Tuesday, January 09, 2007

The SpOILs of War

Colin Powell, 2003:
"It cost a great deal of money to prosecute this war. But the oil of the Iraqi people belongs to the Iraqi people; it is their wealth, it will be used for their benefit. So we did not do it for oil."

London's Independent, 2007:

Iraq's massive oil reserves, the third-largest in the world, are about to be thrown open for large-scale exploitation by Western oil companies under a controversial law which is expected to come before the Iraqi parliament within days.

The US government has been involved in drawing up the law, a draft of which has been seen by The Independent on Sunday. It would give big oil companies such as BP, Shell and Exxon 30-year contracts to extract Iraqi crude and allow the first large-scale operation of foreign oil interests in the country since the industry was nationalised in 1972.

The huge potential prizes for Western firms will give ammunition to critics who say the Iraq war was fought for oil. They point to statements such as one from Vice-President Dick Cheney, who said in 1999, while he was still chief executive of the oil services company Halliburton, that the world would need an additional 50 million barrels of oil a day by 2010. "So where is the oil going to come from?... The Middle East, with two-thirds of the world's oil and the lowest cost, is still where the prize ultimately lies," he said.

Oil industry executives and analysts say the law, which would permit Western companies to pocket up to three-quarters of profits in the early years, is the only way to get Iraq's oil industry back on its feet after years of sanctions, war and loss of expertise.


Anonymous said...

I wish I could say I was surprised but I'm not. The current Thuggerment....oops, I meant Government seems hell bent on throwing away the lives of its soldiers for oil and trying to call it some kind of fight for democracy.

Paul said...

And anyone thinks it will be any different if the Democratic candidate for President wins? No - those contracts, if awarded by then, will stay in place and not be modified.

Another reason I liked Colin Powell -

Okay - I'll introduce another name that is anathema to many here - but I heard this from the source, not a commentator's blog. Sen Kerry was on O'Reilly a few months back, was discussing Middle East and oil. O'Reilly said "you (Congress and the Executive) have blown it for 30 years, going back to Carter, with no policy for energy independence from the Middle East. Why do any of you guys deserve to get voted back in?" Sen Kerry said, if effect, "you're right."

So nothing meaningful from this administration about energy independence - and I'll wager, if the 100-hour agenda is an indicator, we'll hear nothing from this Congress. Or the next President, Democrat or Republican.

Hamilton said...

We would've heard something about it from a President Gore. What a mistake the Supreme Court made when they selected the wrong guy.

Tiffany said...

For the record, I believe Colin Powell meant what he said in 2003, and that's just one of many reasons he no longer works for this Administration.

K.C. said...

Powell was hopelessly naive about the Bushes. What a disappointment.