Iraqi oil opens for Western exploitation
BAGHDAD, Jan. 7 (UPI) -- Under a new law, Iraq's massive oil reserves will open for Western oil companies, fueling debate on whether the war in Iraq is for oil.
The Independent reported on the law, which is expected to come before Iraqi lawmakers this week. The law would give oil companies like BP, Shell and ExxonMobil 30-year contracts to have access to Iraqi crude oil.
It would be the first large-scale operation of foreign interests in Iraq since the oil industry was nationalized in 1972, the Independent said.
Critics say the development shows the war is being fought for oil. They cite Vice President Dick Cheney who -- while CEO of the oil services company Halliburton -- said the world would need an additional 50 million barrels of oil a day by 2010, oil that would probably come from the Middle East.
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