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Michael T. Klare's Posts


The (Re)Making of a Petro-State

Will Iraq be a global gas pump?

This guest essay was originally published on TomDispatch and is republished here with Tom's kind permission. ----- Has it all come to this? The wars and invasions, the death and destruction, the exile and torture, the resistance and collapse? In a world of shrinking energy reserves, is Iraq finally fated to become what it was going to be anyway, even before the chaos and catastrophe set in: a giant gas pump for an energy-starved planet? Will it all end not with a bang, but with a gusher? The latest oil news out of that country offers at least a hint …


Energy Department changes tune on peak oil

It’s official — the era of cheap oil is over

This was originally published on TomDispatch and is republished here with Tom's kind permission. Every summer, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) of the U.S. Department of Energy issues its International Energy Outlook (IEO) -- a jam-packed compendium of data and analysis on the evolving world energy equation. For those with the background to interpret its key statistical findings, the release of the IEO can provide a unique opportunity to gauge important shifts in global energy trends, much as reports of routine Communist Party functions in the party journal Pravda once provided America's Kremlin watchers with insights into changes in the …


Oil 2009

Cheap oil: Be careful what you wish for

This guest essay was originally published on TomDispatch and is republished here with Tom's kind permission. ----- Only yesterday, it seems, we were bemoaning the high price of oil. Under the headline "Oil's Rapid Rise Stirs Talk of $200 a Barrel This Year," the July 7 issue of the Wall Street Journal warned that prices that high would put "extreme strains on large sectors of the U.S. economy." Today, oil, at over $40 a barrel, costs less than one-third what it did in July, and some economists have predicted that it could fall as low as $25 a barrel in …

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Garrisoning the global gas station

Challenging the militarization of U.S. energy policy

This essay originally ran on TomDispatch; it is reprinted here with Tom's kind permission. ----- American policymakers have long viewed the protection of overseas oil supplies as an essential matter of "national security," requiring the threat of -- and sometimes the use of -- military force. This is now an unquestioned part of American foreign policy. On this basis, the first Bush administration fought a war against Iraq in 1990-1991 and the second Bush administration invaded Iraq in 2003. With global oil prices soaring and oil reserves expected to dwindle in the years ahead, military force is sure to be …


Portrait of an oil-addicted former superpower

How rising oil prices are obliterating America’s superpower status

The following was originally published on Tom's Dispatch, which has graciously permitted us to use it here. ----- Nineteen years ago, the fall of the Berlin Wall effectively eliminated the Soviet Union as the world's other superpower. Yes, the USSR as a political entity stumbled on for another two years, but it was clearly an ex-superpower from the moment it lost control over its satellites in Eastern Europe. Less than a month ago, the United States similarly lost its claim to superpower status when a barrel crude oil roared past $110 on the international market, gasoline prices crossed the $3.50 …