News Release

As Britain Votes on War, Western Interests Eyeing Syria’s Resources, Dismemberment


Today, the House of Commons is having an all-day debate on extending British bombing in Iraq into Syria as well. [BBC livefeed] Prime Minister David Cameron is forcing a vote tonight. Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn is opposing the bombing, but has called for a “free vote” — effectively giving greater leeway for Labor MPs to defect.

NAFEEZ AHMED, [in London] iprdoffice at, @NafeezAhmed
An independent, London-based investigative reporter, Ahmed is a columnist with Middle East Eye. His books include A User’s Guide to the Crisis of Civilization.

Ahmed just wrote the piece “Western firms primed to cash in on Syria’s oil and gas ‘frontier’,” which states: “U.S., British, French, Israeli and other energy interests could be prime beneficiaries of military operations in Iraq and Syria designed to rollback the power of the ‘Islamic State’ (ISIS) and, potentially, the Bashar al-Assad regime. A study for a global oil services company backed by the French government and linked to Britain’s Tory-led administration, published during the height of the Arab Spring, hailed the significant ‘hydrocarbon potential’ of Syria’s offshore resources. … In early November, as Nazareth-based journalist Jonathan Cook reports, ‘Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu took advantage of a private meeting… with Barack Obama — their first in 13 months — to raise the possibility of dismembering Syria.'”

Ahmed also recently wrote the piece “ISIS wants to destroy the ‘grey zone’. Here’s how we defend it,” which states: “Incumbent political elites keen to avoid accountability for a decade and a half of failure will use heightened public anxiety to push through more of the same. They will seek to avoid hard questions about past failures, while casting suspicion everywhere except the state itself, with a view to continue business-as-usual. And in a similar vein, the military-industrial complex, whose profits have come to depend symbiotically on perpetual war, wants to avoid awkward questions about lack of transparency and corrupt relationships with governments. They would much rather keep the trillion-dollar gravy train flowing out of the public purse. …

“ISIS recognizes that it has only marginal support among Muslims around the world. The only way it can accelerate recruitment and strengthen its territorial ambitions is twofold: firstly, demonstrating to Islamist jihadist networks that there is now only one credible terror game in town capable of pulling off spectacular terrorist attacks in the heart of the west, and two, by deteriorating conditions of life for Muslims all over the world to draw them into joining or supporting ISIS.”