Cheney & Iraqi Oil at Shell UK

It’s good when someone actually comes up with a visual idea for a demonstration that you can photograph; too often you really get things that would only look good from a helicopter. Actually it’s usually better if people don’t try to be too clever, but give us something a little out of the ordinary in the way of masks or makeup or costumes or props that we can play around with and find a different way to photograph.

Firefox: Rt click and 'View Image' to see it larger
Dick Cheney, Iraqi Oil and the Shell Centre (right)

So although a giant Dick Chaney was a nice idea, and he was very well produced, and we all had some fun photographing him, I have a feeling that every other photographer there will have produced a picture more or less like mine. But perhaps not quite.

100 Days to stop Bush & Cheney’s Iraq Oil Grab! was of course a protest about a very serious issue, basically the pay-off US and UK forces were sent to Iraq to bring home. Forget WMD, Iraq was about another three letters, OIL, and Cheney with his friends at Shell and BP are now getting down to wrapping it up and bringing the swag home.

It’s a simple plan. A nationalised oil industry belonging to the Iraqi people (even if much of the proceeds went into palaces for the president) does nothing for multinational oil companies. So you invade, topple Saddam, put a puppet government in his place and send them your “oil experts” to draft natural resources laws that hand out the oil to your friends. 

I photographed the demonstration outside Shell’s UK Offices in Waterloo, before it set off for the BP offices and then the US Embassy at Grosvenor Square. There is some opposition to the proposed handover in the Iraqi Parliament – and rather more among the Iraqi people. If the give-away goes ahead I think we can forecast further trouble in the Middle East after US forces finally pull out.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.