Corrupt officials overjoyed by Afghan mineral find
Grasping corporate executives, corrupt government officials and thuggish tribal warlords are celebrating the discovery of huge mineral deposits in war-torn Afghanistan, vowing to enrich themselves quickly at the expense of ordinary citizens.
“Dude, we’re partying like Lindsay Lohan,” said T. Furman Jessup, chairman of the gigantic mining conglomerate International Excavating Corp., in a phone call from corporate headquarters in Throckmorton, Texas. “The opportunities for corrupt profits are staggering.”
Popping champagne corks, tinkling glasses and gleeful whoops could be heard in the background.
The exultation, which extended throughout the corruption community on three continents, came after U.S. government spokesmen announced that rich veins of iron, copper, cobalt, gold and other key raw materials had been found in the conflict-ridden Asian nation.
Jessup said he was already negotiating with a corrupt son-in-law of corrupt Afghan President Hamid Karzai as well as corrupt tribal chieftains and corrupt leaders of the outlawed Taliban for “right-of-exploitation contracts,” as they are called in the world of international graft.
“I’m confident that not only will we amass untold wealth,” he predicted, “but also find a way to do significant environmental damage that will mar the ruggedly beautiful Afghan landscape for generations to come.”
Jessup added: “We haven’t seen illicit profit potential like this since the glory days of the Bush Administration.”
Another executive, Yardley M. Cantwell, vice president for chicanery and plunder for North American Ore & Metals, said that so far the bribery demands by the various rivals for power in Afghanistan were “predictably exorbitant” but he speculated that “our costs may rise even further as the bidding heats up. But that’s OK, we’ll still make a pile.”
Zemoun Keftah, a powerful Pashtun warlord in the mountainous Galabah area of southwestern Afghanistan, said he was looking forward to finally giving up the opium trade and instead concentrating on fleecing the foreign corporations that come to extract the minerals. “People don’t realize how labor intensive opium trafficking is,” he said. “My underlings must constantly travel by donkey to remote valleys and lean on farmers just to collect a few hundred million dollars. It’s exhausting. Now we’ll just sit back and wait for corporate checks to come by FedEx.”
A Pentagon official who requested anonymity said the massive mining operations needed to extract the minerals would have no effect on the U.S. war effort, which is expected to continue for the rest of the century, costing taxpayers an estimated $980 billion trillion. Asked if any of the profits from the mineral deposits might be used to defray these costs, he said, “Not a chance. They’re earmarked to go into the pockets of a handful of corrupt and powerful individuals.”