The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Who Will Iraqi Oil Serve?

Apr 14, 2003

The U.S. government has widely reprinted what Colin Powell said on January 21 about Iraqi oil, "It will be held for and used for the people of Iraq. It will not be exploited for the United States’ own purpose." In other words, Iraqi oil should be used to build houses that were destroyed, open schools, establish hospitals, set up markets, purify the water. And Bush often refers to such things. But, as they say, actions speak louder than words. And all the actions so far show that the U.S. has one aim and only one aim for Iraqi oil–to exploit it for the benefit of U.S. corporations.

Vice President Dick Cheney–less concerned with mouthing propaganda–was more to the point than Powell. He bluntly declared that the costs of this war must be paid for by Iraq, that is, by the proceeds of its oil. To that end, Cheney’s company has been given the right to move into Iraqi oil fields, using the profits they made there in order to refurbish oil wells and fix up the infrastructure to remove oil from the country, rebuilding the port of Umm Qasr. Still more proceeds from Iraqi oil sales are slated to finance the modernization of the wells, the digging of new wells and new exploration for oil. All this to enable the same U.S. oil companies to take out still more oil–and make still more profit. The Iraqi people will have more empty holes in the ground and their pressing social needs will go unmet.