An Analysis of how we got into the Mess of Afghanistan

The "Soviet Union" collapsed in December 1991, allowing the people in their previously held Caspian Sea area to form independent nations, with each one of them hungry for income. Since all of these new countries sat atop an enormous oil cache, our US and other countries were more than interested in lending them a hand. By 1995, several international oil giants decided to develop a pipeline from Turkmenistan through Afghanistan to the Arabian Sea ports in Pakistan. By 1997, Taliban representatives were repeatedly flown to Unical's corporate headquarters in Sugarland, Texas, and to Washington, DC, where they discussed the project with Unocal and Clinton administration representatives. Since the Taliban failed to accept the "kind offer" presented by our government, and with civil unrest in Afghanistan, the project was put on hold. This prompted John Mareska, then VP of International Relations for Unocal Oil, to testify before the US House of Representatives in February 1998, stating that the Taliban government should be removed and replaced by a government acceptable to the US government, as well as the Unocal corporation. During the following year, the Taliban formally said NO to the pipeline deal, instead signing an agreement with Turkmenistan and Pakistan. The rest, as they say, is history.

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