Why are We in Iraq and Afghanistan
First of all, this question would not have been posed half a century ago. Back then, we had fewer Liberals and Muslims in America, that is to say, fewer idiots, and so fewer silly questions.
Can you imagine anyone during WWII carrying signs asking why we are attacking Germany, a country that never attacked us directly? How about signs with "No Blood for Beer" as if America could not buy or produce any beer on its own, but had to get it from Germany or else?
Most uninformed individuals think that we went to Iraq for oil. Indeed, a common refrain found on blogs is "The war [in Iraq] and the occupation are all about the neocons desire to control Middle East oil."
As I wrote:
As for neocons desire to control middle east oil, isn't it cheaper just to buy it? Gold is more precious than oil, yet we didn't invade South Africa (which controls most of the world's gold supply) to CONTROL GOLD. When we need it - we buy it.
Starting a war to control oil only drives the price higher. You are rather naive. If the US wanted to control Arab oil, it would have invaded Israel and set up a Palestinian state. With no tensions in the middle east, oil would have dropped to $12 a barrel, about 4 bucks more than the cost of producing it.
That's how you control oil.
As for idiots of the Muslim kind, a commenter to my article Islam is the Fastest Growing Religion - Not gives us his twisted view of why we are in Iraq and Afghanistan: "you want what muslims have... and are murdering for it!"
First of all, Muslims have nothing that we can't buy elsewhere. As for oil, the majority of it is bought from non-Muslim countries: Canada, Colombia, Norway, the United Kingdom, Venezuela, Equatorial Guinea, and many other countries. "The diversity of the US oil supply makes it difficult to cut off the country's supply of oil altogether." [Link]
At present, we produce 40% of all the oil we need. We don't need to spend billions on a war to control oil, because if we want, we can exploit the oil we already have here in the states (1).
So unless Iraq is the only country left with oil, why waste one bullet on a Muslim to get his oil? Isn't it cheaper to simply buy it?
As for being in Afghanistan, certainly the country has no valuable assets other than donkey dung and opium. No person in his right mind would invade Afghanistan for its 'riches.'
Caption (ISAF Photo at top - by U.S. Air Force TSgt Laura K. Smith):
HERAT, Afghanistan--Afghan Border Police (ABP) members provide security during the processing of illegal narcotics which were seized during an ambush on 14 Dec 2008. This was the largest seizure to date by the 4th Brigade of the ABP.
LA Times, Oil boom brings jobs, money, hope to long-impoverished ND American Indian reservation
NEW TOWN, N.D. (AP) — An oil boom on American Indian land has brought jobs, millions of dollars and hope to long-impoverished tribal members who have struggled for more than a century on the million-acre Fort Berthold Indian Reservation.
In little more than a year, oil companies have put dozens of money-producing rigs on remote rolling prairie and sprawling badlands that are home to small cattle ranches and scattered settlements of modular housing. Although other tribes around the nation have oil interests, industry officials said none has likely experienced a recent windfall of this scale.
The reservation was the last area to be targeted by companies in the state's oil patch because of onerous federal requirements. But a 2008 tax agreement standardized the rules for oil drilling.