Archive for January 6th, 2020

US Middle East Strategy Makes Sense, Was Not Born Yesterday… Although It Looks Upside Down

January 6, 2020

US FOSSIL FUEL POLICY HAS SWITCHED TO PARTIAL SUPPRESSION… NOT JUST EXPLOITATION.

The strategic interest of the USA is this: that no nuclear armed power emerges outside of the UN Permanent Security Council members (plus Israel, an ally, and the lethal Indo-Pakistani nuclear embrace). Out of the five members, two are parents (not just Allies) of the USA: France and Britain… So they sort of triple US influence. China and Russia, overlording giant empires, have no reason to go to war. 

A second strategic aim of the USA is that no oil and gas comes out of the Middle East, except from powers aligned to and controlled by US-France-Britain… Namely Arabia and Qatar, Kuwait, the UAE. Oil procurement has long been central to US strategy:

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2015/01/29/great-bitter-lake/

A third aim is to keep the price of oil and gas just so, neither too low, nor too high, to keep the US fracking industry mighty.

September 1980, Abadan, Iran — An Iraqi soldier watches as the Iranian Abadan refinery, located near the Iraqi border, burns. The Abadan oil refinery was under constant fire from the Iraqi air force during the Iran-Iraq conflict. (Henri Bureau/Sygma/Corbis). US-France-UK did more than encourage Iraq to attack Iran: they collaborated militarily. Superficially it looks like a crusade against the Islamist State of Iran. But there may have been a more sinister aims, later decades would reveal. What is not exposed at first, may be revealed in the fullness of times. As it turns out the West, especially the US, outwitted Iraq. But not just that: the USA outwitted… France (rising the price of oil was fine for the UK, an oil exporter…)

Keeping Iraq (with its giant oil reserves) and Iran down and out achieves this.

The Iran-Iraq war was most helpful to help keep both oil producers out of production, thus strangling countries such as France, while keeping the US and its oilmen happy.  France, highly dependent upon Middle East oil, seems to have understood by 2003 (the UK had its own oil, and Germany no qualms using its dirty coal)… But by then, it was too little, too late.

Now SECULAR Iraq was unfortunately destroyed as an independent power by the USA over the 1990-2003 war (Bush I, Clinton, Bush II). That was definitively to make massive fracking in the USA profitable (and that was implemented by Obama)… Something that propped up the USA as a hyperpower, while bringing the financial plutocracy even higher than “TARP” and QE already had done (all of this under pawn Obama). Partisan of progress can only feel sorry at what happen to Saddam’s Iraq (and Saddam himself said he was baffled, an uncomprehending pawn, to the end…) .

The case of Iran is different from Iraq. Iran is an Islamist State. Progressives can only view it as an enemy. US frackers also view it as an enemy, or rival. The less Iran is powerful, the better it is, for civilization and humanity.

In either case, US strategy, however selfish, makes sense.

Some may object; isn’t in the interest of the US to extract oil from the Middle East? Yes… But not so much that prices will collapse, and, with it, the entire fracking industry… and a part of the banking industry. 

The USA, with Britain, developed Middle East oil, and it was owned by multinationals. However, in recent times, national oil companies have taken over. So the global plutocrats, in the precise realm of fossil fuels, have lost control… when they are not national government actors…

Thus the interest to suppress oil production out of potentially mighty nations… As exploiting it is not possible… 

In any case, the Trump administration’s ministrations with Iraq and Iran may appear new, but they are more of the same… Upside down.

There is plenty enough fossil fuel supply, just now, to make fracking (barely) profitable, and Russia squeezed, just so. (Russia, is the world’s second fossil fuel producer, and is highly dependent upon the cash they provide, differently from the world’s first producer, the US, with its enormous economy…)

Expect more of the same, on a much grander scale, in the distant future. Some day, the US will scream that the planet is dying and one has to go cold turkey on fossil fuels… As by then, the USA will have full replacements, thanks to solar, hydrogen… and thermonuclear. That will make for interesting new adventures…

Patrice Ayme