Monday, February 26, 2007

I may be slow but ...

I have not bought into the whole "Oil War" theory of the Iraq War. I have been willing to grant that oil is a factor in our Middle East policies but the idea that oil would explicitly drive us to attack another country just smelled too much like conspiracy theory.

Then I saw this quote from the 2007 State of the Union speech in a Michael Klare piece.
.. A contagion of violence could spill out across the country -- and in time, the entire region could be drawn into the conflict.

For America, this is a nightmare scenario...
The invocation of "a nightmare scenario" caused by instability of some desert kingdoms, many thousands of miles away, can only be about oil. The President is explicitly stating here that our decisions about whether or not to start a war with Iran will be based on mainly our access to oil.

Now whether the Iraq war was intended by Dick Cheney to prevent China from winning access to the region's energy supply is highly speculative (and smells of conspiracy theory.) Whether an attack on Iran has already been ordered is also only one interpretation of events among many. All those ideas, wild or merely feral, will be left for another day. Sure, its nice to support Israel, with the holocaust and all, but would we grant Tel Aviv carte blanche if we weren't desperate for allies in that part of the world. It is at last clear (belatedly to me), that the only serious consideration about war and peace with Iran is the oil. Period.

I am reminded of the "hidden" cost of gasoline - the billions sunk into maintaining access to the Middle East. If only Bush took seriously our "addiction to foreign oil" he would see that the cost of changing our gas-guzzling ways would pale next to the benefits in money and American lives saved.

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