Iran, War, and Oil
January 10, 2020
With apologies for filling up your emails again, I thought you would be interested in the attached articles having to do with the current situation in regard to Iran. Amy Jaffe's thoughtful piece from the Council on Foreign Relations Realpolitik blog is worth a read, as well as a report last year on the military cost of protecting our oil lanes. This is basically what our Middle East policy is all about.
One of the great difficulties in moving to a fossil-fuel-free economy is the enormous investment we have made in oil. This includes the huge infrastructure that has been built around oil, but also the military investment in protecting the oil lanes. Oil has led to many conflicts. One historian has pointed out that before the Iraq War, the oil industry was about to put a great deal of money into modernizing the Iraqi oil wells and related infrastructure in order to get the maximum amount of oil from its wells. He opined that this was the real reason for regime change in Iraq; we know now that it had nothing to do with weapons of mass destruction. This opinion has not been seriously disputed.
I hope all is well with you. I'll be quiet for a while, I promise.