Iraqi oil minister Jabar Ali Al-Luaibi announced Tuesday that the Middle Eastern nation plans to put nine oil and gas fields up for auction to help fund its ongoing battle against the Islamic State group, which still controls a notable swath of the country.
While Al-Luaibi refrained from providing a specific timeline, according to the Associated Press, his announcement should provoke excitement among world leaders interested in procuring more oil, including perhaps even U.S. President Donald Trump.
Trump has previously expressed interest in seizing Iraq’s oil as per the role the United States played in freeing the nation from the tyrannical rule of deceased dictator Saddam Hussein.
“To the victor belong the spoils,” Trump emphatically told members of the intelligence community during a speech at the CIA’s headquarters in January. “I always used to say, keep the oil. I wasn’t a fan of Iraq. I didn’t want to go into Iraq. But I will tell you, when we were in, we got out wrong. And I always said, in addition to that, keep the oil.”
Clearly, simply “seizing” the oil is not feasible, unless the president desires war. But now that Iraq is reportedly looking to put some of its oil fields up for auction, this might be an opportunity for his administration to swoop in and purchase the rights to some of the Middle Eastern nation’s oil.
As for Iraq, the revenue it earns from oil reportedly funds up to 95 percent of its budget. Moreover, though it recently achieved a major victory against the Islamic State group in Mosul, the terror network as a whole has not yet been completely defeated.
Take a look at the map below published last week by Al Jazeera:
Despite its successes against radical Islamic terrorism, Iraq will remain entrenched in war for some time longer, meaning it’ll need money — meaning in turn the rest of us will have a rare opportunity to gain control of some of its oil.
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H/T The Daily Caller