Daniel Traub, Mongolia Today
Genghis Khan, the 13th century conqueror, created an empire that stretched from the Pacific to the Caspian Sea. He also introduced an alphabet and a common currency. But despite his status as legend, Khan’s burial site has always been a mystery. Now, however, we may be close to locating it in the remote Khentii mountains of northwestern Mongolia, where American researchers and Mongolian archeologists are working together to scan the 4,000-square-mile landscape.
What they’ll find there is a country in flux. Several winters of extremely cold temperatures—followed by arid summers—have stalled the incomes of livestock herders, who make up roughly 30 percent of all Mongolians. Tens of thousands of them have migrated to city slums in hope of finding work. On the flip side, Mongolia is estimated to hold a projected $1.3 trillion bounty of natural resources: gold, copper, and coal.