"… had enthusiastically participated in a behind-the-scenes economic campaign inspired by western intelligence agencies against Iraqi interests. The Kuwaities even went so far as to dump oil for less than the agreed upon OPEC price... which undercut the oil revenues essential to cash hungry Baghdad. The evidence shows that President George Bush, British prime minister Margaret Thatcher, Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, and other Arab leaders secretly cooperated on a number of occasions, beginning August 1988, to deny Saddam Hussein the economic help he demanded for the reconstruction of his nation."These covert efforts to quietly weaken Iraq's regional clout ended up provoking Saddam into invading Kuwait, prompting the 1991 Gulf War to re-assert OPEC's oil hegemony under western tutelage.
Now Iraqis are paying the price yet again for our ill-conceived imperial hubris, and the US is desperately considering an alliance with arch-enemy Iran to stave off Isis, whose bloody rampage across Iraq threatens to disrupt Iraqi oil production. The conflict has already triggered price spikes that could worsen if Isis expands its hold of key cities.
A new intervention to keep the lid on oil prices is clearly tempting for the US and UK governments, except this would merely strike at the head of the hydra - the symptom - not the root cause. And so far, self-serving wars for oil are precisely what got us here. The rise of Isis – a movement so ruthless even their parent network al-Qaeda disowned them - is blowback from the same brand of oil addicted US-UK covert operations we have run for decades.
If we really wanted to shut down Isis and its ilk for good, we could start by dismantling and disentangling ourselves from the geopolitical and financial infrastructure of oil hegemony that incubates terror. In the current context, bombs promise nothing more than the road to escalation.
In Einstein's words: "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."