It's time the U.S. stopped being so coy about why they're in Iraq. It's about the oil, isn't it? Sure it is.

Americans (specifically, American soldiers) are a pretty sharp bunch, contrary to what their government thinks of them; I bet you if you were open and said "this is a war to secure more oil for our ever-growing thirst for gasoline in our SUVs," and "while we're at it, we're going to overthrow a cruel dictator, and impose a U.S.-friendly puppet regime," people would buy it. People might just line up to go over there and fight. It would be an unjust war, sure -- but it is already that. U.S. troops would still die, but they already are. U.S. public opinion would drop in foreign countries, but ... well you get the point.

But with prices currently topping US$4.00/gal for gas in some states, you'd probably still get people volunteering to secure more oil resources. Of that I'm pretty certain.

Well, finally we hear mention of the word oil. Previously, this has been an uncomfortable topic for Bush, and we've heard words like "Freedom," "Democracy," and "Liberation," none of which has really happened. At least not yet. Nor have the words "Safety," or "Peace," or "Reconstruction," held any meaning over in Iraq. At least not yet.

Here's what was in yesterday's Associated Press article:

Bush: U.S. Must Protect Iraq From Terror - Yahoo! News

President Bush on Tuesday answered growing anti-war protests with a fresh reason for American troops to continue fighting in Iraq: protection of the country's vast oil fields that he said would otherwise fall under the control of terrorist extremists.

...

Bush said the Iraqi oil industry, already suffering from sabotage and lost revenues, must not fall under the control of Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida forces in Iraq led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

"If Zarqawi and bin Laden gain control of Iraq, they would create a new training ground for future terrorist attacks," Bush said. "They'd seize oil fields to fund their ambitions. They could recruit more terrorists by claiming a historic victory over the United States and our coalition."



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