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JrSyko

Jerry Maguire
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I received this email and I thought I'd share it. Read this and tell me what you think. Sorry, I know its long.

++THE INFORMED PROGRESSIVE++
(www.informedprogressive.com)

To understand motivations for the war on Iraq, one must keep in mind how those who guide Washington's foreign policy view America's future role in the world...

++++A View Of Our Future
There is always a divide between political rhetoric and actual policy, but it is worthwhile to examine particular cases to see how wide the divide is. During his 2000 campaign, President Bush claimed that "the United States must be humble... We must be proud and confident of our values, but humble in how we treat nations that are figuring out how to chart their own course." Around the same time, in September 2000, current Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and VP Cheney's current Chief of Staff I. Lewis Libby were helping to develop a document that sets out prospective U.S. foreign policy goals, entitled "Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century." This document states that the US must continue to "discourage...advanced industrial nations from challenging our leadership or...even aspiring to a larger regional or global role...[To achieve this, the US] must retain the preeminent responsibility for addressing...those wrongs which t!
hreaten not only our interests, but those of our allies or friends, or which seriously unsettle international relations." The report also urges Washington to develop the capability to "fight and win multiple, simultaneous major theater wars" and at the same time "perform the 'constabulary' duties associated with shaping the security environment in critical regions": maintain "nuclear strategic superiority" by developing smaller "bunker-buster" nuclear weapons and resuming nuclear testing; develop the "'Star Wars' global missile defense system"; and "control the new 'international commons' of space and 'cyberspace' and pave the way for the creation of a new military service - US Space Forces - with the mission of space control".
http://www.counterpunch.org/dixon0911.html
http://www.newamericancentury.org/RebuildingAmericasDefenses.pdf

So what are the underlying causes?, one might ask. Why must the US military be ready for "multiple, simultaneous" wars?

++++Peeling Away More Rhetoric
The policies articulated above are addressed with considerably less gloss by Marine Corps Commandant General A.M. Gray in a 1990 military publication. The end of the Cold War will only reorient our security policies, he advises, but not change them significantly. "In fact, the majority of the crises we have responded to since the end of World War II have not directly involved the Soviet Union," a fact that can now not only be conceded, but must be stressed, to ensure that we may act as before when there are "threats to our interest." The North-South (developed states vs. Third World states) conflict is the major fault line: "The underdeveloped world's growing dissatisfaction over the gap between rich and poor nations will create a fertile breeding ground for insurgencies. These insurgencies have the potential to jeopardize regional stability and our access to vital economic and military resources. This situation will become more critical as our Nation and allies, as well!
as potential adversaries, become more and more dependent on these strategic resources. If we are to have stability in these regions, maintain access to their resources, protect our citizens abroad, defend our vital installations, and deter conflict, we must maintain within our active force structure a credible military power projection capability with the flexibility to respond to conflict across the spectrum of violence throughout the globe. Crucially, we must maintain our "unimpeded access" to "developing economic markets throughout the world" and "to the resources needed to support our manufacturing requirements." We therefore need "a credible forcible entry capability," forces that "must truly be expeditionary" and capable of executing a wide variety of missions from counterinsurgency and psychological warfare to the deployment of "multidivision forces." We must also bear in mind the rapidly increasing technological advances in weaponry and their availability to the n!
ew regional powers that will be springing up throughout the Third World, so that we must develop military capacities exploiting the far reaches of electronics, genetic engineering and other biotechnologies, and so on, "if our Nation is to maintain military credibility in the next century."
http://www.zmag.org/chomsky/dd/dd-c01-s08.html

In this context, we can then examine the invasion of Iraq...

++++The Importance of Controlling Oil
Robert Mabro, board member of the British oil firm International Petroleum Exchange observes: "Powerful US lobbies want to undermine Saudi Arabia’s leading role in the world petroleum market and reduce its share of world exports. For this reason, they are promoting oil developments in West Africa, suggesting to Nigeria that it should leave OPEC, encouraging Russian private oil companies to maximise production, and are pinning great hopes on the Caspian. They also hope that President Chavez of Venezuela will be overthrown and replaced by a government willing to maximise oil production. More importantly in this context, they would like to install a friendly regime in Iraq who will open the doors to foreign oil companies, increase oil output and contribute to this strategy of diversification. Thirdly, the US objectives regarding an intervention in Iraq are not limited to the removal of President Saddam and his weapons of mass destruction. If successful, the USA will acquire b!
oth a military and a political base in the heart of the Middle East from where they will be able to exercise greater leverage on all the neighbouring countries – Iran, Saudi Arabia and the rest of the Gulf oil-exporting countries, as well as Syria and Jordan. A military presence in Afghanistan, Iraq and some Central Asian Republics give the USA strategic advantages vis-à-vis both Russia and China. Clearly the issues at stake go well beyond oil. The immediate effect of any intervention will inevitably be an interruption of oil supplies from Iraq. The impact on oil prices will depend however on a number of circumstances: the duration of the interruption, whether the oil market is in a state of glut or shortage at the time of the US attack, and whether additional supplies from other countries or from the US strategic stocks are made immediately available or not. If the military intervention succeeds in putting in place a regime in Iraq that is on the one hand friendly to the!
USA and on the other hand able to keep the country united and peaceful, the Iraqi upstream oil sector will be open to foreign oil companies, with the lion’s share of contracts going perhaps to American companies. Oil production will grow significantly after a time lag of, say, three years."
http://www.oxfordenergy.org/commentaug02.html

++++In Their Own Words: The Importance of Controlling Oil
In testimony to Congress in 1999, General Anthony C.Zinni, commander in chief of the US Central Command, testified that the Gulf Region, with its huge oil reserves, is a "vital interest" of "long standing" for the United States and that the US "must have free access to the region’s resources." "Free access," it seems, means both military and economic control of these resources. This has been a major goal of US strategic doctrine ever since the end of World War II. Prior to 1971, Britain (the former colonial power) policed the region and its oil riches. Since then, the United States has deployed ever-larger military forces to assure "free access" through overwhelming armed might. "It's pretty straightforward," said former CIA director R. James Woolsey, who has been one of the leading advocates of forcing Hussein from power. "France and Russia have oil companies and interests in Iraq. They should be told that if they are of assistance in moving Iraq toward decent government, !
we'll do the best we can to ensure that the new government and American companies work closely with them." But he added: "If they throw in their lot with Saddam, it will be difficult to the point of impossible to persuade the new Iraqi government to work with them." Indeed, the mere prospect of a new Iraqi government has fanned concerns by non-American oil companies that they will be excluded by the United States, which almost certainly would be the dominant foreign power in Iraq in the aftermath of Hussein's fall. Representatives of many foreign oil concerns have been meeting with leaders of the Iraqi opposition to make their case for a future stake and to sound them out about their intentions. Officials of several major firms said they were taking care to avoiding playing any role in the [public] debate in Washington over how to proceed on Iraq. "There's no real upside for American oil companies to take a very aggressive stance at this stage. There'll be plenty of time!
in the future," said James Lucier, an oil analyst with Prudential Securities. But with the end of sanctions that likely would come with Hussein's ouster, companies such as ExxonMobil and ChevronTexaco would almost assuredly play a role, industry officials said. "There's not an oil company out there that wouldn't be interested in Iraq," one analyst said.
http://www.globalpolicy.org/security/oil/2002/08jim.htm

++++How Far They'll Go: Indonesia's Killing Fields and Int'l Oil
An internal CIA research study [of General Suharto's rise to power in the mid-1960s] called it "one of the worst mass murders of the 20th century" and compared it to "the Nazi mass murders during the Second War." Estimates by Amnesty International and others report that 500,000 to 1 million people -- mostly landless peasants -- were slaughtered under the direction of Suharto and the [Indonesian] army. In 1967 Suharto established himself as president and launched the "Orde Baru" (New Order), setting up a fascist regime ruled by terror and torture that only began to reform in the last decade. The benefits of Suharto's bloodshed to American oil companies are no secret. A recent report published by the US Commerce Department notes that Indonesia's "oil boom did not really begin, however, until 1967 when Indonesia pioneered the production-sharing contract and the 'New Order' launched the country on the road to economic and political stability." In the wake of what the CIA pa!
per calls "one of the ghastliest and most concentrated bloodlettings of current times," multinationals such as Phillips Petroleum, Mobil Corp., and others signed production-sharing contracts with Indonesia's state oil company in 1968 -- the same year the London Economist called the killings a "holocaust." Phillips spokespersons say that when the company operates in a country, it looks at "the stability of the government and the political situation in general." C. Phillip Liechty, CIA desk officer in Indonesia during the invasion, saw the reports coming out of East Timor (where Indonesia's armies subsequently invaded). "There were people being herded into school buildings by Indonesian soldiers and the buildings set on fire," he told award-winning journalist John Pilger. People who tried to get out were shot, "with most of the people being burned alive. There were people herded into fields and machine-gunned, and hunted in the mountains simply because they were there. We!
knew the place was a free-fire zone." Funds from oil companies played an important role in supporting the military leaders who carried out the bloodshed. "Oil revenues were vital for the Suharto regime," says a recent U.S. Library of Congress study sponsored by the Department of Army, because these resources helped the regime with "political stability."
http://www.zmag.org/ZMag/articles/may96udin.htm

++++Connecting The Dots
Writes Susan Davis: "[The war in Iraq is] about the extension of such imperial control around the globe -- and Central Asia and the Middle East are critically important to that control. The country or coalition that dominates Central Asia and the Middle East will control the flow of oil. Central Asia accounts for about sixty percent of the world's GNP. That's what an empire is -- controlling basic resources and making decisions about their use worldwide, unchallenged, long-term. U.S. military bases and access agreements in the Gulf and Central Asia have been growing quickly, especially in the last year. American troops are already moving very quickly into Djibouti in the Horn of Africa (New York Times, November 17, 2002); a few weeks ago the New York Times reported that about one-third of Kuwait has been sealed off so it will be accessible to the U.S. troops being deployed there. This buildup is not for military convenience; it is intended as permanent, as are all the ne!
w bases in the Central Asian 'stans': Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Kazakhstan."
http://www.counterpunch.org/davis1123.html

RELATED TOPICS

++++And Then We Get To Pay For It
Byron Dorgan, a North Dakota Democrat, took to the Senate floor on February 27 2002 with an impassioned plea for a small federal subsidy that has fueled an explosion of activity in the wind-power industry. The so-called wind production tax credit (PTC) is as tiny as subsidies go--over a decade it has cost roughly $55 million--and remarkably effective. Wind is the fastest-growing energy industry in the world, and last year was the US wind-power industry's best ever, with power capacity equivalent to that of roughly six coal-fired power plants coming online--minus coal's pollution. Judged just on its merits, this would probably pass with bipartisan support. But Congress is tentatively committed to gargantuan new subsidies to coal, oil, gas and nuclear power--the only disagreement so far is exactly how obscenely enormous they will be. So the five-year wind PTC will be held hostage, to provide green window dressing for less admirable legislation. The Republican energy plan, to!
uted in the President's State of the Union address, would dole out $35.6 billion over ten years--or about $125 per American--to the oil, gas, coal and nuclear industries. The Democratic Senate energy bill is larded with almost as many tax-funded mega-giveaways to polluters. By contrast, the wind PTC has, to date, cost every American about 19 cents.
http://www.thenation.com/doc.mhtml?i=20020415&s=bivens&c=1

++++Environmental Effects of Oil Well Destruction During the Gulf War
If Iraq is attacked, it is likely that Iraqi soldiers will again act to destroy oil wells, as they did in 1991. The United States Naval Academy reports that the previous oil well destruction caused the following damage: A 1-2 cm surface layer containing all deposits from smoke fall-out downwind of burning wells; 76 lakes of oil formed from gushing wells containing 50 million barrels of oil; up to 11 million gallons of oil were released into the Gulf between January and May of 1991; the average sea water temperature decreased 2.5 degrees Celsius; approximately 1million gallons of oil washed ashore; 80 kilotons of nitrous oxide were released; 133 million tons of carbon dioxide were released.
http://www.usna.edu/NAOE/courses/en411/holland

++++Clear Air Restrictions Eased
The Environmental Protection Agency issued regulation changes on Friday to clean-air rules, easing restrictions to provide utilities and refinery manufacturers more flexibility in installing pollution-emission controls. These changes will clearly benefit the industries, who will now be free to modernize plants without the hassle of updating anti-pollution equipment, but they in no way reflect the changes that should be made to protect the best interests of the environment and public. Lowering standards for businesses will not serve as a way for our country to meet air-quality standards, although the EPA believes allowing more flexibility will encourage emission reductions. There can be good news found in the fact that a group of attorney generals from Northeast states, including New York and Connecticut, plan to file a lawsuit intending to reverse the decision. Some of the changes include allowing factories to calculate emissions on a plant-wide basis (instead of by indivi!
dual pieces of equipment), to rely on the highest historical pollution levels in the past decade when deciding whether the factory's pollution output requires increased control, and to exempt the output of secondary contaminants that result from new pollution controls for other emissions, according to the Associated Press. These changes were sought by the utility, coal and oil industries which just happened to be major donors to the Republican campaigns of 2000 and 2002.
http://technicianonline.com/read/tol/opinion/006455.html




See ya in the dirt!
 

Rodney

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Hmmm...an interesting and thought provoking article. There are no simple answers, thats for sure. One fact that is not addressed is how important oil is to THEIR economy. The middle east would simply implode without oil $$$$. I often think how great it will be for us and the environment when someone finally produces an engine that is twice as efficent as we have now. Unfortunately, the economic havoc that would result in the oil producing countries would undoubtedly lead to war in the region. It is unfortunate that the US has to be so aggressive, but untill someone finds an alternative to oil...we really have no choice. They need us as much as we need them. I am elated that the US is finally tapping the caspian region..I would like to see more of my money helping the Russian economy. Finally, the obvious answer is less dependance on foreign oil...I know we have covered this on here before.
Maybe someday it will be "cool" to drive a gas miser instead of a tahoe. In America today, very few people are willing to give up the American dream of a big house and a big car for the sake of saving oil. Even if it means fighting for it. Jeez...what a mess, I think I will go stick my head back in the sand and not worry about it!!!! cheers.

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JrSyko

Jerry Maguire
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Just read an interesting tidbit of information today in the WSJ. Apparently, VP Cheney's company was paid 27.5 million dollars to repair Saddam Hussein's oil derricks after the gulf war. HUMMM.......... No wonder he wants to go back to war.....

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Ryno

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Jr-

just another tid bit for your mind. When I was in a upper level geography class back in college, I was doing some research and stumbled upon the fact the WE (the United States) actually have the worlds largest oil reserve. Why don't we use it? Because when the middle east runs dry...we'll make a killing. If you want to find more info, look up Standard Oil Co. They tried to tap the reserves under the rockies, but couldn't make it cost effective back in the early 1900's.

Ryno

Build it like a Rhino, and Leave it be.
 

martininsocal

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There are tons of OIl pockets that have been undiscovered, but the truth is many will never be tapped, regardless of what the actual impact will be on access to them, even with technological upgrades that occur in the next 20-30 years. That is because forces that exist will not allow exploaration in many areas unexplored, and whenever anyone tries to explore, they are sued by environmental groups and held up in court, raising the cost of basic crude due to legal expenses getting it. Noone ever thinks of the cost to the public that is incurred just fighting the legal battles(don't take that as a blanket statement that any extraction that occurs is good, they are places that should remain untouched), but the current environment has lawsuits filed for just about every large construction, production, or refinery that is proposed.
Also- the oil fields in the middle east were developed by british and american companies who were tossed out with no renumeration for the infrastructure that they developed. If those countries hadn't been explored and oil production been developed by us and Britain, they would be eating sand. Think about that. And also explain why it is wrong to have a hand in the development of third world countries who want to develop into countires like the U.S. Britain, France, Japan, etc... Why shouldn't their socio-economic base be similiar to ours? Isn't that the standard that every developed country is measured by? And why is it wrong to use market share and control to infuse stability into a region that otherwise would be killing each other off without outside influence?

Martin

If your gonna go, go BIG
 

JrSyko

Jerry Maguire
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Ryno -
I seriously hope that by the time the Middle East runs dry we are still not so dependent on oil. However, if we are, we will make a killing selling our oil to the rest of the world. Kind of ironic don't you think.

Martin -

The problem with developing countries as I see it is that the developed nations don't want the non-developed nations to take the same steps they did i.e. industrialization. Because of the tremendous amounts of pollution that occurred thanks to industrialization, the developed nations don't want to see those steps re-traced. Not sure I agree with the policy, but it is the one in place.

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martininsocal

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Jr- I look at it this way...The U.S. and some other countries went through the teething pains to become industrialized. We had huge working hours, lots of death, etc...to get to the point that folks could works overtime after 40 hours, Unions became a realization, and a true middle class was formed. That is what got many of the immigrants here after WW2. Not the dream to become rich, but the dream to be middle class. We paved the way for the rest of the world to have easily deliverable electricity, communication, fuel, etc...we designed ways to increase crop outputs, use ground more efficiently, etc... Why should now developing vountries repeat the process or re-invent that wheel? If we have some input into how they develop, then their systems will be compatible with ours, making global delivery and output more efficient, and everybody should win. What is going on right now is that there are those who don't want to see these countries develop as fast athey could because it would ruin their cheap labor pool. Look at the market share of technology information that has gone to India. These were well paying jobs from California, South Carolina, etc.. the producer hasn't reduced prices, but he has cut production costs. The benefit has not been past on to consumers, so the finacial gain in the whole process ends at the producer, allowing him to become incredibly rich while holding wages down at his production site and still costing the user the same amount. it becomes a loss for everyone but the producer. Oil production stopped by environmental attacks does the same thing. The cost to develop petroleum extract sites increases greatly with the costs associated with fighting the lawsuits, TRO's, etc...Funds that could be used to develop lower impact extraction processes. Noone looks at that as a possibility. Many say Bush, Cheney, etc...are just looking out for big oil, but of they didn't have to look out for big oil in regards to environemntal lawsuits and the increasing costs to fight them, maybe big oil would use those funds to develop safer, low impact extraction techniques. Who wins when big oil spends millions just going through the process to get to the point of being able to think about extraction at a site and millions are spent by environmental groups to delay this thought to extract? What benefit did that money actually provide?

If your gonna go, go BIG
 
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