A few days ago, Vice President Joe Biden went to Iraq in an unannounced visit. It was reported that he was there to discuss the future political and military security relations between the U.S. and Iraq after the withdrawal of American troops by the end of 2011.
At the same time, it was announced that Exxon Mobil Oil Company signed a contract with the Kurdish government to drill for oil in their region.
The government in Baghdad has issued a warning stating that no contract signed by the Kurdish authority will be honored unless it is approved by the central government.
Exxon Mobil is already involved in the production of 370,000 barrels of oil on a daily basis in al Kurnah Field. The American oil company is also aware of the fact that no contract for oil will be honored unless it is approved by the central government. Why, then, did Exxon Mobil bypass the central government?
Exxon Mobil’s greed does not help its aggressive policy for more control of Iraqi oil. The company is aware of the Iraqi government’s law, which clearly states that contracts signed by the regional government will not be honored by the central government.
The Iraqi central government has prevented oil companies who signed contracts with regional governments from participating in bids elsewhere in Iraq. In 2009, the Iraqi central government signed a contract with Exxon worth $50 billion of investment to develop and increase oil production in southern Iraq.
It was reported that the Iraqi oil minister was outraged about Exxon Mobil’s contract with the Kurdistan regional government without consulting proper central government authority.
I am wondering if the central government will cancel its contract with Exxon Mobil as a result of its violation of Iraqi oil law.
The Iraqi government should do that to set a standard, especially with aggressive American oil companies. What Exxon Mobil has done is increasing the ethnic tensions between Kurdistan’s regional government and the central authority in Baghdad.
Furthermore, I wonder if Vice President Joe Biden’s recent trip to Baghdad and the Kurdistan region is connected with Exxon Mobil, the Kurdistan regional government and the central government in Baghdad.
It seems to me that through their lobbyists, American oil companies exert so much pressure on the U.S. government to do their dirty work for them. After all, the American oil companies have played an influential role in supporting the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
The American oil companies have never forgotten the Saddam Hussein nationalizing of all oil companies during the early 1970s.
Iraq is viewed as the richest country in oil reserves, which puts it ahead of Saudi Arabia. As a matter of fact, Vice President Dick Cheney, while in office, pointed out publicly at a conference in Britain that Iraq will be the country that will sell the last barrel of oil.
It also should be stated that Vice President Joe Biden has advocated after the U.S. invasion in 2003 and the partitioning of Iraq into three states: a Kurdish state in the north, a Sunni Muslim state in the center and a Muslim Shiaa state in the south. Mr. Biden’s rationale was that such a plan would lesson the conflict among the three major groups in Iraq.
Foreign interference in Iraqi internal affairs, especially by Britain and the U.S., has been going on for many decades. The strategy of divide and rule has been followed by the West, especially in the Middle East. This policy was and still is a major destabilizing factor in the region, which has created sectarian and ethnic conflicts among various groups, especially in the Arab world. Not a single Arab state has escaped such Western interferences directly and indirectly.