Iraq's Kurdish tensions over oil worsen
THE NATIONAL | Florian Neuhof | April 10, 2012
The tensions between Baghdad and Erbil over Kurdish control of its oil resources have been further stoked by comments from Iraq's top oil official.
The Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) last week announced a halt to its exports, frustrated by the continued reluctance of the central government to sign off payments for oil flowing out of the autonomous region.
Hussein Al Shahristani, Iraq's deputy prime minister for energy affairs, responded by criticising the contracts awarded to international oil companies by the KRG as too generous, sayingthe companies were given "what they dreamt of in any place in the world".
Jeremiah's prophecy of doom on Babylon the land of the Chaldeans in chapters 50 through 51 in the hebrew bible describes the rise of the Medes -- today known as the Kurds of Kurdistan -- into a conquering power: "Sharpen the arrows, fill the quivers! The LORD has aroused the spirit of the kings of the Medes, because his purpose is to destroy (Babylon)..." (Jer 51:11). "'Shout for joy over Babylon, for the destroyers will come to her from the north,' declares the LORD," (Jer 51:48).
Could we be seeing the rise of the Medes into a self-sufficient power through oil wealth, and the building of tensions between the semi-autonomous Kurdistan government and the central Iraqi government? Will the tensions boil over into all out civil war? Will the Kurds plunder Babylon's liquid treasures?