Begun in October 2001, the U.S. war in Afghanistan is now 11 years old — the longest war in U.S. history.
As of October 17, 2012, there have been 2,012 U.S. military casualties in the war in Afghanistan and additional 118 fatalities in the broader Operation Enduring Freedom outside Afghanistan. 1,679 of these casualties inside Afghanistan have been the result of hostile action. 17,790 American servicemembers have been wounded in action during the war. In addition there are 1,173 U.S. civilian contractor fatalities. [Wikipedia]
The news article below was published almost 10 months ago but I just discovered it. I hope Gov. Romney brings this up in tonight’s debate.
See also our Terry’s post “Let ‘em Win or Bring ‘em Home”.
Florian Neuhof – The National – Dec 28, 2011
China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) has won the right to develop Afghanistan’s first oilfield, as the world’s second-biggest consumer of hydrocarbons extends the frontier of its quest for raw materials.
The state-owned CNPC is to sign the agreement today to develop three blocks in Afghanistan’s Amu Darya Basin after outbidding international rivals in an auction and proposing to build a refinery.
The deal makes China the largest foreign investor in Afghanistan, after Metallurgical Corporation of China in 2007 won the rights to develop the biggest Afghan copper deposit. CNPC will work in a joint venture with Afghan Oil and Gas Company. “The deal was supported and approved by President Hamid Karzai’s cabinet [on Monday],” Jawad Omar, a spokesman for the mines ministry, told Bloomberg News yesterday.
Afghan officials hope that production will commence within a year, as pledged by CNPC, and that the blocks live up to estimates by the US Geological Survey, which estimated the reserves to be as much as 80 million barrels. “Eventual investments in the Amu Darya Basin are expected to be in the hundreds of millions of dollars, and will spur improvements in roads and other infrastructure,” said Wahidullah Shahrani, Afghanistan’s minister of mines.
Northern Afghanistan could hold more than 1.6 billion barrels of crude, 16 trillion cubic feet of natural gas and 500 million barrels of natural gas liquids, he said. The next oilfield auction will be held in February, Abdul Jalil Jumriany, the policy director at the mines ministry, said in September.