to follow.

The Taliban are TERRORISTS: This a a broad brushstroke that became one of the common buzzwords of the past decade, and is open to much debate. What is certain, is that the Taliban are most certainly not international terrorists. There simply isn’t the financial viability nor the military might for the Taliban to instigate global unrest. They have no Naval operations, nor an Air Force, and rely on good old-fashioned ground combat.

The Taliban are responsible for THE 9/11 ATTACKS: One of my personal favorites, because it exposes those who speak such nonsense as being poorly informed. 15 of the hijackers were from Saudi Arabia, and another four were citizens of the United Arab Emirates, Syria & Lebanon.

To suggest that the Taliban have the knowledge or the training facilities to execute an attack such as 9/11 would be near sighted, considering the regime has no air force to speak of. During the Taliban’s rise to power in the late 1990’s, all that remained of Afghanistan’s airborne military were a handful of run down, ageing helicopters. Quite simply, it’s impossible to consider the Taliban orchestrating and acting out the 9/11 strikes.

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These four key misconceptions are widespread untruths that spoken often, in both the ‘trusted’ media outlets and subsequently through the supple minds of gossiping social pundits who care little for discovering the truth. Another truth if you will.