Iraq Advice-Givers Have Business Ties
September 2, 2002 8:13 PM   Subscribe

Iraq Advice-Givers Have Business Ties This interesting information. I've done a lot of research on these folks and knew of many of these business ties already. But I doubt the general public has put them together. Yet considering how this information affects the slant of the many "printed statements" and "op-ed" pieces by Baker, Scowcroft et, al...why haven't any of the shrill talking heads on cable news revealed this?
posted by bas67 (19 comments total)
Eagleberger flatly denied any influence from "business ties" in his expressing strong reservations to the iraq attack plans on tim russert's sunday morning talk show. If you are actually interested in men with hidden agendas currently influencing the rush to war - this is worth a read.
posted by specialk420 at 8:20 PM on September 2, 2002

And some of those talking heads on cable have brought this up. I saw it on either Donahue or Hardball on MSNBC.
posted by theonetruebix at 8:28 PM on September 2, 2002

Do you like to "use a lot of quote marks" to make things "seem more suspicious" when you "post on Metafilter"?
posted by owillis at 10:18 PM on September 2, 2002

No I just used them to highlight what I was talking about. Sorry if it was inappropriate.

Not really sure why I'm getting all the hostility. I think the war at this point is a bad idea, I just thought it would be interesting to look a little behind the curtain and talk about the motivations of the people involved.

If the only thing you have to add is a writing skills lesson, thanks anyway but I didn't ask for one.
posted by bas67 at 10:31 PM on September 2, 2002

Actually, this is one of the ways that global capitalism is supposed to work beneficiently: trade links make people reluctant to go to war.

Presumably the amounts given by pro-Likud lobby groups to political campaigns are also a matter of record. One might assume that a politiciain is more easily influenced by money that helps buy him power than by money that simply makes him rich(er).
posted by alloneword at 12:18 AM on September 3, 2002

The AP story which leads the FPP seems to me to make it pretty clear that the business ties are similar or even, in some cases, overlapping, between those calling for military action in Iraq and those calling for more discussion and/or diplomacy. This would tend to suggest that these business ties are not responsible for the views expressed by their sources. Why would people speaking from corporate self-interest come up with opposite tacks, given the similarity in business interests?
posted by Nicolae Carpathia at 2:02 AM on September 3, 2002

Because they've all been reading the Left Behind series.
posted by crasspastor at 2:22 AM on September 3, 2002

From the AP story: The (Carlyle) Group's defense interests could possibly benefit from increased military spending. At the same time, any big rift with Saudi Arabia — which opposes a U.S. attack — could adversely affect the investment group's other interests.

Ah, I see -- the Carlyle Group is a hedge fund.
posted by Holden at 2:56 AM on September 3, 2002

There seems to me a difference between the names given as having agendas and those advising the president rather than merely giving their views on TV shows. I am not very happy with the advice givers he has but he has appointed them The ones mentioned are former this and thats.
posted by Postroad at 3:06 AM on September 3, 2002

Specialk's post (The Nation) gets much closer to operatives (?) much closer to the administation. However, the essay tries to put down Rumsfeld etc by deriding the use made of "occupied territories". In fact, the areas controlled since the '67 war are really referred to not as the occupied territories but as contested areas. Now whatever position you may or may not have on this issue it seems that belittling the term that is used by the UN is hardly going to make your case in order to prove the Nation's point.
Nonetheless, the Nation piece a good read with much to say in its favor.
posted by Postroad at 3:14 AM on September 3, 2002

Wrong. Here's the search page for the U.N Documentation Center. Search for "occupied territories" and you'll find that the U.N. most certainly does use that term in reference to Palestine. Read UNSCR 242 and some of the others while you're there.
posted by Nicolae Carpathia at 4:54 AM on September 3, 2002

I've done a lot of research on these folks and knew of many of these business ties already...

What research? Where can we see it? What are your credentials?
posted by Mo Nickels at 5:03 AM on September 3, 2002

What research? Where can we see it? What are your credentials?

The same research that anyone with an interest can do with a search engine, a public library and access to you local newspaper archives.

I have no credentials, I'm just interested in the subject so I try to educate myself.
posted by bas67 at 5:53 AM on September 3, 2002

from the WSJ last friday (reg. req.):
As global leaders debate the wisdom of a U.S. attack on Iraq, the global oil industry is already thinking about the aftermath -- both the short-term risks of supply disruption and price spikes, and the possibility of a long-term bonanza in a region that contains about two-thirds the world's proven reserves but is still largely closed to Western companies.


A common theme of the longer-term scenarios is the varying extent to which a post-Saddam Hussein Iraq may open up to Western oil companies to help it find, develop and market its formidable reserves, and diminish the dominant role of Saudi Arabia in the region and in OPEC.
like i'd guess with a US administered iraq OPEC's role would be a severely diminshed. and a weakened ability for the cartel to influence production and oil prices would, i think, call into question the long-term viability of oil revenues bolstering current regimes, i.e. it could undermine economic and political structures to an extent that they might not survive. obviously, to the benefit of non-oil exporting countries (and to a lesser extent competitors, e.g. norway, russia) but not clearly to the US. for instance (from the same article):
France's TotalFinaElf SA, Italy's Eni SpA and a clutch of companies from Russia, China and India already have agreements to develop Iraq's huge oil fields -- second only to Saudi Arabia in terms of proven reserves -- once United Nations sanctions are lifted. Oil company executives say American and British companies are expected to be invited by the Europeans to share the risks and rewards.
the question is whether the people living in the region will get a fairer shake if it ever comes around. like for nigeria, having foreign-developed oil fields hasn't been such a great deal. altho the profit motive is clearly a consideration, i feel like unless "development" redounds to iraqis it's more of a concern.
posted by kliuless at 6:41 AM on September 3, 2002

From the linked article: Few suggest that these four senior American foreign policy statesmen are tailoring their messages to fit their business interests.

"I think these people are expressing their genuine concerns and interests. I don't think there's anything beyond that," said Sandy Berger, who was President Clinton national security adviser.

So, even someone I presume to be a solid Democrat (national security advisory to a Democratic president... hmm...) is saying there's not much to this, other than, "Hey, kids, welcome to the big wide world of politicobusiness." The only thing that's surprising about this information is that anyone would be surprised by this information...
posted by JollyWanker at 6:52 AM on September 3, 2002

To his credit, Frank Rich pointed the same thing out in his Saturday NYT column a few weeks ago.
posted by risenc at 7:23 AM on September 3, 2002

As noted, the cautionmongers have just as many ties to the region as the rusher-inners.

The Nation lives up to its annoyingly wet reputation with that column, which seems to imply that without the advocacy groups like CSP, hawks wouldn't exist -- which is just silly. Likudniks, for example, already exist and would make their way into the administration without benefit of such groups. If anything, this just makes it easier to identify them. This also reads like barely disguised envy at how the right has succeeded at funding think tanks and marshalling its forces for future administrations.

In the end, I think it's a wash.
posted by dhartung at 8:10 AM on September 3, 2002

bas67: As one who has no business ties in the region and doesn't keep a focused eye on the events (other than concern over possible health effects), I thank you for your post. I found it informative and interesting.
posted by semmi at 8:45 AM on September 3, 2002

Interesting post, but i agree with all of the comments combined, which basically says that all of these people are crooked, it's just a choice of which crooked you prefer.
posted by cell divide at 10:57 PM on September 3, 2002

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