A few days ago I wrote a post pointing out the incredible complexities behind the so-called 'war against ISIL' in the heartlands of their caliphate. Everybody and his uncle seems to be in on the act so it's amazing really that ISIS continues to flourish against such an array of foes. But of course, everybody and his uncle are in it for very different reasons almost none of which are concerned with just ridding the world of this pestilential bunch of psychos.
It was 'SoD' (well done, my boy, good to see you inherited your father's intelligence gene!) who pointed us all to the oil trade which provides ISIL with much of their cash - although not all of it by any means. Yesterday, Bloomberg picked up on earlier reports concerning this huge illicit oil trade and pointed the finger firmly at the American government and its useless intelligence and financial departments for egregious errors of judgment. The Americans assumed that ISIL was living off refined oil and therefore they launched attacks against refinery plants and storage depots. However, ISIL simply changed to selling crude oil delivered around their caliphate by truck to a thousand and one 'Billy basic' refineries that supplied the needs of their local communities.
This massive operation seemed to have evaded the notice of American intelligence:
- U.S. intelligence had grossly overestimated the damage they’d inflicted during airstrikes on the militants’ oil production apparatus last year, while underestimating Islamic State’s oil revenue by $400 million. According to U.S. Department of the Treasury officials and data they released in the wake of the Paris mayhem, the terrorist group is actually taking in $500 million from oil a year. What’s more, just a few hours before the first Islamic State suicide bomber blew himself up outside the Stade de France on Nov. 13, U.S. Army Colonel Steve Warren conceded at a press briefing that some American airstrikes disrupted IS oil operations for no more than a day or two.
Apparently it was only in May, following a raid by US Special Forces on an ISIL HQ that the Americans realised the change in the distribution of oil and the true size of the market which, of course, extends well beyond the borders of the caliphate into the territories of neighbours who are supposed to be our allies! Actually, I'm not at all sure that the American agencies were unaware of what was going on which makes me wonder what the real American game is. After all, the Russians haven't been in it for that long but as Zero Hedge reports, with a video to support the story, they have been attacking the ISIL lorries for some time. It's worth looking at that Russian video not least because I cannot believe, given the surveillance technology available to the Americans, that they failed to notice all those lorries until just a few months ago! And if they did notice them, why didn't they attack them much earlier? Or to put it another way, what exactly is the American game?
The golden rule in any scandal is 'always follow the money' and 'Tyler Durden' at Zero Hedge does exactly that by asking, very pointedly, who exactly are the middle-men in this enormous trade for very cheap caliphate crude oil? He points a suggestive finger at various huge international commodity traders and it would be interesting to know if any of them are large contributors to the Democrat party in the USA! The excuse by the American military authorities that they were reluctant to bomb the lorries because they might kill or injure the drivers is the stuff of Monty Python!
In the meantime, we and in particular, the French, continue to fly along acting as 'tail-gunners' to the USAF, bombing anything and everything except the really important targets. 'Dim Dave', needless to say, wishes desperately to 'strut his hour upon the stage' by taking an even greater role in this useless bombing campaign. I would suggest that he pays a visit to Washington first and after shaking Obama firmly by the throat, demands to know precisely what aims the American government is really pursuing in the Middle East.