A Cold War Legacy of Persian Gulf Conflict: “Oil as the Future”

By Jennifer Huang | World Power III: Geopolitics

page 3 of 3

Critics cite a January 16 article in the Wall Street Journal, describing a meeting between State Department officials and oil company executives. “The Bush administration is eager to secure Iraq’s oil fields and rehabilitate them, industry officials say,” the article reads. “They say Mr. Cheney’s staff hosted an informational meeting with industry executives in October, with Exxon Mobil Corp., ChevronTexaco Corp., ConocoPhillips and Halliburton among the companies represented. Both the Bush administration and the companies say such a meeting never took place.” Former Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader believes the meetings happened, and said that “41 members of the administration have ties to the industry.”

A Cold War Legacy of Persian Gulf Conflict: This Means War

By Jennifer Huang | World Power III: Geopolitics

Page 2 of 3

Cold War Legacies

In 1983, under President Ronald Reagan, the Rapid Deployment Joint Task Force became the Central Command, the instrument of American military policy in the region, and capable of drawing up troops from all branches of the armed services. “Each of the four services provides personnel on an as-needed basis, depending on the requirements of the mission,” explained Central Command spokesman Commander Dan Gage in an email correspondence. “In other words, there is no set number of personnel who are assigned to Central Command.” The Central Command was never used during the ’80s to directly confront Soviet ambition in Afghanistan, that crucial access route to Persian Gulf and Central Asian oil and natural gas reserves. Such matters were left to the Islamist mujahedeen, who, according to the CIA World Factbook, were trained and armed by the United States, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and others.

A Cold War Legacy of Persian Gulf Conflict: Central Command assures “unimpeded flow of oil”

By Jennifer Huang | World Power III: Geopolitics

Ground troops in the desert and aircraft carriers in the Persian Gulf, Kurdish alliances and leafleting campaigns, oil field protection and one slippery despot: War in Iraq is a strategic and logistical behemoth. Legions of American soldiers have shipped out to the Persian Gulf region from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard. An estimated 250,000 troops are in place — add another 40,000 from Britain and Australia and the number approaches 300,000. The modern military needs a small battalion just to orchestrate its own bureaucracy. That battalion is the Central Command, headed by General Tommy Franks.