This page shows the source for this entry, with WebCore formatting language tags and attributes highlighted.
<a href="http://www.alternet.org">Alternet</a> has an <a href="http://www.alternet.org/story.html?StoryID=11692">article on Kazakhstan</a>. Kazakhstan has two huge problems. One is crippling poverty and brutal winters in the mid-nineties that killed much of the population through malnutrition. The other is that: <span class="quote"><q>Geologists estimate that sitting beneath the wind-blown steppes of Kazakhstan are 50 billion barrels of oil --- by far the biggest untapped reserves in the world. (Saudi Arabia, currently the world's largest oil producer, is believed to have about 30 billion barrels remaining.)</q></span> The problem lies not in that, but in moving it out of Kazakhstan and into the hands of those that would pay dearly for it. The most logical plan: <span class="quote"><q>... is to extend Turkmenistan's existing system west to the Kazakh field on the Caspian and southeast to the Pakistani port of Karachi on the Arabian Sea. That project runs through Afghanistan. ... [In 1994], [i]mpressed by the ruthlessness and willingness of the then-emerging Taliban to cut a pipeline deal, the U.S. State Department and Pakistan's ISI intelligence service agreed to funnel arms and funding to the Taliban in their war against the ethnically Tajik Northern Alliance. As recently as 1999, U.S. taxpayers paid the entire annual salary of every single Taliban government official, all in the hopes of returning to the days of dollar-a-gallon gas.</q></span> Read <a href="http://www.alternet.org/story.html?StoryID=11692">the rest of the article.</a>