Thursday, 11 December 2008

Behind-the-scenes players

An interested and must-read article by the Mother Jones' Anthony Fenton on how Retired Lt. General Jay M. Garner, Iraq's first post-war U.S. administrator and a small group of former U.S. military leaders, officials, and lobbyists are pouring fuel to the fire in disagreements between the central government and the Kurds.

They are using their deep connections in Kurdistan to help Canadian companies to have access to some of the region's richest oil fields by mediating oil deals between these companies and the Kurds to whome Garner was charged after the 1991 Gulf War to secure their region, a position which enabled him to develop good relaions with the Kurds.

Since 1991, Garner was frequently seen on TV flanked by the two Kurdish guerrilla leaders, Jalal Talabani and Masoud Barzani as he was wearing their traditional flowing cloths.

The Kurds' oil deals, at least 20, with western oil companies have been since last year one of handfull sticking issues between the Kurds and central government and the main obstacle in adpoting Iraq's long-awaited oil and gas law which is designed to govern Iraq's oil and gas resources and to regulate the foreign investment in this field.

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