Saturday, May 24, 2008

on Oil motive for Iraq War, are Dems in DC silent from cowardice, corruption, or cognitive impairment?

Greg Palast wrote a column about the 80 years of choking Iraq's oil output to keep prices high that that about two minutes of googling could verify. It is another brick in the pyramid of evidence that the Iraq War and impending Iran War are about keeping oil prices high rather than bringing them down. That's because the war is meant to benefit the oil companies, not the average American and certainly not the average Iraqi (who is dead).

Oil & Gas Journal said as much in 2002 when they worried that without a war against Iraq, Saddam would pump too much and drive prices down. A top oil exec admitted as much to Palast, and Bush sent assurances to Putin that a successful Iraq War would NOT result in lower gas prices.

And Bush is forcing such an exploitative oil law to ensure most of the profits go to big oil on Iraqis that the parliament won't pass it even as oil companies are offering members of parliament bribes into the millions.

You would think the Democrats would be shouting this from the roof tops and the Republicans would be scurrying like cockroaches back into their lobbying firms and corporate boardrooms. Instead, Democrats talk about the Iraq War in terms of the failure to fight the "War on Terror" or worse, how poorly Bush has executed the war (if only we had screwed the Iraqis more subtly). That message is muddled at best and only attractive when compared to the Republican sprint-to-Armageddon foreign policy.

I sent the following email to Palast to ask him what the hell was going with the supposed opposition party in DC:


In your column on redlining Iraq's oil production, you said Obama or at least his advisors should know about that bit of history, and that is probably true, but you would never know it from any of their published articles, interviews, or public statements.

Only a handful in the House of Representatives have talked honestly about the oil motive for the Iraq War or the Hydrocarbon Law machinations that are still going on. As far as I know, NO ONE in the senate has dealt honestly with this issue. (A few like Biden, Reid, and Feinstein have taken the time to lie though).

Is this because they are on or hope to be on the oil company dole? Are they afraid of being crushed by big oil if the cross them? Or are they just plain retarded?

My fear is that if the Democrats are not talking honestly about this, it means they plan to continue the same policies as Bush only with less bombastic propaganda.

The British parliament at least had a resolution that 100 MPs signed condemning their government coercing Iraqis on behalf of big oil.

Is our government so much more corrupt than theirs?


If he responds, I'll post that here. (and he has written me back before).

Here's excerpts of his article on redlining Iraq:
Obama’s Secret War Profiteering Tax
By Greg Palast for
New York, May 22, 2008.

In 1928, oil company chieftains (from Anglo-Persian Oil, now British Petroleum, from Standard Oil, now Exxon, and their Continental counterparts) were faced with a crisis: falling prices due to rising supplies of oil; the same crisis faced by their successors during the Clinton years, when oil traded at $22 a barrel.

The solution then, as now: stop the flow of oil, squeeze the market, raise the price. The method: put a red line around Iraq and declare that virtually all the oil under its sands would remain there, untapped. Their plan: choke supply, raise prices rise, boost profits. That was the program for 1928. For 2003. For 2008.

Again and again, year after year, the world price of oil has been boosted artificially by keeping a tight limit on Iraq’s oil output. Methods varied. The 1928 “Redline” agreement held, in various forms, for over three decades. It was replaced in 1959 by quotas imposed by President Eisenhower. Then Saudi Arabia and OPEC kept Iraq, capable of producing over 6 million barrels a day, capped at half that, given an export quota equal to Iran’s lower output.


It’s been a good war for Exxon and friends. Since George Bush began to beat the war-drum for an invasion of Iraq, the value of Exxon’s reserves has risen – are you ready for this? – by $2 trillion.

Obama’s war profiteering tax, or “oil windfall profits” tax, would equal just 20% of the industry’s charges in excess of $80 a barrel. It’s embarrassingly small actually, smaller than every windfall tax charged by every other nation. (Ecuador, for example, captures up to 99% of the higher earnings).


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