A recent piece by Michael Klare titled, "New Global Hot Spot–Iraq War Will Redraw Strategic Map" begins:
“The old Cold War theaters of Europe and the Far East are being replaced in strategic importance by the Persian Gulf basin, where the desires of Russia, China and the United States for oil, security and geopolitical advantage could collide.
“By invading Iraq, the United States will do far more than topple an odious regime that has resisted American policy goals for the past 10 years — it will redraw the global strategic map in a way that has not occurred in more than half a century.
“Ever since the end of World War II, the two most important theaters of international political and military competition have been Europe and the Far East. These are the regions that attracted the greatest attention from U.S. and Soviet strategists during the Cold War period and housed the largest concentration of military forces. Most of the major confrontations of the Cold War era — the various Berlin crises, the Korean War and the Vietnam War — also occurred in these areas.
“But now, with the invasion of Iraq, these two areas are being supplanted by the Persian Gulf basin as the central cockpit of global political competition. From now on, relations between the world’s great powers — especially the United States, Russia, and China — will be defined by their relative geo-strategic position in this vital region.
The greater Gulf region, including the Caspian Sea basin (which stretches to within a few hundred miles of Baghdad), houses over two-thirds of the world’s known petroleum reserves and will become ever more important to the world economy as oil supplies in other areas, including the United States, the North Sea and China become depleted."We go now to a recent speech Klare gave this weekend at the Socialist Scholars Conference in New York.
- Michael Klare, the Five College Professor of Peace and World Security Studies, based at Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts.