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July 17, 2008

Tom Engelhardt Interview + New TomDispatch

Here's Tom Engelhardt being interviewed by the Real News. (Donate to the Real News here.)

And here's the latest piece from TomDispatch:

The Pentagon and the Hunt for Black Gold
The Oil Deal Nobody Wants to Talk About

by Nick Turse

For years, "oil" and "Iraq" couldn't make it into the same sentence in mainstream coverage of the invasion and occupation of that country. Recently, that's begun to change, but "oil" and "the Pentagon" still seldom make the news together.

Last year, for instance, according to Department of Defense (DoD) documents, the Pentagon paid more than $70 million to Hunt Refining, an oil company whose corporate affiliate, Hunt Oil, undermined U.S. policy in Iraq. Not that anyone would know it. While the hunt for oil in Iraq is now being increasingly well covered in the mainstream, the Pentagon's hunt for oil remains a subject missing in action. Despite the staggering levels at which the Pentagon guzzles fuel, it's a chronic blind spot in media energy coverage.

Let's consider the Hunt Oil story in a little more detail, since it offers a striking example of the larger problem. On July 3, 2008, according to the New York Times, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform found that Hunt Oil had pursued "an oil deal with the regional Kurdistan government that ran counter to American policy and undercut Iraq's central government." Despite its officially stated policy of warning companies like Hunt Oil "that they incur risks in signing contracts until Iraq passes an oil law," the State Department in some cases actually encouraged a deal between the "Texas oil company with close ties to President Bush" and Kurdistan that "undercut" Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's government in Baghdad.

Asked if the White House was aware of Hunt Oil's negotiations with Kurdistan's largely autonomous regional government, President Bush's press secretary Dana Perino replied, "I don't know of anybody who was aware of it."

It turns out that wasn't exactly the truth of the matter....

The rest.

—Jonathan Schwarz

Posted at July 17, 2008 09:48 AM


I'd like to think of the MSM as conspirators that don't know they're a part of the conspiracy.

How much evidence do we need that saurian overlords control the conspiracy with a very subtle hand?

Or, maybe it's just a chummy, collegial omission by the elements of the micfic -- but I find the saurians as overlords more compelling.

Posted by: Labiche at July 17, 2008 04:17 PM

Backstabbin' BUSHwackers!!!
Call Pelosi @1-202-225-0100 DEMAND IMPEACHMENT.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at July 17, 2008 04:43 PM

I find it fascinating how many players surrounding the JFK business in Dallas keep turning up in Iraq. Old man Hunt was right in the middle of that milieu. Halliburton's former sidekick, KBR, was only Brown and Root back then, but as I recall was doing things back then. I'll have to get out my stack of books but as I remember Brown and Root also got lots of work over in Vietnam.

How's that pipeline through Afghanistan going? Talk about stories that are underreported!

Posted by: Bob In Pacifica at July 19, 2008 10:08 AM