With friends like these, right? An Iraqi diplomat advised Arab states to “use the weapon of oil” against the United States over our relationship with Israel.
The statement originated from a democratic government in Iraq that the US helped install and nurture after our aggressive ousting of ruthless dictator Saddam Hussein in a costly and long war. “Iraq will invite (Arab) ministers to use the weapon of oil, with the aim of asserting real pressure on the United States and whoever stands with Israel,” Qais al-Azzawy told reporters in Cairo on Friday.
“The economic weapon is the strongest one to be put into effect now, to assure of standing by the Palestinian people, in light of there being no military power that can stand in the face of Israel at the present time,” he added.
Hussein’s bloody, 30-year reign was brought to an end when the US ousted him from power in 2003 during a controversial and expensive conflict. Nearly 4,500 American service members were killed and more than 32,000 wounded in a war that has cost US taxpayers at least $750 billion.
Iraq itself is oil-rich, and is estimated to be the world’s third-largest holder of reserves. Like other Arab nations, Iraq provides the US with roughly 13 percent of its oil. Arab oil producers have a tremendous effect on world prices through OPEC.
Iraq is standing with Hamas and Palestinians in the latest conflict between the two, and the US is standing with Israel. Though the oil threat is an effective one, the US is making strides to become more energy independent in the coming years.
In response to the Iraq statement, Florida Representative Gus Bilirakis, who sits on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said the following:
“As sirens sound over Israel, we must not forget the millions of Israelis who live under the constant threat of rocket attacks from Gaza. Israel’s right to defend itself is fundamental, and U.S. policy must continue to support this. I have long advocated for energy independence in the United States, and I firmly believe this to be more true now than ever before.”
Are you surprised that Iraq is proving once again to be an antagonizing force against the US?