All Largely About Oil

ALL LARGELY ABOUT OIL….Bob Woodward plucks a sentence from Alan Greenspan’s forthcoming memoir:

Without elaborating, he writes, “I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil.”

Now that’s a statement that could use some elaboration, isn’t it? I guess Greenspan hasn’t quite given up his Sphinx-like pose entirely.

(So what’s Greenspan’s point? I don’t think he’s suggesting that we invaded Iraq because we wanted to seize control of their oil fields and hand them over to ExxonMobil. More likely, he’s making the unexceptional argument that we wouldn’t care much about the Middle East in the first place if it didn’t have all that oil. But it does, and our economy depends on it, and we long ago decided that protecting our access to that oil was an essential element of our national interest. The Iraq war, as Greenspan notes, is pretty obviously bound up in all of that.)

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation