Who Guards The Guards
Counter terror Adviser Defends Jihad as `Legitimate Tenet of Islam'
May 27, 2010 Obama top counterterrorism adviser on Wednesday called
jihad a "legitimate tenet of Islam," arguing that the term "jihadists" should
not be used to describe America `s enemies.
During a speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, John
Brennan described violent extremists as victims of "political, economic and
social forces," but said that those plotting
attacks on the United States should
not be described in "religious terms."
He repeated the administration argument that the enemy is not "terrorism,"
because terrorism is a "tactic," and not terror, because terror is a "state of
mind"though Brennan's title, deputy national security adviser for
counterterrorism and homeland
security, includes the word "terrorism" in it. But
then Brennan said that the word "jihad" should not be applied either.
"Nor do we describe our enemy as `jihadists' or `Islamists' because jihad is a
holy struggle, a legitimate tenet of Islam, meaning to purify oneself or one's
community, and there is nothing holy or legitimate or Islamic about murdering
innocent men, women and children," Brennan
The technical, broadest definition of jihad is a "struggle" in the name of Islam
and the term does not connote "holy war" for all Muslims. However, jihad
frequently connotes images of military combat or warfare, and some of the
world's most wanted terrorists including Usama bin Laden commonly use the word
to call for war against the West.
Brennan defined the enemy as members of
bin Laden's Al Qaeda network and "its
But Brennan argued that it would be "counterproductive" for the United States to
use the term, as it would "play into the false perception" that the "murderers"
leading war against the West are doing so in the name of a "holy cause."
"Moreover, describing our enemy in religious terms would lend credence to the
lie propagated by Al Qaeda and its affiliates to justify terrorismthat the
United States is somehow at war against Islam," he said.
The comment comes after Brennan, in a February speech in which he described his
respect for the tolerance and devotion
of Middle Eastern nations, referred to
Jerusalem on first reference by its Arabic name, Al-Quds.
"In all my travels the city I have come to love most is al-Quds, Jerusalem ,
where three great faiths come together," Brennan said at an event co-sponsored
by the White House Office of Public Engagement and the Islamic Center at
York University and the Islamic Law Students Association at NYU
BP Claims Iraq Oil could Rival Saudi Arabia
By Robin Pagnamenta
Posted on Jan. 28, 2010
From British Times
Iraqi oil production could rival that of Saudi Arabia by 2020, according to the
chief executive of BP.
Tony Hayward told an audience at the World Economic Forum in Davos that within a
decade Iraqi oil production could
quadruple to 10 million barrels a day from 2.5
million barrels at present.
"The resources there are relatively easy to bring onstream and there is no
reason to believe that Iraq can't be producing 10 million
barrels per day by
2020 or so."
In 2008, Saudi Arabia was producing about 10 million barrels a day but has
reduced that output.
BP is engaged in a partnership with CNPC, of China , to co-develop the Rumaila
Basra , one of the biggest in the world.
Mr Hayward said that BP planned to boost production from Rumaila from 1 million
to 3 million barrels a day.
However, he cautioned that there were significant obstacles to overcome in the
development of the Iraqi oil industry, which was shattered by years of war and
He said: "The realities of the challenges of execution on the ground and
need to build capability on the ground mean things will happen a little slower
than all of us are perhaps planning for today.
"If all of us who are participating there are reasonably successful in
delivering on the commitments we have made, it is quite likely we will see Iraq
increase its production to perhaps around 10 million barrels per day within
Iraq sits on at least 115 billion barrels of proven oil reserves, the world's
third-largest behind Saudi Arabia and Canada .
Could Secret Saudi Spill Hold Fix for Gulf Slick?Chanan Tigay
(May 14 2010) -- Even as proposals pour in for cleaning up the Gulf of Mexico
oil spill, one veteran of a massive (and secret) crude spill in the Persian
says he has a tried-and-true solution.
Now if only the people who could make it happen would return his calls.
"No one's listening," says Nick Pozzi, who was an engineer with Saudi Aramco in
the Middle East when he says an accident there in 1993 generated a spill far
larger than anything the United
States has ever seen.
Eric Gay, AP
A shrimp boat collects oil with booms in the waters of Chandeleur Sound , La. ,
on May 5. An engineer who witnessed a crude spill in the Persian Gulf in 1993
says BP should use a fleet of empty supertankers to suck crude off the water's
According to Pozzi, that mishap, kept under wraps for close to two decades and
first reported by Esquire, dumped nearly 800 million gallons of oil into the
Persian Gulf , which would make it more than 70 times the size of the Exxon
But remarkably, by employing a fleet of empty supertankers to suck crude off the
water's surface, Pozzi's team was not only able to clean up the spill, but also
salvage 85 percent of the oil, he says.
"We took [the oil] out of the water so it would save the environment off the
Arabian Gulf , and then we
put it into tanks until we could figure out how to
clean it," he told AOL News.
While BP, the oil giant at the center of the recent accident, works to stanch
the leak from the sunken Deepwater Horizon rig, Pozzi insists the company should
be following his lead.
AOL News could not independently verify Pozzi's account, but one former Aramco
employee did acknowledge that there was a large
spill in the region in the early
`90s, and that Aramco had used tankers to clean up earlier oil slicks.
Pozzi, now retired, spent 17 years of his career in Saudi Arabia , part of it as
a manager in Aramco's technical support and maintenance division.
Shortly after the April 22 sinking of the Deepwater Horizon, he and a friend,
Houston attorney Jon King (with whom Pozzi recently launched a business
Wow Environmental Solutions), traveled to Houma , La. , headquarters for BP's
response center, to offer up the lessons he'd learned working in the Persian
since, he says, the pair's been stonewalled.
When he called the manager at BP in charge of the cleanup effort, Pozzi says he
was told "don't bother me."
"He said, `Follow procedures,' " Pozzi recalls. "He said, `I'm taking names and
I'm going to sue you.' "
Next, Pozzi and King phoned the president of BP and left a message with his
secretary. An hour later, though,
they received a call from "from a young lady
in BP headquarters" who asked how she might assist them. They told her about
their planbut have received no further contact.
Then, early this week, the duo say they spoke with Capt. Ed Stanton, the Coast
Guard commander overseeing a length of the affected coastline. Stanton asked for
a written proposal. That's the last Pozzi and King heard from him.
"It sounds so simple that they turn around and say, `That was years ago. We've
got modern technology now,' " Pozzi says. "But their modern technology isn't
working too well."
Last week BP lowered a concrete-and-steel containment dome into the gulf in a
highly chronicled effort to cap the underwater leak, only to have to
abort that effort.
Meantime, Saudia Arabia is sitting on the world's largest fleet of supertankers.
Pozzi suggests that the U.S. government tell the Saudis: " `Hey, we helped you
out, can you help us out? Lend us some supertankers.' For a little payback for
helping them out during the Iraqi invasion of
Moreover, he says, "there are many, many, many other countries that have oil
tankers" that, for a price, could be deployed off Louisiana .
Stephen Reilly, CEO of Slickbar, a leading oil spill equipment and vessels
manufacturer, says that while he's unfamiliar with supertankers being used in
this way, Pozzi's proposal could well work.
"Any containment area or barge or
tanker can be used for reception, and they
certainly have the pumping system on board," Reilly says. "So in terms of using
assets like that to pump stuff into tanks, by all means."
Pozzi speculates that the reluctance on the part of those he's contacted comes
down to one word: cash. When oil tankers are taken out of service for
project like this, they stop earning money for their owners.
BP, Pozzi says, should "step up to the plate" and offer to pay anyone willing to
lend a tanker whatever they would lose in profits by dispatching one of their
ships to the gulf region.
BP on Thursday said the cost of battling the spill has reached nearly $450
Calls to BP and Stanton were not immediately returned. The BP press line voice
mail message asks anyone offering "technical solutions" to dial another number
to "most efficiently" address the suggestion.
During his years with Aramco, Pozzi says, he took a number of approaches to
cleaning oil spills, from dumping flour into the sea and hauling out the
resultant tar gobs to dropping hay into the slicks and burning
The 1993 Persian Gulf spill, Pozzi says, began when Aramco was loading a tanker
and "the umbilical cord got away." Oil started spewing from the pumps. Panicked,
a line of tankers waiting to be filled began hightailing away from the flammable
spray. Massive ships maneuvered in tight quarters. It was chaos.
Because of a confidentiality agreement with Aramco, Pozzi won't describe exactly
what happened next, except to say that "there were [then] other mishaps causing
other oil to spill."
"The order of magnitude rose exponentially due to the panic level," he says.
The tankers worked for the next six months skimming oil off the water's surface
and pumping it into tanks for cleaning. Cleanup efforts
went on for several
years after that. Still, that such an enormous slick could be successfully
cleaned ought to point the way this time around, Pozzi says.
"My guys have worked on a lot of oil spills, and back in the late `80s and early
`90s we figured out the best way to clean up oil through lessons learned," he
says. "This is what we think they need to do. We know it works."
as King puts it: "We just want them to get off their ass and use multiple
solutions to clean this crap."
U.S. Is a Top Villain in Pakistan `s Conspiracy Talk
May 25, 2010
By SABRINA TAVERNISE
ISLAMABAD , Pakistan Americans may think that the failed Times Square bomb was
planted by a man named Faisal Shahzad. But the view in the Supreme Court Bar
Association here in Pakistan `s capital is that the culprit was an American
No one seems to know its name, but everyone has an opinion about it. It is
powerful and shadowy, and seems to control just about everything in the
government, including President Obama.
"They have planted this
character Faisal Shahzad to implement their script,"
said Hashmat Ali Habib, a lawyer and a member of the bar association.
Who are they?
"You must know, you are from America ," he said smiling. "My advice for the
American nation is, get free of these think tanks."
Conspiracy theory is a national sport in
Pakistan , where the main players the
United States, India and Israel change positions depending on the ebb and flow
of history. Since 2001, the United States has taken center stage, looming so
Pakistan `s collective imagination that it sometimes seems to be
responsible for everything that goes wrong here.
"When the water stops running from the tap, people blame America ," said Shaista
Sirajuddin, an English professor in Lahore .
The problem is more than a peculiar domestic phenomenon for
Pakistan . It has
grown into a narrative of national victimhood that is a nearly impenetrable
barrier to any candid discussion of the problems here. In turn, it is one of the
principal obstacles for the United States in its effort to build a stronger
alliance with a country to which it gives more than a billion dollars a year in
It does not help that no part of the Pakistani state
either the weak civilian
government or the powerful military is willing to risk publicly owning that
One result is that nearly all of American policy toward Pakistan is conducted in
secret, a fact that serves only to
further feed conspiracies. American military
leaders slip quietly in and out of the capital; the Pentagon uses networks of
private spies; and the main tool of American policy here, the drone program, is
not even publicly acknowledged to exist.
"The linchpin of U.S. relations is security, and it's not talked about in
public," said Adnan Rehmat, a
media analyst in Islamabad .
The empty public space fills instead with hard-line pundits and loud Islamic
political parties, all projected into Pakistani living rooms by the rambunctious
new electronic media, dozens of satellite television networks that weave a
black-and-white, prime-time narrative in which the United States is the central
"People want simple explanations, like evil
America , Zionist-Hindu alliance,"
said a Pakistani diplomat, who asked not to be named because of the delicate
nature of the topic. "It's gone really deep into the national psyche now."
One of those pundits is Zaid Hamid, a fast-talking, right-wing television
personality who rose to fame on one of Pakistan `s 90 new private television
He uses Google searches to support his
theory that India , Israel and the United
States through their intelligence agencies and the company formerly known as
Blackwater are conspiring to destroy
For Mr. Hamid, the case of Mr. Shahzad is one piece of a larger puzzle being
assembled to pressure Pakistan . Why, otherwise, the strange inconsistencies,
like the bomb's not exploding? "If you connect the dots, you have a pretty
exciting story," he said.
But the media are only part of the problem. Only a third of Pakistan `s
population has access to satellite channels, Mr.
Rehmat said, and equally
powerful are Islamic groups active at the grass roots of Pakistani society.
Though Pakistan was created as a haven for Muslims, it was secular at first, and
did not harden into an Islamic state on paper until 1949.
Intellectuals point to
the moment as a kind of original sin, when Islam became embedded in the
country's democratic blueprint, handing immense power to Islamic hard-liners,
who could claim despite their small numbers to be the true guardians of the
Together with military and political leaders, these groups wield Islamic slogans
for personal gain, further shutting down
"We're in this mess because political forces evoke Islam to further their own
interests," said Aasim Sajjad, an assistant professor of political economy at
Quaid-i-Azam University in Islamabad .
Pakistan have a strong streak of political Islam. Mr. Habib, who has
had militants as clients, argues that Al Qaeda is an American invention. Their
pronouncements are infused with anti-Semitism, standard for Islamic groups in
"The lobbies are the Jews, maybe some Indians, working in the inner core of the
American administration," said Muhammad
Ikram Chaudhry, vice president of the
Liberals on Pakistan `s beleaguered left see the xenophobic patriotism and
conspiracy theories as a defense mechanism that deflects all responsibility for
society's problems and protects against a reality that is too painful to face.
"It's deny, deny, deny," said Nadeem F. Paracha, a
columnist for Dawn, an
English-language daily. "It's become second nature, like an instinct."
Mr. Paracha argues that the denial is dangerous because it hobbles any form of
public conversation for example, about Mr. Shahzad's upper-class background
leaving society unequipped to find remedies for its problems. "We've started to
believe our own lies," he said.
For those on
the left, that view obscures an increasingly disappointing history.
For 62 years, Pakistan has lurched from one self-serving government to the next,
with little thought given to education or the economy, said Pervez Hoodbhoy, a
physics professor at Quaid-i-Azam University . Now Pakistan is dependent
West to pay its bills, a vulnerable position that breeds resentment.
"We acknowledge to ourselves privately that Pakistan is a client state of the
U.S. ," Mr. Hoodbhoy said. "But on the other hand, the U.S. is acting against
Muslim interests globally. A sort of self-loathing came about."
There are very real reasons for Pakistanis to be skeptical of the United States
. It encouraged and financed jihadis waging a religious war against the
Soviets in the 1980s, while supporting the military autocrat Mohammed Zia
ul-Haq, who seeded Pakistan 's education
system with Islamists.
But Mr. Hamid is more interested in the larger plot, like the secret ownership
of the Federal Reserve, which he found on the Internet. After three years of
fame, his star seems to be falling. This month his show was canceled, and he has
had to rely on Facebook and audio CDs to make his points. But it is not the end
of the conspiracy.
"Someone else will be front row very
soon," said Manan Ahmed, a professor of
Pakistani history. "It is the mood of the country at the moment."
Society names Prince Turki bin Abdullah Al-Saud honorary Board member
Jul 26, 2008 ... Prince Turki expressed his keen interest and support for
society and shared his views on the important role that Saudi Aramco technical
Synchronicity Coincidences Something More You Be The
First some definitions. The word Taliban means students. The word Madrassas
means schools. Saudi Arabia has long funded Islamic Fundamentalist Wahabi
oriented Madrassas around the world and in the United States itself.
The Saudis funded the Pakistani Madrassas (Schools) which trained the
"Roumanian-born Paul Deac (was) a vociferous supporter of Nasser and a
About black Americans. On one occasion his front group ran a full-page
advertisement `attacking federal plans to recruit more Negroes for defense jobs'
under the headline `Is Your Job Next?' Deac himself said `We spend millions and
the Negroes get everything and we get nothing.' Nothing except
from Texaco, that
is, which was one of the partners in Aramco's holdings in Saudi Arabia that
funded Deac's group."source: http://www.stargods.org/AngelsOfFeather.html
"Saudi Aramco is the state-owned national oil company of Saudi Arabia . It is
oil corporation in the world."
Pak envoy, Aramco discuss Pak-Saudi oil, gas cooperation
May 12th 2010 Posted In Pakistan News Tags: Aramco, Discuss, Envoy, Pak
JEDDAH, May 12 Ambassador of
Pakistan , Umar Khan Alisherzai Wednesday called
on Khalid Abdul Aziz Al Falih, President and the Chief Executive Officer of the
Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco) in Dhahran and discussed avenues of
cooperation between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia in the field of gas and petroleum
sector. The ambassador said that a great potential for cooperation between
two fraternal countries exits in the field of oil and gas sector, which needed
to be materialized for the benefit of the people of Pakistan and Saudi Arabia .
He underlined the need for enhanced cooperation in training facilities,
internship and exchange of delegations in the oil and gas sectors of the two
The chief executive assured the ambassador of all possible cooperation in
filed of petroleum and gas.
The ambassador was given a detailed briefing about the Saudi Aramco by the
senior officials that was followed by a visit of the installation of the company
He also invited the president
and chief executive of the Saudi Aramco on behalf
of Pakistan `s Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources, Naveed Qamar to
visit Pakistan which was accepted.
Later, the President of Saudi Aramco hosted a luncheon in honour of the
Ambassador. The Commercial Attache of the Pakistan Embassy in the Kingdom was
also present in the meeting.
NYC Suspect, Convicted Terrorist Have
AURORA, Colo. (May 4) -- Authorities say there is no immediate connection
between recently arrested terror suspect Faisal Shahzad and convicted
Najibullah Zazi, even though both men have ties to the greater Denver area.
The woman identified as Shahzad's wife, Huma Asif Mian, attended the University
of Colorado in Boulder from 2000 to 2004. She received a degree in business with
an emphasis on accounting, according to university spokesman Bronson Hilliard.
Orkut.com / AP
The suspect in Saturday's failed car bombing of
Times Square , Faisal Shahzad,
left, and convicted terrorist Najibullah Zazi both have links to the greater
Mian lived on campus in student housing, spending the last two years in family
housing with two women believed to be her sisters, Hilliard said. He did not
know if Mian was married when she was a student, and said there did not appear
to be anything remarkable about her time at the university.
The FBI says Mian then moved to Connecticut , where she and Shahzad owned a home
in Shelton that is now in
Seeking a Pakistani Connection
What Did Shahzad's Wife Know?
Arrest Brings Pakistani Terror to Fore
Video Footage Proves Key in Case
Shahzad's Father Anguished
Shahzad's Pakistan Past
Shahzad Met Top Taliban Leader?
Grid: 30 Years of Terror Incidents
The Denver Post identified Mian's father as Mohammad Asif Mian. He lives in
Aurora , a suburb east of
Denver , according to Arapahoe County assessor and
phone records. Mr. Mian could not be reached for comment, as the home's phone
had been disconnected.
Zazi, who pleaded guilty to charges stemming from a plot to set off bombs in the
New York City subway, was arrested at his home in
Aurora in 2009.
Asked if they were looking into whether Shahzad had lived in Colorado , FBI
spokesman Dave Joly in Denver said he did not believe so. Joly and an FBI
spokesman in New York said they were not aware of any direct link between
Apparent Links Found Between Times Square Suspect, NYC Subway Bomber
Joshua Rhett Miller
May 04, 2010
The accused Times Square bomber appears to have links to the same town in
Colorado where convicted terrorist Najibullah Zazi lived prior to coming to New
City and attempting a foiled subway attack, Fox News has learned.
The accused Times Square bomber appears to have links to the same town in
Colorado where convicted terrorist Najibullah Zazi lived prior to coming to New
York City and attempting a foiled subway attack, Fox News has learned.
Records obtained by Fox News show Huma Asif Mian, Faisal Shahzad's wife, has
relatives listed at various addresses in Colorado . The addresses include
apartment leases and a property deed in Aurora , Colo. , and an apartment
in Golden, Colo. , that were held on-and-off from 2003 to March of this year.
A person who answered the phone at the Golden address listed in the records
refused to answer questions on Tuesday and instead asked a series of questions
about how Fox News obtained the address, phone number and other information
related to the case.
Zazi, the would-be subway bomber, returned to the U.S. from
receiving bomb training and lived in Aurora from January 2009 to July 31, 2009.
He then traveled to New York City , according to the information contained in
his indictment, where he attempted the failed subway bombing. He and
relatives had lived in an apartment off Smoky Hill Road in Aurora , about seven
miles from the address of an apartment associated with Shahzad's wife.
Attorney General Eric Holder, asked if there is any link between Shahzad and
Zazi, said at a press conference Tuesday afternoon: "No comment on that. I don't
have any basis to believe at least at this point that there's any connection
between the two."
A University of Colorado spokesman told the Denver Post Asif Mian started
attending the school in August of 2000 and received a degree in accounting in
the spring of 2004.
A man who neighbors told
the Post is her father lived in the Deer Pointe
neighborhood of Aurora until a few years aog.
"They were good neighbors," Johnny Wright, told the newspaper. "They were just
friendly neighbors. We speak to one another. They were nice."
Zazi, a 25-year-old Afghan, pleaded guilty in federal court in February to
conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction,
conspiracy to commit murder and
providing material support to a terror group, Al Qaeda. He faces a life term at
his sentencing next month.
Mian, 28, is listed along with Shahzad, 30, as co-owners of a home in Shelton ,
Conn. Attempts to reach Mian were unsuccessful on Tuesday. The foreclosure case is
pending in Milford Superior Court. Records indicate Shahzad and Mian did not
have an attorney for the
Court and public records show both Zazi and Shahzad settled in the New York
metropolitan area when they arrived in the United States , and spent several
months in Pakistan before returning to the New York area.
Shahzad, who became a
U.S. citizen in April 2009, spent five months in Pakistan
before he returned in February, according to reports and law enforcement
officials who spoke on condition of anonymity. On Saturday, federal officials
say, he improvised a car bomb, lit a makeshift fuse and abandoned it in the
heart of Times Square , where it failed to explode.
Neighbors on Tuesday described Shahzad as a reclusive man who said he worked on
Wall Street. Brenda Thurman, 37,
"He was a little bit strange," "He didn't like to come out during
Shahzad, who reportedly has family ties to the southern port city of Karachi ,
Pakistan, was not known to U.S. intelligence sources prior to
bombing, and there is no derogatory information about him in various government
databases, a law enforcement official said on condition of anonymity.
Shahzad was born in June 1979 in Karachi , Pakistan . He left Pakistan at an
unknown date for the United States and returned to Pakistan between July and
August 2009, Pakistani police and intelligence officials told the Wall Street
He was granted an F-1 student visa in December 1998 and later attended the
University of Bridgeport , where he earned a bachelor's degree in computer
applications in 2000 and later graduated with an MBA in the summer of 2005,
spokeswoman A website for alumni of Sharia College at Minhaj University in Lahore , Pakistan
, listed a profile for a "Faisal Shahzad" of Pakistani descent.
According to the profile, Shahzad attended the Board of Intermediate &
Education in Lahore in 1999, following by the University of the Punjab , where
he concentrated on Islamic studies, Arabic and Persian. He later attended the
Minhaj University in Lahore . Messages seeking comment from Minhaj
were not immediately returned.
Shahzad was later granted an H1-B visa for skilled workers in April 2002 and
stayed in the United States for three years on that visa, the Journal reports.
It's unclear what company sponsored the visa, which is used to attract workers
with specialty occupation like high
On Oct. 20, 2008, Shahzad reported his marriage to a woman he identified as
Mian. That marriage granted Shahzad the right to become a naturalized citizen on
April 17, 2009.
Law enforcement officials do not have complete details of Shahzad's travels
following his naturalization, the Journal reports, but one trip stands out:
Shahzad left New York on June 2, 2009, on an Emirates
flight to Dubai ,
returning to the U.S. on Feb. 3, 2010, on another Emirates flight from Dubai .
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Source: Faisal Shahzad Had Bigger Targets
Updated: Monday, 17 May 2010, 11:08 PM
Published : Monday, 17 May 2010, 11:07 PM EDT
Reported by LINDA SCHMIDT and CHARLES LEAF
MYFOXNY.COM EXCLUSIVE - Fox 5 has exclusive details on the Times Square bomber
case suspect Faisal Shahzad plotted his potentially deadly mission as he
assembled his four-wheel arsenal.
A source close to
this investigation tells Fox 5 exclusively that Shahzad
allegedly had bigger, more destructive plansother targets in our area. The
source says that Shahzad has told interrogators that if the Times Square bombing
was successful, that he had four other locations to possibly attack.
If the bomb inside the pathfinder in Times Square went off as planned, a source
fox 5 that Faisal Shahzad says he was taking aim at four other
high-profile targets: Rockefeller center, Grand Central terminal, the world
financial center which is across from ground zero, and Connecticut-based defense
The company manufacturers helicopters for the u.s. Military, including the black
hawk. Headquartered in
Stratford , Sikorsky also has facilities in Shelton and
Bridgeport the same two cities where Shahzad has lived. A source tells fox 5
that Shahzad says he had familiarized himself with all of these notable targets.
Security expert Michael Balboni is a former homeland security adviser for New
York State . He says casing out numerous locations is standard.
"They want to maximize the exposure of the attack," Balboni says. "So they want
to pick things that are iconic that perhaps have a lot of people so they can
increase the body count. Anything to make it as dramatic as possible."
A source also says Shahzad picked out two datesSaturday, May 1, the date of the
attempted bombing, and an alternate Saturday, May 8. We're told he picked those
dates and the time of 6:30 pm for the attack after checking out live streaming
video of ` Times Square ` online and he determined that 6:30 pm on Saturdays is
when Times Square is the most crowded.
A source also tells fox 5 that Shahzad slowly bought the fireworks, fertilizer
and pathfinder over a period of time because his Pakistani connections at the
bomb-making training camp told him to do this so it wouldn't raise any
We already know the government complaint against Shahzad says he bought the
green pathfinder on the Craigslist Web site. Now, Fox 5 has also learned from
source that Shahzad bought another vehicle through Craigslista black Isuzu
rodeoand he bought it from mechanic and race car driver Alain Chebeir. He owns
a garage in Stratford , Connecticut . His garage services super luxury cars,
like Porsches and Lamborghinis. Sources tell Fox 5 Chebeir was questioned by the
FBI, and one of
those sources says he was cleared and he is not a suspect.
But the source says he did sell Shahzad the black Isuzu rodeo.
We know Shahzad had access to three cars: the green Pathfinder that
investigators say he rigged to blow up here in Times Square , the white Isuzu
Trooper that was left at JFK Airport , and the black Isuzu Rodeo seen on
surveillance footage at a Pennsylvania fireworks store.
Charles Leaf tracked down the man who sources say sold that SUV to Shahzad and
gone to his Connecticut business.
His name is Alain Chebeir. And a source tells us he advertised the 1998 black
Isuzu Rodeo on Craigslist and sold it to Faisal Shahzad, who paid $2,800 cash.
"Any vehicle that he owned is of interest," says McCann. "And what he did with
any vehicles he owned. What locations he visited and who was in the car."
Sources say Shahazd came to pick it the black Isuzu at Alain Chebeir's
nondescript garage in Statford , Connecticut . It is a
place filled with fancy
expensive luxury sports cars, some worth more than $300,000.
A source tells us Shahzad walked from his home in Bridgeport to get here. We
drove the routeit's about 2-1/2 miles.
A law enforcement source tells us Chebeir, who is not a suspect, customizes race
cars and luxury vehicles. But at some point he acquired a beat-up 1998 black
Isuzu, then swapped out the
engine as a favor to a friend, replacing it with
another engine before selling the SUV on Craigslist.
The buyer: Faisal Shahzad.
"Looking at Craigslist, I'm sure the investigators are going to look at look at
his computer records and see what else he bought on Craigslist," McCann says.
Alan Chebeir, sources say, is in the clear. Our law enforcement source tells us
Chebeir was questioned
by the FBI and is
not considered a suspect.
We reached out to Chebeir, and after repeated requests for an interview he
responded with an email saying: "I have nothing to contribute to your story
other than the facts that you already have; I am contacting my attorney to
discuss my legal rights."
We know according to the federal complaint against Shahzad that he planned to
use fireworks as
The owner of a Pennsylvania fireworks store released surveillance video showing
a black Isuzu pulling up. Shahzad is seen entering the store on March 8 and
The federal complaint says he also drove the black Isuzu on April 24 to buy the
which he bought on Craigslist and the FBI says he rigged with a car bomb.
So what happened to the black Isuzu?
A source tells us that in late April Shahzad sold it back to Alain Chebeir for
$2,000 after the SUV broke down while Shahzad was driving to Massachusetts , a
place of interest to the FBI.
Just last week the feds executed raids in the Boston area, picking up two people
for questioning in connection with financing Shahzad.
Details Emerge in Al Qaeda Plot on NYC Subway System
A fourth suspect in
the alleged plot to blow up New York City subways has
reportedly revealed shocking details about the plan involving terror suspect
Najibullah Zazi, MyFoxNY.com reported.
Subway tunnel connecting the Bowling Green station in Manhattan to the Borough
Hall station in
Brooklyn on the 4 train line is pictured in New York .
A fourth suspect in the alleged plot to blow up New York City subways has
reportedly revealed shocking details about the plan involving Najibullah Zazi,
The Queens native and two high school friends were planning to detonate
explosives attached to their bodies at Grand Central and Times Square stations
hour, according to the Associated Press.
The AP reports that the fourth suspect was arrested in Pakistan and is likely to
be extradited to Brooklyn .
The group had supposedly picked September 14, 15 or 16 as the attack date.
In February, Zazi pleaded guilty in U.S. federal court to a plot to blow up New
York'ssubway system last year and to links with al Qaeda.
Zazi pleaded guilty to three
charges: conspiracy to use weapons of mass
destruction, conspiracy to commit murder in a foreign country, and providing
material support to the al Qaeda extremist network.
He told the federal court in Brooklyn that he had planned to blow up New York
targets including the underground train system and that he wanted to "conduct
mortal operations in the subway line."
Zazi, 24, said he was
ready to "sacrifice myself" in order "to draw the
attention to what the United States is doing in
He faces maximum sentences of life in prison for the first two charges and 15
years for the third.
However, his plea appears to be part of a bargain in which he could receive a
more lenient sentence in return for cooperating with investigators.
Zazi was arrested September 20 in
Denver , where he worked as an airport shuttle
Prosecutors say he carried bomb-making instructions in a laptop and had been
shopping for large quantities of chemicals found in beauty products that could
have been the ingredients for explosives.
They also say he received explosives training in Peshawar ,
Pakistan , a hotbed
of al Qaeda activity.
According to prosecutors, Zazi went to New York to prepare the alleged bombing
campaign, using weapons of "mass destruction," but left after receiving a
tip-off that he was being (observed) by federal agents.
Iraq Arrests Al-Qaeda Terrorist in Plot to Blow Up World Cup
Published: 05/18/10, 11:12 AM / Last Update: 05/18/10, 11:32 AM
by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
Follow Israel news
Iraqi security forces have arrested a former Saudi colonel who plotted with
Al-Qaeda's number two terrorist to blow up the World Cup in South Africa next
The 30-year-old suspect, Abdullah Azam Saleh al-Qahtani, 30, entered Iraq from
Saudi Arabia in 2004 and was in charge of the terrorist network's security in
Baghdad . He was in contact with Al-Qaeda's number two terrorist, Ayman
al-Zawahiri, in a plot to attack the World Cup, which begins June 11 and
features a match between England and the United States the following day.
Al-Qaeda earlier this year threatened that hundreds of
spectators at the
championship match would be killed.
South African police said they were not told of the arrest but that they have
made necessary security precautions for the World Cup. However, South African
police commissioner Bheki Cele that South African police had investigated and
decided a threat by Al Shaba'ab, an Al-Qaeda offshoot, was not credible.
Professor Hussein Solomon, head of the
International Institute for Islamic
Studies at Pretoria University , told The Citizen newspaper in Johannesburg on
May 13 that Al-Qaeda has "billions of people (looking at) televisions and they will
have no limit of targets. The only way to take on Al-Qaeda is an operation that
needs to be driven by intelligence, and our intelligence
services have been
Meanwhile, New York authorities have indicted a second man for allegedly helping
Al-Qaeda with computer systems and financial donations. Another suspect was
previously arrested on the same charges. (IsraelNationalNews.com)
" Saudi Arabia recognizes the
In September 1996, the Taliban gained control of the Afghan city of Kabul . The
following year, Saudi Arabia became one of only three countries to establish
diplomatic relations with the Taliban. The Taliban are followers of the Deobandi
school of Islam , an extreme form of the faith closely related to Wahhabism."
"Her Arab background hasn't
hurt, either. In February of last year, A-Baki
hosted Yas-sir Arafat at her official residence when the Palestinian leader was
"Yasser Arafat praised the "warm welcome" he received when he signed the guest
book in 1992."
Columbia Dean Admits Taking Saudi Junket
By ALEC MAGNET, Staff Reporter of the Sun | January 11, 2006
Months before a Columbia University dean was named to a special committee
convened to investigate student complaints about professors' hostility to Israel
, the dean took a trip to Saudi Arabia that she acknowledges was "largely"
for by Saudi Aramco, the kingdom-owned oil company.
The dean, Lisa Anderson of Columbia `s School of International and Public
Affairs, was one of five members of the committee named in December 2004. The
committee for the most part cleared the accused scholars of blame, prompting
critics to describe their report as a whitewash.
The March 2004 junket to Saudi Arabia is described in
glowing terms on a Web
site for former Saudi Aramco employees that details the "delightful lunch"
enjoyed by the Columbia delegation, as well as a "wonderful dinner" during which
"guests (looked at) the sunset over the sand dunes from the
The tour, which the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations helped organize,
took a total of 10 Columbia faculty members and scholars to Riyadh , Dharan, and
other parts of Saudi Arabia to tour facilities and meet with officials of the
Ms. Anderson's participation drew criticism yesterday from people familiar with
the developments at Columbia .
"Saudi money is borderline corruption," said a research associate at the Moshe
Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies at Tel Aviv
Martin Kramer, who has been a vocal critic of Middle Eastern studies in America
Mr. Kramer said Western academics are constantly vying for Saudi money to fund
their departments, whose message more often than not is that American support
for Israel is the problem in the Middle East .
Mr. Kramer said he wonders if Ms. Anderson's trip was part of an effort to raise
more funds from the Saudis.
Prince Alwaleed bin Talal bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, who recently gave $20 million
gifts to Georgetown and Harvard
Universities , told the New York Times Magazine
earlier this month that several other Ivy League universities had applied for
similar gifts, but that he had turned them down. In the interview, the prince
declined to name the schools, saying: "I'd rather not embarrass them."
Mr. Kramer said he wonders whether Columbia might have been one of those
schools, adding that it "has a record of soliciting Arab donors." He cited
Columbia `s admission that among the donors of the $2.1 million Edward Said
chair were the United Arab Emirates , which gave $200,000, and the Olayan
Charitable Trust, a charity associated with a Saudi-based multinational
corporation, the Olayan Group.
The New York Sun in March reported that Saudi Aramco since 2002 had given annual
grants of $15,000 for
unspecified outreach activities to Columbia University `s
Middle East Institute.
"I think it's pretty suspicious that the dean of SIPA ... would go tour Saudi
Aramco facilities," a junior at Columbia College , Bari Weiss, said. She, too,
wondered whether Columbia might have tried to secure a donation from Prince
Alwaleed and failed, "fortunately for the school's ethical standards, but
unfortunately for Lisa Anderson."
Ms. Weiss brought one
of the complaints investigated by the committee.
Ms. Anderson said in an e-mail message that the trip was meant "to familiarize
some of the faculty of our then new Center on Energy, Marine Transportation and
Public Policy with the operations of Saudi Aramco." She added that she was
unable to stay for the entire trip, but "found the visit very instructive."
Ms. Anderson added that the trip was not out of the ordinary. "Our
faculty often travel throughout the world on projects funded wholly or in part
by other organizations, and this was a case in point," she said.
She said she's gone on other trips funded by the State Department, Tel Aviv
University , and the Bertelsmann Foundation.
She did not respond to further requests for comment yesterday.
Another member of the tour group, Michael Heller, a
professor of property law at
Columbia `s law school, said the trip granted a balanced view of Saudi Arabia
and had nothing to do with the committee to investigate bias charges.
"What I came away with was a much more subtle appreciation for the complexity of
society," he said.
Other members of the tour group, Jonathan Fallet, David Nissen, Gary Sick, and
Jean-Francois Seznek, declined to comment. Hurst Groves did not return multiple
voice messages left yesterday and on Monday. David Cohen, David Long, and
Shirley Neff could not be reached.
Representatives of Saudi Aramco and of the National Council on U.S.-Arab
Relations did not respond to
requests for comment.
Complaints of anti-Israel intimidation at Columbia continue to surface.
A professional violinist, Anat Malkin, in December told the Israeli newspaper
Ha'aretz that she dropped out of her graduate program in the university's Middle
Eastern studies department because she did not want to endure bullying from
biased, anti-Israel professors.
"In one class the lecturer
cited an article about how the Israelis were raping
Palestinian women in the prisons and then sending them back to the territories.
I raised my hand and said that no friend of mine had raped a Palestinian, and he
started to shout at me," she told Ha'aretz.
Columbia failed for years to comply with federal law requiring the disclosure of
gifts from overseas. Among the gifts it failed to disclose to the
government in 2003, until The New York Sun reported the university's failure to
comply, was a $250,000 gift from an unnamed Saudi individual for "social science
"Professor Rashid Khalidi, Walid's younger cousin, was born in New York and
teaches modern Middle East history at the University of Chicago , where he also
directs the Center for Middle Eastern Studies. As a historian and scholar with
an independent voice, he gained access to PLO chairman Yassir Arafat's
while researching material for his book Under Siege: PLO Decisionmaking During
the 1982 War. He is a member of the Palestinian Advisory Committee to the
talks. Like Walid, he is an American citizen, but his roots in Jerusalem go very
deep. It is Rashid who is working on the private papers of the Khalidi Library.
Today in the final stages of renovation, the library remains basically
unchanged, comprising the reading room, the refurbished attic where the
manuscripts will be shelved, the courtyardnow covered by a
roofand a vaulted chamber across the courtyard. Architects Rabih al-Masri and
Jamal al-Araj are responsible for the design and execution of the renovationbut
it could not have taken place without the unrelenting diligence of Haifa
Khalidi, a young woman deputizing for her brother Kamel, a petroleum engineer
Amman , as the current mutawalli, or guardian, of the Khalidi family
The library is maintained by grants, family donations and private contributions.
The Friends of The Khalidi Library, a non-profit organization registered in
Massachusetts , acts as a conduit for this support. The government of the
generously sponsored the conservation of the manuscripts, the
cataloguing of the collection and the refurbishing of the Library itself; a
smaller grant from UNESCO contributed to the installation of climate-control
devices to combat humidity.
The monumental task of conservation, led by Tony
Bish of the Wellcome Institute
in London , will make the library's manuscript treasures available for research.
Each manuscript must be taken apart, examined, cleaned of surface debris,
treated page by page and then rebound. To date, 350 of the more badly damaged
manuscripts have been stored in tailor-made acid-free boxes designed to protect
them from insects, dust and
the effects of light. The time-consuming task will
not be completed until after 1995.
There are now plans to restore a neighboring Mamluk building, with a beautiful
dome, as an annex to the Khalidi Library. This structure would house all the
printed materials. Its 10 rooms could also allow display of some of the
manuscripts and documents, and could accommodate visiting scholars. Thus the
library will continue to provide future generations with an incomparable
literary and historical resource.
The Khalidi family's eponym is said to be the brilliant seventh-century military
commander Khalid ibn al-Walid, victor over the Byzantine forces, whose courage
and clever military tactics earned him the title "the Unsheathed Sword of God"
World, November-December 1991). If true, the association seems to
miss the point. The Khalidi legacy, as evidenced by the library, lies not with
the sword but with the pen.
Jocelyn M. Ajami is a painter and independent producer in Boston . Her video
"Jihad," on the Qur'anic meaning of the term, was published by Carousel Film and
New York .
This article appeared on pages 2-9 of the November/December 1993 print edition
of Saudi Aramco World. "
Victor Davis Hanson on Israel
Some strong supporters of both Obama and Israel are disappointed in the latest
hysterical Biden-Clinton-Obama smack-down over the settlement issue. But why, I
don't know this is a logical, not an aberrant, development from President
Once it was thought to be unprincipled guilt-by-association for pro-Israeli,
anti-Obama groups to question candidate Obama's dubious associations; after all,
Reverend Wright, Rashid Khalidi, Samantha Power, et al. were all on record as
hostile to the Jewish state. Few likewise seemed to take note when a key Obama
campaign foreign policy advisor, Zbigniew Brzezinski , in September 2009
suggested that the U.S. might, and perhaps should, shoot down Israeli
over Iraq on their way to Iran ; e.g., "If they fly over, you go up and confront
them. They have the choice of turning back or not. No one wishes for this but it
could be a Liberty in reverse." Then there was the nomination of Charles Freeman
. And of course the present outreach to the two most terrorist-friendly
in the Middle East, theocratic Iran and authoritarian Syria . Someone from Mars
might conclude that the United States has spent far more effort in courting
Ahmadinejad and Assad than Netanyahu.
in aggregate they paint a pretty clear picture that for this administration the
benefits of supporting Israel are far outweighed by the downside.
Israel `s multiple enemies now are
almost giddy in sensing that America is not
all that into protecting the Jewish state, intellectually or morally..."
Natural Gas Bonanza for Israel , Possible Oil
Field as Well
Published: 06/03/10, 5:45 PM / Last Update: 06/03/10, 6:06 PM
by Maayana Miskin
Follow Israel news
A survey of the natural gas field off the shore of Haifa is to be released
Thursday evening in the
United States . According to the Globes financial
journal, the field has been discovered to be even larger than previously
The field's estimated size has grown several times as more surveys are
conducted. In mid-2009, Yitzchak Teshuva, controlling shareholder who invested
in developing the field, originally said the gas reserves could allow
be self-sufficient in energy for two decades, but now it seems that this was a
Teshuva said Thursday, "The results indicate that in addition to the gas, there
are signs of oil at a greater depth. We have turned Israel into a great energy
Today is a holiday for every citizen of Israel . It's a day of joy," He
proceeded to say the Shehecheyanu blessing for new and happy tidings.
Partners in the project plan to make their first deliveries of gas in 2012.
Companies involved in the project include Noble Energy, Delek Drilling, and
Globes also stated that Noble Energy is planning to bring another offshore
platform to Israel . The platform will be imported from the Gulf of Mexico .
Next Hizbullah War May Be Over Israel's Gas and Oil Fields
Published: 06/15/10, 10:13 AM / Last Update: 06/15/10, 10:34 AM
by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
Follow Israel news
Hizbullah has laid claim to a huge oil and gas
field that Israel discovered off
its northeastern Mediterranean Coast -- and which Lebanon already has claimed
The terrorist organization warned that it will not allow Israel to take
possession of the offshore fields, which could make the Jewish State energy
self-sufficient for the first time in history.
The As-Safir Lebanese newspaper told its readers that the gas
field "was located
between Israeli and Cypriot territorial waters and stretches toward the Lebanese
coast."Lebanese newspapers also reported that previous Israeli gas finds "were
either taking place in areas
stretching to Lebanese territorial waters or other
spots far away from the Israeli coast."
Hizbullah's claims were stated by the party's executive council chief Hashem
Safieddine, who was quoted by the Tehran Times as saying it would not allow
Israel to "loot" Lebanese gas resources.
Lebanese parliamentary speaker Nabih Berri previously said, " Israel is racing
to make the case a fait accompli and was quick to present itself as an oil
emirate, ignoring the fact that, according to the maps, the deposit extends into
Lebanese waters. Exploring our options in this field is our best bet to pay off
Lebanon `s debts."
The Israeli government immediately responded to the Lebanese claims, saying they
are totally unfounded and that all of the gas and oil fields are off the coast
of Israel and not Lebanon .
Dr. Yaakov Mimran, director of energy exploration for the National
Infrastructures Ministry, called the claims "nonsense." He added, "These noises
occur when they smell gas. Until then they sit quietly and let the other side
spend the money."
Marine law expert Amir Cohen-Dor told the Globes business news service that the
Dalit and Tamar gas fields are within Israel `s contiguous economic zone, and
that United Nations regulations clearly state that Israel can develop them.
Jack B. Moore is Director, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cameron. He
joined Cameron's Drilling & Production Systems group in
July 1999 as Vice
President and General Manager, Western Hemisphere , and was named President of
this group in July 2002. He became Cameron's President and Chief Operating
Officer in January 2007, and was named to his current position in April 2008.
Mr. Moore has been a Director of Cameron since 2007. Moore was previously with
Hughes Incorporated for twenty-three years. While there, he held numerous
positions in Manufacturing Management, Market Research, Human Resources and
Worldwide Operations. Moore holds a B.B.A. degree from the University of Houston
and is a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School
. He serves on the board of directors of the Petroleum Equipment Suppliers
Association, Spindletop, the University of Houston Bauer College of Business,
and Memorial Drive United Methodist Church .
Board of Directors
Royal Dutch Shell has a single-tier Board of Directors chaired by Jorma Ollila.
The executive management is led by the Chief Executive Officer, Peter Voser. The
members of the Board of Royal Dutch Shell plc meet regularly to discuss reviews
and reports on the business and plans of Royal Dutch Shell. Jorma Ollila
Born August 15, 1950. A Finnish national, appointed Chairman of the Company with
effect from June 2006. He started his career at Citibank in London and Helsinki
, before moving in 1985 to Nokia, where he
became Vice President
International Operations of Nokia.
In 1986 he was appointed Vice President Finance of Nokia. Between 1990 and 1992
he served as President of Nokia Mobile Phones. Between 1992 and 1999 he was
President and Chief Executive Officer of Nokia and from 1999 to June 2006 he was
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. He is Chairman of the Board of Nokia.
Nokia, Verizon Plan Exclusive 4G Device
Scott Moritz 03/05/09 - 01:02 PM EST
Two wireless giantsNokia (NOK) and Verizon (VZ) -- have decided to set aside
their differences and work together to create a touchscreen device for the
upcoming 4G LTE network. Burned by AT&T (T) and Apple's (AAPL) exclusive deal
with the popular iPhone, Nokia and Verizon are determined to lead the next stage
of wireless technology through what probably will be an exclusive
say people familiar with the companies.
The pact would be a huge restart for Nokia in the U.S. , where it has seen its
market share all but vanish. And for Verizon, the Nokia device would help it
trump AT&T's iPhone by giving it a special product designed to take advantage of
its new high-speed network and enable services like HD
The move would mark a significant departure for Nokia, which has resisted
efforts by U.S. telcos to control the features on its phones. The lack of
cooperation has caused Nokia, the world's largest smartphone maker, to miss out
on the high-end gadget boom here in the U.S.
For Verizon, Nokia represents a capable technology partner that could help
fashion a device that delivers a next
generation of media and data services.
Verizon told a gathering at a recent trade show that it plans to get its LTE
network started earlier than originally planned, largely in an effort to get a
one- or two-year jump on AT&T's upgrade.
"They want to get back in the leadership role," says Telecom
Sam Greenholtz, referring to Nokia and Verizon's newfound common interest. "My
guess is that Verizon will insist that this be an exclusive," says Greenholtz.
"It has been roughly three years since BP agreed to
take over US Amoco,
officially kicking off what would become known as the "era of the super major."
Exxon's subsequent acquisition of Mobil not only confirmed this trend, but also
set in motion a fierce rivalry between the oil industry's three largest
companies. Each implementing their own unique strategy, BP, Exxon, and Royal
Dutch/Shell have competed for investors' attention-and dollarssince late 1998.
Only now are the results of this contest emerging, as all three display their
strengths and weaknesses. BP's acquisition of Amoco in August 1998 triggered the
series of industry mega-mergers
Batelco, PCCW, and Verizon Awarded Saudi Fixed-line Business
April 24, 2007-Consortia led by Bahrain
Telecommunications Co. (Batelco), Hong
Kong's PCCW, and the U.S.-based Verizon Communications have won initial approval
to operate Saudi Arabia `s new fixed-line phone network. The three new
who were short listed from ten applicants for licenses to end the monopoly of
the state-owned Saudi Telecom Co. (STC), are expected to sell shares in initial
public offerings (IPOs) before the end of 2008.
The Verizon-led consortium has paid a license fee of SR5 million to operate a
cable network in the Kingdom, while the two other consortia seek to use radio
spectrum technology to offer
landline phone services. Spectrum bids in the more
populous regions reached up to SR69 million, a bid submitted by the Batelco
consortium. The three firms are expected to start commercial operations a year
after receiving their licenses. However, all of them must offer a 25 percent
stake of their capital to the public and a 10 percent stake to state pension
funds before the start of commercial operations
Will 100 yrs of ruthless rivalry end with ExxonMobil buying Shell?
Posted on January 9th, 2009
by John Donovan in All News, Breaking News, Business News
By John Donovan of royaldutchshellplc.com
2009 kicked off with a forecast in BusinessWeek that because of the meltdown in
oil prices and the resulting financial pressures, "two or more mergers" are
likely among the oil giants.
The BusinessWeek article predicted: "Royal Dutch Shell will buy BP". (2 January
Their article ignited speculation of a reshuffle in the ranks of the
supermajors, with one likely possibility being that ExxonMobil may buy the Royal
Dutch Shell Group to acquire its oil and gas reserves.
New York Daily News: Analysts think ExxonMobil will buy Royal Dutch Shell (5
Blogger News Network: How will Shell respond to the threat of an
takeover? (5 January 2009)
CNNMoney.com: Waiting for the tiger to pounce (5 January 2009)
Houston Chronicle: A year of merger mania for the majors? (6 January 2009)
Conditions ripe for a reshuffle of energy sector pack (6 January
Wall Street Journal: Feeling Flush, Exxon Fuels Speculation Deal Is on Tap:
Shell spokesman declined to comment: 12 January 2009
Dow Jones Newswires: Exxon-Mobil Has Mega Cash and Capital Ideas: 12 January
BNET ENERGY: Exxon Goes Shopping?: 12 January
27/7 WALLst: Will Big Oil Go Shopping: 16 January 2009
The Observer: Mergers in pipeline as oil industry's fairytale era ends: 18 Jan
Independent ( Uganda ): Exxon to acquire Shell?: 22 Jan 2009
New York Times: Analyst Sees Energy M&A Heating Up: 22 Jan 2009
Seeking Alpha: Speculation on Exxon Acquisition of Royal Dutch Shell growing: 25
CNNMoney.com article correctly pointed out that Standard Oil and Royal Dutch
Shell have been arch-rivals since the early days of the oil business. It would
therefore be a remarkable development for ExxonMobil to merge with Royal Dutch
Shell, its principle global competitor for over a hundred years.
military tone of articles published 90 years ago in the New York Times
provide insight into the depth of intense rivalry between the oil giants which
sometimes descended into open warfare.
The opening salvo was fired in an article published on 16 January 1928 under the
"N.Y. STANDARD OIL DECLARES WAR UPON DUTCH SHELL GROUP".
The military tone continued in the
"FIGHT TO FINISH LOOMS";
"Conflict already on in India and Is Expected to spread to Other World Markets";
New York Standard Oil (NY SO) was one of the "baby standards" which emerged from
the breakup by US regulators of the original Standard Oil Company under
anti-monopoly legislation. New York Standard Oil later became Mobil Oil
Corporation, which eventually merged
with Exxon (Standard Oil of New Jersey),
resulting in the ExxonMobil Corporation, the worlds largest company by revenue.
The opening paragraph of the New York Times article said:
The Standard Oil Company of
New York broke a long silence in the controversy
over the purchase of Russian oil products by issuing yesterday what amounts to
an open declaration of war against the powerful Royal Dutch-Shell group of
Basically NY SO accused Royal Dutch-Shell Group of seeking a monopoly of
`s oil products and engaging in price-cutting tactics in India . The article
said that Sir Henri Deterding, Managing Director of Royal Dutch Shell, had
accused NY SO of purchasing "stolen oil" and had announced his intentions "of
invading the markets which have been more or less controlled by Standard of New
According to the same news report, Burmah Oil Company (subsequently swallowed by
BP) and Standard Oil of New Jersey, (now known as Exxon in the USA and Esso
elsewhere), were both supporting Royal Dutch Shell's position. Walter C. Teagle,
President of Standard Oil New
Jersey , was said to be adopting a peacemaker
The military tone was also apparent in an uncompromising statement issued the
following day by Royal Dutch-Shell saying it would "carry its fight against the
Standard Oil Company of New York to any country in which that company attempts
to dispose of Russian oil". A New York Times
article published on 18 January
1928 under the headline "ROYAL DUTCH READY TO BATTLE STANDARD" commented on the
"In language as emphatic as that in which the Standard of New York set forth its
position in the Russian oil controversy, the Royal Dutch announced its intention
to continue the competitive struggle that has started in the oil markets of
India and which threatens to spread elsewhere."
The statement repeated the allegation made by Sir Henri Deterding that NY SO was
"trafficking in stolen goods".
The NY Times article included an Associated Press report that the price-cutting
war between SO NY and Royal Dutch-Shell "will continue without
Just a few weeks later peace moves were underway by interests not directly
involved in the Royal Dutch - SO NY fight.
By July 1928 the New York Times was reporting "STANDARD ENDS WAR WITH SHELL
OIL". SO NY and Royal Dutch Shell had agreed to bury their differences in
relation to Russian oil products. On 8 July an article quoted the remarks made
by Viscount Bearsted, Managing Director of the Shell Transport and Trading
Company at the annual general meeting in London in which he acknowledged that
the "Russian question" had "given rise to many heated arguments which led to
By 14 July, focus had turned to a plan by American interests for an
international oil conference to "prevent further overproduction".
Representatives from Royal Dutch and the Anglo-Persian Oil Company (owned by the
British government and later to become BP) were invited to attend the setting up
of an oil cartel similar to OPEC. The publicly stated objective was an
international accord on oil conservation. The end of the war between SO NY and
Royal Dutch-Shell removed a block to the cartel
By August of 1928 the war between SO NY and Royal Dutch Shell was over without
either protagonist emerging as a clear winner.
The conflict had ended in a draw.
It would be ironic if the various parties jockeying for position in the 1928
Russian oil products war ended up some 90 years later, all rolled into one mega
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