Why there was no exit plan , San Francisco Chronicle Lewis Seiler, Dan Hamburg
Monday, April 30, 2007
"The United States maintains 737 military bases in 130 countries across the globe. They exist for the purpose of defending the economic interests of the United States, what is euphemistically called "national security." In order to secure favorable access to Iraq's vast reserves of light crude, the United States is spending billions on the construction of at least five large permanent military bases throughout that country.
A new Iraq oil law, largely written by the Coalition Provisional Authority, is planned for ratification by June. This law cedes control of Iraq's oil to western powers for 30 years . There is major opposition to the proposed law within Iraq, especially among the country's five trade union federations that represent hundreds of thousands of oil workers. The United States is working hard to surmount this opposition by appealing directly to the al-Maliki government in Iraq.
The attack upon, and subsequent occupation of, Iraq can be seen as a direct result of the 2001 (better known as vice president Cheney's energy task force the National Energy Policy Development Group ) that was comprised largely of oil and energy company executives. This task force -- the proceedings of which have been kept secret by the administration on the grounds of "executive privilege" -- recommended that the U.S. government support initiatives in Middle Eastern countries "to open up areas of their energy sector to foreign investment." As Antonio Juhasz, an analyst with Oil Change International wrote last month in the New York Times, "One invasion and a great deal of political engineering by the Bush administration later, this is exactly what the proposed Iraq oil law would achieve."
Read the rest of this stunning indictment of US /Coalition policy in Iraq.
Lewis Seiler is president of Voice of the Environment. Dan Hamburg, a former U.S. representative, is executive director.