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U.S. Intervention in Venezuela and in Latin America

Noam Chomsky, Venezuelanalysis
…If you want my speculation, based on no information except what I would be doing if I was sitting in the Pentagon planning office and told to figure out a way to overthrow the governments of Bolivia, Venezuela, and Iran, in fact. The idea that immediately comes to mind, so I assume they are working on it, is to support secessionist movements, which is conceivable if you look at the geography and the places where the oil is and so on.

In Venezuela, the oil is in Zulia province, which is where the opposition candidate is coming from, right on the boarder of Colombia (one of the only states [in Latin America] where the US has a firm military presence). It’s a rich province, pretty anti-Chavez, and it happens to be where most of the oil is, and in fact there is rumor of a Zulia independence movement, which, if they can carry it off, the US could then intervene to protect against the dictator. That’s Venezuela.

In Bolivia, the major gas resources are in the low-lands, the eastern low-lands, which is mostly European, not indigenous, opposed to the government, rich area, near Paraguay (one of the other countries where the US has military bases), so you can imagine the same project going on – also secessionist movements.

In Iran, which is the big one, if you look at it, the oil of the region (that’s where most of the hydrocarbons in the world are) they are right around the gulf, the Shiite sections of Iraq, the Shiite sections of Saudi Arabia and an Arab-not Persian-region of Iran, Khuzestan, right near the Gulf, it happens to be Arab. There is talk floating around Europe (you know it’s probably planted by the CIA) of an Ahwazi Liberation Movement for this region. A feasible, I don’t know if it’s feasible or not, but I think the kind of thought that would be occurring to the Pentagon planners is to sponsor a liberation movement, so-called, in the area near the Gulf then move in to defend it. They’ve got 150,000 troops in Iraq; presumably, you might try that, and then bomb the rest of the country back to the Stone Age. It’s conceivable, I mean, I wouldn’t be surprised if those are the kinds of plans that are being toyed with.
(11 Oct 2006)
I haven’t seen this suggestion before. It comes at the end of a leftist analysis of Latin America (this is Chomsky after all!).
Also at Znet.
Related: Hugo Chávez’ opponent becomes a crazy, wild-eyed populist.

Iraq envoy: U.S. oil investment waiting on legal changes

HOUSTON — U.S. oil companies are slowly building their relationships with the Iraqi government in anticipation of a new legal regime that will allow them to invest there, the Iraqi ambassador to the U.S. said Monday.
“I see very strong interest from U.S. energy companies in Iraq,” Ambassador Samir Shakir Mahmood Sumaida’ie told Dow Jones Newswires after a speech in Houston.
The companies “have visited me at the embassy and expressed that interest,” while “waiting for things to be put in place,” he said.
The passage of a new investment law in the next two or three weeks and a new hydrocarbons law “within this year” will create the right conditions for major U.S. investments, he said.
(9 Oct 2006)

China drills where others dare not seek oil

William Mellor and Le-Min Lim, International Herald Tribune
In a steamy jungle clearing in Myanmar, a lone drilling rig topped by limp red flags bears testimony to China’s insatiable thirst for oil.

A century ago, the British-owned Burmah Oil made a fortune for its shareholders from oil fields that lie beneath the teak forests and golden- spired Buddhist pagodas of the country formerly known as Burma. In today’s Myanmar – a military dictatorship under Western economic sanctions – there is little hope of striking another gusher, said Ma Guiming, a stocky, crew-cutted project leader for China National Petroleum Corp.

“Gou qiang,” Ma said of the search for oil, using a Beijing slang term that literally means it will be chokingly difficult. “But we have no choice. This is something we have to do.”

As recently as 1992, China was self- sufficient in oil. Today, the world’s most-populous country is importing 40 percent of its needs – a figure that will rise to 75 percent by 2025, the U.S. Department of Energy predicts.
(2 Oct 2006)