Iraq 2.0: Oil Market 101

Literally off the beaten path is the below article I acquired in 1999 which appears nowhere else online today—at least according to Google. One reference to the article by a blogger does exist as learned via offbeat search engines duckduckgo and Dogpile. At 911 words it’s a succinct equation for the global oil business, with effective price setters in the oligopolist Saudis and Iraq, and disgruntled price takers in not simply consumers, but principally less formidable Western suppliers.

It frames US military intervention in Iraq in market terms virtually unfound in Western media.  Western circulated fears for mass consumption concerned a supposed threat of retaliatory diminished oil supply by then Iraq President Saddam Hussein. Unchallenged was the irrationality of a regime whose economy depended on oil sales, foregoing oil sales.

This article presents the opposite case–excess supply and, hence, lower world prices and raised profit thresholds for smaller (Western) suppliers–as the actual fear by the Western investor class unbeknownst to the electorate.  It remains instructive on the oil market today. The article’s premise—rarely heard by American audiences—is directly supported in U.S. legislative transcripts like that of Senate Hearing 106-86.

SanFranExaminer

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