Thursday, December 19, 2002

Henry Kissinger has resigned as chairman of the 9-11 whitewash commission, only to be replaced by former governor of New Jersey, Thomas Kean. I am disappointed that Henry the K has resigned, as I had hoped that his attempts to deal with his conflicts of interest would have provided a great deal of entertainment. Can Thomas Kean provide us with similar fun? Kean is a director of Amerada Hess Corporation. Amongst other things (including, through its 25% ownership in a company called Premier Oil, having had the same sort of Burma problem that Unocal has, a problem that, to its great credit, Amerada Hess has fixed by getting out of Burma), Amerada Hess has operations in two oil fields in Azerbaijan. Its interest is in the form of a joint venture called Delta Hess Alliance with Delta Oil (!), the same Saudi oil company that caused part of the conflict problems of Henry the K! Delta Hess Alliance has interests in the Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli Production Sharing Agreement (2.72% - a small percentage but this is believed to be one of the largest undeveloped oil fields in the world, which has the added advantage of producing amongst the lightest crudes in the world) and the Garabaghli-Kursangi Production Sharing Agreement (20%). The Delta Hess Alliance is also part of the group to build the $3 billion oil pipeline from Azerbaijan to Turkey (the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan route). All these joint venture interests are still not a significant part of the operations of Amerada Hess, but have great potential. I quote myself:

". . . Delta Oil is partly owned by the al-Amoudi family of Saudi Arabia (headed by Mohammed Hussein al-Amoudi), a family closely related through business interests to the family of Khalid bin Mahfouz, a probable investor in George Bush's company, Harken Energy. It was also supported by King Fahd of Saudi Arabia. Khalid bin Mahfouz and Mohammed Hussein al-Amoudi allegedly have had ties to Islamic charities and companies linked financially to al-Qaeda."

There is plenty of information available on the bin Mahfouz and al-Amoudi families. So Kean, through being a director of Amerada Hess, is tied in to the same Khalid bin Mahfouz and Mohammed Hussein al-Amoudi problem that would have plagued Henry the K. It is possible that a proper investigation of 9-11 will uncover information that will implicate in the financing of bin Laden the owners of a partner of a company of which Kean is a director, possibly making it impossible, due to American laws against the funding of terrorism, for the joint ventures to continue. How can Kean possibly head this commission?

0 comments: