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Rahasya Poe is an author, publisher, and has a tenacious appetite for the truth no matter

where it leads. In today’s world the truth hides in plain sight within the disinformation that is generated by the many organizations we have traditionally trusted. To watch his interviews with cutting-edge scientists and researchers visit You can contact Rahasya at

‘Gorilla Free’ Cell Phones? The True Cost of Technology


know the title sounds almost as if it’s the beginning of a sick joke, but it’s not. A mineral found in almost every piece of technology we use—computers, iPads, cell phones, and so on—is called columbite-tantalite, coltan for short. When refined, coltan becomes a heat- resistant powder, metallic tantalum, that has unique properties for storing an electrical charge.

In a recent report from the United Nations it was shown that the militia involved in the local civil wars in the Democratic Republic of the Congo make their money mining coltan. An example of the money being made would be that of the nearby Rwanda army, which made more than $250 million in less than 18 months by simply playing the middleman in selling it. Then there are the military forces of Uganda and Burundi who are also implicated in smuggling coltan out of

It is the environmental

degradation that directly affects the gorilla population. Often, if hungry miners come across a gorilla they kill it for the “bush meat” because they make less than $10 per month. In Kahuzi Biega National Park the mountain gorilla population has been cut in half, from 258 to 125 as the ground is cleared to make mining easier.

In the same way that the movie

the Congo for resale in Belgium. The enormous amounts of profit that go back into the rebel groups are obvious, but there’s also the aspect of child labor, human smuggling, and environmental degradation.

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Blood Diamonds caused a revolution in the way diamond wholesalers bought and sold diamonds, we can also change the way coltan is mined and sold by putting the light of consciousness on it. American-based Kemet, the world’s largest maker of tantalum capacitors, has asked its suppliers to certify that their coltan ore does not come from the Democratic Republic of Congo or from neighboring countries. Such moves could lead to the marketing of “gorilla safe”

Joyce Bippus

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