From The Congo – with love.
Posted by Exile on August 6, 2006
Sixty-one years ago today an american aircraft, stripped of its own armaments and flying at extreme altitude, dropped a single bomb over Japan. It landed on Hiroshima and over one hundred and forty thousand people died. The age of the atom bomb had begun.
The uranium that had been used to refine the plutonium which worked as the explosive fissionable material in that bomb came, perhaps surprisingly, from Africa. In fact it came from a region in the Congo called Shinkolobwe in the Katanga province, a resource rich mining area where copper, cobalt and other minerals are to be found in huge quantities. These minerals have also been dug up to help finance some of the warfare that has plagued the congo for years and the area itself is high on everyone’s list of desirable property. The mine which produced the uranium for the american bomb has officially been closed and secured since 1961, when the authorities declared it unsafe and the mine was sealed and concreted over. In 1999 the congolese sought help and expertise from North Korea to re-open the mine.
Most of the mining done there now is anarchistic and illegal.
The main export lines to the coast go through Tanzania and there is a healthy traffic of minerals through that land to the outside world. Tanzanian customs officials are used to dealing with this and regularly, if not frequently, inspect the ore that comes through their country. Some of the materials going through Tanzania are, effectively, being smuggled to other lands.
What is worrying about this? Well, one of the destinations for some of the illicit transport is a port called Bandar Abbas. It is in Iran.
Now, you may ask, what has all this interesting geography and history got to do with us? Although the quicker ones among us will have worked it out by now.
Uranium from the Congo is being smuggled directly to Iran in shipments of minerals that have their final destination in the former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan.
Tanzanian customs have discovered at least three shipments going to Iran which, acording to the manifests, are for final delivery in Kazakhstan, containing uranium disguised as coltan, a rare mineral used to make chips in mobile telephones.
How many went unnoticed? The Iranians now have a direct source of raw uranium.
August 1945, was a point of no return for the world. It would never be the same afterwards. Another bomb was yet to fall, and did fall, on Nagasaki. Marking the end of the second world war but maybe laying the foundations for the third. The cold war followed and we took fifty years to end the nuclear stand-off that ensued after Russia announced it had acquired the technology necessary to make nuclear weapons.
And today, evil men in Iran are illicitly gathering the fuel to make more of these weapons of incredible destruction while we stand idly by and watch them, knowing what is happening and doing nothing. And they have the technology already.
World war three is coming. The question is, will it be heralded in by a nuclear bomb just as world war two was heralded out? Or will we have the
balls strength of will and determination to stop it?
We only have a limited time to do something.
American readers might want to read this. I found it more or less by accident. It is frightening.