When people talk about ‘The Deep State’, they are talking about the people and organisations who wield global power from the shadows - the ones who are able to profit from chaos. And nothing created more chaos than the Iraq War. Among the documents revealed in the Chilcott Report into the Iraq War was a Foreign Office report outlining what a post-Saddam Hussein Iraqi government would look like. It listed the government’s “overarching priorities”, such as getting rid of the (supposed) Weapons of Mass Destruction. But it also listed a number of “second order objectives”, which included “ensuring British companies benefit from any post-war reconstruction contracts.” Another document revealed in the report was a telegram titled “Iraq: Dividing the Spoils”. In it, the British Ambassador to the US questioned why this was only a “second order objective” - and not a primary concern. For many, this is a prime example … [Read more...] about The organisations which profited from the chaos of the Iraq War
Sunday marks the 100th anniversary of the Royal Air Force and I will celebrate the great achievements of the service I was incredibly proud to be part of. The RAF has changed beyond recognition from the days of the canvas and wooden aircraft of 1918, to the technological force it is today. But I will be applauding more than that advancement in warfighting capability; I will be celebrating the way it treats its servicemen and women. The RAF I joined in 1981 was very different; women were deemed incapable of flying, to be openly gay meant possible imprisonment and certain dismissal, and terms like “transgender” were simply unknown. Today the RAF is at the forefront of equal rights for all who serve, but it has not always been an easy journey. I didn’t know RAF Firefighter Carl Austin-Behan when I was a Tornado Navigator, but I certainly knew of him. In 1992, Carl and his fire crew responded to an aircraft crash at RAF Chivenor in … [Read more...] about Former navigator shot down in Iraq reveals pride at equality in the RAF
Life by Press Association March 29, 2018, 3:13 pm FacebookTwitterLinkedInWhatsAppEmail Sign up to our Daily newsletter Former British soldier Adnan Sarwar is returning to Iraq for a BBC documentary. Exploring how the country has changed since the Iraq War, the programme with the working title Return To Iraq, will air as a two-part series on BBC2. Sarwar went to Iraq in 2003 as a 24-year-old soldier with the British Army. He “initially viewed his mission as liberating the country’s people from Saddam Hussein”. But the BBC says “when parts of the population turned against the allied forces, Adnan’s life was changed forever by an ambush which killed one of his friends in the Army”. In the documentary, the former British soldier and journalist will “venture through ancient hilltop villages, IS tunnels, magnificent gorges and sleep under the stars with the locals”. He will “explore whether the … [Read more...] about Ex-British soldier returns to Iraq for BBC documentary
Some OPEC producers and other countries participating in global output cuts have suggested extending the curbs beyond 2018 and up to the middle of next year, according to Iraq’s Oil Minister Jabbar al-Luaibi.Some producers suggested extending the cuts for three months and others for six months after their planned expiration at the end of this year, al-Luaibi told reporters at an energy conference in Baghdad. He didn’t identify the countries. OPEC is looking for a long-term cooperation with other global producers, OPEC Secretary-General Mohammad Barkindo said at the same event.The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia agreed in late 2016 to cut production and then extended the limits until the end of this year in a drive to clear a glut in crude inventories. Both OPEC and the International Energy Agency forecast that the production cuts will succeed in eliminating the inventory surplus this year.OPEC’s biggest supplier Saudi Arabia … [Read more...] about Iraq Says Some OPEC, Allied Producers Seek Oil Cuts Into 2019
The results of the Kuwait International Conference for the Reconstruction of Iraq last month were modest, while the conference targeted to raise $100 billion, it barely raised $30 billion. This modest achievement cannot be underestimated, and we can build on it. But the most important question is, can international investors be persuaded to return to Iraq? In Iraq, post-conflict recovery will depend upon rebuilding key infrastructure, institutions, and individuals’ trust. Fundamental to all of these is significant and sustained investment in the country. Historically, foreign investment in Iraq has failed to deliver successful results. To a large extent, this is due to a series of recurrent challenges that have appeared time and again as stumbling blocks to investment projects in the country. Now more than ever, following the February conference and the pledge of US $30 billion to the country, is it necessary to assess the mistakes of the past and the mistakes of the present that … [Read more...] about Will the failure of investment in Iraq turn into a success story?