- Bush planned Iraq 'regime change' before
- Iraq oil targeted before 9-11
by Neil Mackay
Editor's note: the author, an award-winning
journalist with The Sunday Herald, Glasgow, Scotland, provided Culture Change
this article and the related ones that follow. They are historic, though
dated Sept. 15, 2002, and Oct. 6, 2002, respectively.
A SECRET blueprint for US global domination
reveals that President Bush and his cabinet were planning a premeditated attack
on Iraq to secure ''regime change'' even before he took power in January
The blueprint, uncovered by the Sunday Herald, for the
creation of a ''global Pax Americana'' was drawn up for Dick Cheney (now
vice-president), Donald Rumsfeld (defence secretary), Paul Wolfowitz (Rumsfeld's
deputy), George W Bush's younger brother Jeb and Lewis Libby (Cheney's chief of
staff). The document, entitled Rebuilding America's Defences: Strategies, Forces
And Resources For A New Century, was written in September 2000 by the
neo-conservative think-tank Project for the New American Century (PNAC).
The plan shows Bush's cabinet intended to take military
control of the Gulf region whether or not Saddam Hussein was in power. It says:
''The United States has for decades sought to play a more permanent role in Gulf
regional security. While the unresolved conflict with Iraq provides the
immediate justification, the need for a substantial American force presence in
the Gulf transcends the issue of the regime of Saddam Hussein.''
The PNAC document supports a ''blueprint for maintaining
global US pre-eminence, precluding the rise of a great-power rival, and shaping
the international security order in line with American principles and
This ''American grand strategy'' must be advanced ''as far
into the future as possible'', the report says. It also calls for the US to
''fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theatre wars'' as a
The report describes American armed forces abroad as ''the
cavalry on the new American frontier''. The PNAC blueprint supports an earlier
document written by Wolfowitz and Libby that said the US must ''discourage
advanced industrial nations from challenging our leadership or even aspiring to
a larger regional or global role''.
The PNAC report also:
-- refers to key allies such as the UK as ''the most effective and efficient
means of exercising American global leadership'';
-- describes peace-keeping missions as ''demanding American political leadership
rather than that of the United Nations'';
-- reveals worries in the administration that Europe could rival the USA;
-- says ''even should Saddam pass from the scene'' bases in Saudi Arabia and
Kuwait will remain permanently - despite domestic opposition in the Gulf regimes
to the stationing of US troops - as ''Iran may well prove as large a threat to
US interests as Iraq has'';
-- spotlights China for ''regime change'' saying ''it is time to increase the
presence of American forces in southeast Asia''. This, it says, may lead to
''American and allied power providing the spur to the process of democratisation
-- calls for the creation of ''US Space Forces'', to dominate space, and the
total control of cyberspace to prevent ''enemies'' using the internet against
-- hints that, despite threatening war against Iraq for developing
weapons of mass destruction, the US may consider developing biological weapons -
which the nation has banned - in decades to come. It says: ''New methods of
attack - electronic, 'non-lethal', biological - will be more widely available
combat likely will take place in new dimensions, in space, cyberspace, and
perhaps the world of microbes advanced forms of biological warfare that can
'target' specific genotypes may transform biological warfare from the realm of
terror to a politically useful tool'';
l and pinpoints North Korea, Libya, Syria and Iran as dangerous regimes and says
their existence justifies the creation of a ''world-wide command-and-control
Tam Dalyell, the Labour MP, father of the House of Commons
and one of the leading rebel voices against war with Iraq, said: ''This
is garbage from right-wing think-tanks stuffed with chicken-hawks - men who have
never seen the horror of war but are in love with the idea of war. Men like
Cheney, who were draft-dodgers during the Vietnam war.
''This is a blueprint for US world domination - a new world
order of their making. These are the thought processes of fantasist Americans
who want to control the world. I am appalled that a British Labour Prime
Minister should have got into bed with a crew which has this moral standing.''
Oil companies at the heart of Iraq crisis. Before 9-11, US targeted Iraq oil
by Neil Mackay
Cabinet agreed in April 2001 that ''Iraq remains a destabilising
influence to the flow of oil to international markets from the Middle East'' and
because this is an unacceptable risk to the US ''military intervention'' is
Vice-president Dick Cheney, who chairs the White House Energy
Policy Development Group, commissioned a report on ''energy security'' from the
Baker Institute for Public Policy, a think-tank set up by James Baker, the
former US secretary of state under George Bush Snr.
The report, Strategic Energy Policy Challenges For The 21st
Century, concludes: ''The United States remains a prisoner of its energy
dilemma. Iraq remains a de-stabilising influence to the flow of oil to
international markets from the Middle East. Saddam Hussein has also demonstrated
a willingness to threaten to use the oil weapon and to use his own export
programme to manipulate oil markets. Therefore the US
should conduct an immediate policy review toward Iraq including military,
energy, economic and political/ diplomatic assessments.
''The United States should then develop an integrated strategy with key allies
in Europe and Asia, and with key countries in the Middle East, to restate goals
with respect to Iraqi policy and to restore a cohesive coalition of key
Baker who delivered the recommendations to Cheney, the former
chief executive of Texas oil firm Halliburton, was advised by Kenneth Lay, the
disgraced former chief executive of Enron, the US energy giant which went
bankrupt after carrying out massive accountancy fraud.
The other advisers to Baker were: Luis Giusti, a Shell
non-executive director; John Manzoni, regional president of BP and David
O'Reilly, chief executive of ChevronTexaco. Another name linked to the document
is Sheikh Saud Al Nasser Al Sabah, the former Kuwaiti oil minister and a fellow
of the Baker Institute.
President Bush also has strong connections to the US oil
industry and once owned the oil company Spectrum 7.
The Baker report highlights massive shortages in world oil
supplies which now leave the US facing ''unprecedented energy price volatility''
and has led to recurring electricity black-outs in areas such as California.
The report refers to the impact of fuel shortages on voters.
It recommends a ''new and viable US energy policy central to America's domestic
economy and to [the] nation's security and foreign policy''.
Iraq, the report says, ''turns its taps on and
off when it has felt such action was in its strategic interest to do so'',
adding that there is a ''possibility that Saddam Hussein may remove Iraqi oil
from the market for an extended period of time'' in order to damage prices.
The report also says that Cheney should integrate energy and
security to stop ''manipulations of markets by any state'', and suggests that
Cheney's Energy Policy Group includes ''representation from the Department of
''Unless the United States assumes a leadership role in the
formation of new rules of the game,'' the report says, ''US firms, US consumers
and the US government [will be left] in a weaker position.''
The west's battle for oil
Five months before September 11, the US advocated using force against Iraq to
secure control of its oil.
IT is a document that fundamentally questions the motives behind the Bush
administration's desire to take out Saddam Hussein and go to war with Iraq.
Strategic Energy Policy Challenges For The 21st Century describes how America is
facing the biggest energy crisis in its history. It targets Saddam as a threat
to American interests because of his control of Iraqi oilfields and recommends
the use of ''military intervention'' as a means to fix the US energy crisis.
The report is linked to a veritable who's who of US hawks,
oilmen and corporate bigwigs. It was commissioned by James Baker, the former US
Secretary of State under George Bush Snr, and submitted to Vice-President Dick
Cheney in April 2001 - a full five months before September 11. Yet it advocates
a policy of using military force against an enemy such as Iraq to secure
US access to, and control of, Middle Eastern oil fields.
One of the most telling passages in the document reads: ''Iraq
remains a destabilising influence to the flow of oil to international markets
from the Middle East. Saddam Hussein has also demonstrated a willingness to
threaten to use the oil weapon and to use his own export programme to manipulate
''This would display his personal power, enhance his image as
a pan-Arab leader and pressure others for a lifting of economic sanctions
against his regime. The United States should conduct an immediate policy review
toward Iraq including military, energy, economic and political/diplomatic
''The United States should then develop an integrated
strategy with key allies in Europe and Asia, and with key countries in the
Middle East, to restate goals with respect to Iraqi policy and to restore a
cohesive coalition of key allies.''
At the moment, UN sanctions allow Iraq to export some oil. Indeed, the US
imports almost a million barrels of Iraqi oil a day, even though American firms
are forbidden from direct involvement with the regime's oil industry. In 1999, Iraq
was exporting around 2.5 million barrels a day across the world.
The US document recommends using UN weapons inspectors as a means of controlling
Iraqi oil. On one hand, ''military intervention'' is supported; but the report
also backs ''de-fanging'' Saddam through weapons inspectors and then moving in
to take control of Iraqi oil.
''Once an arms-control program is in place, the US could consider reducing
restrictions [sanctions] on oil investment inside Iraq,'' it reads. The
reason for this is that ''Iraqi [oil] reserves represent a major asset that can
quickly add capacity to world oil markets and inject a more competitive tenor to
This, however, may not be as effective as simply taking out Saddam. The report
admits that an arms-control policy will be ''quite costly'' as it will
''encourage Saddam Hussein to boast of his 'victory' against the United States,
fuel his ambition and potentially strengthen his regime''. It adds: ''Once so
encouraged, and if his access to oil revenues was to be increased by adjustments
in oil sanctions, Saddam Hussein could be a greater security threat to US allies
in the region if weapons of mass destruction, sanctions, weapons regimes and the
coalition against him are not strengthened.''
The document also points out that ''the United States remains
a prisoner of its energy dilemma'', and that one of the ''consequences'' of this
is a ''need for military intervention''.
At the heart of the decision to target Iraq over oil
lies dire mismanagement of the US energy policy over decades by consecutive
administrations. The report refers to the huge power cuts that have affected
California in recent years and warns of ''more Californias'' ahead.
It says the ''central dilemma'' for the US administration is
that ''the American people continue to demand plentiful and cheap energy without
sacrifice or inconvenience''. With the ''energy sector in critical condition, a
crisis could erupt at any time [which] could have potentially enormous impact on
the US and would affect US national security and foreign policy in dramatic
The main cause of a crisis, according to the document's
authors, is ''Middle East tension'', which means the ''chances are greater than
at any point in the last two decades of an oil supply disruption''. The report
says the US will never be ''energy independent'' and is becoming too reliant on
foreign powers supplying it with oil and gas. The response is to put oil at the
heart of the administration - ''a reassessment of the role of energy in American
The US energy crisis is exacerbated by growing anti-American
feeling in the oil-rich Gulf states. ''Gulf allies are finding their domestic
and foreign policy interests increasingly at odds with US strategic
considerations, especially as Arab-Israeli tensions flare,'' says the report.
''They have become less inclined to lower oil prices A trend towards
anti-Americanism could affect regional leaders' ability to co-operate with the
US in the energy area. The resulting tight markets have increased US
vulnerability to disruption and provided adversaries undue political influence
over the price of oil.''
Iraq is described as the world's ''key swing
producer turning its taps on and off when it has felt such action was in its
strategic interest''. The report also says there is a ''possibility that Saddam
may remove Iraqi oil from the market for an extended period of time'', creating
a volatile market.
While the report alone seems to build a compelling case that
oil is one of the central issues fuelling the war against Iraq, there are
also other, circumstantial pieces of the jigsaw that show disturbing connections
between ''black gold'' and the Bush administration's desire to wage war on
Saddam. In 1998 the oil equipment company Halliburton, of which Dick Cheney was
chief executive, sold parts to Iraq so Saddam could repair an
infrastructure that had been terribly damaged during the 1991 Gulf war. Cheney's
firm did (pounds) 15 million of business with Saddam - a man Cheney now calls a
''murderous dictator''. Halliburton is one of the firms thought by analysts to
be in line to make a killing in any clean-up operation after another US-led war
All five permanent members of the UN Security Council - the
UK, France, China, Russia and the US - have international oil companies that
would benefit from huge windfalls in the event of regime change in Baghdad. The
best chance for US firms to make billions would come if Bush installed a pro-US
Iraqi opposition member as the head of a new government.
Representatives of foreign oil firms have already met with
leaders of the Iraqi opposition. Ahmed Chalabi, the London-based leader of the
Iraqi National Congress, said: ''American companies will have a big shot at
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