[..] Which brings us back to last week, when it was announced that United States’ researchers have found nearly $1 trillion in untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan, in the form of huge veins of iron, copper, cobalt, gold and critical industrial metals like lithium. Indeed, it was reported that Afghanistan may be the “Saudi Arabia of lithium,” an element that is essential to the production of high-efficiency batteries that our green world demands.
These discoveries can change everything. If we do it right, Afghanistan will become a wealthy, reliable ally, a nation that will grow rich and that will help us increase our riches. If we don’t, some other nation like Russia or China will step in to help the Afghans cash in on this find, which would be a tragedy after all the work we’ve done there and after so many Americans who given their lives there.
The worst case, of course, would be for the Taliban to win the war and to control such riches. That would be a disaster, one that we cannot afford to let occur, but that result would also be representative of the ongoing struggle between the jihadists medieval world and the modern world. [..]