Future Of Iraq: The SpOILs Of War

Fact: They would not have been able to do this without 9/11. - Jon

Future Of Iraq: The SpOILs Of War
How the West will make a killing on Iraqi oil riches

Source: news.independent.co.uk

By Danny Fortson, Andrew Murray-Watson and Tim Webb
Published: 07 January 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. But it will operate through "production-sharing agreements" (or PSAs) which are highly unusual in the Middle East, where the oil industry in Saudi Arabia and Iran, the world's two largest producers, is state controlled.

Opponents say Iraq, where oil accounts for 95 per cent of the economy, is being forced to surrender an unacceptable degree of sovereignty.

Proposing the parliamentary motion for war in 2003, Tony Blair denied the "false claim" that "we want to seize" Iraq's oil revenues. He said the money should be put into a trust fund, run by the UN, for the Iraqis, but the idea came to nothing. The same year Colin Powell, then Secretary of State, said: "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."

Supporters say the provision allowing oil companies to take up to 75 per cent of the profits will last until they have recouped initial drilling costs. After that, they would collect about 20 per cent of all profits, according to industry sources in Iraq. But that is twice the industry average for such deals.

Greg Muttitt, a researcher for Platform, a human rights and environmental group which monitors the oil industry, said Iraq was being asked to pay an enormous price over the next 30 years for its present instability. "They would lose out massively," he said, "because they don't have the capacity at the moment to strike a good deal."

Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister, Barham Salih, who chairs the country's oil committee, is expected to unveil the legislation as early as today. "It is a redrawing of the whole Iraqi oil industry [to] a modern standard," said Khaled Salih, spokesman for the Kurdish Regional Government, a party to the negotiations. The Iraqi government hopes to have the law on the books by March.

Several major oil companies are said to have sent teams into the country in recent months to lobby for deals ahead of the law, though the big names are considered unlikely to invest until the violence in Iraq abates.

James Paul, executive director at the Global Policy Forum, the international government watchdog, said: "It is not an exaggeration to say that the overwhelming majority of the population would be opposed to this. To do it anyway, with minimal discussion within the [Iraqi] parliament is really just pouring more oil on the fire."

Vince Cable, the Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesman and a former chief economist at Shell, said it was crucial that any deal would guarantee funds for rebuilding Iraq. "It is absolutely vital that the revenue from the oil industry goes into Iraqi development and is seen to do so," he said. "Although it does make sense to collaborate with foreign investors, it is very important the terms are seen to be fair."

Now Bush Co. has everyone fighting the "surge" instead of

fighting to end the war & bring the troops home!

Interesting Saddam = to Harvey Oswald picture:

god, how I hate the oil companies

and the humans who have spawned our endless murdering and war.

"There are none so hoplessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free" (Goethe)..... a paraphrase from V: Cast aside the illusions. Only when you are finally hopeless can you truly be free.

I'm reminded of...

The Energy Task Force that was headed by Vice President Richard Cheney that took place months before 9/11, and included Oil Execs that said they weren't there, and that discussed how best to use Iraq's Oil Fields.

"We've been offered a unique opportunity and we must not let this moment pass."

— George W. Bush - State Of The Union Address - January 29th, 2002

Credit Creation is the key

Oil? Yes, great stuff, but much bigger than oil is the business in OIL IN THE FUTURE.

I reckon it all works like this:

Governments allow private banks to create money, create credit, fuel the money supply, invent money out of thin air, for buying land, mortgages, private property that is CAN BE TRADED, hence PUBLIC (or state-) OWNERSHIP is so hated and big money is spent to propagandize against COMMON ONWERSHIP.

So, Saddam had to go. But that's not the real story. The real story is DERIVATIVES, or financial INSTRUMENTS and CRAZY BETS... these "instruments" have allowed the money supply to reach ASTRONOMICAL SPHERES... and now the backing of these gigantic "lNVENTED MONEY" needs to be created, or the money (and its power) with vanish into the thin air it came from.

OF course IRAQs oil reserves are a wonderful collateral. If only they can be privatised, so that they can be traded and BET AGAINST (money can be created against it).

Wouldn't it be wonderful if we had a world that "responded to need" rather than "accumulated wealth"?

Check out this talk... it will open your eyes,
(unless you are EVANGELIC-CHRISTIAN immunized, or depend on the money system)

Happy New Year!


PS. I forgot to say: PRIVATE OWNERSHIP is evil. Not your personal things, your house, your garden ... I mean ABSENTEE OWNERSHIP... must be outlawed..