Excerpts from the article continue:
The disclosure, coming on the eve of the contracts’ announcement, is the first confirmation of direct involvement by the Bush administration in deals to open Iraq’s oil to commercial development and is likely to stoke criticism.Read the entire New York Times article on about the US government's involvement in the awarding of no-bid oil field contracts in Iraq here.
In their role as advisers to the Iraqi Oil Ministry, American government lawyers and private-sector consultants provided template contracts and detailed suggestions on drafting the contracts, advisers and a senior State Department official said. It is unclear how much influence their work had on the ministry’s decisions.
At a time of spiraling oil prices, the no-bid contracts, in a country with some of the world’s largest untapped fields and potential for vast profits, are a rare prize to the industry. The contracts are expected to be awarded Monday to Exxon Mobil, Shell, BP, Total and Chevron, as well as to several smaller oil companies.
The deals have been criticized by opponents of the Iraq war, who accuse the Bush administration of working behind the scenes to ensure Western access to Iraqi oil fields even as most other oil-exporting countries have been sharply limiting the roles of international oil companies in development.
plez sez: it's good to see that the ole crystal ball still works!
the funniest line in the article (more than likely added by the editor for some comic relief): "It is unclear how much influence the [US government's] work had on the ministry’s decisions."
since the bush administration is getting ready to vacate the white house, i guess it is time for all of the weasels to come out and start claiming their booty in iraq. it is a shame that bush (and cheney) will not be brought to task for their high crimes and profiteering associated with the invasion and occupation of iraq. gasoline has topped $4 a gallon here in atlanta (i'm paying about $4.20 a gallon for midgrade) and the bush and cheney are riding to the bank on the backs of every american who puts fuel in their car and truck... enough to make me ill!
...for all the oil in Iraq!