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14 December 2017 06:37 (South Africa)

Former US ambassador may reap millions from Kurdish oil bonanza

Peter Galbraith, a former American ambassador to Norway, has had the ear of those who shape American policy in Iraq and Afghanistan.  He is also the son of economist, John Kenneth Galbraith, and he helped write the Kurdish regional constitution in Iraq. He is thus a loud voice in how Iraq would share out its oil revenues. Now he appears to have helped himself to a large trove of cash too. The New York Times carried an investigation by a Norwegian newspaper that Galbraith stands to gain up to $100 million from a Norwegian oil company with some serious contracts in the Iraqi oil sector. Along the way, Galbraith helped the Kurds successfully insist upon provisions in the new Iraqi constitution that gave them, and not the central government, control over oil fields in their territory. Galbraith’s influence will undoubtedly inflame conspiracy theories about oil as the real reason for the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, especially since Galbraith consistently argued Iraq should be split into three ethnically separate nations. And it probably won’t do much good for the reputation of Iraq’s constitution either. For more, read the New York Times

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