Saturday, December 12, 2009


vast subterranean puddles that stretch west into Chad, and south to Nigeria and Uganda; not the technology; just the simple fact of the oil.
This is a resource war, fought by surrogates, involving great powers whose economies are predicated on growth, contending for a finite pool of resources
if it were not also an invisible war.
Invisible because it is happening in Africa. Invisible because our mainstream media are subsidized by the petroleum industry.
The real driving force behind the North-South conflict became clear after Chevron discovered oil in southern Sudan in 1978.
Oil pipelines, pumping stations, well-heads, and other key infrastructure became targets
John Garang, leader of the rebel Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA), declared these installations to be legitimate targets of war. For a time, the oil companies fled from the conflict, but in the 1990s they began to return. Chinese and Indian companies were particularly aggressive,

It was a Chinese pipeline to the Red Sea that first brought Sudanese oil to the international market.
Under a power-sharing agreement, SPLA commander John Garang would be installed as vice president of Sudan, alongside President Omar al-Bashir.
Darfur, to the west, was left out of this treaty.
the size of France, sparsely populated but oil rich.
With the signing of the treaty last January
new seismographic studies were undertaken by foreign oil companies
doubling Sudan's estimated oil reserves
to at least 563 million barrels
Khartoum claims
5 billion barrels
a pittance compared to the 674 billion barrels of proven
six Persian Gulf countries
The very modesty of Sudan's reserves speaks volumes to the desperation with which industrial nations are grasping for alternative sources of oil.
Oil revenues to Khartoum have been about $1 million a day, exactly the amount which the government funnels into arms

"As Chinese and Indian companies venture into countries like Sudan, where risk-aversive multinationals have hesitated to enter, questions are being raised in the industry about whether state-owned companies are accurately judging the risks to their own investments, or whether they are just more willing to gamble with taxpayers' money than multinationals are willing to gamble with shareholders' investments."

Three weeks later, Garang was killed in a helicopter crash. When word of his death emerged, angry riots broke out

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