George Graham

The Politics of Oil



New reserves have been discovered and new technologies have been developed making North America possibly the largest oil and gas producer on the planet. Meanwhile, new evidence is constantly emerging to emphasize the pressing need for clean energy to avert a global climate catastrophe.

You would think it’s time for the United States to stop pandering to despots in the Middle East.

Oil is a nasty industry with a blood stained history. And it fuels some of the worst dictatorships in the world today.

Even more disgusting, it finances the terrorist activities of ISIS.

One way of fighting terrorism, then, would be to curb demand for oil, sending prices plummeting.

America and the rest of the developed world is dedicating  billions to the war on terror. I wonder whether that expenditure would be more effective if it were channeled into developing cheap green energy.

Obviously, the money spent on bombs, bullets and “boots on the ground” – and the billions siphoned off by corrupt “allies” – has done nothing to make the world safer for America and other western civilizations.

There’s no way to win a war in places like Afghanistan and Iraq. I just read, for example, that Shia militias are vowing to fight American troops if they set foot in Iraq. So the US would be waging war against the Sunni and the Shia in Iraq at the same time – as they’re essentially doing in Syria by funding Sunni rebels against Assad while bombing the bejeezus out of ISIS.

You might think Uncle Sam would want to wash the oil and blood off his hands and get out of the Mideast once and for all.

But you and I know that’s not going to happen any time soon. Powerful interests have a lot to lose if the global petroleum racket collapses. And they spend a lot of money contributing to political campaigns and lobbying Congress.

The merchants of death who supply the world with arms are even more influential in Washington.

But global oil prices are plunging (expected to be below $30 a barrel by the spring) and that changes everything.

Mideast despots are not the only ones who lose as oil prices decline. Russia also depends on oil exports. And that inevitably affects the global balance of power.

Perhaps the most important agent of change, however, is the world’s urgent need for pollution control. Mother Nature is at war now, too. And her wrath is far more fearsome than that of any military or financial colossus.

Click for more on oil in politics.

How Obama is using the oil weapon.

About the author


I am a Jamaican-born writer who has lived and worked in Canada and the United States. I live in Lakeland, Florida with my wife, Sandra, our three cats and two dogs. I like to play golf and enjoy our garden, even though it's a lot of work. Since retiring from newspaper reporting I've written a few books. I also write a monthly column for