Arguably the second Gulf war is now over. As the result we have a ‘liberated’ country with a free falling population and a foreign occupation continuing to harvest the disguised fruits like in a bygone era. Meanwhile I am told the previously estimated appalling death toll of 100,000 human lives is a gross underestimation. A latest joint US-Iraqi survey has estimated 655,000 Iraqis or 2.5 percent of Iraq’s population have died as a result of the 2003 US-UK invasion of Iraq.
While the “United States operation for Iraqi Freedom” continues to move forward over the bodies of Iraqis, it is worth reviewing the first Gulf War. The following is my translation of an article published in Sinhala language by the newspaper ‘Hiru’ at the beginning of American Iraq invasion in 2003.
At that time it was said the first Gulf war was for the “freedom” of Kuwaitis and Iraqis. But a glance at the profit/loss account of the war led by George Bush senior may suggest otherwise. Thereby we can envisage how the profit-loss will be of the second Gulf War.
What was the cost of 1991 first Gulf War?
It was US$ 40 billion.
Have you thought about who paid this money?
The general public believes the Unite States paid for the cost of the war. But the truth is very different. Out of the US$ 40 billion the US spent only US$ 10 billion or 25%. The rest US$ 30 billion comprising 75% of the war budget was spent by Arab country’s Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.
How did they get this money?
Before the war the average price of a barrel of crude oil was 15 US$. With the Gulf war it increased to 42 US$. There by they got an extra profit of US$ 60 billion.
To whom did this profit go?
According to the “50% -50%” law in Arab countries 50% of it belonged to the governments. The other 50% went to the multinational oil companies controlling the oilfields.
That means US$ 30 billion for those companies and the other US$ 30 billion for Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.
Who owns those companies?
Middle-East oil exploration and trade is under 7 companies (Shell, Mobil, Esso etc.). All these companies are American. The US Government owns 5 of them. Therefore from the 30 billion dollar profit for these companies, about 21 billion belonged to the American government and the remaining 9 billion to the American private sector.
Lets look at it like this.
Now it’s clear. From the first Gulf War the United States earned a profit of 20 billion dollars.
For what was the 40 billion dollars spent in the war?
That was for weapons. Americans have a total control over this weapons industry. So America got a 20 billion profit from oil. And also most of the 40 billion dollar war cost from weapon sales.
Now it is easy to understand two other important issues.
1. Reason for Afghanistan war
2. Reason for 2003 Iraq war
The first target of Afghanistan war was to install a puppet government. Thereafter gain the opportunity to build a 2500 km long, American owned oil pipeline to pump oil from the oil rich central Asian states (Uzbekistan, etc.) to the Arabian Sea.
If the oil pipeline cutting across many countries were to be built avoiding Afghanistan it would be 5500 km long. Thereby making it difficult to build and maintain.
Why did Bush junior want to attack Iraq again?
Saudi Arabia is the main Middle-East oil supplier. United States wouldn’t be able to amend the increasingly fracturing ties with Saudi Arabia. And also because of its human rights record Saudi Arabia is an internationally disgraced country. Furthermore the 3 years leading to 2003 saw some revolutionary changes taking place in Venezuela. Venezuela is United States main oil supplier.
Therefore Bush aim was to find an alternative oil source to Middle-East Saudi Arabia, and Venezuela.
Wasn’t Iraq an alternative?