FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Yes, Tony, There is a Conspiracy

Here’s the prewar zeitgeist in a nutshell: In a widely reported January 16 speech, Tony Blair proclaimed that the impending invasion of Iraq “has nothing to do with oil, or any of the other conspiracy theories put forward.”

One week later, Sen. Richard Lugar, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, quietly passed word to Russia and France that their countries will be frozen out of staggeringly lucrative postwar oil contracts unless they roll over and endorse the US attack.

Yes, Tony, there is a conspiracy, in the dictionary sense of the term: an agreement among people to perform a criminal or wrongful act. It consists, not of a tiny cabal, but of the whole of the American power elite, from politicians to business executives to journalists. It has everything to do with oil. But it is not secret.

The conspirators know they can count on the uncritical support of the mass media. Therefore knowledge of their cynical motives and thuggish tactics can be made available in journals and other specialized fora, all but invisible to most Americans but accessible to the few with sufficient time and inclination to dig beneath the headlines.

Building on that knowledge, a Mumbai-based independent think tank has now anatomized the conspiracy behind the coming war and issued a truly comprehensive explanation of the current global crisis.

Behind the Invasion of Iraq, the startling new book-length report authored by the Research Unit for Political Economy (RUPE), synthesizes the seemingly disparate threads of the US war drive in what amounts to a blistering indictment of American foreign policy. The report (available on the Web at www.rupe-india.org) is lavishly documented and jargon-free; the effect, especially for readers with limited understanding of global commerce and finance, is of puzzle pieces clicking decisively into place.

The RUPE report wholly confirms the widely-held view of the coming war as a massive oil grab, “on a scale not witnessed since the days of colonialism.” Further, the current debate about arms inspections and alleged links to al-Qaeda is revealed as pure political theater, since the decision to invade Iraq was made months ago.

But seizure of Iraq’s multi-trillion-dollar petroleum reserves is only the immediate goal, the report shows. RUPE’s rigorous analysis of publicly available sources — including official documents, think-tank papers, and press reports — reveals that the US intends to use the invasion of Iraq as a launching pad for a drastic reshaping of the Middle East, to be followed by an unprecedented expansion of US power worldwide. The strategic trend of US foreign policy now points unmistakably towards global empire.

To be sure, an imperial project on so ambitious a scale entails big downside risks for the US, including staggering costs, military hazards, and the disruption of global “stability” (i.e., the dearly-bought loyalty of US allies and client states.) But the American Establishment seems prepared to go for broke, and its enthusiastic consensus behind a naked war of conquest cannot be explained solely by the “cowboy mentality” that some detect in the White House.

What’s really at stake — and this will come as no surprise to leftists — is US control of global markets. The report reveals that the US economy is now facing a nightmare scenario: A crisis of overproduction has crippled US GDP, resulting in monstrous trade and budget deficits, even as a potentially disastrous deflationary spiral appears to be under way worldwide.

Meanwhile, superpower rivals Europe, Russia and China are mounting a vigorous challenge to US economic preeminence, which is further threatened by the euro’s emergence as a credible alternative to the dollar as global reserve currency. (All this is exhaustively detailed in the RUPE report, which draws its most telling evidence from the mainstream financial press.)

In this context, the US sees confiscation of the world’s richest oil-producing regions as a magic bullet. While securing its own access to petroleum supplies for the foreseeable future, it can simultaneously defend dollar hegemony and restructure Middle East markets for the exclusive benefit of US-based corporations.

Which brings us to the crux: Direct American control of oil would render any potential challengers for world or regional supremacy perpetually dependent on US forbearance. In RUPE’s words, “once it has seized the oil wells of west Asia the US will determine not only which firms would bag the deals, not only the currency in which oil trade would be denominated, not only the price of oil on the international market, but even the destination of the oil.”

RUPE’s argument here is powerful but complex, and this summary is necessarily an extreme oversimplification. But the overall thrust is quite clear: The US invasion of Iraq needs to be understood not as an end in itself but as the means to an end — the foundation of a New American Empire.

Needless to say, you won’t catch Tony Blair owning up to the war’s real purpose as he flogs it to a skeptical public. But the truth, or something pretty close to it, is now readily available to anyone who cares to look.

JACOB LEVICH (, a writer and editor based in Queens, N.Y., assisted RUPE in researching Behind The Invasion of Iraq — which is a fancy way of saying he forwarded several hundred articles to an email address in Mumbai. He can be reached at: jlevich@earthlink.net

 

More articles by:

Jacob Levich is a university administrator and independent researcher who tweets as @cordeliers.

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550
Weekend Edition
August 23, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Adolf Alzuphar
Tears / Ayizan Velekete
Stephen Cooper
General Jah Mikey: “I Just Love That Microphone, Man”
Louis Proyect
Slaves to the Clock
August 22, 2019
George Ochenski
Breaking the Web of Life
Kenneth Surin
Boris Johnson’s Brexit Helter Skelter
Enrique C. Ochoa – Gilda L. Ochoa
It’s About Time for Ethnic Studies in Our K-12 Schools
Steve Early
A GI Rebellion: When Soldiers Said No to War
Clark T. Scott
Sanders And Bezos’s Shared, Debilitating, Basic Premise
Dan Corjescu
The Metaphysics of Revolution
Mark Weisbrot
Who is to Blame for Argentina’s Economic Crisis?
Howard Lisnoff
To Protect and Serve
Cesar Chelala
A Palestinian/Israeli Experiment for Peace in the Middle East
Binoy Kampmark
No Deal Chaos: the Brexit Cliff Face and Operation Yellowhammer
Josue De Luna Navarro
For True Climate Justice, Abolish ICE and CBP
Dean Baker
The NYT’s Upside Down Economics on Germany and the Euro Zone
August 21, 2019
Craig Collins
Endangered Species Act: A Failure Worth Fighting For?
Colin Todhunter
Offering Choice But Delivering Tyranny: the Corporate Capture of Agriculture
Michael Welton
That Couldn’t Be True: Restorying and Reconciliation
John Feffer
‘Slowbalization’: Is the Slowing Global Economy a Boon or Bane?
Johnny Hazard
In Protest Against Police Raping Spree, Women Burn Their Station in Mexico City.
Tom Engelhardt
2084: Orwell Revisited in the Age of Trump
Binoy Kampmark
Condescension and Climate Change: Australia and the Failure of the Pacific Islands Forum
Kenn Orphan – Phil Rockstroh
The Dead Letter Office of Capitalist Imperium: a Poverty of Mundus Imaginalis 
George Wuerthner
The Forest Service Puts Ranchers Ahead of Grizzlies (and the Public Interest)
Stephen Martin
Geopolitics of Arse and Elbow, with Apologies to Schopenhauer.
Gary Lindorff
The Smiling Turtle
August 20, 2019
James Bovard
America’s Forgotten Bullshit Bombing of Serbia
Peter Bolton
Biden’s Complicity in Obama’s Toxic Legacy
James Phillips
Calm and Conflict: a Dispatch From Nicaragua
Karl Grossman
Einstein’s Atomic Regrets
Colter Louwerse
Kushner’s Threat to Palestine: An Interview with Norman Finkelstein
Nyla Ali Khan
Jammu and Kashmir: the Legitimacy of Article 370
Dean Baker
The Mythology of the Stock Market
Daniel Warner
Is Hong Kong Important? For Whom?
Frederick B. Mills
Monroeism is the Other Side of Jim Crow, the Side Facing South
Binoy Kampmark
God, Guns and Video Games
John Kendall Hawkins
Toni Morrison: Beloved or Belovéd?
Martin Billheimer
A Clerk’s Guide to the Unspectacular, 1914
Elliot Sperber
On the 10-Year Treasury Bonds 
August 19, 2019
John Davis
The Isle of White: a Tale of the Have-Lots Versus the Have-Nots
John O'Kane
Supreme Nihilism: the El Paso Shooter’s Manifesto
Robert Fisk
If Chinese Tanks Take Hong Kong, Who’ll be Surprised?
Ipek S. Burnett
White Terror: Toni Morrison on the Construct of Racism
Arshad Khan
India’s Mangled Economy
Howard Lisnoff
The Proud Boys Take Over the Streets of Portland, Oregon
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail