America cannot kick the oil habit

The USA has become accustomed to forcing others to realize the fact that it uses double standards in international politics. The USA imports 60% of the oil it uses, and oil is also imported from countries blacklisted by America itself. Washington ProFile, a US news agency informs that Iraq supplied 8.5% of the US’s total oil imports in 2001. It seems to be a rather strange “axis of evil”: on the one hand, Iraq is cursed every day, on the other, oil is being pumped from this very Iraq.

The USA is constantly cursing some of its oil suppliers, including Iraq, for "connections" with international terrorism. Member of the Senate’s Committee for Energy and Natural Resources Conrad Burns says that “oil and terrorism are interlaced the same way as radical Islam and terror. If a perverted religion inspires terrorism, earnings obtained from oil sales are its material basis.” Mr. Burns also thinks that any debate on the US national energy policy is to be based on the following question: “Why do we import oil from countries exporting terrorism as well?”

Former US ambassador to the UN Richard Holbrooke believes that the USA’s dependency on oil from abroad is the greatest failure of the country over the past 25 years. In addition to Iraq, oil is also imported from Saudi Arabia (17.6% of USA’s consumption in 2001), Mexico (15.1%), Canada (14.4%), Venezuela (14%), and Nigeria (8,9%). Washington ProFile reported that the amount of oil imported from the Persian Gulf region almost tripled. At the same time, US oil production reduced by almost 50% over the same period.

In September of 2001, when terrorist attacks occured in New York and Washington, the USA had record oil imports over the past eleven years. 1.6 million barrels of oil were bought from Iraq everyday. Last year, the USA purchased oil from Iraq to the sum of $4 million within the network of the UN program “Oil for Food”. The agency also mentions that Iraqi oil is supplied to the USA via shady mediators. Americans are not even confused with the fact that the mediators work for Saddam Hussein, enemy number one after Osama bin Laden.

Conrad Burns thinks that “the US’s imperfect policy in the sphere of energy and natural resources helps to finance terrorism.” At the same time, “dependency on oil supplies from criminal regimes poses a threat to the US security.”

America is irritated with Hussein’s support of families of Palestinian terrorists. When the USA purchases oil from Iraq, it implicitly sponsors the training of suicide terrorists. Why the appeals of the USA to Palestinians to give up terrorism? Double standards are in action. When Saddam Hussein suggested that Arab countries cease oil supplies to the USA because of the latter’s support to Israel, Washington announced it would not suffer greatly. At the same time, the possibility of oil production in Alaska’s national Arctic reserve is now being considered. According to some estimates, up to 10 billion barrels oil supplies are located in this reserve. This amount equals oil imports from Iraq for the next 55 years. However, the Americans plan to settle “the oil problem” in a different way. They wish to remove Saddam Hussein from the political scene. If the USA succeeds in this, no Alaska reserves need to be tapped. Americans do care about their nature, but they are not so squeamish about lives of other nations. Therefore, as long as the discussion of energy security continues, threats against Iraq will intensify.

Sergey Borisov PRAVDA.Ru

Translated by Maria Gousseva

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