Ashraf Ghani Empowerment Strategy
Prepared by Congressman Curt Weldon (1987-2007)
Afghanistan is a nation of people who have been abused and maligned from outside forces for centuries for the selfish goals and objectives of the aggressors. A new opportunity for independence, self-governance and dignity for every person is now achievable. The United States and the World are ready to support this great nation and its people in their quest for stability for every man, woman and child. The basic premise of this plan is that every community, every family and every person is entitled to security – physical security, economic security, health security, education security and the security to practice religious beliefs without outside interference and malicious manipulation.
To lead this effort, internal leadership is absolutely critical. The following initiatives are proposed to support the vision and bold principles and plans of Ahraf Ghani for a new Afghanistan. All of the items listed below would be implemented through Millennium Energy World Corporation and personally led by Congressman Curt Weldon.
Short Term –
Community Empowerment – Working through established local empowerment non-profits, such as Al Santoli’s Asia America Initiative and Greg Mortenson’s Central Asia Institute, strategic focus will center on grass roots community based efforts to establish health care outreach centers, schools for children of all ages, agriculture based economic programs and economic empowerment models in villages and communities throughout the country. Because Al Santoli also operates a for-profit US Disabled Veterans Company (highest DOD priority) contracts obtained through US procurement will fund grass-roots programs in health care, education and job creation. If desired, an outreach effort will be made to coordinate efforts with the Gadhaffi International Foundation, of which Weldon is an advisor.
Agriculture Growth Initiative – Working through the Asia America Initiative, a research effort will be undertaken with US funds to analyze Afghan growing conditions (soil, climate, terrain, etc) to develop a comprehensive plan to enhance and increase food production to maximize food availability and maximize profits for local farmers. Team members for this initiative can include Orbitec (NASA funded food growth research company), Rienzi International (Italian food manufacturer/distributor) and others who have been involved in similar efforts in areas of the world where successful agricultural efforts have been hampered by arid climate, difficult terrain and challenging conditions.
Essential Commodity Availability – Working with one of the largest UN Air-lift supply companies in the world as well as in-country NGO’s and the US military, efforts will be undertaken to establish secure logistics corridors for the distribution of food and pure water. A plan will be developed to work with AID to support its efforts in providing self-help to individual Afghan communities.
Secure Elections – Proposals have been developed to provide Afghanistan officials with the most optimum technology to guarantee the integrity of polling places for the Afghan people to vote in the 2009 election process. Technologies include secure portable walled systems that can deflect all sniper fire and IED’s, sensing technology that can be used to detect dangerous weapons, communications systems that can aide election officials as well as self-contained fire suppression systems that can be used to extinguish fires and /or explosions that may threaten polling places or villages.
Enhanced in-country Air-lift – Working with a well-established UN air-lift contractor, a network of emergency logistics and medical supply operations will be established in-country to assist non-military aspects of Afghanistan domestic operations. Limited air-lift opportunities will be made available to Ashraf Ghani on a pro bono basis until established funding mechanisms are solidified.
Ashraf Ghani Empowerment Conference – An International Conference will be organized and conducted under the leadership of Ashraf Ghani for the purpose of bringing selected Afghan stakeholders and NGO’s together for the purpose of accomplishing the following –
- Assess NGO involvement, success and needs
- Identify critical shortfalls in delivery services
- Identify critical local Afghan national leaders in key services
- Establish a working group of Afghan Advisors
- Establish a working group of NGO Leaders for coordination
- Establish US based private Afghan support for the above
Strategic Consultation Group – Weldon will assemble a low-key but extremely competent Team to provide ongoing advice and consultation to Ashraf Ghani and his Political Team. Team Members may include such notables as –
- US Ambassador Steve Minikes (US OSCE Ambassador to 55 nations)
- Former Presidential Chief of Staff John Sununu
- Former Republican Leader Bob Walker
- Biden’s Friend and First Legislative Director Brian Ettinger
- International Statesperson and Hillary friend Esther Coopersmith
- Former US NATO Deputy Secretary Bruce Weinrod
- Retired senior Military Officers as needed
Long Term –
Afghanistan “New Time – New Beginning” Document – Working with Ahsraf Ghani, US and Foreign Officials, a comprehensive and strategic document will be developed to assess outside assistance in key target areas and to develop a series of strategic recommendations for enhanced relationships all focused on the long term stability of the Afghan people. The Model Document will be patterned after similar documents prepared by Members of the US Congress for other countries (The Russian Example, developed by Weldon, is attached). Key Target Areas suggested but not limited to the following include-
- Health Care
- Natural Resources/Environment
- Economic Development
- Local Governance
- Defense and Security
- Culture and Religion
- Science, Technology and Research
US Congress/Afghanistan Parliament Working Group – Modeled after similar relationships between the Congress and the Japanese Diet, European Parliament, Russian Duma, Ukraine Rada, German Bundestag and other inter-parliamentary working groups, a formal relationship will be developed between the Afghan Parliament and the US Congress. Leaders from major political parties from each side will organize bi-annual Parliamentary Exchanges as well as ongoing Staff Exchanges, Working Sessions and IT based instantaneous bi-lateral Capital to Capital Communications. From this working group will come suggestions for enhanced bi-lateral relations, specific programs, workshops and conferences and task forces to focus on specific initiatives.