French War for Oil

Posted by Peter

The French' motives for not wanting a war in Iraq are becoming more and more clear. It turns out that they had exclusive oil contracts with Iraq that would have been VERY beneficial for them. From Powerline:

Jamie Glazov has a good interview of Kenneth Timmerman on FrontPage regarding the case he makes in his new book The French Betrayal of America: "Chirac's war for oil." Here's one of the points Timmerman makes:

erstwhile foreign minister, Dominique de Villepin, around the world to buy votes against America at the United nations. Chirac was determined to maintain Saddam Hussein in power so that two extraordinarily lucrative oil contracts, negotiated by the French, could go into effect. Very little has been written about this until now.

The deals were negotiated separately by CFP Total and by Elf Aquitaine during the mid to late 1990s. At the time, both companies were state-controlled. They have since been privatized and combined into the world’s second largest oil giant, TotalFinalElf.

Through my sources, I obtained a copy of one of these contracts. It spans 154 pages, and grants the French exclusive right to exploit one of Iraq’s largest oil fields at Nahr al-Umar for a period of twenty years. Under the deal, the French were given 75% of the revenue from every barril of oil they extracted – 75%! That is absolutely stunning. Not even during the pre-OPEC days were foreign oil operators granted such extravagant terms.

The silence that has greeted Timmerman's book is as striking as its revelations.

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