|Ottoman and Persian Empires circa 1912|
In other words, Current Civilization's enslavement by addiction to the use of oil (Russia-Ukraine's part below).
It is also a story of a century of decisions which define the suicidal episodes of current civilization, a dynamic which we have found also apples to most civilizations, empires, and societies (Civilization Is Now On Suicide Watch).
The graphic to the upper-left shows the Ottoman Empire (now Turkey) and the Persian Empire (now Iran) circa 1912.
A few years prior to 1912, oil had been discovered in the Persian Empire:
In 1901 William Knox D'Arcy, a millionaire London socialite, negotiated an oil concession with Mozaffar al-Din Shah Qajar of Persia [now Iran]. He assumed exclusive rights to prospect for oil for 60 years in a vast tract of territory ... By 1908 having sunk more than £500,000 into their Persian venture and found no oil ... [however,] in a stroke of luck, struck oil shortly after on May 26, 1908 ... [thereafter those interested] created the Anglo-Persian Oil Company (APOC) ... Volume production of Persian oil products eventually started in 1913 from a refinery built at Abadan, for its first 50 years the largest oil refinery in the world (see Abadan Refinery). In 1913, shortly before World War I, APOC managers negotiated with a new customer, Winston Churchill [Britain], who was then First Lord of the Admiralty. Churchill, as a part of a three-year expansion program, sought to modernize Britain's navy by abandoning the use of coal. Furthermore, Churchill wanted to free Britain from its reliance on the Standard Oil [American] and Royal Dutch-Shell [Netherlands] / Dutch / Brits] oil companies. In exchange for secure oil supplies for its ships, the British government injected new capital into the company and, in doing so, acquired a controlling interest in APOC. The contract that was set up between the British Government and APOC was to hold for 20 years. The British government also became a de facto hidden power behind the oil company ...(Anglo-Persian Oil Company, emphasis added, see also Viva Egypt - 2). As for the Ottoman Empire, oil was discovered near Mosul:
Discovery of oil in 1908 at Masjid-i Suleiman in [what was then "Persia", now] Iran – an event that changed the fate of the Middle East – gave impetus to quest for oil in Mesopotamia [now Iraq]. Oil pursuits in Mesopotamia [now Iraq] were concentrated in Mosul, one of three provinces or "vilayets" constituting [Mesopotamia, now] Iraq under the Ottoman [Ottoman Empire] rule. Mosul was the northern province, the other two being Baghdad (in the middle) and Basra (in the south) provinces. Foreign geologists visited the area under the disguise of archeologists.(The Quest for Oil, emphasis added). The video at the end of this post shows some additional Ottoman Empire oil fields up in the Black Sea area that were producing prior to WW I.
For a good part of the last century, interests of national governments were closely linked with the interests of oil companies, so much so that oil companies were de facto extensions of foreign-office establishments of the governments. The latter actively lobbied on behalf of the oil companies owned by their respective nationals. The oil companies, in return, would guarantee oil supply to respective governments – preferably at a substantial discount.
This symbiotic relationship manifested itself superbly when Turkish Petroleum Company (TPC), founded in 1911 and named as such in 1912 to exploit Mosul oil, was reorganized in March 1914 at a meeting held in Foreign Office in London where British and German diplomats sat next to executives of British and German banks and British and Dutch oil companies. Notwithstanding its name, TPC did not have Turkish participation. At that time World War I had not broken out yet, and Germans were welcome at TPC.
The British and Dutch were attracted to German participation because German banks had obtained a concession from the Ottomans in 1904 – a concession that in fact had been allowed to lapse. Calouste Gulbenkian, the consummate deal-maker of Armenian origin that helped found TPC, was not present at the meeting, but his interests were well looked after. He ended up with 5 percent share in TPC, though with no voting rights.
The same sort of deception was taking place against Persia [now Iran], according to a book published in 1912:
"The Persian Government, starting in December, 1909, had been seeking to obtain a loan of about $2,500,000 from the Russian and British Governments, but the conditions which the two Powers endeavored to impose upon the granting of this assistance was so dangerous to, and even destructive of, Persia's independence that the Medjlis [the Parliament] was compelled to reject them. Shortly thereafter Persia entered into negotiations with a private banking-house in London for a loan, and it was upon the point of being concluded on terms mutually satisfactory, when, in October, 1910, the negotiations were brought to an end through the action of the British Government, working in harmony with Russia, whereby Persia was prevented from realizing money on the crown jewels which she was ready to pledge for the loan. All this time Russia had been openly endeavoring to extort a number of valuable concessions from the Persian Medjlis as the price of withdrawing her troops from Northern Persia. The general attitude of the two Powers toward Persia was marked with increasing unfriendliness and hostility."(The Strangling of Persia, Intro. p. liii, by W. Morgan Shuster, emphasis added). The year 1912, shortly before WW I, was a time when both of the empires shown on the map had oil resources within their borders, and both had predators circling around them.
That map was to change when the first world oil war (WW I) took place, as detailed in the "Blood and Oil" video below, a good look at that oil war.
In closing for today, (more in future posts), let's bring oil wars up to date:
When Russia seized Crimea in March, it acquired not just the Crimean landmass but also a maritime zone more than three times its size with the rights to underwater resources potentially worth trillions of dollars.(In Taking Crimea ..., emphasis added). Our current oil-based civilization has been warring over oil for over a century because of the mindset of Oil-Qaeda, the current "Jim Jones" that is deceiving and leading us toward mass suicide (MOMCOM's Mass Suicide & Murder Pact - 5).
Russia portrayed the takeover as reclamation of its rightful territory, drawing no attention to the oil and gas rush that had recently been heating up in the Black Sea. But the move also extended Russia’s maritime boundaries, quietly giving Russia dominion over vast oil and gas reserves while dealing a crippling blow to Ukraine’s hopes for energy independence.
Russia did so under an international accord that gives nations sovereignty over areas up to 230 miles from their shorelines. It had tried, unsuccessfully, to gain access to energy resources in the same territory in a pact with Ukraine less than two years earlier.
The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.
A look at the phenomenon of "blood for oil" is depicted in this video: