I saw this on Democracy Now yesterday. The author connects oil companies, Western govt, corruption and possible hope for the people of Iraq. Read the transcript. Here's a portion.
"AMY GOODMAN: We begin today’s broadcast in Iraq. A new U.S. government report has found much of the U.S. taxpayer money used for Iraq’s reconstruction has likely been squandered. In what has been called their final audit report, the Office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction Funds pinpointed a number of accounting weaknesses that "put billions of American taxpayer dollars at risk of waste and misappropriation in the largest reconstruction project of its kind in U.S. history." The report concluded the precise amount lost to fraud and waste can never be known. While much of Iraq is still struggling to recover from the 2003 invasion and occupation, the country’s oil sector is quickly expanding. In June, Iraq’s crude production overtook Iran for the first time in more than two decades. Iraq produced just under 3 million barrels of oil a day during the month, second only to Saudi Arabia. The Bloomberg News Agency reports the rising rate of Iraqi oil production comes as foreign investors such as Exxon Mobil and BP are developing new fields and reworking older deposits. We’re joined now by Greg Muttitt, author of the new book, "Fuel on the Fire: Oil and Politics in Occupied Iraq." The book takes a close look at how energy interests played a crucial role in the U.S. invasion. Greg Muttitt is the former co-director of the British group Platform that exposed the environmental and human impacts of the oil industry. Greg Muttitt, welcome to Democracy Now!. Talk about "Fuel on the fire," Your, what, almost 10-year investigation of the reasons behind the Iraq war.
GREG MUTTITT: Well, if we start with those two bits of news you mentioned, the U.S. Special Inspector General’s report finding enormous corruption and Iraqi oil production increasing and catching up with Iran, actually those two are connected. What we’ve seen, is since the multinationals have been in Iraq, which is about two years, corruption has blossomed in the oil sector. Far from bringing transparency and ethical way of doing business, as we were told, they have created the conditions for much greater corruption. What I have done, is since 2003, since the war began, I’ve closely followed what has happened in the oil sector. I’ve worked closely with Iraqi trade unions in particular, and other civil society groups. As you would imagine, the story that I tell in the book is rather different from the one the government wanted us to know about."