Baku-Jeyhan And The Geopolitical Interests (Analysis)

Armen Manvelyan

12.05.2006 14:20
“Radiolur” [ArmRadio]

Mass media report that Turkish Prime Minister Rajab Tayib Erdoghan
invited US President George Bush to participate in the official
ceremony of opening Baku-Tbilisi-Jeyhan pipeline to be held July 13
at Jeyhan port. The invitation was sent to the White House through
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

The response of the American side is not known so far. It is noted,
however, that Washington has promised “to participate in the ceremony
on the highest possible level.”

It should be noted that still a year ago Baku-Jeyhan pipeline was
officially opened. Then it was asserted that everything was ready and
in autumn 2005 the first oil carrier loaded with Azeri oil would leave
from the port of Jeyhan. Despite the fact that a year has passed from
that day, Azeri oil has not even reached Jeyhan, which means that it is
still early to expect entry of oil carriers to this Mediterranean port.

It should be noted that the pipeline is of great political importance
for the real owners of it, i.e. Americans, who constructed it
proceeding primarily from political considerations. In this regard,
it is important just for the foreign policy of Armenia to correctly
comprehend and evaluate the political value of the program. We should
note that both underestimation and overestimation of the project are
equally dangerous, since it can result in incorrect understanding
of the political developments in the region and the struggle between
the heavy powers around these. Speaking about the politicization of
Baku-Jeyhan, we should first of all understand that the White House
is interested in the pipeline primarily as an alternative route for
exporting oil from the Caspian region, which will allow Washington
to reduce the so-called pipeline dependency on Russia. That is to say
that directing the oil flows to Baku-Jeyhan from Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan
and later from Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, the US attains not only
economic, but also complete political control over these countries.

>>From the geopolitical perspective Central Asia is of strategic
importance for official Washington, and Baku-Jeyhan is the means
through which the US can subject the countries of the region to its
interests. It should be noted that this region has nothing to offer
to the world except for oil and gas, therefore domination over this
branch means control over these countries. Hence, the United States
conceives Baku-Jeyhan as the most essential factor in the gradually
strengthening struggle between the US, Russia and China. What is
the most attractive for the United States in Central Asian region
is its geopolitical location. It’s not a secret that the region
neighbors four possible rivals of the US, i.e. China, India, Russia and
Iran. Therefore, considering these countries as possible competitors,
number one superpower of the world aspires to exert control over
a region, from where it can threat its potential enemies. In this
geopolitical game the South Caucasus and the Baku-Jeyhan pipeline
are mere links to help the US make its control more complete.

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