The ExxonMobil War Boycott

Vote with your dollars. When governments and/or corporations perpetrate gross injustice and war - or do nothing to stop it - we, the people, must take action to end the violence and exploitation.

From Information Clearing House





- EXXONMOBIL AND OTHER MAJOR OIL COMPANIES STAND TO MAKE HUGE PROFITS ON IRAQ OIL AGREEMENTS DRAFTED BY THE STATE DEPARTMENT PRIOR TO THE INVASION OF IRAQ according the “Crude Designs” report published by Platform in the UK last November. It appears there there is still time for a boycott to have a positive effect, as none of these contracts have yet been signed, though it is reported that negotiations are underway with the new Iraqi government. The U.S. drafted contracts could bring the oil companies profits on investment ranging from 42% to 162% compared to the minimum of 12% return that is considered more normal. Contracted access to one of the major southern Iraq oil fields could double ExxonMobil’s oil reserves, doubling the worth of the company. In January, 2003, the Coalition Provisional Authority CPA appointed former senior executives from oil companies to help set up the framework for a longer-term oil policy in Iraq, with Gary Vogler of ExxonMobil, being one of the first advisors. ExxonMobil is on the board of directors of the International Tax & Investment Centre (ITIC), with is seeking Production Sharing Agreements in Iraq. Before the war started, ExxonMobil was in the hunt for Iraqi oil and it continues this quest during the occupation.

- $7 BILLION OF EXXONMOBIL’S 2005 RECORD PROFIT OF $36 BILLION CAN BE CONSIDERED WAR PROFITEERING. Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, said that as much as 20 percent of EXXONMOBIL’s record $36 billion 2005 profit, or about $7 billion, is “a ball park number” for what can be considered war profits for the oil giant. This is an estimate of the amount of profit that is essentially unearned and is traceable to oil prices that have been inflated because: (1) the Iraq War has severely depressed Iraq oil production and (2) because of fears that the Iraq War may spread, possibly affecting oil production in Iran and Saudi Arabia. Noble Prize winning Joseph Stiglitz has also said that the war, in inflating oil prices, has brought huge profits to U.S. oil companies. Tyson Slocum, Acting Director of Public Citizen’s Energy Program, says that ExxonMobil accumulated a war profit in 2005 “in the billions”.

- EXXONMOBIL’s recently-retired Chair and CEO Lee Raymond appears to have had a major role in US policy making - including planning for access to Iraqi oil and promoting the war against Iraq. Mr. Raymond has personal access to Vice President Dick Cheney; for example, he met with him privately 10 days after the first Bush inauguration. Shortly after that Cheney’s energy task force began drafting an energy policy. The Vice President went to court to keep the energy task force work secret, but the few papers forced out by law suits have included maps of Iraqi oil fields. Two months before the 2003 invasion of Iraq, Mr. Raymond became the vice chair of the board of the American Enterprise Institute, possibly the foremost “think tank” in engineering the Bush Administration Iraq War Policy, and central in promoting the war. Mr. Raymond continues as vice chair of AEI’s board after his 12/31/05 retirement.

- CONSUMERS FOR PEACE HAS WRITTEN TO EXXONMOBIL asking that the firm endorse the goals of the ExxonMobil War Boycott campaign and engage the full force of its lobbying effort in advancing these goals. The goals are: (1) immediate withdrawal of all U.S. troops and mercenaries from Iraq; (2) impeachment of George W. Bush and prosecution of U.S. officials for war crimes and crimes against humanity. ExxonMobil has not responded to a certified letter except with the postal receipt. Consumers for Peace has written to the nine other firms selected for boycott because of their involvement with ExxonMobil through its board of directors, asking that they endorse the above goals. Of the nine, only Novartis has responded, declining to meet the request. The other firms affected are: Campbell Soups; Carlson Companies (Radisson Hotels, TGI Friday’s); Corning Inc. (Steuben Glass); Metlife; Pfizer; Verizon; Wells Fargo; and Wyeth.

- APART FROM APPLYING PRESSURE TO END THE IRAQ WAR AND IMPEACH MR. BUSH, THE PURPOSE OF THE BOYCOTT IS TO MAKE IT CLEAR THAT WE WILL NO LONGER ACCEPT GOING TO WAR FOR OIL. As the competition for oil and other energy sources increases, the temptation to use force to maintain control over oil will increase. The war alternative, one can argue, can be viewed a major factor in delaying the U.S. from seriously addressing petroleum overconsumption, for example through gasoline rationing. The war alternative forestalls urgently needed action to protect the environment.

- There has been some controversy over the “war for oil” premise, with some saying this idea is too simplistic. However, it is becoming more clear that the struggle between nations - between the U.S. and China for example - for assured access to oil reserves is intensifying. Without oil, the Middle East would not have had such keen attention from Washington since the early 1900s. A State Department official under Colin Powell said that while oil wasn’t specifically mentioned in State Department pre-war planning, everyone knew in the back of their minds that Iraq reportedly has the world’s second largest oil reserves after Saudi Arabia.

- A BASIC PREMISE OF THE BOYCOTT IS THAT THE INVASION AND OCCUPATION OF IRAQ ARE ILLEGAL ACTIVITIES, VIOLATING THE U.S. CONSTITUTION AND INTERNATIONAL LAW. The boycott is leveled at a major firm that appears to be complicit in this illegal behavior and is clearly a beneficiary. It is also directed at nine firms connected with ExxonMobil that benefit from this connection. Novartis is one such firm. While the Novartis website states that the firm will not benefit from violations of human rights, it has sent representatives to Iraq investment conferences even as the killing in Iraq escalated. At no point has ExxonMobil, or any of the firms associated with it, come forward to disavow connection with the illegal acts of the United States in Iraq. ExxonMobil has not offered to direct its war profits to relieving the vast suffering caused by the war.

Prepared by Nick Mottern,

You may download a pdf version of the talking points at

See ExxonMobil War Boycott press release or

Organizational Endorsers:

After Downing Street

Bloomington Peace Action Coalition

Campus Antiwar Network

Coalition Against War and Injustice (Baton Rouge)

Covington (Louisiana) Peace Project

Consumers for Peace

Goldstar Families for Peace

International Socialist Organization

Midsouth Peace and Justice Center

Progressive Democrats of America

Traprock Peace Center

Wespac Foundation

Individual Endorsers*:

Annie and Buddy Spell, Louisiana peace activists (Annie is president of the Greater Covington, LA branch of the NAACP)

Anthony Arnove, author, “Iraq: The Logic of Withdrawal”; co-editor with Howard Zinn, “Voices of a People’s History of the US”

Charles Jenks, Chair of Advisory Board - Traprock Peace Center

Cindy Sheehan, Co-founder - Gold Star Families for Peace

Dahr Jamail, independent journalist who spent over 8 months reporting from occupied Iraq

David Swanson, co-founder of

Dennis Kyne, Gulf War veteran, activist and author of “Support the Truth”

Dirk Adriaensens, coordinator SOS Iraq and member of the Executive Committee of the Brussells Tribunal, Belgium

Don DeBar, correspondent, WBAI, New York

Elizabeth Wrigley-Field, National Coordinating Committee - Campus Antiwar Network

Eric Ruder, reporter - Socialist Worker newspaper

Gabriele Zamparini, freelance journalist and film maker living in London; co-editor of

Howard Zinn, historian, playwright and activist; author of “A People’s History of the United States” and co-editor with Anthony Arnove of “Voices of a People’s History of the US” Jacob Flowers, Director - MidSouth Peace and Justice Center

Judy Linehan, Military Families Speak Out

Kathy Kelly, Nobel Peace Prize nominee, co-founder - Voices For Creative Non-Violence

Lindsey German, Convener - Stop the War Coalition (UK)

Michael Letwin, Co-Convener - New York City Labor Against the War

Nick Mottern, National Director - Consumers for Peace

Nada Khader, Executive Director, Wespac Foundation

Norman Solomon, Author of “War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death”

Paola Pisi, professor of religious sciences (Italy) and editor of

Phil Gasper, Chair - Department of Philosophy & Religion, Notre Dame de Namur University, Professors for Peace

Sharon Smith, author of “Women and Socialism : Essays on Women’s Liberation”

Stan Goff, Master Sergeant Retired, US Army

Sunny Miller, Executive Director - Traprock Peace Center

Thomas F. Barton, publisher, GI Special

Tim Baer, Director - Bloomington Peace Action Coalition

Tim Carpenter, National Director - Progressive Democrats of America

Ward Reilly, SE National Contact - Vietnam Veterans Against the War, Veterans for Peace, Baton Rouge

*Affiliations are for identification purposes only.

Charles Jenks
Chair of Advisory Board and Web Manager
Traprock Peace Center
103A Keets Road Deerfield, MA 01342
413-773-7427 fax 413-773-7507


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