Trump administration moves forward with Afghanistan mining plan, despite risks – Middle East – Stripes

Here’s an important article from Stripes. It reports that President Donald Trump, who last week announced that he would be sending more troops to Afghanistan, believes the country’s estimated $1 trillion in mineral resources can be used to repay the United States for what it has spent there.

Source: Trump administration moves forward with Afghanistan mining plan, despite risks – Middle East – Stripes

Of course, the elephant in the room also means that developing the mineral wealth in Afghanistan and divert attention from opium. The US is experiencing an opioid crisis where the large cause of death for the under fifties is drug overdose.

Unfortunately, the Trump strategy seems high risk, so it would be interesting to speculate on risk mitigation options?


America is out of ideas in Afghanistan – POLITICO

Of the dozens of articles on Trump’s Afghanistan speech, the POLITICO article is probably one of the most critical. It concludes that only one thing was clear after President Trump’s vague speech and that was ‘Nobody knows what to do’.

Source: America is out of ideas in Afghanistan – POLITICO

Personally, I think the article is unnecessarily harsh.

I’m no lover of Trump but he’s right to highlight that premature evacuation creates opportunities for terrorists. For me, Obama’s foreign policy disasters have precipitated the current terrorist threat.

Trump is also right to question Pakistan’s role. Under Obama, Pakistan received billions of Dollars but exactly where the money went and the cost benefit analysis is far from clear.

Meanwhile, India’s media have seized on Trump citing India’s importance in solving the conflict in Afghanistan. He actually highlighted how India benefited from business in the US, so it’s time for India to repay. Others will question the wisdom of playing India against Pakistan.

Critically, the US military has prevailed with Trump, for now anyway, but there’s still evidence of Bannon’s ‘US first’ policy. It seems the US not longer wants the moral highground of exporting freedom and democracy.

So is Trump really a Neocon at heart?