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gold,oil and war.....from long waves

  1. croupier

    5,447 posts.
    A great summation of the recent history of these three subjects.

    Gold Oil and War
    by B. Parady
    25 January 2003 07:04 UTC



    The obvious drive of oil and gold to higher prices under
    the flowering drum song of war, suggests some fundamental
    economic issues that have threaded through society
    for at least the last couple of centuries.

    Let's start it simply with the founding of California. This
    one is easy, but the annexation of California to the US was
    precipitated by the gold rush and what it meant to the
    US government.

    Now let's switch over to the Franco-Prussian war. What
    was that all about? Some credit France for initiating it to
    capture the coal fields of the Saar. As it ended, the Prussians
    annexed the coal rich region of Alsace Lorraine (Lothuringia
    if you are German) as a key strategic spoil. Interestingly
    enough, this region was one of the first major oil producing
    regions, and is the home of Schlumberger, the giant oil
    services firm.

    OK, still no oil, but in the 19th century, the next best thing
    was coal. After all it provided all that modern petroleum
    drilling provides: gas, coal oil, chemical stock, and fuel.

    Next shift over to the Northern hemisphere. Here we start out
    with the development of the Panama canal. What is the US
    looking for here? Coaling stations for the navy, and we get
    Guantanamo as a tiny spoil, along with Guam and the Philippines.

    Later the US goes out and plunks down cash for Samoa and
    the Virgin Islands as coaling stations for our expanding navy.

    Next shift over to the far east and Japan. Roll in the big boys for
    the first little naval discussion in the Russo-Japanese war. Here
    we have Port Arthur coaling station being taken by the Japanese
    along with the coal rich Sakhalin Island.

    Now we have set the table with the modern navy and the dreadnought.
    Britain has developed a ship that needs oil, though they did have
    coal bunkers on some. The oil was much quicker for fueling and
    refueling. Britain has a problem here. No natural resources, just
    like Japan. What to do?

    First off, they need to get the gold, so Boers need to go. Filthy
    beggars.

    Germany of course wants to be modern like Britain, but this makes
    Britain very nervous, and off we go. The French of course want
    Saar and Alsace-Lorraine again, and now let's party. Hey after all
    we have the Boer gold to pay for all the party favors.

    OK, so they work this out. Some of the biggest oil strikes occur
    under the dominion of the Hun's greatest ally, Turkey, then possessor
    of the Arabian peninsula. Well, what has to happen is that
    France needs its toys, and Britain needs to get its trinkets, so
    we all need to assemble under the Christmas tree in Versailles,
    while Wilson, the college president, is trying to push his 14 points
    on anyone silly enough to care.

    So after the War, the UK gets Iraq and Kuwait, along with
    concessions in Saudi Arabia, and dominion over Aden, Qatar,
    Musqat and Oman; the French get the oil fields of Alsace and
    a couple fueling stations. So far fun stuff.

    Now, guess who is up to bat? Japan. They like the idea
    of coal, so Manchuria seems like a great idea. Though
    with the modern navy, stoking coal is not a whole lot of fun.
    It is awfully dirty work and it is smelly. Makes a mess out
    of white naval uniforms.

    What to do? Oil is the obvious answer, but gosh darn
    Japan is a small set of islands. Ok, Ok, let's look around on
    the map. Yes, I see it, the Dutch East Indies and the discoveries
    of Royal Dutch-Shell in 1903. What are the Dutch going to do with oil
    anyway. They got no navy and they are a lousy small country.
    Time to push these pantywaists out of the way.

    But wait, what is between the Dutch East Indies and Japan?
    Small problem - the US held Philippines. Ok, negotiate with
    the US to get access to the oil then everything will be fine.
    The US sees this and Roosevelt hits the roof. He sees the
    coming domination of the South Pacific by Japan and
    puts a stop to this nonsense and issues an ultimatum which
    the Japanese cannot abide.

    Party time again, now in Hawaii (no disrespect to those who were
    injured or fallen, please allow me to make this horrible contrast) with
    lots of fireworks, along with the Philippines, Singapore, and Indonesia.

    If you want to see the role of gold in W.W.II, just look at the
    hideous scavenging of bodies for dental and ornamental gold
    by Hitler's minions.

    This brings us to the present. There is a crisis in gold or
    currencies, and a crisis in oil -- the two are not necessarily
    separable. With cheap supplies running out, the western
    economies are running out of gas literally.

    We are seeing the drums of war offshore of China in the
    forcible takeover of the Spratleys from the Philippines
    and Vietnam, merely for the sake of oil rights.

    The crisis comes when the OPEC members flip from supplying
    enough oil cheaply to keep the western economies humming along,
    to stiffing the west through exorbitant prices. We are seeing the
    beginnings of the outright political use of oil in Venezuela.
    Where this will lead is anyone's guess. None of my notions
    are very pleasant at this point.

    Bottom line, the major world wars in recent history, have
    involved oil, and needed gold to finance them -- paper just
    seems to burn up in battle.

    What were Vietnam and Korea about? I have no idea, other
    than simple aggression for aggression's sake, and it needing a counter.
    I guess I could see Korea get involved with Iraq, and Pakistan
    just for the jollies based on their past actions. China and Japan
    are bigger enigmas needing both oil and gold to extend their
    economies.

    We are headed for interesting times.

    Regards

    BParady


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