Monday, August 08, 2005

Petroleum Wars

One of the things we would like to do on Woodshavings is introduce our readers to different, even obscure writers that deserve more attention. Professor Michael Klare is one of those writers. He is the author of the great Resource Wars and recently of Blood and Oil. In this article from, Klare argues we are entering "The Twilight Era of Petroleum," which will be:
characterized by the growing politicization of oil policy and the recurring use of military force to gain control over valuable supplies. This is so because oil, alone among all major trading commodities, is viewed as a strategic material; something so vital to a nation's economic well-being, that is, as to justify the use of force in assuring its availability. That nations are prepared to go to war over petroleum is not exactly a new phenomenon. The pursuit of foreign oil was a significant factor in World War II and the 1991 Gulf War, to offer only two examples; but it is likely to become ever more a part of our everyday world in a period of increased competition and diminishing supplies.

This new era will not begin with a single, clearly defined incident, but rather with a series of events suggesting the transition from a period of relative abundance to a time of persistent scarcity. These events will take both economic and political form: on the one hand, rising energy prices and contracting supplies; on the other, more diplomatic crises and military assertiveness.
Klare's analysis seems spot on, so click on the link and see if you agree.

SHHHH! He may be a Marxist.