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Can US contractors be leaving Iraq because the cost to secure the oil fields will be too much, and seems China has become a player from deals signed pre-USA invasion:

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - China and Japan have staked their claim to develop Iraq's vast oil reserves with Tokyo offering billions of dollars in loans and Beijing agreeing to renegotiate a deal signed with Saddam, Iraq's oil minister said Wednesday.

Hussain al-Shahristani was briefing reporters after a tour of Asia that took in the world's second biggest oil consumer China and its third biggest Japan -- both heavily dependent on imports and keen to secure future energy supplies.

Iraq, which has the world's third largest oil reserves, is in urgent need of billions of dollars in foreign investment after years of sanctions and war crushed the industry.

The Baghdad government is working towards its first foreign oilfield development contract and is readying a legal framework.
http://www.ndtvprofit.com/...

What a royal f***up!


State-owned China National Petroleum Corp signed the al-Ahdab deal in the midst of UN sanctions that barred direct dealings with Iraq's oil industry. Beijing was waiting for sanctions to end when the US invasion in 2003 overthrew Saddam's government.

All other energy contracts signed by foreign producers during the Saddam era also must be renegotiated after Iraqi lawmakers enact a new oil and gas law, which is likely to happen this year.

Al-Shahristani said al-Ahdab would be among the first fields offered to foreign bidders, which will need to show technical and financial capability and a proven record in producing oil.

Iraq will need up to $20 billion in investment to develop its oil infrastructure, the minister said.


http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/... I knew that Saddum wanted to go off the dollar, but I did not know about the oil deals with China. I wonder if this played a part on our invasion. Even if Saddum had weapons, would he have used them and destroy his arrangements with China? I somehow doubt it.

Originally posted to mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 05:06 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  interesting (6+ / 0-)

    China and oil.

    it's like a set up for the Cold War to compete with us, but they own us through all the crap we buy and the debt we rack up. so it's different.

    I might do a DKos Atlas series on China's oil contracts but that won't come until January. Still have Sudan to finish up, the Horn of Africa to do, and then Zaire Congo...then will move into South America.

    things fall apart; the centre cannot hold

    by terrypinder on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 05:12:18 PM PST

    •  How about Syria and Iran...since (0+ / 0-)

      Israel and USA want so much to bomb them.

      Bush's Noble Cause: 600,000 dead, millions maimed, billions traumatized and homeless. And now the gutting of Social Security.

      by mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 05:13:56 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  'Stability First': Newspeak for rape of Iraq (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mattes, skywriter, Kingsmeg

      There is an excellent article in Asia Times Online on this topic.

      "Total victory", in Cheney's world view, means that the Bush administration was not, is not and will never be interested in Iraqi, or Middle Eastern, "democracy". What matters is control of the lightest, sweetest, most profitable crude oil on the planet, 112 billion barrels of it in proven reserves plus 220 billion barrels still to be exploited, at a cost as low as US$1 a barrel; a cluster of sprawling military bases; the largest embassy/fortress-by-the-Tigris in the world; and the indispensable client regime.

      In sum: a "Coalition of the Drilling" secured by the Pentagon's Long War apparatus. It's up to ancient and proud Baghdad to spoil the party. Baghdad survived and buried Hulagu. Baghdad survived and buried Tamerlan. Baghdad may as well survive and bury George W Bush.

      and

      World public opinion must switch to red alert. The real, not virtual, future of Iraq will be decided in December. The whole point is a new oil law - which is in fact a debt-for-oil program concocted and imposed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). This is the point of the US invasion - a return on investment on the hundreds of billions of dollars of US taxpayers' money spent. It's not war as politics by other means; it's war as free-market opening by other means - full US access to the epicenter of the energy wars and the perfect geostrategic location for "taming", in the near future, both Russia and China.
      Very few observers have detailed what's at stake. In US corporate media the silence is stratospheric.

      Emphasis in bold type is my own.

      Here is the link for the full story: http://www.atimes.com/...

  •  Okay.......Am I one of the few people (3+ / 0-)

    that think this is important??

    Bush's Noble Cause: 600,000 dead, millions maimed, billions traumatized and homeless. And now the gutting of Social Security.

    by mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 05:59:35 PM PST

    •  it's been a rough day (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mattes

      the site is stuck on stupid with all the Kerry diaries today....so a LOT falls behind and gets lost.

      things fall apart; the centre cannot hold

      by terrypinder on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 06:34:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  This seems a tad bit more imporant.. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        truong son traveler

        I guess everyone is tapped out. How can Bush demand the contracts without admitting to the world it was all about oil, and not letting China get the contracts.

        Bush's Noble Cause: 600,000 dead, millions maimed, billions traumatized and homeless. And now the gutting of Social Security.

        by mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 06:41:07 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  we're still the world's superpower (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          mattes

          so we can demand what we want, as long as the world continues to see us in that role.

          and they may decide otherwise in the next 15 to 30 years. this will be a very interesting century.

          things fall apart; the centre cannot hold

          by terrypinder on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 06:42:31 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  US doesn't deserve to lead the world (0+ / 0-)

            It's made a mess of the Middle East.

            Has paid tribute to Israel to the tune of $120 billion

            and for what?

            so Israel can keep its foot in the face of Palestinians?

            No, the US no longer deserves leading role and that is without discussing the continuing criminal activity that is the Iraq invasion and occupation.

            The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.--Mark Twain

            by skywriter on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 06:56:10 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I can't argue a thing. But the Americans that (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              truong son traveler

              will suffer most are the poor and middle class, the elite won't miss a beat.

              Bush's Noble Cause: 600,000 dead, millions maimed, billions traumatized and homeless. And now the gutting of Social Security.

              by mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 07:01:15 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  No question the US is in decline (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                mattes

                We can hope that China will be enlightened and humane. Hope they can be steered in that direction. The depth of Republican decadence is unbounded and the crime is these bastards are taking us down with them.

                check this out and the graphics especially.

                SPIEGEL ONLINE - October 24, 2006
                http://www.spiegel.de/...
                A SUPERPOWER IN DECLINE
                America's Middle Class Has Become Globalization's Loser

                By Gabor Steingart

                At the beginning of the 21st century, the United States is still a superpower. But it's a superpower facing competition from beyond its borders as well as internal difficulties. Its lower and middle classes are turning out to be the losers of globalization.

                Editor's Note: The following essay has been excerpted from the German best-seller "World War for Wealth: The Global Grab for Power and Prosperity" by SPIEGEL editor Gabor Steingart. SPIEGEL ONLINE is publishing a series of daily excerpts from the book.

                The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.--Mark Twain

                by skywriter on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 07:47:20 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

  •  I've been visiting China every year since 2000 (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mattes, truong son traveler

    I've been in Guangzhou, the main city of south China, for about 1 month in each year since 2000.

    Within the past couple years, I have seen a whole lot of people there who appear to be from Middle Eastern countries.  I do not know if they were Arab or Persian, but there are alot more than there was 4 or 5 years ago.

    Some were dressed in typical Western clothing, but many were wearing standard Middle Eastern style clothing (including women in burkhas).

    China is making trade deals all over the place, and the Chinese government understands that it can not maintain social order without continuing economic growth.

    Look Out! Homosexuals are gonna force your guns to have abortions!

    by Predator Saint on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 06:17:31 PM PST

  •  This sez US oil cartel has Iraqi oil sewn up (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mattes

    The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.--Mark Twain

    by skywriter on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 06:29:49 PM PST

    •  I wonder if this is why al Maliki has been so (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      truong son traveler, skywriter

      testy...he is under pressure from Bushco, but China wants the pre-invasion deals honored.

      The Iraqi government faces a December deadline, imposed by the world's wealthiest countries, to complete its final oil law. Industry analysts expect that the result will be a radical departure from the laws governing the country's oil-rich neighbors, giving foreign multinationals a much higher rate of return than with other major oil producers and locking in their control over what George Bush called Iraq's "patrimony" for decades, regardless of what kind of policies future elected governments might want to pursue.
      snip

      But the real gem -- what one oil consultant called the "Holy Grail" of the industry -- lies in Iraq's vast western desert. It's one of the last "virgin" fields on the planet, and it has the potential to catapult Iraq to No. 1 in the world in oil reserves. Sparsely populated, the western fields are less prone to sabotage than the country's current centers of production in the north, near Kirkuk, and in the south near Basra. The Nation's Aram Roston predicts Iraq's western desert will yield "untold riches."

      Hold can foreign countries force them to sell to themselves?

      Bush's Noble Cause: 600,000 dead, millions maimed, billions traumatized and homeless. And now the gutting of Social Security.

      by mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 06:39:05 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  yes (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mattes, truong son traveler

        US v Japan, 1853.

        we forced them open by gunship.

        things fall apart; the centre cannot hold

        by terrypinder on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 06:40:19 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Shit.....and we are worried about Syria (0+ / 0-)

          and Iran. Seems the big one is really with China....just like Firefly Series.

          Bush's Noble Cause: 600,000 dead, millions maimed, billions traumatized and homeless. And now the gutting of Social Security.

          by mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 06:43:01 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  China maybe getting contracts (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mattes, truong son traveler

        because US/Halliburton screwed up so badly.

        the full story is here and it is not behind a firewall:
        http://travel2.nytimes.com/...

        this was the editorial and it's also not behind firewall:

        The New York Times

        April 27, 2006
        Editorial
        The Iraqi Oil Pipeline Fiasco

        The Bush administration's promise that Iraq's reconstruction could be paid for with the country's own oil revenues was one of the many false assertions and assurances that ushered in the invasion. But unlike the predictions of weapons of mass destruction and streets filled with cheering Iraqis, this claim might have been at least partly true — if the administration had more carefully supervised the lucrative no-bid oil industry repair contract it awarded to a subsidiary of Halliburton, the firm formerly headed by Vice President Dick Cheney.

        Part of that contract involved repairing a crucial pipeline link that American bombing had severed in the course of the invasion. Had the repair been done right the first time, Iraq would have been able to export much more oil from its northern oil fields in the past few years, making it far less dependent on American reconstruction aid, which has amounted to about $30 billion so far.

        How this costly and unnecessary failure came about was spelled out by James Glanz in a compelling investigative report in Tuesday's Times. He described the easily avoidable engineering errors that delayed the reopening of the crucial Fatah pipeline link while the contracted funds ran out and the security situation for reconstruction workers deteriorated drastically. It is instructive to recall the circumstances in which Halliburton was awarded this contract just prior to the Iraq invasion — with no competitive bidding. Later, when Democrats in Congress began raising questions, the Pentagon pointed to Halliburton's special expertise in oil-field management and its long experience working under Army Corps of Engineers' supervision.

        But neither the expertise nor the supervision were much in evidence on the Fatah repair job. The Halliburton subsidiary managing the project ignored the clear warnings of its own consultants and let the drilling begin without any rigorous testing of the ground it needed to work in, which turned out to be a geological fault zone. As a result, drill bits repeatedly snapped and drill holes kept collapsing. It took an unconscionably long time for the corps to find out about the problems. By then, months had passed and almost all of the roughly $75 million allocated for the project had been spent.

        There are crucial lessons to be learned here about the rarely justified practice of awarding no-bid contracts based on presumed special expertise. There are lessons as well for the Corps of Engineers, which is also supervising much of the Katrina rebuilding effort — some of the reconstruction work there is also being done by Halliburton.

        On the Fatah pipeline crossing project, American taxpayers got a particularly raw deal. The repair work they originally paid for wasn't done. The government agency that was supposed to supervise the work did not do an effective job. And the oil exports that could have helped pay Iraq's reconstruction bills never made it through the pipeline.

        Copyright 2006 The New York Times Company

        http://www.nytimes.com/...

        The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.--Mark Twain

        by skywriter on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 07:19:36 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  If this does not win the election (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          truong son traveler

          for the democrats...nothing will. Yet, Cheney and Rumsfeld are doing a FANTASTIC job.

          Why isn't this all over the networks?

          Thanks for that link!

          Bush's Noble Cause: 600,000 dead, millions maimed, billions traumatized and homeless. And now the gutting of Social Security.

          by mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 07:27:36 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Here'a another (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mattes

    The failures by this administration haven't been counted up because there are so many.

    It's clear China is getting these contracts because the US under Bush can't do it.

    OTOH, giving China the contracts means China will be bringing in its own pacification routines. At this point, the Iraqis might be thinking they'll side with "Not US"

    Evidence of Fraud Found by Iraq Audit
    A watchdog agency sees poor oversight in a defunct U.S. program to let private firms train Iraqis to guard oil and power infrastructure.
    By T. Christian Miller, Times Staff Writer
    April 30, 2006
    http://www.latimes.com/...
    this story also at:
    http://www.corpwatch.org/...

    WASHINGTON — An American initiative to use private security companies to protect Iraq's oil and power infrastructure collapsed amid reports of possible fraud, missing weapons and destroyed documents, according to a federal audit released Saturday.

    Under a program named Task Force Shield, the U.S. paid two security firms $147 million to train and equip tens of thousands of Iraqis to safeguard oil pipelines and transmission towers, the audit found.

    The U.S. government's efforts "ultimately proved to be unsuccessful," says the report by the Special Inspector General for the Reconstruction of Iraq, a U.S. government watchdog agency. "The lack of records and equipment accountability raises significant concerns about possible fraud, waste and abuse of Task Force Shield program by U.S. and Iraqi officials."

    Task Force Shield was disbanded in April 2005. Its former commanders could not be reached for comment Saturday.

    Iraqi insurgent attacks on oil pipelines drain as much as $8 million a day from the Iraqi treasury, and strikes against electrical towers are among the primary reasons that power production remains below prewar levels.

    The chief executive of Erinys, the company responsible for training guards to protect Iraq's oil system, strenuously defended its work, saying it had ....

    The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.--Mark Twain

    by skywriter on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 07:31:22 PM PST

    •  ...all this came out today, and we are talking (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      truong son traveler, skywriter

      about Kerry! Ugh!!

      The Iraqis may very well do better under China. We have made so many enemies, there would never be security under US control. Bush F***ed it but good. This might be why alot of wall street is turning against Bush, and why to placate them he is still promising Social Security money.

      Bush's Noble Cause: 600,000 dead, millions maimed, billions traumatized and homeless. And now the gutting of Social Security.

      by mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 07:40:34 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This is pure piggery (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mattes, truong son traveler

    The breadth and scope of the Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld hubris and failures are so massive, so breath-taking, and so wide-ranging, they have not begun to be counted. You wonder why the Iraqi oil minister is steering contracts to China? Get a load of this...

    Is there any wonder that pure chaos reigns in Iraq? This sort of porkery befits Louis XIV or Henry the VIII. Why would anyone in that poor country trust the US?

    Wednesday, May 3, 2006 by the London Times / UK
    In the Chaos of Iraq, One Project is on Target: a Giant US Embassy
    by Daniel McGrory
    The question puzzles and enrages a city: how is it that the Americans cannot keep the electricity running in Baghdad for more than a couple of hours a day, yet still manage to build themselves the biggest embassy on Earth?

    Irritation grows as residents deprived of air-conditioning and running water three years after the US-led invasion watch the massive US Embassy they call “George W’s palace” rising from the banks of the Tigris.

    ...

    In the pavement cafés, people moan that the structure is bigger than anything Saddam Hussein built. They are not impressed by the architects’ claims that the diplomatic outpost will be visible from space and cover an area that is larger than the Vatican city and big enough to accommodate four Millennium Domes. They are more interested in knowing whether the US State Department paid for the prime real estate or simply took it.

    While families in the capital suffer electricity cuts, queue all day to fuel their cars and wait for water pipes to be connected, the US mission due to open in June next year will have its own power and water plants to cater for a population the size of a small town.

    ...

    Looming over the skyline, the embassy has the distinction of being the only big US building project in Iraq that is on time and within budget.

    In a week when Washington revealed a startling list of missed deadlines and overspending on building projects, Congress was told that the bill for the embassy was $592 million (£312 million).

    The heavily guarded 42-hectare (104-acre) site — which will have a 15ft thick perimeter wall — has hundreds of workers swarming on scaffolding. Local residents are bitter that the Kuwaiti contractor has employed only foreign staff and is busing them in from a temporary camp nearby.

    After roughing it in Saddam’s abandoned palaces, diplomats should have every comfort in their new home. There will be impressive residences for the Ambassador and his deputy, six apartments for senior officials, and two huge office blocks for 8,000 staff to work in. There will be what is rumoured to be the biggest swimming pool in Iraq, a state-of-the-art gymnasium, a cinema, restaurants offering delicacies from favourite US food chains, tennis courts and a swish American Club for evening functions.

    The security measures being installed are described as extraordinary. US officials are preparing for the day when the so-called green zone, the fortified and sealed-off compound where international diplomats and Iraq’s leaders live and work, is reopened to the rest of the city’s residents, and American diplomats can retreat to their own secure area.

    Iraqi politicians opposed to the US presence protest that the scale of the project suggests that America retains long-term ambitions here. The International Crisis Group, a think-tank, said the embassy’s size “is seen by Iraqis as an indication of who actually exercises power in their country”. ...

    ...

    BEHIND SCHEDULE

    1. A US Inspector General’s report into reconstruction found that although $22 billion had been spent, water, sewage and electricity, infrastructure still operated at prewar levels
    2. Despite “significant progress” in recent months, less than half the water and electricity projects have been completed
    3. Only six of the 150 planned health centres have been completed
    4. US officials spent $70 million on medical equipment for health clinics that are unlikely ever to be built. More than 75 per cent of the funds for the 150 planned clinics have been allocated
    5. Task Force Shield, the $147 million programme to train Iraqi security units to protect key oil and electrical sites failed to meet its goals. A fraud investigation is under way
    6. Oil production was 2.18 million barrels per day in the last week of March. Before the war it was 2.6 million

    Copyright 2006 Times Newspapers Ltd.

    http://www.commondreams.org/...

    The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.--Mark Twain

    by skywriter on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 07:43:01 PM PST

  •  This diary is spot on and of great importance (0+ / 0-)

    It's sad to see so little interest and so few comments. Perhaps it's the timing but so many important facts are brought out in this diary.

    •  Skywriter has added some wonderful (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      truong son traveler

      links that give the story more dimension. Maybe someone could write another diary tomorrow. I bet that these were the issues discussed at the Energy Meetings.

      Hear that Chevron?

      Bush's Noble Cause: 600,000 dead, millions maimed, billions traumatized and homeless. And now the gutting of Social Security.

      by mattes on Wed Nov 01, 2006 at 07:58:37 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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