by Eric Margolis
December 6, 2001


Here's an interesting article by someone called Eric Margolis, who,
according to his biography on the "Foreign Correspondent" website, is a
highly credentialed Canadian newsperson. Don't hold that against him,

Margolis says that the takeover of Afghanistan by the Northern Alliance
is a defeat for the United State, because Russia is behind the Northern
Alliance. It has always struck me as odd that the two areas in which the
United States has interfered most egregiously in the last ten years, the 
Balkans and now Afghanistan, lie on proposed oil pipeline routes. The U.S. 
oil company Unocal has, for some time, wanted to lay a pipeline through
Afghanistan and Pakistan to transport oil from the Caspian Sea fields --
potentially the richest new source of oil in the world. (See Stephen J. 
Sniegoski, "Keep your eyes on the Caspian, or, None dare call it 
imperialism," The Last Ditch, September 22, 1997 (whole number 18), 
pp. 1, 19-29. ---Editor)

> The US attacked Afghanistan to exact revenge for the 11 Sept attacks on 
> America. But it quickly occurred to former oil men George Bush and Dick 
> Cheney that retribution against Taliban and Osama bin Laden offered a 
> golden opportunity to expand American geopolitical influence into South 
> and Central Asia, scene of the world's latest gold rush, the Caspian 
> Basin oil boom.

Margolis says that Bush and his gang got themselves hornswoggled when
they supported the Northern Alliance, because the Alliance is a creature
of the Russians. Their ascendance will mean Russian control of the
region; and there go all those fat oil profits to the filthy Russkies.

> In a dazzling coup, Russian leader Vladimir Putin stole a march on the 
> Bush Administration, which was so busy trying to tear apart Afghanistan 
> to find bin Laden it failed to notice the Russians were taking over half 
> the country.
> The wily Russians achieved this victory through their proxy Afghan 
> force, the Northern Alliance. Moscow, which has sustained the Alliance 
> since 1990, re-armed it after 11 Sept with new tanks, armored vehicles, 
> artillery, helicopters, and trucks. The Alliances two military leaders, 
> Gen Rashid Dostam and Gen Muhammed Fahim, were stalwarts of the old 
> communist regime with close links to KGB.
> Putin put Chief of the Russian General Staff, Col. Gen. Viktor Kvashnin, 
> and the deputy director of KGB, in charge of the Alliance. During the 
> Balkan fighting in 1999, the hard-charging Kvashnin outfoxed the US by 
> seizing Prishtinas airfield, thus assuring a permanent Russian role in 
> Kosovo.
> Now, he's done it again. To the fury of Washington and Islamabad, in a 
> coup de main, Kvashnin rushed the Northern Alliance into Kabul, in 
> direct contravention of Bush's dictates. The Alliance is now 
> Afghanistan's dominant force, and, heedless of multi-party political 
> talks in Germany this week, styles itself the new 'lawful government,' 
> a claim fully backed by Moscow.

If Mr. Margolis is right, Emperor Bush II is getting jerked around like 
a toy poodle on a matron's leash, both by Putin and by Israeli Prime 
Minister Ariel Sharon (see The Oriental wiliness of Ariel Sharon). It's 
beginning to look as if all the lib-lefties were right when they 
portrayed Bush as a bumbling fool. I hate it when that happens.

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