Heyrsh Abdulrahman is independent political observer & researcher, former Deputy Representative & director of community Outreach for PUK and Kurdistan Region. – 9.6.2013 –  A former Kurdish official claims that a group of retired American generals negotiated Iraqi Kurdistan’s oil contracts with the knowledge of Kurdistan’s US representative. Heyrsh Abdulrahman – who has made the statement – served as deputy of the Kurdistan Regional Government’s US representative between 2004 and 2009. In an interview with the local newspaper Hawlati, Abdulrahman says retired American generals and politicians have shares Kurdistan’s oil deals.

Kurdistan’s regional government has so far signed around fifty oil contracts with foreign firms. The regional government says the oil and gas investments total to about twenty billion dollars. Press TV asked Kurdistan’s regional government to respond to Abdulrahman’s allegations.

A report by Kurdistan’s Lvin Magazine published in February documents the involvement of several retired US generals and politicians in Kurdish oil deals. Those named include Jay Garner, a retired US army lieutenant general. He was appointed in 2003 as the director of the Office for Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance for Iraq. James Jones, a former US national security advisor and a retired US marine corps general. Zalmay Khalilzad, the US ambassador to the United Nations under President George Bush. He was also a US ambassador to Iraq. And former British Prime Minister, Tony Blair.

The Lvin report also mentions American advisor Peter Galbraith. In 2009, The New York Times said Galbraith stood to reap Kurdistan’s oil profits. It said in 2004, Galbraith received a stake in Norway’s DNO oil field in Kurdistan after negotiating a deal. And in 2005, he advised Kurdistan’s regional government when Baghdad officials wrote Iraq’s constitution.

The article states: “When drillers struck oil… in December 2005, no one but a handful of government and business officials and members of Galbraith’s inner circle knew that the constitutional provisions he had pushed through only months earlier could enrich him so handsomely.” Galbraith defended his actions, claiming he was “a private citizen deeply involved in Kurdish causes, both in business and policy”. Abdulrahman’s allegations now add more fuel to the theory that the true reason for the US-led invasion of Iraq was for officials to benefit from oil reserves. Kurdistan’s regional government says former officials have the right to be involved in oil deals because they’re retired. But what remains unknown is whether any of the officials abused their power to achieve their future aims in Kurdistan’s oil industry.