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BP in the Gulf - the Persian Gulf

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ensho Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-30-10 10:52 AM
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BP in the Gulf - the Persian Gulf

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/LG01Ak02.html


To frustrated Americans who have begun boycotting BP: Welcome to the club. It's great not to be the only member any more!

-snip-

My decision not to give this company my business came after I learned about its role in another kind of "spill" entirely - the destruction of Iran's democracy more than half a century ago.

The history of the company we now call BP has, over the past 100 years, traced the arc of transnational capitalism. Its roots lie in the early years of the 20th century when a wealthy bon vivant named William Knox D'Arcy decided, with encouragement from the British government, to begin looking for oil in Iran. He struck a concession agreement with the dissolute Iranian monarchy, using the proven expedient of bribing the three Iranians negotiating with him.

Under this contract, which he designed, D'Arcy was to own whatever oil he found in Iran and pay the government just 16% of any profits he made - never allowing any Iranian to review his accounting. After his first strike in 1908, he became sole owner of the entire ocean of oil that lies beneath Iran's soil. No one else was allowed to drill for, refine, extract or sell "Iranian" oil.

-snip-

Soon afterward, the British government bought the D'Arcy concession, which it named the Anglo-Persian Oil Company. It then built the world's biggest refinery at the port of Abadan on the Persian Gulf. From the 1920s into the 1940s, Britain's standard of living was supported by oil from Iran. British cars, trucks and buses ran on cheap Iranian oil. Factories throughout Britain were fueled by oil from Iran. The Royal Navy, which projected British power all over the world, powered its ships with Iranian oil.

-snip WWII-

In Iran, nationalism meant one thing: weve got to take back our oil. Driven by this passion, parliament voted on April 28, 1951, to choose its most passionate champion of oil nationalization, Mohammad Mossadegh, as prime minister. Days later, it unanimously approved his bill nationalizing the oil company. Mossadegh promised that, henceforth, oil profits would be used to develop Iran, not enrich Britain.

-snip-

The British took a series of steps meant to push Mossadegh off his nationalist path. They withdrew their technicians from Abadan, blockaded the port, cut off exports of vital goods to Iran, froze the countrys hard-currency accounts in British banks, and tried to win anti-Iran resolutions from the United Nations and the World Court. This campaign only intensified Iranian determination. Finally, the British turned to Washington and asked for a favor: please overthrow this madman for us so we can have our oil company back.

American president Dwight D Eisenhower, encouraged by his secretary of state John Foster Dulles, a lifelong defender of transnational corporate power, agreed to send the Central Intelligence Agency in to depose Mossadegh. The operation took less than a month in the summer of 1953. It was the first time the Central Intelligence Agency had ever overthrown a government.

-snip-

The oil company rebranded itself as British Petroleum, BP Amoco, and then, in 2000, BP. During its decades in Iran, it had operated as it pleased, with little regard for the interests of local people. This corporate tradition has evidently remained strong.

Many Americans are outraged by the relentless images of oil gushing into Gulf waters from the Deepwater Horizon well, and by the corporate recklessness that allowed this spill to happen. Those who know Iranian history have been less surprised.
------------------------------


the CIA is a dirty stain on all us americans

BP is so used to getting its own way the horror in the Gulf won't move them off their high horse.
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slipslidingaway Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-30-10 10:57 AM
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1. knr nt
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-30-10 11:00 AM
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2. This is about the sixth post
using more or less the same boring narrative copied from a wiki links etc on the subject. A number of us quoted this as straight forward blowback in links to problems with Iran over the past few years or so here on DU.

At the time of the coup Anglo Persian Oil was a UK government jv with Iran/Persia. Any criticism here only need to be levelled at both our governments. That is not a defence of BP - just a fact of life.
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