Thursday, May 29, 2008

What About Those "Stans", And Why Should I Care?

I discussed in an earlier post about the tragedy of Myanmar... citing the incredible might of the U.S. Military and the money we spend supporting this massive machine. I wondered why we can not have it put to good use to save lives in a situation in which our military might could have served US well as well and the people of Myanmar.

However, we live in a geo-political reality where its clear to everyone who LOOKS, that U.S. military policy exactly mirrors U.S. economic policy. Our national interests and national security are no longer a matter of nuclear annihilation, but simply a matter of using our overwhelming firepower to ensure the safe delivery of oil and natural gas through the middle east to markets in Asia. (We only get 10 % of OUR oil from the Middle East, that being from Saudi Arabia.) Note Thomas Barnett's "Pentagon's New Map For War and Peace " in the 21st Century. This map shows the focus of the U.S. military in the next century... and note that bulge in Central Asia. That's become a very important place.

I want to bring to your attention what is happening in the world that makes Central Asia the hotspot and focus of our military. Assuming that I am right (which I am) that our military protects our economic interests, then one must consider why we invaded two countries, why THOSE countries, and what we have to gain by these incredibly expensive and horrific adventures.

Earlier in B.L.O.G., I posted the strategic necessities of US Foreign Policy as outlined by the PNAC. In it, they discuss the need for a transfer of American military force from Western Europe... where it is clearly no longer needed... to Asia. Why Asia?

Its quite simple... The "STANS" HAVE THE LARGEST UNTAPPED DEPOSITS OF OIL AND GAS IN THE WORLD. Whoever controls the flow of that oil, will reap enormous benefits and be a major economic power as viewed by the current financial paradigm of the ruling elite... as well as providing a true supplementation to dwindling Middle Eastern Oil over the next decade or two.

From Jane's Foreign Report: "Intense competition for unimpeded access to the world’s natural resources is continuing and is likely to increase. The current unprecedented surge in fuel prices illustrates the growing need for a greater supply and consequently demonstrates the volatile nature of the energy market.

The Caspian Sea could meet some of that demand, because it has sizable proven and possible oil and gas reserves ("proven reserves" are defined as oil and natural-gas deposits that are considered 90 percent probable, and "possible reserves" are defined as deposits that are considered 50 percent probable). The littoral states of the Caspian Sea -- Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Iran, and Azerbaijan -- collectively have an estimated 10 billion-32 billion barrels of proven and another 233 billion barrels of possible oil reserves."

This represents a new Saudi Arabia of Oil just north of IRAQ and AFGHANISTAN. What a coincidence!!! Just so happens to be the two countries that we invaded. Wow... what luck!! Let's take a look at the map to your left.

Notice how incredibly landlocked this region is.... you need LANES to get the oil to the sea and on to those tankers. Look closely at the map... what are the two most perfect lanes to get this out? Afghanistan (just below Turkmenistan) down through Pakistan... that pipeline deal, known as the Trans-Afghanistan Pipeline has already been inked. But how do we get even closer?

The Caspian Sea is where the action is and Kazakhstan is the major player here with the most potential for oil. The only OTHER way to move that oil for us to have control of it is WEST AND SOUTH of the Caspian Sea. Look at the map and see what two countries sit to the west and south... Iran and Iraq. WHAT A COINCIDENCE!! Georgia, Azerbaijan and TURKEY would be the route for new pipelines moving the oil away from the Russians and the Chinese and ensuring our control.

Watch in the next few years as Turkey grows in importance. We will be hearing a lot more about Turkey as it is the backbone for U.S. foreign and military policy in Asia for the foreseeable future. They are the hub between Asia and Europe and provide the quickest and best means of getting to this oil other than our control of Iraq and Afghanistan.

This is a map of pipelines under construction and proposed for the region... of particular note is the Baku-Tblisi-Ceyhan pipeline (that will move oil from the Caspian Sea west through Turkey):

I realize that this post may seem incredibly boring... and SO WHAT BRUCE!! I am in the business of understanding WHY we do what we do, and have realized that our military now ENACTS our economic policies by clearing zones of control and then acting as a force to protect those zones.

Therefore, if we want, we can now draw a new pipeline route south through Iraq on the above map. Note that Syria is now surrounded and trust me... eventually will not look anything like it does today. Economic and military realities will ensure this and already is forcing them to the peace table with Israel.

But if we are going to understand WHAT is going on and WHY in our world... we need to look at maps, and overlay the resources of the world over those maps. When you do so, you will have a glimpse of what is and what will continue to be U.S. Foreign and Military policy.

Its a good idea to know what we are actually up to... it helps us gain insight into what we have done, as well as what is potentially going to happen and perhaps even... PREVENT IT.

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Michael said...

You've forgotten a crucial piece of the puzzle: Why should we control the production or transport of oil when we can buy it on the open market?

Bruce said...

Hey Micheal, thanks for keeping me honest.

From what I know... the open market is not something that we want to have to compete with foreign powers on. Don't forget that there really is no open market as the oil commodity market is in the United States and all oil in the world is traded in dollars. If we didn't control the market, then oil would no longer be traded in dollars and we would face collapse of currency. The dollar's value is kept high in the global market partially because if you buy and sell oil... YOU MUST DO IT IN DOLLARS. That keeps a permanent demand for US Dollars.

Anonymous said...

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Anonymous said...

I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


Bruce said...

Thanks so much Joannah. I haven't been writing much lately, but the world is becoming more dangerous and fascinating each day... its hard for me to stay ahead. But you inspire me and I'll keep writing.