Term Paper: Iraq War as the End

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[. . .] Did the United States have proof of a program in the making? Governmental reports sited Saddam's efforts to search out specialists. "Iraq retains its cadre of nuclear scientists and technicians, its program documentation, and sufficient dual-use manufacturing capabilities to support a reconstituted nuclear weapons program. Iraqi media have reported numerous meetings between Saddam and nuclear scientists over the past two years, signaling Baghdad's continued interest in reviving a nuclear program." (Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction Programs) But those same reports never mention a successful implementation of Iraq's nuclear program.

If the recent war was not about weapons of mass destruction, then what other motivation could there have been for the United States to bring down the Iraqi dictator? "Is the coming war with Iraq about oil when all is said and done? The anti-war movement seems to think so. I am not so sure. Unless the peace movement has discovered telepathy, I doubt that it's in any better position to divine the hidden thoughts or secret motivations of George Bush and Tony Blair than I am. Arguing about unstated motives, therefore, is a waste of time -- claims cannot be proven or disproven. (Blood for Oil?) During the first war with Iraq in the 1990's, the Bush Sr. administration was quite open in regard the role oil played in the attacks on Iraq. The moves seemed quite imperialistic.

The United States has shown signs of recent imperialistic expansion when in the early 1980's Ronald Reagan promised an economic revival. He claimed his plans would affect that would affect the entire population. Cutting taxes could not be used because it would reduce government revenues. The approach waws to retool the military. But a retooled military needed endmies. "Two days after the Beirut barracks bombing, the U.S. conducted Operation Urgent Fury - the invasion of Grenada. The administration's pretext was the protection of 500 U.S. And Western medical students from a pro-Cuban socialist government. U.S. forces ousted the government, in the process diverting media coverage from the barracks bombing. Grenada would serve as a model for later "low intensity conflicts." (History of United States Imperialism) But, the United States as a nation has policies that deter it from being imperialistic.

Ironically, this was not the case and the same tactics used to initiate the Iraq wars in the 1990's and the most recent war could be compare to the Reagan administration's expansion policies. Oil was used to justify the first war and weapons of mass destruction the latter were each great catalysts to gather support just like the Grenada bombing in the 1980's. The American people responded favorably to the arguments via polls and media hype.

The recent war with Iraq helped to eliminate numerous legitimate contracts with some of the world's most oil thirsty nations. "Companies from several countries - Russia, France, Italy and China, among others - already hold contracts, but because of UN sanctions they are not operational." (Yergin) The United States and their eventual free Iraqi government will be able to renegotiate all of these deals. There must be some incentive in all new oil contracts even if production is down. "Production capacity has dropped from its peak of 3.5m barrels a day in 1980, before the Iran-Iraq War, to about 2.8m barrels per day and continues to fall." (Yergin)

If one was to think about it, Fidel Castro is still in power and although he did not possess a nuclear program, we know for a fact that he recruited the Soviet Union into using Cuba as a launching pad within ninety miles of our boarders. "The Soviet government determined in 1959 that any future war would be largely nuclear, and in that same year the Strategic Roclket Forces were founded. The Soviet government became increasingly militaristic in the face of Kennedy's rearmament program. In response, the Soviets decided to install nuclear weapons in Cuba, a Caribbean nation off the coast of Florida which whose government had fallen as a result of the Cuban Revelotion that brought Fidel Castro to power; Cuba's government sought Soviet support after the collapse of its relations with the U.S. due to the expropriation of U.S. properties in Cuba and a subsequent CIA backed attempt of invasion of Cuba known as the Bay of Pigs." (History of United States imperialism)

There have been very few efforts equivalent to the Iraqi wars to oust Castro from power. There is no way the world will ever believe that a nation with the military might of the United States sincerely believe that a well-armed Iraq could ever pose an intolerable danger to our modern civilized world. "Oil, however, is relevant to this extent: Whoever controls those reserves sits atop a large source of potential revenue which, in the hands of a rogue state, could bankroll a sizeable and dangerous military arsenal. That's why the United States and Great Britain care more about containing the ambitions of Saddam Hussein than, say, the ambitions of Robert Mugabe. Still, if seizing oil fields from anti-western regimes is the name of the game, why aren't U.S. troops massing on the Venezuelan border and menacing Castro "Mini-Me" Hugo Chavez? (Blood for Oil?)

Recent headlines may provide insight into the real reason for the war. "OPEC is considering a proposal from Saudi Arabia, the world's biggest exporter, to raise output by 1.5 million barrels a day. Reuters reports that Saudi Arabia is planning to release between 500,000 and one million barrels onto world markets from next month." (BBC World News, "Oil prices set new record highs") The philosophers who feel that Iraq is a way to control OPEC may in fact be missing the big picture. Could our administrative leaders know of things to come? Is the world literally running out of oil? As oil is a natural resource that takes billions of years to replenish itself, this possibility is very real. We may not be talking about next year or ten years from now - but what if the year 2016 or any time thereafter the possibility of an empty tank becomes real? The demand for this resource continues to grow yet no reserves are harder to come by. Was the War on Iraq a positioning for things to come?

In conclusion, the situation in Iraq is tumultuous. There is supposed to be a transition of power by the United States and its allies back to the Iraqi people on June 30th 2004. The deadline is approaching but there does not seem to be a semblance of order - there is still a great deal of blood shed. The media has attempted to convince us that as a nation we have liberated Iraq from a brutal dictator in Saddam Hussein. But today there is still no evidence of any weapons of mass destruction or a tie to Al Qaeda's terroristic network. This report aimed to prove that all of those anecdotes were merely media spinning at its finest. The focus of this report was to show how the leaders of the United States blatantly attacked a sovereign nation with the sole purpose of positioning themselves to capture that nation's oil reserves for themselves as well as restructuring contracts worth billions for companies like Halliburton. "World oil demand is growing, driven by countries such as China and India. The competition is shaping up: On one side are Russia and the Caspian countries, primarily Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan. Standing on the other side is the Middle East, including Iraq." (Yergin) It is good to have an administration that is positioning them early for the increased resource demand - or is it?

Works Cited

Al Qaeda. Ed. Frontline. PBS. 12 May 2004 http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/binladen/who/alqaeda.html.

BBC World News. "Oil prices set new record highs." BBC Online UK Edition. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/3713281.stm.

Blood for Oil? Ed. Taylor, Jerry. March 18, 2003. CATO Institute. 12 May 2004 http://www.cato.org/dailys/03-18-03.html.

Bush Administration. "National Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass Destruction." White House Release (2002) 12 May 2004 http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/12/WMDStrategy.pdf.

History of United States Imperialism. Ed. Wikipedia. Wikipedia. 12 May 2004 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_United_States_Imperialism.

Iraq. Ed. World Fact Book. Central Intelligence Agency. 13 May 2004 http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/iz.html.

Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction - The Assessment of the British Government. Ed. official Documents UK. TSO. 12 May 2004 http://www.official-documents.co.uk/document/reps/iraq/foreword.htm.

Iraq's Weapons of Mass Destruction Programs. Ed. CIA. 2002. Central Intelligence Agency. 12 May 2004 http://www.cia.gov/cia/reports/iraq_wmd/Iraq_Oct_2002.htm.

Yergin, Daniel. "The Fight Over Iraq's Oil." BBC News UK edition. March, 2003. 12 May 2004 http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/2847905.stm.

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