How Much Oil Do We Get From Iraq?

I was wondering how much oil we have been getting from Iraq.
Some people seem to think the US wants to wage war over oil. I don’t see their point at all. I think we are preemptively defending ourselves against Islamic extremists who hate “The Great Satan” mainly because we are the hated Israel’s staunchest supporters.

I think what would be a big help in settling the question would be to find out just what percentage of our oil we have been getting from Iraq. Anybody know where to get some figures?

I saw a surprising statistic in the paper last week. We get abot 8% of our oil from Iraq, and 6% from Saudi Arabia. That floored me. More oil from Iraq than Saudi Arabia!

If I remember correctly, we get about 30% of our total oil from imports. I’m sure if I’m wrong someone will correct me.

This site says as of March last year it was about one million barrels a day.

11% I believe from the Gulf. 8% if you want to single out Iraq.

The problem lies in big oil companies like Exxon, having multi-national sopporters, each having their finger on one aspect of the whole scheme. The U.S has a couple fingers on the Production end of things. Which a lot of Mid-easternors don’t particularly like. This is not a war for oil.
Welcome to the boards…

From the Energy Information Administration :
An estimated 30%-40% of Iraqi oil is sold initially to Russian firms (i.e., Emerkom, Kalymneftegas, Machinoimport, Rosnefteimpex, Sidanco, Slavneft, Soyuzneftegaz, Tatneft, and Zarubzhneft). The remaining 60%-70% of Iraq’s oil is first purchased by companies from many countries, including Cyprus, Sudan, Pakistan, China, Vietnam, Egypt, Italy, Ukraine, and others. Iraqi oil is normally then resold to a variety of oil companies and middlemen before being purchased by end users. During 2001, for instance, nearly 80% of Basra Light liftings, and over 30% of Kirkuk oil, went to the United States, with large importers including ExxonMobil, Chevron, Citgo, BP, Marathon, Coastal, Valero, Koch, and Premcor. During the first eleven months of 2002, the United States imported an average of 449,000 bbl/d from Iraq. In January 2003, approximately 1.2 million bbl/d of Iraqi oil went to the Americas (up from 910,000 bbl/d in December 2002 and 515,000 bbl/d in November), while 430,000 bbl/d went to Europe and 140,000 bbl/d to Asia. To some extent, increased Iraqi oil exports to the Americas have helped fill the loss created by a major oil strike and general unrest in Venezuela beginning in December 2002.

According to this site in 2001 we got about 6% of our oil from Iraq. However, The US imports 25% of their oil from the Persian gulf and of that only 14% is for domestic use (the other 11% is refined and exported). Of the imports from Persian gulf most of that is from Saudi Arabia (63%) and Iraq (25%) “oil for food”.

I imagine that oil gets mixed a lot and shuffled from broker to broker before it ends up at its final destination. Might make tracing it precisely kind of difficult.

chococheese, why would you think the amount of oil we currently import from Iraq is relevent to the question of whether this war is about oil? For views on that particular topic, you may want to review the recent thread “Its about oil…”

Second, why would you think the action is about, “preemptively defending ourselves against Islamic extremists”, when Saddam and his government are secular, and generally disliked by Islamic extremists, like OBL?

Good points, Cowboy. Second question first:

Whether Osama likes Saddam or not, he will ally himself with whoever gives him weapons. There is a saying in the Middle East: “Whoever is the enemy of my enemy, is my friend.”

Saddam is in fact linked to Al-Qaeda, and both, like other extremist orgs, don’t like us because of our MidEast policies – which is their euphemism for our support of Jews. Back when I was a teen in college and politically naiive, I met Islamic students from many countries who confided to me that they don’t like Jews, and admired Hitler for killing so many of them. I met only one Muslim who liked the Israelis, and he was a Palestinian from the West Bank. He said that was because life was much better after the Israelis came along.

Now I’ll go read that thread. (I’m new here, so for me it won’t be a re-view.)

Wouldn’t that mean it’d be just as likely that OBL or SH would choose to ally w/ the USA against the other?

Cite please.

These are each very fearful individuals, ( I would call them paranoid but people really are out to betray them/ get them). SH, according to CIA estimates is unlikely to iniate an attack terroristic, w/ WMD, conventional or otherwise unless he thinks he is in extremis.

Just as likely? Only if you’re looking purely at sentence structures and not at real-life contexts.

The link between Iraq and Binny has been discussed in the news many times. Here’s one example, from the Boston Globe:

“Likewise, Mylroie believes Iraq worked with bin Laden in the African embassy bombings on Aug. 7, 1998, two days after Saddam formally suspended weapons inspections. In the planning of the attack, bin Laden’s group and Saddam issued parallel warnings. In May, Baghdad warned of “dire consequences” if UN sanctions were not lifted. Because US intelligence never investigated possible links to Saddam, Mylroie says, there is no proof. Instead the US indictment stops at bin Laden and his alleged conspirators.”
Found at:’s%20smoking%20gun%20Links%20between%20Iraq,%20Osama%20Bin%20Laden%20and%20recent%20major%20terrorist%20attacks.htm


Surely you can some up with a better rebuttal than “Wouldn’t that mean it’d be just as likely that OBL or SH would choose to ally w/ the USA against the other?” I’ll agree that the linkage between the two “evildoers” has not been shown to my satisfaction, but either OBL or SH allying with the US at this stage is ludicrous, even if we were allied with both of them at some time in the past.


I don’t buy the “the was is about oil” slogan either, other in the broadest sense of mideast stability. However, the more relavent question here would be “how much oil COULD we get from Iraq” if the invasion went well and a pro-American gov’t were installed. I’ll give you an answer: A lot. Iraq has some of the largest proven oil reserves in the world.

I dont see why an alliance with OBL and SH can be so farfetched.

To paraphrase Mr Powell, When you have a nation that desperately wants to create Weapons of Mass Destruction and an organization that desperately wants to have them, how can any sane person think that these two will not find some way to ally themselves against a nation that is actively trying to stop both of them from achieving their desperate goals?

X~Slayer(ALE), I accept Powell’s speculation - there is no problem with the logic. OTOH, starting wars on speculation is a dangerous business.

When the OP suggests that our attack is, “preemptively defending ourselves against Islamic extremists,” it just seems a little silly we are doing that by attacking a secular government. Especially when there is a kingdom next door that WE KNOW is full of Islamic extremists, that is funding Al-Qaeda, and contributed the majority of the 9-11 hijackers.

That’s my point. Just because it’s a saying doesn’t make it likely that they would cooperate.

Overall I’d say that the likelihood is less than Powell is estimating.

For starters there’s Mr. Tenet and his assertation that Iraq wouldn’t do anything to piss off the U.S., like support terrorists, because it would cause the U.S. to retaliate with extreme measures. Giving WMD’s to Al Qaeda would definitely qualify as something that the U.S. would respond to.

Also you have to remember that bin Laden and Al Qaeda don’t like Saddam or the Baath party and want to see them removed from power. Bin Laden’s recent call to all Muslims to defend Iraq from the evil invading infidels (that’d be us) was not because he wants to support Saddam’s dictatorship, but because he doesn’t want an evil American dictatorship in its place.

Not to mention anything Saddam gives to Al Qaeda is something that one day could be used against him. Right now attacking the U.S. and the West are Al Qaeda’s number one goals, but deposing Saddam is still on their to-do list.

I wouldn’t say that some type of an agreement between bin Laden and Al Qaeda is farfetched, but at the same time I don’t see it as being likely either. Right now there might be more of a motivation for Iraq to provide assistance of some kind to Al Qaeda, kind of as Saddam’s revenge if Gulf War II doesn’t go his way, but I think that before the U.S. started putting the heat on Iraq there was too much tension between the two of them for any meaningful cooperation to exist.

choco, I can’t get your link to work. Can you repost it?

OBL did make a poit of specifically calling Iraq’s ruling regime infidel.
It seems likely if you’re willing to commit murder and die for religion you take your religion seriously.