1. UNOCAL CHEVRON
In Congressional testimony in 1998, John J. Maresca, vice president of international relations for the oil company UNOCAL told the committee plainly. “It's [the oil pipeline] not going to be built until there is a single Afghan government.
Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India or TAPI signed a Gas Pipeline Framework Agreement to build a U.S.-backed $7.6 billion pipeline. It would, of course, bypass Iran and new energy giant Russia, carrying Turkmeni natural gas and oil to Pakistan and India. The construction is slated to begin in 2010. The Taliban represents the problem for this renewed plan. Meanwhile US taxpayers are going without healthcare in lieu of the defense appropriations for what will be a billion dollar annual payday for international corporations and foreign governments. This was a Bill Clinton project originally discussed in the mid 1990's.
Given the fact that a third of the combined legal and illegal Afghan economy is based on the illegal opium industry, counter-narcotics policy is currently one of the most important elements of domestic politics. Despite law enforcement measures with a dominant focus on crop eradication programs, Afghan opium production has doubled in just two years. This has shown that currently there is no correlation between poppy crop eradication and the level of poppy cultivation or opium production. The reason for this is the underlying economic nature of the opium problem. Poverty and structural employment are the main reason for 3.3 million Afghans' full dependence on poppies.
Poppy crop eradication could even have damaging side-effects for Afghanistan's process of stabilization and reconstruction. Director of policy research for the Senlis Council, Jorrit Kamminga, says:
- the poppy eradication campaign has been ineffective, counterproductive and could well give the Taliban the decisive advantage in their struggle for the hearts and minds of the Afghan people.
5. WOT and US DOMESTIC SPYING [FISA]
Don't blame Obama. If he were to attempt a change in course here he would have the majority of the World Order Committee to contend with.