Oil colonialism

By John Cherian

, by Frontline

“Cooperating with Iran’s energy industry” is not the sole reason for the U.S. decision to impose sanctions on Venezuela’s state oil company.

VENEZUELA has become the latest country to be put under economic sanctions by the United States for doing business with Iran. In the last week of May, the Barack Obama administration announced that it was imposing sanctions on Venezuela’s state oil company Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PDVSA) “for cooperating with Iran’s energy industry”. The U.S. State Department spokesman said dealings with Iran’s oil industry violated the Iran Sanctions Act enacted by the U.S. Congress way back in 1996. “We are sending a clear message to companies around the world. Those who continue to irresponsibly support Iran’s energy sector or help facilitate Iran’s efforts to evade U.S. sanctions will face significant consequences,” said the U.S. Deputy Secretary of State, James Steinberg.

[...] Venezuela, along with a core group of Latin American and Caribbean countries, has resolutely opposed the hegemonic policies of the U.S. in the region and in the world. Chavez was among the first heads of state to condemn the U.S.-led North Atlantic Treaty Organisation war on Libya. Chavez, like many world leaders, had initially expressed his admiration for Obama and had expected that the new President, with his emphasis on projecting “soft power”, would be different from his predecessor Bush. But three years into the presidency, Obama has shown his real face to the world. He has launched another war, in Libya, adding to the wars he has inherited in Afghanistan and Iraq.

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