About the war, the oil, and Anti-Semitic Propaganda
Aug 01, 2006 05:24 PM
Condemning and fomenting hatred of an entire national, ethnic or religious
group because of the acts of their leaders is unconscionable and directly in
contradiction of all the moral and ethical principles of theosophy.
I thought this article by an internationally respected author/journalist
might clarify the truths behind the current war in the Middle East and counteract
the propaganda spewed into this forum recently by a notorious Neo Nazi Hitler
apologist and Jew hater who sham-fully calls himself a "theosophist."
BLOOD IN BEIRUT: $75.05 A BARREL
The failure to stop the bloodletting in the Middle East,
Exxon's record second-quarter profits and Iran's
nuclear cat-and-mouse game have something in common --
it's the oil
By Greg Palast
July 26, 2006
I can't tell you how it started -- this is a war that's
been fought since the Levites clashed with the Philistines -- but I
can tell you why the current mayhem has not been stopped. It's the
I'm not an expert on Palestine nor Lebanon and I'd rather
not pretend to be one. If you want to know what's going on, read
Robert Fisk. He lives there. He speaks Arabic. Stay away from pundits
whose only connection to the Middle East is the local falafel
So why am I writing now? The answer is that, while I don't
speak Arabic or Hebrew, I am completely fluent in the language of
What? You don't need a degree in geology to know there's no oil in
Israel, Palestine or Lebanon. (A few weeks ago, I was joking around
with Afif Safieh, the Palestinian Authority's Ambassador to the US,
asking him why he was fighting to have a piece of the only place in
the Middle East without oil. Well, there's no joking now.)
Let's begin with the facts we can agree on: the berserkers
are winning. Crazies discredited only a month ago are now in charge,
guys with guns bigger than brains and souls smaller still. Here's a
-- Israel's Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's approval rating in
June was down to a Bush-level of 35%. But today, Olmert's poll numbers
among Israeli voters have more than doubled to 78% as he does his
bloody John Wayne “'cleanin' out the varmints” routine. But
let's not forget: Olmert can't pee-pee without George Bush's approval.
Bush can stop Olmert tomorrow. He hasn't.
-- Hezbollah, a political party rejected overwhelmingly by
Lebanese voters sickened by their support of Syrian occupation, holds
a mere 14 seats out of 128 in the nation's parliament. Hezbollah was
facing demands by both Lebanon's non-Shia majority and the United
Nations to lay down arms. Now, few Lebanese would suggest taking away
their rockets. But let's not forget: Without Iran, Hezbollah is just a
fundamentalist street gang. Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad can
stop Hezbollah's rockets tomorrow. He hasn't.
-- Hamas, just days before it kidnapped and killed Israeli
soldiers, was facing certain political defeat at the hands of the
Palestinian majority ready to accept the existence of Israel as
proposed in a manifesto for peace talks penned by influential
Palestinian prisoners. Now the Hamas rocket brigade is back in charge.
But let's not forget: Hamas is broke and a joke without the loot and
authority of Saudi Arabia. King Abdullah can stop these guys tomorrow.
Why not? Why haven't what we laughably call
“leaders” of the USA, Iran and Saudi Arabia called back
their delinquent spawn, cut off their allowances and grounded them for
Maybe because mayhem and murder in the Middle East are
very, very profitable to the sponsors of these characters with bombs
and rockets. America, Iran and Saudi Arabia share one thing in common:
they are run by oil regimes. The higher the price of crude, the higher
the profits and the happier the presidents and princelings of these
This Thursday, Exxon is expected to report the highest
second-quarter earnings of any corporation since the days of the
Pharaoh, $9.9 billion in pure profit collected in just three months --
courtesy of an oil shortage caused by pipelines on fire in Iraq,
warlord attacks in Nigeria, the lingering effects of the sabotage of
Venezuela's oil system by a 2002 strike... the list could go on.
Exxon's brobdingnagian profits simply reflect the cold
axiom that oil companies and oil states don't make their loot by
finding oil but by finding trouble. Finding oil increases supply.
Increased supply means decreased price. Whereas finding trouble --
wars, coup d'etats, hurricanes, whatever can disrupt supply -- raises
the price of oil.
A couple of examples from today's Bloomberg newswire
“Crude oil traded above $75 a barrel in New York as
fighting between Israeli and Iranian-backed Hezbollah forces in
Lebanon entered its 14th day... Oil prices rose last month on concern
for supplies from Iran, the world's fourth largest producer, may be
disrupted in its dispute with the United Nations over its uranium
enrichment ... [And, said a trader,] 'I still think $85 is likely this
summer. I'm really surprised we haven't seen any hurricanes.'''
In Tehran, President Ahmadinejad may or may not have a plan
to make a nuclear bomb, but he sure as heck knows that hinting at it
raises the price of the one thing he certainly does have -- oil. Every
time he barks, 'Mad Mahmoud' knows that he's pumping up the price of
crude. Just a $10 a barrel “blow-up-in-the-Mideast” premium
brings his regime nearly a quarter of a billion dollars each week
(including the little kick to the value of Iran's natural gas). Not a
bad pay-off for making a bit of trouble.
Saudi Arabia's rake-in from The Troubles? Assuming just a
$10 a barrel boost for Middle Eastern mayhem and you can calculate
that the blood in the sand puts an extra $658 million a week in
And in Houston, you can hear the cash registers jing-a-ling
as explosions in Kirkuk, Beirut and the Niger River Delta sound like
the sleigh-bells on Santa's sled. At $75.05 a barrel, they don't call
it “sweet” crude for nothing. That's up 27% from a year ago.
The big difference between then and now: the rockets' red glare.
Exxon's second-quarter profits may bust records, but next
quarter's should put it to shame, as the “Lebanon premium”
and Iraq's insurgency have puffed up prices, up by an average of 11%
in the last three months.
So there's not much incentive for the guys who supply the
weaponry to tell their wards to put away their murderous toys. This
war's just too darn profitable.
We are trained to think of Middle Eastern conflicts as just
modern flare-ups of ancient tribal animosities. But to uncover why the
flames won't die, the usual rule applies: follow the money.
Am I saying that Tehran, Riyadh and Houston oil chieftains
conspired to ignite a war to boost their petroleum profits? I can't
imagine it. But I do wonder if Bush would let Olmert have an extra
week of bombings, or if the potentates of the Persian Gulf would allow
Hamas and Hezbollah to continue their deadly fireworks if it caused
the price of crude to crash. You know and I know that if this war took
a bite out of Exxon or the House of Saud, a ceasefire would be imposed
quicker than you can say, “Let's drill in the Arctic.”
Eventually, there will be another ceasefire. But Exxon
shareholders need not worry. Global warming has heated the seas
sufficiently to make certain that they can look forward to a
hellacious -- and profitable -- season of hurricanes.
Greg Palast is the author of the just-released New York
Times bestseller, http://tinyurl.com/otb8d ARMED
MADHOUSE: Who's Afraid of Osama Wolf?, China Floats Bush Sinks,
the Scheme to Steal '08, No Child's Behind Left and other Dispatches
from the Front Lines of the Class War. Go to:
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