Tuesday, December 29, 2009


I'm no oil politics expert, but I'm fairly sure that Turkmenistan's new oil pipeline to China, and the soon to be completed pipeline to Iran, are not fantastic for the US's position as global hegemon, and probably not great for the US's (meek) ability to pressure these countries re human rights, imprisoned professors, carbon emissions, etc.

To put amounts into perspective, the 40 billion cubic meters a year the pipeline will deliver to China when running at capacity will supply half of China's oil demand. Before the pipeline, Russia had bought almost all of Turkmenistan's exports, giving Russia considerable political leverage over it's Central Asian non-neighbor.

Are there any Turkmenistan experts in the US? Where? How many people in the Turkmenistan desk of the NYT? Mark my words, Turkmenistan is the next... well, not quite Iraq or Iran. Maybe Kuwait?

Update: Better article about the new Turkmen oil pipelines.