It was the oil all along — naturally

Bill Moyers & Michael Winship, Truthout

Oh, no, they told us, Iraq isn’t a war about oil. That’s cynical and simplistic, they said. It’s about terror and al-Qaeda and toppling a dictator and spreading democracy and protecting ourselves from weapons of mass destruction. But one by one, these concocted rationales went up in smoke, fire and ashes. And now the bottom line turns out to be … the bottom line. It is about oil.

Alan Greenspan said so last fall. The former chairman of the Federal Reserve, safely out of office, confessed in his memoir, “Everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil.” He elaborated in an interview with The Washington Post’s Bob Woodward, “If Saddam Hussein had been head of Iraq and there was no oil under those sands, our response to him would not have been as strong as it was in the first Gulf War.”

Remember, also, that soon after the invasion, Donald Rumsfeld’s deputy, Paul Wolfowitz, told the press that war was our only strategic choice. “We had virtually no economic options with Iraq,” he explained, “because the country floats on a sea of oil.”

Shades of Daniel Plainview, the monstrous petroleum tycoon in the movie, “There Will Be Blood.” Half-mad, he exclaims, “There’s a whole ocean of oil under our feet!” then adds, “No one can get at it except for me!”

No wonder American troops only guarded the Ministries of Oil and the Interior in Baghdad, even as looters pillaged museums of their priceless antiquities. They were making sure no one could get at the oil except … guess who?

Here’s a recent headline in The New York Times: “Deals With Iraq Are Set to Bring Oil Giants Back.” Read on: “Four western companies are in the final stages of negotiations this month on contracts that will return them to Iraq, 36 years after losing their oil concession to nationalization as Saddam Hussein rose to power.”

There you have it. After a long exile, Exxon Mobil, Shell, Total and BP are back in Iraq. And on the wings of no-bid contracts – that’s right, sweetheart deals like those given Halliburton, KBR and Blackwater. The kind of deals you get only if you have friends in high places. And these war profiteers have friends in very high places.  Keep reading→

Imagine that….

The war in Iraq was about the oil all along.  Not because the terrorists attacked us.  Not because Saddam had weapons of mass destruction.  Not because the Iraqi people needed freeing.  Not because it’s our manifest destiny to spread democracy across the world.  None of that shit.

It’s a fact:  IT WAS THE OIL, STUPID.

And it will be the same for Iran.

Hey, if anyone stops by to read this post, and still supports this war and/or George W. Bush, I’d like to hear your story.

Oil Prices Likely to Hit $150 to $170 Per Barrel

These are the prices as estimated by OPEC President Chakib Khelil according to an interview he gave Thursday to Reuters.

Khelil said he doubted prices would climb as high as $200.

“I think that the devaluation of the dollar against the euro, if everything goes as I think it will, will be of the order of perhaps 1-2 percent and this will probably generate an $8 rise in the price of oil,” he said.

The head of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, said it had been clearly established that speculation was impacting markets.

“It’s not a question, but a certainty. The problem is the extent of that speculation on the market,” he said, adding that the effect of the subprime crisis in the United States had affected oil markets.

Asked what the main factor behind the rise in prices had been, he replied: “I think it’s the devaluation of the dollar.”

Of course Iran sees things differently according to another article from Reuters.

The Revolutionary Guards said Iran would impose controls on shipping in the vital Gulf oil route if Iran was attacked and warned regional states of reprisals if they took part, a newspaper reported on Saturday.

Fear of an escalation in the standoff between the West and Iran, the world’s fourth largest oil producer, have been one factor propping up sky-high oil prices. Crude hit a record level on international markets near $143 a barrel on Friday.

Speculation about a possible attack on Iran because of its disputed nuclear ambitions has risen since a report this month said Israel had practiced such a strike, prompting increasingly tough talk of retaliation, if pushed, from Tehran.

President Bush takes no responsibility for high oil prices but the devaluation of the dollar is in large part a result of the money borrowed from China to fund the Iraq war and then there is his eagerness to attack Iran even though their nuclear capabilities have been debunked. His answer is more leases for the oil companies and Senator McCain agrees. It appears there are more immediate remedies.