- Europe’s Gas Crunch: The Pending Crisis Around Nordstream 2 & Ukraine Transit June 6, 2019
- Washington interviews: Energy Relations of Russia, Germany, Poland & Ukraine (Kennan Fellow) June 2, 2019
- Venezuelan transition? My analysis on Germany’s DW TV | Videos: español & English March 1, 2019
- Germany backs small-scale LNG import terminals despite opposition [my King’s College/EUCERS paper] August 29, 2018
- Germany’s Real LNG Policy [My BPJ analysis] July 4, 2018
- Putin’s OPEC tactics: Iran sanctions and the Saudis [IBD cites me] June 18, 2018
- A Comment on: “A Trans-Atlantic Manifesto in Times of Trump – A German Perspective,” by foreign policy experts October 12, 2017
- China’s big NOCs slash prices to take market from private oil refiners ~ I’m quoted in “China Oil Week” July 31, 2017
- “Neue Neue Ostpolitik” My BPJ piece on German fury at Senate NS2 sanctions July 3, 2017
- Trump’s promise to “stay totally independent” of OPEC is populist hype [My IBD interview] January 3, 2017
- Putin’s new OPEC role reflects the toll of low oil prices on Russia [IBD quotes me] December 9, 2016
- My CNNMoney quote & 3 points: OPEC v shale, Russia’s new role & Trump-buddy Hamm is pro Saudi price band December 3, 2016
- An Oil-Price War´s Surprise Ending -My BPJ article on OPEC, Shale, Trump, Market & Geopolitics November 30, 2016
- Saudi & Russia seek oil deal as OPEC fight v US shale fails [My RTRadio Interview] November 21, 2016
- Post-election reading list: Trump’s foreign policy portends “world crisis” November 9, 2016
- Bolivarian Venezuela in crisis: An oil-rich nation collapses? Berlin, 10 October October 3, 2016
- Pipe Dream? Polish ruling complicates Nord Stream 2 pipeline for Gazprom & EU partners [My Berlin Policy Journal piece] September 26, 2016
- “Energy independence” won’t free the USA from global oil market & geopolitics [I’m cited: CNNMoney] August 12, 2016
- How fast can Libyan oil recover? (I’m quoted by CNN) July 21, 2016
- New US tech squeezing oilfields & rivals [IBD quotes me] June 18, 2016
- What’s keeping foreign oil firms out of Iran? IRG? [CNNMoney quotes me] June 17, 2016
- IBD News cites me: OPEC Oil Production Ceiling Reported On Table June 2, 2016
- Don’t write off American oil boom despite OPEC – CNNMoney cites my analysis June 1, 2016
- Latin American Oil: Beijing Still Lending, But for How Long? – I’m quoted by Energy Compass May 31, 2016
- Wikistrat Report “Saudi Arabia & the Future of Oil” cites my views May 29, 2016
- I’m quoted by MarketWatch: Five key issues for OPEC’s June meet May 27, 2016
- Falling oil price & Saudi strategy: My Sky News interview (London) February 12, 2016
- My AQ piece: “Russia Is Beating China to Venezuela’s Oil Fields” February 4, 2016
- “The Road to Paris: COP21 …” Berlin HEEN Conference November 26, 2015
- Bypass Operation: Nord Stream 2, Russia-to-Germany pipeline deal, raises questions October 20, 2015
- Venezuela: Default risks grow (I’m quoted in Platts) September 4, 2015
- Containing Gazprom: Putin may be overplaying his hand on gas – but no thanks to Berlin and Paris August 10, 2015
- A Strange “No!” Alignment: Greeks, IMF and Washington v. Berlin and Brussels July 6, 2015
- MY REPORT | Washington Viewpoints: Assessing Berlin’s Leadership on EU Energy Security July 3, 2015
- US Experts on German & EU Energy Vulnerabilities (My D.C. seminar) June 10, 2015
- The EU-US “Oil Weapon”: Putin’s overtures to OPEC, China & Iran reveal desperation April 23, 2015
- The P5+1–Iran Deal: Obama’s Initial Challenge was to Rally EU-3 Allies to the Cause April 14, 2015
- “US Expert Perspectives on German Energy Vulnerabilities” – My AICGS/Washington Project April 6, 2015
- Paralyzed on Economic Reforms, Venezuela Will Mortgage Citgo [My Americas Quarterly analysis] February 5, 2015
- Oil Price Collaterals: Saudi strategy shakes Russia, Iran & Venezuela, but they’re not targets February 4, 2015
- [Spanish] Mi opinión en Petroquía: China se involucra en los principales proyectos de América Latina January 25, 2015
- Watch: Falling Oil Price & Geopolitics – Saudis & OPEC, Russia, USA, .. | My Real News Network interview December 8, 2014
- My IP JOURNAL article | EU’s “Stress Test” of a Russian gas cutoff: Official optimism? November 22, 2014
- “Venezuela: Petroleum, Politics & Economics in the Post-Chavez Era”–My Columbia U. talk, with Luiz Pinto, 9 October October 2, 2014
- “Oil & the US-Iran Crisis” – My talk at American University, Washington DC: September 30, 2014
- Estoy citado en “Dinero”: La caída en la acción de Ecopetrol de Colombia no se debe únicamente a los ataques guerrilleros September 13, 2014
- My IP Journal latest: “A firm US-EU partnership on Iran came at great cost, and made a deal possible” August 14, 2014
- I’m quoted in WSJ: Why sell Citgo? Cash for Ramirez’ PDVSA-recovery projects August 5, 2014
- My talk on Iran, NYC | After an Iran-USA deal: A Mideast without democracy, run by Iran & Saudi Arabia? May 31, 2014
- USA Oil Seminar 5.0 | USA as Rising Energy Superpower? May 15, 2014
Category Archives: Sanctions
My IP Journal latest: “A firm US-EU partnership on Iran came at great cost, and made a deal possible”
My latest at the IP Journal of the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP): US-EU Cooperate on Iranian Nonproliferation: Agreement positions Tehran as regional leader — IP Journal 14/08/2014
Although negotiators failed to reach agreement on Iran’s nuclear program by the late-July deadline set last November, as Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif put it: “We have made enough headway to be able to tell our political bosses that this is a process worth continuing. … I am sure Secretary Kerry will make the same recommendation.” Indeed, Washington, Brussels, and Tehran readily agreed on a four-month extension.
This represents a sea change in tone from the period prior to November 2013, Continue reading
My talk on Iran, NYC | After an Iran-USA deal: A Mideast without democracy, run by Iran & Saudi Arabia?
Appreciation: I am honored to again be invited by my Iranian colleagues in New York, Professors Reza Ghorashi, Hamidah Zangeneh and Hamid Sedghi, to join this panel and discuss the geopolitics of US-Iranian relations. And, my thanks to Prof. Sedghi for reading my paper as I am teaching in Berlin and cannot be with you today. I only ask that those who dislike my message, kindly refrain from shooting the messenger.
The US-Iran nuclear confrontation finally appears close to resolution. This is because both Presidents Obama and Rouhani desire a diplomatic solution, and both countries need to move on. With such an agreement, it is possible that relations will slowly become normalized.
Of particular note—as a direct consequence—are the recent secret negotiations between Iran and Saudi Arabia towards a rapprochement. These were initially facilitated by Oman (e.g. see reports here, here, and here). Until very recently the Saudis had remained fiercely opposed to any US deal with Iran. However, the Saudi’s are realists, and know when it is time to adapt. Figure 1. is a photo of kisses exchanged on 22 April between ex-President Rafsanjani of Iran and King Abdullah’s ambassador to Iran, which caused quite a stir in the region. Agreements reached in these recently revealed negotiations have already significantly affected the presidential-succession crisis in Lebanon, sectarian conflicts in Iraq, and the conflict in Yemen. Next the two sides are expected to negotiate regarding their interests in the Syrian conflict.
In addition, the nature of the US-Saudi relationship is changing, transferring much more responsibility on the Kingdom and its Gulf partners for their own defense–albeit strongly supported with US weapons and logistics. This is part of the US disengagement from direct regional interventions, which will be significantly furthered by a successful US-Iran agreement (e.g., see here and here, and this report on Saudi defense buildup from Balfour at Harvard).
How are these new developments to be understood? Continue reading
Globalizing gas market, creating OECD strategic reserves could make embargoes history | By Thomas W. O’Donnell 6May14| Post-war Western Europe was twice the target of energy embargoes, each dramatically altering its energy landscape. A lesson for today is that Europe’s present natural gas dependence on Russia can be addressed with a gas policy like that adopted by the OECD for oil in 1973 – one that launched today’s collective, market centered, and embargo-proof global oil security system.
Russian President Vladimir Putin wrote a letter made public April 10, 2014, warning several EU heads of state that Ukraine must pay its past due gas bill of $2.2 billion or Russian energy giant, Gazprom, “will completely or partially cease gas deliveries” to the country and be “compelled” to insist on payments one month in advance for any future deliveries – including $5 billion to refill Ukraine’s gas reserves before next winter. CONTINUE READING AT: IP Journal of The German Council on Foreign Relations.
In September, President Obama came under withering criticism in Washington for not punishing Assad after crossing his “red line” on chemical weapons. By October, even Riyadh had joined those in the State Department, the White House and Congress who, according to US press reports, saw Mr. Obama as “aloof” and “indecisive” on Syria.
While Mr. Obama’s refusal to arm the more democratic and secular rebel forces has indeed permitted Assad to retrench–increasing the humanitarian disaster as well as the ability of jihadi forces to insinuate themselves into the conflict– nonetheless, imagining this is due to presidential indecision ignores the realpolitik driving his policy.
Why Has Obama Not Forcefully Supported Syrian Rebels? The Iran Factor
Consider first: What if forceful US action in Syria had scuttled any talks with Iran, or, for that matter, if the present negotiations in Geneva between the P5+1 and Iran end up in failure? Continue reading
You’re invited to my lecture at The JFK Institute of North American Studies at Freie Universität in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday 6 PM. Here is the flyer, then the Abstract. Tschüß!
“The Global Barrel”
Today’s globalized market-centered energy system defines Washington’s relations with the EU, Japan and OPEC states Continue reading
Last week in Washington, I attended a talk by Saudi Oil Minister and head of Aramco, Ali al-Naimi, at CSIS. Energy and foreign policy veterans from Daniel Yergin to Brent Scowcroft and Dr. James Schlesinger were on hand to hear al-Naimi’s views. You can read the transcript here, or watch the video embedded below.
Al-Naimi’s contrasted his central theme: “the enduring relevance of oil,” to the predictions made for many years by the adherents of “peak oil”–a theory that he said had itself “peaked in 2009” and has now been shown to be “utterly incorrect.”
Bad News for Venezuela and Iran?
Listening to him describe the global impact that the U.S.A. tight-oil “revolution” will have on the market, plus with Alberta’s heavy oil and so many other new sources from around the globe all coming to market, brought to my mind images of the 1980’s. The 1980’s were the “lost decade” in Latin America. It strikes me that, if he’s right about the trajectory of the global oil sector, the consequences for OPEC’s “price hawk” faction would be sobering. Continue reading