Category Archives: Iraq Oil Law
And the disaster capitalists have been busy — from private firefighters already on the scene in Northern California’s wildfires, to land grabs in cyclone-hit Burma, to the housing bill making its way through Congress. The bill contains little in the way of affordable housing, shifts the burden of mortgage default to taxpayers and makes sure that the banks that made bad loans get some payouts. No wonder it is known in the hallways of Congress as “The Credit Suisse Plan,” after one of the banks that generously proposed it.
It would of been nice to have our National Guard here in Cali to fight the 1700 fires we got going on…but alas, most of them are fighting Bush’s war in Iraq or Afghanistan. Ms. Klein then goes after Iraq and the OIL ministry:
But these cases of disaster capitalism are amateurish compared with what is unfolding at Iraq’s oil ministry. It started with no-bid service contracts announced for ExxonMobil, Chevron, Shell, BP and Total (they have yet to be signed but are still on course). Paying multinationals for their technical expertise is not unusual. What is odd is that such contracts almost invariably go to oil service companies — not to the oil majors, whose work is exploring, producing and owning carbon wealth. As London-based oil expert Greg Muttitt points out, the contracts make sense only in the context of reports that the oil majors have insisted on the right of first refusal on subsequent contracts handed out to manage and produce Iraq’s oil fields. In other words, other companies will be free to bid on those future contracts, but these companies will win.
Such crap. Utter crap and fuckwittery our government pulls m’dear reader. For more ‘straight talk’ check out her piece here.
As if this is a surprise..
Iraq is preparing to allow four of the biggest western oil companies to renew exploitation of the country’s vast reserves for the first time in almost four decades.
Iraq’s oil ministry stepped up talks with BP, Exxon Mobil, Shell and Total after the US vice-president, Dick Cheney, visited Iraq in March, where he also pressed the government to revive efforts to pass the hydrocarbon law that nationalist MPs were blocking. The first contracts are expected to be signed this month. Some 90% of Iraq’s budget comes from oil revenues.
Iraq’s oil minister, Hussain al-Shahristani, told the Guardian this week that the deals did not amount to the privatisation of the country’s oil. But the four companies are heirs to the consortium given the concession to control Iraq’s oil by King Faisal, the foreign Sunni Arab whom the British imposed on Iraq’s majority Shia population after occupying the country during the first world war. They lost their right to explore new fields in 1961 after the monarchy was overthrown, and nationalisation followed under the Ba’ath party.
This is also a …cough..shocker..these contracts were not competitively bid. I do love how Mr. Halliburton dropped in for a visit in Iraq in March. The Big Dick Cheney can finally say his work is done there..fucker.
Artwork by The Worried Shrimp.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki announced Sunday that sectarian leaders have come to an agreement on several contentious draft laws which have been identified by the US as key to the country’s progress. Under the new agreement, former Baath Party [party website, in Arabic]; members not convicted of any crimes will be allowed to participate in the political process and serve in the civil and military service and procedures will be established to allow the release of uncharged security detainees. One of al-Maliki’s advisers also indicated that the leaders have agreed to a draft law on the distribution of oil revenues . The proposals must all still be adopted by the Iraqi Council of Representatives [official website, in Arabic].
In early August, the Sunni Iraqi Accordance Front left the government after al-Maliki refused its demands that he pardon uncharged security detainees and let all government-represented groups participate in security matters. Later five Iraqi Cabinet ministers belonging to the secular and nonsectarian Iraqi National List announced a boycott of government meetings, effectively ending Sunni representation in al-Maliki’s government. The move prompted Shi’a and Kurdish leaders to create a new coalition government to ensure that the coalition government will maintain a majority in the 275-seat legislature and be able to push through legislation seen as essential to the stabilization of Iraq. Reuters has more. BBC News has additional coverage.
Ah yes..the Oil LAW..Of course, like Bush…Maliki saying doesn’t make it so..but we shall see won’t we?
Lately the ball and chain has been bringing up politics. This my dear reader is extremely unusual. I have literally chased him around the house trying to discuss an issue or what have you and it ends with him locking himself in the bathroom.
He has taken an interest in bringing things to my attention that he thinks he is scooping me on. Of course thats not possible, lets be realistic, I get a million news alerts and updates from every known media source during the day. Its my thing for Christ’s sake.
We have baseball already. Sports in general. But he has really been sitting and talking political issues. I have also toned down my rhetoric as I have a tendency to raise my voice, my eyes bug out and the f-bomb’s start flying around. He is after all, a conservative from the old school.
But the operative phrase there is “old school”. They are no longer bad people, almost moderate on many issues like spying on us, taking care of those who can’t and spending our money like a drunken sailor on leave. I did convince him to NOT vote for Ahnold the last time around. He almost went for Angelides but backed out at the voting booth…
My point..possibly..is that labels are shifting in their meaning. We have allies where we never thought to look. We need to cultivate them.
Meanwhile, the Iraqi’s are really getting active protesting and bitching their ever-loving asses off about the proposed Oil Law. You know the one..where they sell their souls to the devil and don’t even get kissed first.
About 300 oil industry workers gathered in Iraq’s main oil port of Basra on Monday to protest a draft law that they said would allow foreigners to pillage the country’s wealth.”
To compensate for the military and political failure of the US administration in Iraq, this administration is trying to control the country’s wealth,” the organisers said in a statement distributed to reporters.
“If this is endorsed by the parliament it would abolish sovereignty and hand over the wealth of this generation and the generations to come as a gift to the occupier,” the statement said.
The protesters, employees of the Oil Pipelines Company, wore black surgical masks over their faces and carried banners and black coffins with the word “freedom” written on the sides.
At issue is a clause in the draft hydrocarbon law allowing for production-sharing agreements with foreign oil companies, which many Iraqis see as a throwback to an earlier era of colonial exploitation.
“This law, in fact destroys the achievements of the Iraqi masses and especially the Law number 80 of 1961 and the nationalisation of 1973,” the statement said.
The law from 1961, part of a bundle of socialist reforms issued by then-Prime Minister Abdul Karim Qassim, sharply limited foreign involvement in the oil sector.
US officials see the passing of the draft hydrocarbon law — aimed at equitably distributing Iraq’s oil proceeds — as a crucial benchmark of the country’s political process and a key component of national reconciliation.
Guess the Iraqi’s aren’t too fond of carpetbaggers stealing the only thing they got.
Here is a video of the event.