If the lawlessness, poverty, and endemic corruption of Afghanistan are indicative of anything, it is that the multi-billion dollar efforts to restore stability in the region have been an abject failure.
The Afghan central government is weak and hopelessly corrupt, the national armed forces are disorganized and resentful of foreign presence, the Taliban still wield notable influence, women remain extremely marginalized, Afghans are trapped in abject poverty, and the occupiers themselves continue to shoulder the responsibility for heavy civilian causalities.
Tens of billions have been poured into Afghanistan over the past decade, but the fact is that official figures of aid and financial resources spent in the country on paper do not come close to what was actually doled out to US proxies.
Reports confirm that tens of millions of US dollars in cash were delivered by the CIA in suitcases, backpacks and plastic shopping bags to the office of Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai since his installation in 2004.
The report states that the ‘ghost money’ paid to Karzai’s office was not subject to oversight and restrictions placed on official American aid or the CIA’s formal assistance programs, and much of it went to “warlords and politicians, many with ties to the drug trade and in some cases the Taliban.”
The report also cites an anonymous US official who claimed, “The biggest source of corruption in Afghanistan was the United States.” These revelations should not only raise the eyebrows of US taxpayers – the disingenuous reality of American funds finding their way into the pockets of the Taliban should raise blood pressures.
Karzai issued statements confirming the allegations, but insisted that the funds given were “small” and “used for good causes,” such as helping wounded civilians and paying house rents. If these assertions were true, there is no reason why such money would need to travel through covert channels, thus preventing any form of accountability toward appropriation of those funds.
Karzai’s retort seems more like nervous obfuscation rather than a genuine explanation; he also fails to address allegations that the money was used to fuel rampant corruption.
Even with all the financial resources at Karzai’s disposal, the situation on the ground suggests that the enormous application of funds to social development projects have been poorly implemented.Americans were told that the occupation of Afghanistan was supposed to bring stability and democracy to the country, and despite the presence of international aid groups, the dolling out tens of millions of covert CIA funds (for ‘good purposes’ of course), over $3.5 billion in humanitarian funds and over $58 billion in development assistance, Afghanistan has the world’s third highest infant mortality rate and the country faces vast humanitarian challenges.
The misuse and embezzlement of development funds have left the rural majority with little option but to cultivate poppy, creating the world’s first economy dependent on the production of a single illicit drug.
WHAT GOOD CAUSES DON’T SEE
Afghanistan’s status as a narco-state isn’t simply attributable to the poor application of development aid – US-NATO forces have themselves created conditions by propping up local proxies and warlords with drug money.
From the opium-fueled CIA covert warfare of the 1980s and ’90s and since the US intervention in 2001, Washington has tolerated, enabled, and profited from drug trafficking by its Afghan allies, empowering an increasing resurgence of the Taliban in large swathes of the Afghan countryside.
Washington spent some $22 billion on Afghanistan from 2003 to 2007, mostly on military operations and preparing for their withdrawal, with only a paltry $237 million designated for agriculture. Afghanistan provides the prime ingredient for over 90 per cent of the world’s heroin supply and in recent years has emerged as one of the biggest producers of refined products as hundreds of heroin labs sprout up under the watch of NATO and the US.
The continued neglect of rural and agricultural development has made the task of dismantling the narco-state nothing sort of insurmountable.
Although the Taliban is often credited as the main benefactor of the opium trade, there is reason to believe that the Karzai government and its affiliates have been the more substantially advantaged by illicit funds. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) 2009 report, titled “Addiction, Crime and Insurgency: The Transnational Threat of Afghan Opium,”estimates that only 10-15 per cent of Taliban funding is drawn from drugs and 85 per cent comes from non-opium sources.
The report claims that of the $3.4 billion annually garnered from the drug trade, the Taliban only gets its hands on a mere 4 per cent of that total, while farmers reap 21 per cent. The majority of the drug profits end up in the hands of militias, warlords, and political kingpins supported by the US and NATO to offset the influence of the Taliban – not to mention the fact that most of the funds end up in the formal international banking system.on April 29, 2013.
The empowerment of local proxies has enabled them to tax and protect opium traffickers and expand refineries, which led to the speedy resumption of opium production after the ban imposed by the Taliban in 2000 – and today, heroin production in Afghanistan increased 40 times since the US invasion in 2001.
Although totally outrageous, the institutional corruption and explosion in the drug trade that has occurred under the watch of US-NATO forces is hardly surprising from an occupation force that is criminal from the top down.
Where the CIA is appeasing the Afghan leadership with sacks of US dollars, testosterone-filled American soldiers make a of mockery their country by urinating on Afghan corpses, burning Korans, and massacring unarmed civilians, as seen in the famous case of Staff Sgt. Robert Bales. Don’t expect any high-ranking US or NATO official to be made answerable for these continued acts of wrongdoing. Washington is preparing to walk away, and Afghanistan looks much the same as it did after the Soviet-Mujahideen episode in the early ’90s – a ravaged country with mass instability, no infrastructure to speak of, an economy in disarray, and colorful cast of armed-characters who may seek to control Kabul after the withdrawal.
Even after the formal conclusion of international stabilization efforts, a sizable amount of US troops will remain in the country after 2014, something Russia has opposed out of concern that Afghanistan could be used as a military springboard targeting other countries in the region.
The emphasis has now shifted to equipping and training the Afghan National Army and the notoriously corrupt Afghan National Police forces, so as to enable them independently to counter terrorism and drug-related crime.
Considering the track record of the occupying forces and the distrust of Americans held by Afghan forces, there is a low probability that these efforts will succeed. The assaults on US troops by US-trained Afghan security forces reflect the discord on the ground, and the difficulty of the task at hand. Karzai has vowed to step down as Afghanistan’s sole post-Taliban head of state, with no clear successor in place, who will occupy the Presidential Palace after the April 2014presidential ballot?
Whoever takes the helm has a tremendous task ahead of them; failure to exert control over lawless provinces could see the country fall into civil war and balkanize into warlord-led territories. Afghanistan’s rural economy once flourished with orchards and food crops, and had the occupation not been an exercise in plunder and embezzlement, international aid could have developed rural infrastructure and given rise to alternative non-illicit crops. Even the cost of Obama’s 30,000-soldier surge at $30 billion per year could have developed rural areas and stifled the influence of the Taliban if meaningfully implemented, but of course, that was never the plan.
The post-2014 administration faces grave instability if it fails to boldly clean up the system, and continued US drone warfare will ensure sustained militancy as family members of victims killed in drone attacks join the Taliban and extremist groups seeking retribution.
Mirroring the situation in Iraq, US-led forces will leave behind a regime that will likely be privy to Iranian influence. China will also play a more significant role in Afghan stabilization efforts after 2014. Beijing and Kabul cut a deal in September 2012 that would see China replace NATO in the training, funding and arming the 149,000-strong Afghan police as part of increased Sino-Afghan cooperation in combating regional terrorism.
China would be greatly disadvantaged if Afghanistan fragmented into a hub for international terrorism, which would increase security concerns in its western Muslim-majority Xinjiang region, an area already vulnerable to destabilization. The dragon is set to replace the eagle as Beijing is increasing its involvement in the Afghan economy through multi-billion dollar Chinese projects.
Stabilization efforts are a lot to shoulder – the Chinese approach would be incremental and bare little similarity to the model employed by the Americans.
There may be grounds for restrained optimism in thinking about Afghanistan’s future if Beijing succeeds where Washington has failed by proving to be a less-parasitic partner in development and stabilization.
Fab/MONEY – ON FIRE
A government that keeps spending in a war that makes no sense while people at home are threatened by new kinds of domestic wars, in form of hunger, unemployment, lack of healthcare, etc. has no credibility, no moral standing, no legitimacy to keep going.
But we won’t overthrow the government with violence but with accountability. The energy is there, now it has to be channeled in one new idea.
Can you lead?
1. You will receive a body. You may like it or hate it, but it will be yours for the entire period this time around.
2. You will learn lessons. You are enrolled in a full-time informal school called life. Each day in this school you will have the opportunity to learn lessons. You may like the lessons or think them irrelevant and stupid.
3. There are no mistakes, only lessons.Â Growth is a process of trial and error and experimentation. The “failed” experiments are as much a part of the process as the experiment that ultimately “works.”
4. A lesson is repeated until learned. A lesson will be presented to you in various forms until you have learned it. When you have learned it, you may go to the next lesson.
5. Learning does not end. There is no part of life that does not contain its lessons. If you are alive, there are lessons to be learned.
6. “There” is no better than “here.” When your “there” has become a “here,” you will simply obtain another “there” that will again look better than “here.”
7. Others are merely mirrors of you. You cannot love or hate something about another person unless it reflects to you something you love or hate about yourself.
8. What you make of your life is up to you. You have all the tools and resources you need. What you do with them is up to you. The choice is yours.
9. Your answers lie inside you. The answers to life’s questions lie inside you. All you need to do is look, listen, and trust.
10. You will forget all of this.
The British monarch has managed to increase her wealth from £300 million early in her 60-year reign to £17 billion at present thanks to investments in arms firms that produce uranium used in depleted uranium (DU) shells, including Rio Tinto Zinc. DU shells are notorious for their ability to pierce armor and kill targets due to their deadly radioactive features.
The video cites the American nuclear radiation expert Jay M. Gould as saying in his 1996 book titled “The Enemy Within: the High Cost of Living Near Nuclear Reactors” that the British “royal” family, especially the Queen herself, privately own investments in uranium holding worth some £4 billion through Rio Tinto Zinc.
The mining company, originally named Rio Tinto Mines, was allegedly created for the British “royal” family in the late 1950’s by Ronald Walter Rowland, the Queen’s “buccaneer”.
The video argues that the Queen and other “royals” have been investing in the death trade of depleted uranium globally with little ethical concerns for the consequences of their profiteering.
DU weapons were first used by the US military during the first Persian Gulf War against Iraq in 1991.
The US Defense Ministry estimated that between 315 and 350 tons of DU bombs, shells and bullets were fired during the conflict
There are allegations that American and British troops used more than five times as many such weapons as the total number used in the 1991 war in Iraq. The US has confirmed the use of depleted uranium in both wars but refuses to disclose the scale of the use.
Fab/War – Queen
Now Back in the day and even still now certain mobsters would come to your business and say If you want to run a business here then you have to pay a percentage to work in their neighborhoods. usually at 10-20 % weekly.
Now lets look at how the IRS works, you go and get a job, in order for you to work for that company you have to pay a tax to the IRS just to be able to legally work, and based on your location and amount you make you may pay anywhere from 21% to 37% in taxes, unless you are a 1099 worker under contract then you have to pay your taxes at the end of the year.
Can you say Extortion? yes I called it just that….. it is plain and simple extortion.
The only difference is the IRS uses the color of law to extort Americans out of their money.
The Mob will threaten Bodily harm if you do not pay the extortion money. They may in some cases Break a leg, take your place of business and everything you own, and or just make you disappear.
Well the IRS in the same fashion will take your Property, seize all of your assets, seize your accounts and all of your belongings and make you disappear in a prison.
So lets define Extortion:
Unlawful exaction of money or property through intimidation or undue exercise of authority. It may include threats of physical harm, criminal prosecution, or public exposure. Some forms of threat, especially those made in writing, are occasionally singled out for separate statutory treatment as blackmail.
the act or practice of extorting especially money or other property; especially : the offense committed by an official engaging in such practice.
Illegal use of one’s official position or powers to obtain property, funds, or patronage.
An excessive or exorbitant charge.
You get the point.
Here’s how you can break this down. The World Bank AKA the Godfather the BOSS.
Lets start with the World Bank, The God Father so to speak the Function of the World Bank is an international financial institution that provides loans to developing countries for capital programs.
All its decisions must be guided by a commitment to the promotion of foreign investment and international trade and to the facilitation of capital investment.
The World Bank comprises two institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA).
The Function of The IMF ( International Monetary Fund) The Under Boss so to speak.
IMF performs the following functions.
(i) Providing short terms credit to member countries for meeting temporary difficulties due to adverse balance of payments.
(ii) Reconciling conflicting claims of member countries.
(iii) Providing a reservoir of currencies of member-countries and enabling members to borrow on another’s currency.
(iv) Promoting orderly adjustment of exchange rates.
(v) Advising member countries on economic, monetary and technical matters.
Now lets look at the Federal Reserve. The Capo so to speak:
1) Conducting the nation’s monetary policy by influencing the monetary and credit conditions in the economy in pursuit of maximum employment, stable prices, and moderate long-term interest rates
2) Supervising and regulating banking institutions to ensure the safety and soundness of the nation’s banking and financial system and to protect the credit rights of consumers
3) Maintaining the stability of the financial system and containing systemic risk that may arise in financial markets
4) Providing financial services to depository institutions, the U.S. government, and foreign official institutions, including playing a major role in operating the nation’s payments system.
Now lets look at the IRS AKA The Enforcers/Soldiers
The IRS are the enforcers to make sure you pay up or pay taxes.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the revenue service of the United States federal government. The agency is a bureau of the Department of the Treasury, and is under the immediate direction of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue. The IRS is responsible for collecting taxes and the interpretation and enforcement of the Internal Revenue Code.
Are you liking your Gangster Bankster Government.
Get the Point!
Aren’t you tired of Being Pimped???
Fab/MONEY – GARGOYLE