For those who will be buying the new Verizon iPhone, here’s an account of what your addiction to electronic gadgets causes in the Congo.

Two articles caught my attention yesterday while I waited for the rain to subside in Tarpon Springs, Florida.
One had to do with “the rape capital” of the world and the other about the “pink pill” for women who have lost their sexual drive. I felt compelled to comment on the latter after Natasha Singer in her article Blue Pill. Pink Pill. Thrill Pill. Chill Pill, asked, why are they “seeking to ‘fix’ women when a lack of desire is often a side effect of another malady: the “men don’t know how to please their partners’ disease? (There’s no pill for that..)” I bit my tongue and instead decided to write yet again about the atrocities happening in the Congo.

Do you know how much we are contributing to a barbaric war raging in Congo? In this conflict, Nicholas Kristof says he’s “seen women who have been mutilated, children who have been forced to eat their parent’s flesh, girls who have been subjected to rapes that destroyed their insides.”

We are responsible indirectly for such atrocities because of our insatiable demand for the latest electronic gadgets. We are so proud to display our new smartphones, laptops, and, digital cameras which are “built from minerals that appear to be fueling mass slaughter and rape in Congo.” These “blood minerals”, are being used by electronic manufacturers such as Intel, Apple, and Research in Motion without caring that “warlords finance their predations in part through the sale of mineral ore containing tantalum, tungsten, tin and gold.”

Grass roots campaigns using Facebook and Yahoo, to pressure companies from using these “conflict minerals” have harassed companies such as Apple, “to lean on their suppliers and ensure the use of tantalum from Australia instead of that which is being peddled by the Congolese militia.”

Start spreading the word at

This article was written with information from Death by gadget, an article written by Nicholas Kristof which appeared in Sunday’s edition of the St. Petersburg Times on Sunday, July 4, 2010