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From that point, oil conversion of the British fleet dictated national security priority to secure large oil reserves outside Britain. In 1913 less than 2% of world oil production was produced within the British Empire.
The final step was finding a source, and toward that end a delegation went to the Persian Gulf to examine oil fields. Two companies were the likely choice of supply: the powerful Royal Dutch Shell Group and smaller Anglo-Persian Oil Company. After considerable maneuvering, and largely through Churchill's encouragement, the government decided to maintain competition in the oil industry and ensure supplies by investing directly in Anglo-Persian (now known as BP). The government acquired 51% of company stock, placed two directors on its board and negotiated a secret contract to provide the Admiralty with a 20-year supply of oil under attractive terms. - www.epmag.com...
People in Turkey, Italy, France, and Britain created various arrangements that gave a certain degree of control over the Baghdad Railway to various indistinct interests in those nations. Investors, speculators, and financiers were involved by 1923 in secretive and clandestine ways.
The British Army had completed the southeastern section from Baghdad to Basra, so that part was under British control.
The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor had its origins, at least in part, in a decision by the United States to limit oil exports to Japan in 1941 in response to the Japanese invasion of China.
Japan was almost totally reliant on imported oil, mainly from the United States, and it needed oil for its navy.
It concluded that if the American tap was going to be turned off, it would have to get its oil elsewhere. This was a factor in its decision to invade the oil-rich Dutch-held Indonesian islands. - news.bbc.co.uk...
The Standard Oil group of companies, in which the Rockefeller family owned a one-quarter (and controlling) interest, was of critical assistance in helping Nazi Germany prepare for World War II. This assistance in military preparation came about because Germany's relatively insignificant supplies of crude petroleum were quite insufficient for modern mechanized warfare; in 1934 for instance about 85 percent of German finished petroleum products were imported. The solution adopted by Nazi Germany was to manufacture synthetic gasoline from its plentiful domestic coal supplies. It was the hydrogenation process of producing synthetic gasoline and iso-octane properties in gasoline that enabled Germany to go to war in 1940 — and this hydrogenation process was developed and financed by the Standard Oil laboratories in the United States in partnership with I.G. Farben.
Evidence presented to the Truman, Bone, and Kilgore Committees after World War II confirmed that Standard Oil had at the same time "seriously imperiled the war preparations of the United States."2 Documentary evidence was presented to all three Congressional committees that before World War II Standard Oil had agreed with I.G. Farben, in the so-called Jasco agreement, that synthetic rubber was within Farben's sphere of influence, while Standard Oil was to have an absolute monopoly in the U.S. only if and when Farben allowed development of synthetic rubber to take place in the U.S.:
Accordingly [concluded the Kilgore Committee] Standard fully accomplished I.G.'s purpose of preventing United States production by dissuading American rubber companies from undertaking independent research in developing synthetic rubber processes.
Regrettably, the Congressional committees did not explore an even more ominous aspect of this Standard Oil — I.G. Farben collusion: that at this time directors of Standard Oil of New Jersey had not only strategic warfare affiliations to I.G. Farben, but had other links with Hitler's Germany — even to the extent of contributing, through German subsidiary companies, to Heinrich Himmler's personal fund and with membership in Himmler's Circle of Friends as late as 1944.
By 1951 Iranian support for nationalization of the AIOC was intense. Grievances included the small fraction of revenues Iran received. In 1947, for example, AIOC reported after-tax profits of £40 million ($112 million) - and gave Iran just £7 million.
Conditions for Iranian oil workers and their families were very bad. The director of Iran's Petroleum Institute wrote that:
Wages were 50 cents a day. There was no vacation pay, no sick leave, no disability compensation. The workers lived in a shanty town called Kaghazabad, or Paper City, without running water or electricity, ... In winter the earth flooded and became a flat, perspiring lake. The mud in town was knee-deep, and ... when the rains subsided, clouds of nipping, small-winged flies rose from the stagnant water to fill the nostrils .... Summer was worse. ... The heat was torrid ... sticky and unrelenting - while the wind and sandstorms shipped off the desert hot as a blower. The dwellings of Kaghazabad, cobbled from rusted oil drums hammered flat, turned into sweltering ovens. ... In every crevice hung the foul, sulfurous stench of burning oil .... in Kaghazad there was nothing - not a tea shop, not a bath, not a single tree. The tiled reflecting pool and shaded central square that were part of every Iranian town, ... were missing here. The unpaved alleyways were emporiums for rats. - en.wikipedia.org...
"What is proposed at this point in fact amounts to a tightening of the rope around the neck of the average Iraqi citizen"; claimed that the sanctions were causing the death of 150 Iraqi children per day; and accused the US and Britain of arrogance toward Iraq, such as refusing to let it pay its UN and OPEC dues and blocking Iraqi attempts at negotiation.
The Washington Post reported on November 15, 2005 that it had obtained documents detailing how executives from major oil corporations, including Exxon-Mobil Corp., Conoco, Royal Dutch Shell Oil Corp., and the American subsidiary of British Petroleum met with Energy Task Force participants while they were developing national energy policy.
In the week prior to this article revealing oil executive involvement, the Chief Executives of Exxon-Mobil and ConocoPhillips told members of the US Senate that they had not participated as part of the Energy Task Force, while the CEO of British Petroleum stated that he did not know. Regardless of whether the executives were under oath, if these statements were knowingly and materially false and deceptive then they were illegal per the The Fraud and False Statements statute (18 U.S.C. 1001)
Robert Newman gets to grips with the wars and politics of the last hundred years - but rather than adhering to the history we were fed at school, he places oil centre stage as the cause of all commotion. This innovative history programme is based around Robert Newman's stand-up act and supported by resourceful archive sequences and stills with satirical impersonations of historical figures from Mayan priests to Archduke Ferdinand. Quirky details such as a bicycle powered street lamp on the stage brings home the pertinent question of just how we are going to survive when the world's oil supplies are finally exhausted. - www.robnewman.com...
"Oil Smoke & Mirrors" offers a sobering critique of our perceived recent history, of our present global circumstances, and of our shared future in light of imminent, under-reported and mis-represented energy production constraints. - oilsmokeandmirrors.com...
Iraq: Good-Bye and Good Luck
The last election made Iraq’s sectarian and ethnic rivalries even sharper, if that is possible. The corruption is universal and shameless. Dozens of people are still being killed by suicide bombers every week. But the country cannot really fail, because there is just so much oil.
After three decades of foreign wars, U.N. sanctions and American occupation, Iraq’s oil exports bottomed out at 1.8 million barrels per day, or b/d, in 2008, but they are already back up to 2.5 million b/d – and Baghdad plans to be producing 9.9 million b/d only ten years from now. That would make it the world’s first, second or third-largest exporter (depending on what happens to Saudi Arabian and Russian production), and drown it in a tidal wave of cash.
The target is plausible, because this is not speculation about production from new oilfields; it is just enhanced production from existing fields. Contracts to build the infrastructure to pump that extra oil have already been signed with two dozen foreign oil companies. Since the foreigners are only paid a fee per barrel, Iraq gets most of the profits.
On the reasonable assumption that the price of oil will not drop below $50 per barrel in the next decade, that means that the Iraqi government will have an oil income of at least $150 billion a year by 2020. Two-thirds of the current government’s income is stolen by the political elite and there is no reason to think that this will change, but that would still allow some $50 billion a year to trickle through and serve the needs of ordinary Iraqis. - www.hurriyetdailynews.com...
THE removal of President Saddam Hussein would open Iraq's rich new oilfields to Western bidders and bring the prospect of lessening dependence on Saudi oil.
No other country offers such untapped oilfields whose exploitation could lessen tensions over the Western presence in Saudi Arabia.
After Kuwait's liberation by US-led forces in 1991, America monopolized the postwar deals, but the need to win international support for an invasion is unlikely to see a repeat.
Russia, in particular, and France and China all permanent members of the United Nations Security Council have high hopes of prizing promises of contracts in a liberated Iraq from a United States that may need their political support.
President Bush has used the War on Terror to press his case for drilling in a protected Arctic refuge, but predicted reserves in Alaska are dwarfed by the oilwells of the Gulf. Anthony Cordesman, of the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, said that the issue for the US was as much the security of the Gulf as access to particular oilfields.
"You are looking down the line to a world in 2020 when reliance on Gulf oil will have more than doubled. The security of the Gulf is an absolutely critical issue."
Gerald Butt, Gulf editor of the Middle East Economic Survey, said: "The removal of Saddam is, in effect, the removal of the last threat to the free flow of oil from the Gulf as a whole." - www.commondreams.org...
Deals with Iraq are set to bring oil giants back
Four Western oil companies are in the final stages of negotiations this month on contracts that will return them to Iraq, 36 years after losing their oil concession to nationalization as Saddam Hussein rose to power.
Exxon Mobil, Shell, Total and BP — the original partners in the Iraq Petroleum Company — along with Chevron and a number of smaller oil companies, are in talks with Iraq's Oil Ministry for no-bid contracts to service Iraq's largest fields, according to ministry officials, oil company officials and an American diplomat.