Index Research will focus on a country or an issue which is of particular interest to me. Articles have appeared on and others.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Iraq Oil Reality vs the NY Times

by Sarah Meyer
Index Research

The New York Times, like many American newspapers, has been lax in its reporting of the problems with the ‘benchmark’ Iraq Oil Law. Mainstream Media has preferred to swallow the Bushline about “sharing” Iraq’s oil, when in fact Bremer’s Law was nothing about ‘sharing’ and everything about American imperial control of Iraq’s oil.

Paul Krugman , (NY Times 14.09.07) as one can see from the following articles, did not discover the story of the Hunt oil contract. Thus his editorial was not, as reported by Raw Story, (14th Sept) a “bombshell.” Further, since the US occupation, many have written about the inherent US 'divide and rule' policy, which has been and is particularly evident in Iraq with its US-built walls partitioning Baghdad.

In order that MSM don’t continue their charade of ‘discovery’ and hopefully return to old - style reportage and research, following is a

continuing Iraq Oil Timeline from 31.08 – 15.09.07

Another Iraqi oil official targeted, shot
31.08.07. Earthtimes. Ali Abu Haydar al-Hasnawi, the director of an oil depot in Najaf, was gunned down in front of his house just days after the release of four kidnapped oil officials, including the deputy minister.

The Anti-oil Law Front holds a press conference in Baghdad
03.09.07. uslaboragainstwar. Amjad Al-Jawhary, Iraq Freedom Congress. There are also preparations to stage a mass demonstration on September 24.

Analysis: Industry eager to see passage of Iraq oil law
04.09.07. B. LANDO, UPI. The question is simple on the third and final day of a major Iraqi energy conference where hundreds of hungry oil men and women broke bread with Iraq's industry chiefs, politicians and technocrats: When will Baghdad set the ground rules for the international oil community's long-awaited venture into the largest oil prize on Earth?

Iraq MP: U.S. oil law pressure no help
05.09.07. UPI. U.S. pressure on Iraq's government to pass an oil law as one of 18 benchmarks didn't help and the law isn't ready to pass now, a top parliamentarian said. … One benchmark, passing an oil law that shares revenues as a way of reconciling factions, was not expected to be achieved. .. For one, the oil law the Bush administration was pushing for was highly controversial, getting right to the heart of the future of Iraq in terms of federalism and foreign investment. And the law doesn't deal with revenue sharing at all; a separate revenue-sharing law does. …

Allawi Uses Loophole to Keep Backers Secret
05.09.07. It's official: Ayad Allawi is no longer represented by Barbour Griffith & Rogers, the White House-connected lobbying firm he retained to sell the U.S. government on his "parliamentary coup" to become Iraq's next prime minister. Well, sort of. Allawi doesn't want to disclose who's paying BGR's $300,000 fee.

Big Oil in Iraq: "World Class Racketeering"
05.09.07. Charlie Cray, Those who want to hold Iraqis "accountable" with a series of benchmarks that are important to Washington fail to understand what those benchmarks are about to begin with.

Reporting From Baghdad
06.09.07. Scott Ritter, uruknet. If Couric would visit the Iraqi Oil Ministry, she might be shocked to witness the legal maneuvering and exploitation carried out by foreign oil companies (including, directly or indirectly, American oil companies).

The Leaders of Iraqi Federation of South Oil Unions (IFOU) join the Anti-Oil Law front
08.09.07. – In a conference held by the Federation of worker councils and unions in Basra today, September 8, 2007, and in the presence of a large number of union activists and political figures, the leaders of the South Oil unions join the ranks of Anti-Oil Law. … The conference concluded in passing a number of resolutions to tighten the campaign against the draft of oil-law such as demonstrations, sit-ins and strikes in various sectors including the oil sector.

KRG publishes approved Kurdistan Region Oil and Gas Law in Arabic and English, updated model contract
07.09.07. iraq updates.

UPDATE 1-Iraq Kurdish region signs oil deal with U.S. Hunt
08.09.07. Reuters. The statement did not give financial details of the deal, the first such contract since the largely autonomous region passed its own oil law in August, while Iraq's parliament failed to pass a national law after months of negotiations. The regional government signed five production sharing agreements earlier with foreign companies.

Texas Co. Signs Iraq Oil Deal With Kurds
09.09.07. CBS. With No National Iraq Oil Law Passed, Kurdistan Region Makes Its Own Rules

Hunt Oil, Impulse Energy, Kurdistan, Iraq's Oil Law, G30
10.09.07. Karlmarxwasright – uruknet. ....Interestingly, as in my previous blogs where the mysterious Eagle Group of Iraq partnered with Canada's Heritage Oil company in Kurdistan, now, another mystery company, Impulse Energy, has partnered with HUNT OIL in Kurdistan. Never had I ever before heard the name Impulse Energy. But, I certainly do not know every company that exists. So, I did numerous searches. I came up with absolutely nothing about Impulse Energy, other than the preceeding press releases simply repeating the information above. So, now we/I have two questions, Who is the Eagle Group of Iraq and Who is Impulse Energy?... Regarding the most recent developments in Iraq's notorious new oil law and the disputes surrounding it, read the following extensive analysis carefully for the fine print and details,
"Iraq Gears Up for Licensing Bid Round as MPs Prepare to Debate Draft Oil Law".

… As a related development in this counter-revolutionary, reactionary, aristocratic restorationist project, "our Citigroup man in Israel," former Citibank Executive and now Governor of the Bank of Israel, Stanley Fischer, is "hosting" the G-30 conference in May 2008 in ISRAEL [???]. … Who is the Group of 30, in case you never heard about them? Well, the following is a link to their website on which you can search around. Interesting, under Fischer's bio they failed to note that he is/was a former Citibank Executive, as well.

Iraq and Oil — Why the mainstream media won’t talk about it
10.09.07. Williambowles. Ever since the invasion of Iraq in 2003, the mainstream media have deliberately downplayed the role of oil in the invasion, indeed even so-called liberal newspapers like the London Independent, have poured scorn on the idea, going as far as labelling anyone who raised the issue as “conspiracists”. The closest the BBC ever gets to it is when it mentions ‘energy security’ but it never mentions the dreaded ‘O’ word when it comes to the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq.

The Battle for Iraq is About Oil and Democracy, Not Religion!
10.09.07. Joshua Holland, Raed Jarrar, AlterNet. As General Petraeus takes the D.C. stage, he and the media are only giving half of the story. Shockingly, the U.S., Iran and Al Qaeda have the same goals in Iraq.

Hunt Oil signs contract to explore for oil in Iraq
11.09.07. dallasnews. One risk: Deal with Kurds bypassed national government

Iraq: New U.S. Base – Wasit
11.09.07. S. Meyer, Index Research. There are oil fields in Wasit.

A Wasted Resource
12.09.07. Institute for War & Peace Reporting IWPR Special Report on Oil Exploitation in Iraq. Chaos, violence, graft and smuggling are wrecking Iraq’s oil business, with the revenue it generates vanishing into the pockets of extremists and corrupt officials, a new IWPR special report reveals.

Propaganda Dept.
A Vital Oil Law for Iraqis
13.09.07. letter to the editor, Washington Post by Zalmay Khalilzad, former US ambassador to Iraq (replaced by Crocker), now US permanent representative to the UN .

Iraq issues tenders for international oil companies
13.09.07. |the Iraqi sic Oil Minister announced that Iraq will issue tenders to international oil companies to develop its oil fields regardless if awaited law to regulate its energy sector is further delayed, Iraq Directory reported. [ is this legal?]

Compromise on Oil Law in Iraq Seems to Be Collapsing
13.09.07. James Glanz, NY Times. A carefully constructed compromise on a draft law governing Iraq’s rich oil fields, agreed to in February after months of arduous talks among Iraqi political groups, appears to have collapsed. The apparent breakdown comes just as Congress and the White House are struggling to find evidence that there is progress toward reconciliation and a functioning government here.

Oil Over but the Shoutin'
13.09.07. M Weiss, Slate. Once cited as a major benchmark for political compromise, Iraq's drafted "oil law," which would have controlled the management of the nation's oil fields and determined revenue-sharing, appears doomed.

Iraq oil bill negotiations failing: NYT
13.09.07. Jurist. Negotiations have collapsed in Iraq over a controversial oil bill [JURIST news archive] that would govern the distribution and refinement process and give the national government control over oil revenue, the New York Times reported Thursday. The bill, which the Iraqi cabinet approved [JURIST report] in February, is now in jeopardy

Krugman: Bush backer banks on Iraq's failure
13.09.07. Nick Juliano, Raw Story. A Texas oil company (Hunt) whose CEO is a longtime confidant of President Bush with access to the most closely held US intelligence has entered into an agreement to explore for oil in Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdistan region. Hunt raised about $100,000 for Bush during the president's 2000 campaign, and he serves on the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, which gives him access to some of the most exclusive data collected by US spy agencies.

Krugman Bombshell - Bush Oil Buddy Cuts Deal with Kurds
13.09.07. daily kos.

A Surge, and Then a Stab
14.09.07. Paul Krugman, NY Times – truthout. ‘on Wednesday attempts to arrive at a compromise oil law collapsed. What’s particularly revealing is the cause of the breakdown. Last month the provincial government in Kurdistan, defying the central government, passed its own oil law; last week a Kurdish Web site announced that the provincial government had signed a production-sharing deal with the Hunt Oil Company of Dallas, and that seems to have been the last straw. Now here’s the thing: Ray L. Hunt, the chief executive and president of Hunt Oil, is a close political ally of Mr. Bush. More than that, Mr. Hunt is a member of the President’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, a key oversight body.’

Iraqi Kurds demand oil minister's resignation
14.09.07. AFP. Iraq's northern Kurdish administration has demanded Baghdad's oil minister be sacked, following his remarks that oil contracts signed by the regional government are "illegal." .. Shahristani at a recent meeting of OPEC in Vienna said that all oil contracts signed in Iraq's Kurdish region are "illegal" as a controversial oil law is yet to be passed in the parliament. The regional government has signed contracts with several global oil companies to explore crude oil in its region, which houses the bulk of the country's oil reserves. Kurdish officials say they will honour the contracts, and also claim to have reached an agreement with Baghdad whereby it will receive 17 percent of the country's oil revenues.

Grand Theft Iraq
14.09.07. F. Arburthnot, At the end of August, in Dubai and the beginning of September, in London, conferences were held in order to privatise and carve up contracts for every essential service and infrastructure in Iraq. There was not a mega-corporate pig anywhere on earth, seemingly, who did not have its trotters in the trough. As Iraqis flee in an exodus of biblical proportions and die in a genocidal one, US/UK government backed corporate priority is a smash and grab raid of every asset and facility in the “land between two rivers” … The carpet baggers had a little bit of help from their quisling friends in their illegitimate and illegal carve up. Dr Adel Abdul Mehdi, Iraq's “Vice President”, said: “Iraq's new investment law will facilitate investment for both Iraqi and non-Iraqi businesses by providing a secure investment environment.” Referring to Iraq's resources, he said the conference presented opportunities across a wide range of industries: oil, gas, agriculture, infrastructure. Indeed. Up for grabs are: hospital and security equipment, medicines, road and rail machinery, oil production tools, finance and telecommunication systems. Rebuilding of roads, rail, hospitals, government buildings, schools, water purification plants and electricity, information technology, telecommunications, all to move from state owned to the “free market economy”.

Michael Klare on the Internal War For Control of Iraq's Oil
14.09.07. Democracy Now. Audio and transcript. Klare says, "There's a second war underway in Iraq that's a war for the control of the oil wealth. That's a war that is pitting Kurds against the Arabs of the country, Shiites against Sunnis, and Shiite against Shiite. Because eventually the Americans are going to leave and the people of Iraq know this."

Editorial: ‘Enduring Relationship’
15.09.07. One of the few things to be said in favor of his blundering American presidency is that, as a conjuror, George Bush has not been too bad even if the underlying trick has actually been deplorable. … The key distraction in this latest bit of the presidential flimflam came when he announced US political, economic, and security engagement would extend beyond his presidency to protect vital American interests in the region. That is what he calls “enduring relationship.” So what are those interests and what have all of Bush’s tricks tried to conceal? Oil. … And why does corporate America want power and influence over Iraqi oil? The conjuring hand that we are not supposed to be watching desires to limit the access of the Indian and Chinese economies to the hydrocarbon lifeblood of their burgeoning growth. In this way America can defend its economic dominance against its two greatest challengers. Abracadabra and presto!

Bush-linked Texas company signs oil deal with Iraqi Kurds
15.09.07. J. Kay, WSWS. ... 'Hunt is also on the board of directors of Halliburton , the company formerly run by Vice President Dick Cheney. ... A report on the web site HalliburtonWatch from August 2004 notes that Hunt “serves as chairman of the board for the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and is a member of the National Petroleum Council, an industry trade group that advises the president on energy policy. Vice President Cheney also served as a member of the Council during his tenure as CEO for Halliburton.”

Sarah Meyer is a researcher living in the UK. She is on the BRussels Tribunal Advisory Committee. This article can also be read on the BRussels Tribunal website .

Essential Reading on Iraq’s Oil history
Iraq Oil: The Vultures are Waiting
Sourced history of oil in Iraq by Sarah Meyer, Index Research.

The url to Iran War: Resource Info is :
A shorter URL is :

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.


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