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Pipe Dreams: The Plundering of Iraq's Oil Wealth
  • Author Image
    Erin Banco
  • Publisher Logo
    Columbia Global Reports

Pipe Dreams: The Plundering of Iraq's Oil Wealth

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Key Metrics

  • Erin Banco
  • Columbia Global Reports
  • Paperback
  • 9780997722949
  • 7.4 X 5 X 0.5 inches
  • 0.35 pounds
  • Political Science > World - Middle Eastern
  • English
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Book Description

A fascinating and revealing dive into the murky world of oil contracts that shape power and politics in Iraq. -- Loveday Morris, The Washington Post Jerusalem bureau chief

Iraq sits on top of more than 140 billion barrels of oil, making it the owner of the world's fifth largest reserves. When the United States invaded in 2003, the Bush Administration promised that oil revenue would be used to rebuild and democratize the country. But fifteen years later, those dreams have been shattered. The Iraqi economy has flatlined, millions of people are internally displaced, and international institutions have had to provide billions of dollars in assistance to the country every year. Where did all the oil revenue go?
Reporter Erin Banco traveled to oil-rich Iraqi Kurdistan--an autonomous region that holds, according to the regional government, some 45 billion barrels of crude--to uncover how widespread corruption, tribal cronyism, kickbacks to political parties, and the war with ISIS have contributed to the plundering of Iraq's oil wealth. The region's economy and political stability have been on the brink of collapse, and local people are suffering. Based on court documents and on exclusive interviews with sources who have investigated energy companies and their dealings with government officials, Pipe Dreams is a cautionary tale that reveals how the dream of an oil-financed, American-style democracy in Iraqi Kurdistan now looks like a completely unrealistic fantasy.

Pipe Dreams: The Plundering of Iraq's Oil Wealth

Author Bio

Erin Banco is a Middle East reporter, and has been covering armed conflict and human rights violations in the Middle East for six years. She began her career as a freelance reporter in Cairo during the Arab spring. She covered the revolts in the region and the war in Syria. 

After graduating from Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs, she worked as the Middle East correspondent for International Business Times, breaking stories on the rise of the Islamic State group and on the Free Syrian Army arms program. Banco also traveled to Gaza to cover the war with Israel in the summer of 2014. More recently, Banco began covering the Islamic State group's economy by tracking illicit oil sales in Turkey and Iraq. 

She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin and lives in New York City. 

 

Source: Columbia University 

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