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Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by zimv20, Jul 30, 2003.
did the energy industry set foreign policy?
we are being totally suckered by the military industrial complex.
We spend $400 billion/year on the military NOT INCLUDING WARS!!!
more than NATO, Russia & China combined!!!
The GAO has labled the defence dept. the most financially mismanaged, ineffecient and wasteful department in the US govt.
They can not acount for trillions of dollars gone missing.
It's all about pork, not about a good military.
and for those that think the deficit is not a problem
enter how much you paid in federal income tax - not social security tax.
Click the button to see where it went
It seems rational to me that there are facilities one would not want to destroy during a war. To avoid such destruction, wouldn't one wish to know the exact locations?
I fail to understand the "problem".
for one, the meetings took place before 9/11.
Cheney's task force shouldn't be responsible for contingency plans for an invasion of Iraq. If it is making plans for the energy needs of the US it is interesting what their discussions about the oil fields of Iraq were all about. If, and this is a big "if", they were in discussions about the need to take control of these resouces, that would indeed be a "problem."
When Exxon is giving you battle maps and a nudge, something's wrong.
Did anyone else catch "Now with Bill Moyers" last Friday night? He interviewed Pentagon whistle-blower Chuck Spinney at length. Scary stuff, to say the least. The military-industrial complex that Eisenhower warned us about has truly come to pass, and then some (Spinney calls it the "military-industrial-congressional complex" because of the way the politics of pork relentlessly feeds the process of waste in the military budget). They apparently haven't posted the transcript of the interview just yet, but an overview of the segment can be found here.
Seems to me that part of the Pentagon deal is to know all that can be known about any country's infrastructure, of whatever sort. Among other things, it can prevent bombing another country's embassy, ala Serbia and the Chinese...
We've war-gamed a near-infinite number of improbabilities, including being attacked by Canada! I'd bet we tap the Exxons or whomever, for every country where there is the remotest possibility of our being involved in a conflict.
9/11 has jack-all to do with when anybody did such studies. They've been unending ever since the Pentagon got serious about war-gaming. Experts in "Games Theory" get some pretty serious salaries, I've noticed.
Or would you prefer WW II saturation bombing, addressed "To whom it may concern"? Would you think we just send the troops in, in just any old direction, on the off chance that Superior Firepower might just do something good for our side?
the documents were circulated to energy companies in meetings that were relevent to the dept. of energy, not the pentagon.
oh, i think i get what you're saying. implied is the notion that oil companies, who are not operating in iraq, have a better idea of the location of iraqi oil facilities than the US gov't, who has the CIA and satellites. if that's your scenario, you've got the information flowing in the wrong direction.
Oil company people work all over the world. I recently ran across a guy who came out of semi-retirement to work oil rigs in Syria, last year and the year before. If there's oil drilling or oil/gas pipeline construction, you're gonna find a bunch of folks from Texas and Louisiana on the job. Heck, who do you think found, explored and developed the mideast oilfields? Arabs?
Oil companies probably spend nearly as much as the CIA, on finding out all they can about what each other has found down below--and as much of that info as they can possibly steal from each other!
And given the western world's mutual inter-dependency on imported oil, you can sure bet that all Presidents and their folks work hand-in-glove with the various oil companies. Why else did Clinton go into Serbia? Answer: It's a major pipeline route from the underbelly of Russia, into central Europe.
It's not gonna change, either, until this country gets seriously into the nuke-plant business, along with wind power and fuel cells. One of the dumber things California has done is to build gas-turbine generating plants--at a time when we're running low on that source of hundreds of consumer products. (When push comes to shove in the dark, Californians don't believe CO2 has anything to do with Globular Worming--unless they're bitching at Bush. )
You still haven't made the connection.
We can understand why the oil companies would be able to help the Pentagon.
The question is: why were the oil companies giving the Energy Dept. -- which should have been doing things like finding solutions to the energy crises or just about anything except planning on what to do with the spoils of an invaded Iraq -- info on Iraqi oil fields unless the Dept. of Energy was going to use the info?
IOW, it's clear that this info was passed along not for military wargaming or strategy, but for the Dept of Energy to use in exploiting the loot we'd find in Iraq.
I make the connection; I just don't see any dark plot. Darned tootin' we're interested in Iraqi production. DOE tries to keep track of the amount of oil available from all fields in all areas. It is important to them to know if problems will develop from the condition of the equipment--as a for instance. Or, if there will be internal political problems, such as happened in Venezuela. I imagine the DOE folks are nervous as can be over the political stability of Saudi Arabia, what with the potential for problems of succession after the death of the king.
I imagine that over the next few years, you're gonna see a whole bunch of exploration and development in the Iraqi fields. The deal is, the French folks--Elf/Total--are out, and Exxon/Shell/Chevron, etc, are in. They'll sub the drilling to a lot of out-of-work US drillers. There will be a lot of pipeline construction, and I guess a bunch of refinery expansion.
And your lights will stay on and the water will come from your faucet and you'll be able to drive to Yosemite or Yellowstone...
I don't see the connection between the French oil companies being out of Iraq and the US and British oil companies being in, to water flowing from my tap or vacations to our national parks. Care to explain?
Oil and gas and refined products. All are being imported. All are used in generating electricity or in transportation. With electricity you have lights. With electricity, water gets pumped. Diesel lets semis move parts and pieces of generators and pumps, etc. Gasoline gets Mall Momma to her favorite activity.
I forget the exact numbers, but I read that Iraq was producing some 2 million bpd before the war. I have read that the potential is for around 6 million bpd. The sooner they get back to, and later above, the 2 million bpd figure, the sooner there will be adequate money for reconstruction and wages and such. Lord knows they need it, desparately.
Recent history has it that a world price of some $25/bbl creates a stable situation for both producer and consumer. (Clinton, OPEC, et al.) Right now, crude is running $30 to $32 per barrel. Increasing Iraqi output from 2 to 6 helps them; we and the rest of the consuming world--US, Europe, China, Japan--do better at $25 than at $32.
Do you think the benefits of the US being able to now order an increase of production from the Iraqi fields is a happy coincidence, or do you think that it's possible that Cheney's task force had discussions prior to 9/11 about the need for the US to figure out a way for that increase to happen?
It is curious that if it is just part of a simple inventory of oil reserves that Saudi , UAE, and Iraqi oil reserves are the only ones mentioned in the judical watch release. I don't want to jump to the conclusion it is something nefarious, but it sure seems to me that it should be looked into and the meetings of that task force that the Bush administration has so long held secret should be opened to the public.
Oil and gas are fungible commodities. It makes no difference to the users of these commodities if they are mined by companies from the United States, France or the UK. The only entities to benefit by one nation being "in" and the other being "out" of oil and gas production in Iraq are the corporations operating in the country that finds itself on the "in" side of the equation. I've always been reluctant to characterize this war as being about US control of Iraq's natural resources, but it seems to me, you're telling me that's what it was about.
I think the main reason for this war is the geopolitical machinations of the neoconservatives. Putting a regime in the region that is controlled by the US and with possible US basing rights for the military changes the whole balance of power in the Middle East. That doesn't mean the acquisition of new oil supplies that can be turned on to lower the price of oil to US markets isn't important. That's true, IMO, even if Cheney's task force had the most benign reasons for discussing Iraqi reserves.
"I think the main reason for this war is the geopolitical machinations of the neoconservatives."
Given who signed on, I'd say it was not just the neocons.
"Putting a regime in the region that is controlled by the US and with possible US basing rights for the military changes the whole balance of power in the Middle East."
Well, sure. This was obvious long before we went into Iraq--this time. All ya gotta do is look at a map and have a bit of knowledge of where is the oil, where are the pipeline routes, and who are the players. And, it was talked about in the talking-head Sunday TV shows quite a lot, last year.
Given the problems in Saudi Arabia, with the factions there, I'd bet anything that our gummint and/or the Pentagon planners have been looking at options all during the 1990s. Particularly since WTC 1, in 1993.
We have two interests in the mideast: Oil and Israel. The oil deal is that we want stability of supply and price. That's why we've climbed in bed with so many sorry rat-bastard heads of state. The Israel deal oughta be obvious, after 55 years.
Look, I'm not saying I'm applauding each and every action. I just cross my fingers that things will work out to our favor. What I don't do is look for evil cabals and holler, "Crooked! Crooked!" at every move that's made.
wow. if you'd said that on these boards in march you'd have been smacked down as a pacifist liberal and given a lecture about how saddam's chem/bio weapons are about to be released down at your corner 7-11. you wouldn't want that? would you? WOULD YOU?
(deep breath, sorry)
it's odd now for me to see that the same thing i'd said was the real motivation -- and opposed the war because of it -- is now being used against me in a "don't be silly, of COURSE this is what it was all about" fashion.
As nearly as I can tell, every aspect of how this war was rationalized, justified, politicked and executed follows the neoconservative game plan to the letter. Even many opponents of the war seem to miss this, and even more surprisingly, many of the proponents don't want to know -- or to admit they know -- that it has very little to do with WMD and least of all with freeing the Iraqis from tyranny.
Glad we don't have to argue about the facade of WMDs and human rights that the Bushies keep throwing up to obscure what's really going on. I think the formula of "oil and Israel" is a little too simple. According to the neocons, we have our own interests, outside of Israel and oil, in showing the region and the world the willingness of the US to use military might. They have put the world on notice - "future super powers need not apply, the position is already taken." Regional powers have been let know that they need to be aware of who is the "top dog" in the area.
I'm not interested in "evil cabals" or conspiracies either. This stuff is upfront in the writings of the neoconservative policy makers - no secret conspiracies needed.
By the way, you're right, Blair signing on gives Bush the cover of a "left" partner in the strategy of a remaking the Middle East. It's what makes Blair's betrayal of the principles of the Labour party so difficult to understand.
Our disagreement, Desertrat, seems to come around the question of whether we as American citizens have a responsibility to speak up against the cynical use of the blood of our children, our sisters and brothers, our fathers and mothers to bring this "realignment" about. And that doesn't even speak to the deaths of thousands of innocent Iraqis that have taken place in our name.
I guess it comes down to what we mean by "our favor." I don't think the world of Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Wolfowitz is one that is to the favor of the American people, much less the world.
there were also issues of people on cheney's energy task force being those who manipulated the "energy crisis" in california last year. enron execs and such...
May be, Ambrose, may be. However, given the Kalifornia government's efforts at creating a statewide Free Lunch for all but the producing class, I have zero sympathy. Pick your problem out there, and they brought it on themselves.
The Kali gummint's behavior during the fat years of tax-take remind me of Mexico's behavior during the boom years in oil prices of the 1970s. "This party's gonna last forever!"
The irrationality of their environmental policies--which contributed directly to their energy crunch--didn't bring the proverbial chickens home to roost; it brought buzzards--one of which was Enron.
Back to the mideast awl bidness: I see the U.S. as having a pretty much hedonistic society. We want the status quo of cheap driving and the "good life", whether SUV or Lexus sedan to go to the Mall with its unlimited shopping. There will thus always be a strong level of support for those whose efforts are touted or are believed to enable this status quo.