Drugs, Oil, and War: The United States in Afghanistan, Colombia, and Indochina (War and Peace Library)
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Praise for the work of Peter Dale Scott: The War Conspiracy A powerful analysis of the United States' persistent drive toward war..... -- Franz Schurmann
Praise for the work of Peter Dale Scott: Cocaine Politics For the evidence that narcotics . . . have been instruments of U.S. foreign policy, you simply have to read Cocaine Politics. This, one of the most enlightening books of the year, will redefine your usage of the silly term 'drug war.'''' -- Christopher Hitchens, The Nation
Praise for the work of Peter Dale Scott: The War Conspiracy A meticulous and fascinating analysis. . . . The great importance of this book extends well beyond the new understanding it provides with regards to past escapades. Scott exposes an element in the American system of global power that poses an increasing threat to the victims of this system.... -- Noam Chomsky, MIT
Praise for the work of Peter Dale Scott: Deep Politics and the Death of JFK Staggeringly well-researched and intelligent overview not only of the JFK assassination but also of the rise of forces undermining American democracy―of which the assassination, Scott says, is symptomatic...., Kirkus
No student of political science or political thinker dares overlook this thirty-year tour de force of the dark side of history and the para and deep politics that control so much of our daily lives. -- Michael C. Ruppert, publisher/editor of From the Wilderness
Peter Dale Scott takes us for a controversial tour along the dark side of American foreign policy. The book builds a powerful case that Washington's War on Drugs is at best futile and at worst criminal. The overall target is the militarization of our foreign policy. The facts and conclusions are chilling. -- Ambassador Robert White, president of the Center for International Policy
Praise for the work of Peter Dale Scott:Coming to JakartaComing to Jakarta is the most important political poem to appear in the English language in a very long time. -- Robert Hass
This is a brilliant, compelling, and startlingly original exposé of American foreign policy as oil policy with an addiction to drug trafficking as its adjunct. It makes most academic and journalistic explanations of the dreadful paradoxes of our past and current interventions read like government propaganda written for children. -- Daniel Ellsberg, author of Secrets: A Memoir of Vietnam and the Pentagon Papers
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Scott's basic premise (and this book is a 50:50 mix of a reprinting of the core of his '72 book THE WAR CONSPIRACY which dealt with US involvement in Indochina, and a 2002 update covering ongoing developments in Columbia and Afghanistan) is that the US, in it's attempt to thwart the spread of communism (and now more recently Islamic fundamentalist terrorism), focuses on oil and drugs to do two things with foreign policy - secure and control foreign oil resources, and utilize drug traffickers as allies and the drug trade as covert revenue. The irony is that the infamous "War on Drugs" is more a war for oil supported by expensive illegal drugs. The effects range from widespread (and increasingly violent) resistance to American hegemony to a huge increase in world-wide drug addiction. It is perhaps no coincidence that when the US invaded Afghanistan after 9-11, the Taliban had effectively suppressed opium production there, and the resulting removal of the Taliban led to Afghanistan's largest poppy crop and a much needed 400 billion dollar influx of drug money to the recently recessed world economy... (for more details see Ruppert's Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil ).
There are many books full of this kind of detailed information, but too often they get marginalized and miss getting mainstream exposure and acceptance. Perhaps the average American thinks they are too sensational, extreme and hyperbolic (being just too conspiracy oriented). Perhaps, among those of us who care, we are left wondering what to believe, which book is information and which is disinformation (purposely planted to distract or delude us) This book, while detailed and focused on the nexus of oil resources and drug trafficking, is relatively concise and sober (supported with extensive footnotes), and appears to be the real deal. Scott no longer considers this a "conspiracy" as much as a generally accepted (albeit secretive) way of doing things, for a variety of sometimes conflicting motives, with an equally mixed variety of intended and unintended consequences. His particular point of view may well be partial, incomplete and biased (and the product of disinformation itself), but it is none the less a documentation of a slice of history and worthy of study along the trail of uncovering the larger picture and underlying pattern.
(What I disagree with Scott about is his view that this is primarily a "right-wing" phenomena/conspiracy. It seems that such ideological clarity is muddied considerably in the Powers-That-Be's desire to gain stability and maintain control, and as such, sounds a lot like the pragmatically motivated classic '3rd Way' of fascism - which has become the status quo almost by default. The result is that politics in America today is mostly "Progressive" in practice if not name, in other words; the centralized union of State and Corporation is almost complete in our anti-individualistic Brave New World. It may not be the violent/ugly fascism of Nazi Germany, but even in it's smily-faced form its pretty intolerant and plenty dangerous.)
I can understand if people are unsure what to believe and trust, but still find it amazing that more Americans don't know of, or care about, the ongoing entangled connections between America's foreign policy, the oil and military industrial lobbies, the CIA and the drug war/trade, or if they hear of it, dismiss it as unbelievable (or even a necessary evil!). It is a truly unholy alliance that needs to be exposed to a much wider audience (for a detailed view of how the CIA got involved in covert operations also see The Secret History of the CIA , or how the CIA was formed by it's bad side and uses it's legitimate but naive good side as a smokescreen and scapegoat see Psychological Warfare and the New World Order: The Secret War Against the American People ).
But then again, maybe the fact that this information has been ignored repeatedly, and the benefactors of such a drug trade have done so well, so popularly (President Clinton being the most prominent example), indicates that the American people want to be kept ignorant and well supplied with the fruits of ongoing war, foreign oil, illegal drugs and the massive industries built up around supporting these.
The Vietnam war was based on the Southeast Asia domino theory, which raised concerns about the Indonesian oil assets. The war was all about preventing communist regimes from taking control of oil reserves.
Other examples are Iraq, Afghanistan and Unocal's oil pipeline from the Caspian Sea, Colombia and Occidental Petroleum's oil fields or Kossovo and the Balkan oil pipeline.
In order to control oil resources the US backes armies and governments that are heavily involved in drug trafficking. The end justifies all means.
This kind of powerplay is exercised by covert means (parapolitics). Unfortunately, those policies tend to metastasize into deep politics. As the author states: 'they become an interplay of unacknowledged forces on which the original parapolitical agent no longer has control'.
The result is that the US and the world are inundated with drugs. One cannot find one dollar note without drug traces.
This book is partly a rewriting of an older book of the author 'The War Conspiracy'.
Although it is more confusing and lesser deep digging than his Magnum Opus 'Deep Politics', it is a disturbing and impressive report.
Not to be missed.
Top international reviews
Part I (1961-2001) Afghanistan, Heroin and Oil. The most lucrative industries in the world are Oil, Narcotics and Armaments. Oil requires control of a country for exploration and extraction. Narcotics are a source of unaccountable money for funding illegality. Arms are used to protect oil and narcotics fields and promoting wars to profit from the sales to governments and mercenaries. These are probably the main drivers of foreign policy of imperial powers such as the USA and the UK etc.
Aviation companies are subsidised by providing movement of narcotics, mercenaries and govt. troops (Pan Am, Air America). Rainbow herbicides were used for defoliation and starvation being very profitable for Dow Chemicals and Monsanto. These were mainly used in Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Malaysia (UK).
Chapter 2 (1959-2001).
Oil was found in Columbia in 1984. The army and police ran most of the cocaine production; not the FARC. Oil was discovered off-shore of Cambodia. Opium production was moved into Laos where a spurious war was announced. The war was later moved to Vietnam.
Banking operations are often subsidised by laundering narcotics money (BCCI, Nugan Hand Bank). By 2001 the Taliban eliminated most of the opium production in Afghanistan but the CIA moved it to the Northern Alliance. The drugs also flowed into Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan to finance the Islamic Radical Group. USA and Russia were competing for access to the Caspian oil fields.
Chapter 3. Taiwan and Burma.
Burma and Thailand were bases for the KMT and CIA to invade the PRC. Opium was cultivated to fund the enterprise. Supplies went to the US drug gangs for distribution there.
Part II Chapter 4. Columbia, Cocaine and Oil (1962-2001).
The CIA and US special forces in 1962 trained the police and paramilitaries ofColumbia. In 1991 as a national security matter, US troops arrived to secure the oil piplines of Occidental Oil.
Chapter 5. CIA and drugs in Columbia. Southern Air Transport was used to ferry drugs for the CIA.
Chapter 6. Columbian Disengagement.
Military aid was promoted by BP Amoco, Occidental and Enron Corporation. The author recommends disengagement.
The book is a good update to his War Conspiracy.