Friday, December 02, 2005

Iraq: the oil-powered light at the end of the tunnel

Mission nearly accomplished. That's the feeling we're getting, as hints are increasing from both the US and UK administrations that troops will withdraw next year.

And not a moment too soon, we all cry. Enough body bags!

But why then?

Is anything changing? Are the "insurgent" atttacks decreasing?


Is security and life any better for ordinary Iraqis?


Are fewer bodybags coming home?

'Fraid not.

So what's the reason?

Because by then, a deal to get the US' and UK's hands on Iraqi oil will have been signed.

When it is: mission accomplished. Apart from the 18 US bases that have been established there, we'll be outta there, and good riddance.

The oil deal is a Production Sharing Agreement (PSA) being arranged with Ahmed Chalabi, head of the Iraq Energy Council, whom the US neocons had originally wanted to be Iraq's top dog.

He's the one who assured the world that Iraq had WMDs, providing Bush with the pretext for the war.

He recently visited Washington, for a moment of togetherness with Vice President Cheney, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, and Secretary of State Condi Rice. And the Low Carbon Kid doesn't think they were discussing the Kyoto Protocol.

According to a November 22 report, backed by charities and thinktanks including War on Want, the Global Policy Forum and Institute for Policy Studies, the PSA being discussed will deprive Iraq of ol revenue worth $2,800 to $7,400 per Iraqi adult over the likely 30-year lifespan.

By comparison, Iraqi gross domestic product is now only $2,100 per person.

It will enable oil companies to safely invest the $20 billion needed to expand current production capacity towards a six million barrels per day (bpd) target.

Repeated sabotage has prevented Iraq meeting its immediate aim of three million bpd, last seen in 1990.

We get the guaranteed cheap oil.

Iraq gets a police state.

We've been here before. A PSA was set up after World War 1. (WW1 was partly begun to prevent Germany from finishing a rail link to Iraq that would have secured the oil for that country alone.)

Read the full story here.

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