Sunday, February 25, 2007

Foreign Policy in the Middle East

Two stories that really sum up the reality of the Bush axis' foreign policy. First came this story in The Guardian:

Much of the intelligence on Iran's nuclear facilities provided to UN inspectors by American spy agencies has turned out to be unfounded, according to diplomatic sources in Vienna.

Despite the rhetoric from the White House, there is a lack of credible intelligence on Iran. Back in August last year, a congressional report found:

"significant gaps in our knowledge and understanding of the various areas of concern about Iran" and said "policymakers will need high-quality intelligence to assess Iranian intentions to prepare for any new round of negotiations".

Sounds a little familiar don't you think? There is little intelligence to support the need for any military intervention, but that won't stop the neo-cons in the US. Despite the consequences of such action in Iran, there are those that still suffer from incurable blood lust. The lessons of Iraq will not be learnt because, as the past few years have proven, those in power have little understanding of the history of the region. Every time the US cranks up the pressure on Iran, the Iranian people stiffen their resolve. Any attack on Iran would result in the people rallying around the regime, not turning against it. Diplomacy is the key, not threats of more blood shed.

Meanwhile, in Iraq, it has become clear that oil really was the primary concern of the 'coalition of the willing':

Baghdad is under pressure from Britain and the US to pass an oil law which would hand long-term control of Iraq's energy assets to foreign multinationals, according to campaigners.

Yes, as suspected, the West are desperate to get their hands on oil revenues. But it gets worse:

Iraqi trades unions have called for the country's oil reserves - the second-largest in the world - to be kept in public hands. But a leaked draft of the oil law, seen by The Observer, would see the government sign away the right to exploit its untapped fields in so-called exploration contracts, which could then be extended for more than 30 years.

For more than 30 years. And there was me thinking it was all about freedom and democracy. As long as Iraqi freedom doesn't extend to the freedom to utilise their resources in a way that benefits Iraqis. How can the pro-war left fail to see what is right in front of their noses? Removing a vicious dictator was always second to maximising profits in an increasingly competitive energy market. And if this deal is done (can anyone believe that it will not be agreed?), will Bush once more stand in front of a banner declaring: