Notice how it says the U.S. discovered this like it was our own country.
The article reads in part:
The United States has discovered nearly $1 trillion in untapped mineral deposits in Afghanistan, far beyond any previously known reserves and enough to fundamentally alter the Afghan economy and perhaps the Afghan war itself, according to senior American government officials.
The previously unknown deposits — including huge veins of iron, copper, cobalt, gold and critical industrial metals like lithium — are so big and include so many minerals that are essential to modern industry that Afghanistan could eventually be transformed into one of the most important mining centers in the world, the United States officials believe.
My take is that the U.S. knew about these reserves all along but has just now gone public with it in order to deal with the growing public opposition to the war in Afghanistan. The fact that the article also appears just days before the House of Representatives votes on another $33 billion war supplemental is no coincidence.