Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Ukraine : Blood and Oil in Odessa - tracking down the ISIS Oil Sales

There's a smell of oil all over the World. But, especially in Odessa harbor, where it stinks. Stinks. It is natural. Imports of oil and oil products through the port of Odessa recently doubled. To be precise, up 150 and 220 percent, respectively. You can check online port authorities of Ukraine, which publishes the full official statistics.

What do these numbers mean against the background of the overall drop in cargo transfer, by almost a factor of four? Unknown. 

Just one thing is understood: at the complete collapse of its industry, Ukraine started consuming more oil. And certainly most of it came through the ports of the Black Sea, principally through Odessa. Overall leader: Odessa.

You could wonder long where those transferred barrels are disappearing, through what damaged pipelines, and what might be the further destination for the "black gold." Perhaps they're going to top off their storage tanks, but where are they going to find so many tanks? 

One might wonder indeed, in the face of all the idle Ukrainian oil refineries, but it takes no special grade of intellect to get this: the oil is not from Novorossia, rather from the side of the Bosporus, from the other side of the sea, where the charismatic Turks have discovered an original means of production on foreign soil. There's a name for it: fencing stolen goods.

There, under the screen of a civil war that morphed into an international conflict, bands of radical islamists, calling themselves a "state" selflessly pump oil from wells they have seized in Syria and Iraq. And Turkey has become one of the main consumers of this oil. There's so much of the stolen oil they've run out of places to put it; legalized ["laundered," we would say, if it was cash -- tr] it continues on its way around the world. Today, of all the Black Sea countries none is more apt for the further distribution of oil, than Ukraine.

In Odessa, in general, something is happening defies logical explanation. The biggest strategic region is living a mysterious life, where the law is the stream of consciousness of a dissolute Georgian, who had not recovered from a hangover. Where appointments can depend on an evening backgammon game, where the tariff commissioner is a girl, and who it is, that both conducts and covers this scheme, is also known.

Mikhail Saakashvili's partners don't change. And their fantasy is not large. But here is what they enjoy of Erdogan, as Saakashvili at first could not believe.
The East is a delicate matter. But where things are delicate, there, they can rip. So, in the language of diplomacy, there could resound a message of the contraceptive nature of certain political figures. [A metaphor, both crude and blunt, is omitted here. --tr.]

This is to say, at the end of the act the partners disappear without saying goodbye, and over the caravans of stolen oil hover very real Aerospace forces, transforming the dubious business of terrorists into a very dangerous occupation, where bankruptcy is indistinguishable from a funeral, which even relatives dare not attend.

After all, oil - it is not just oil. Just like human fingerprints, oils have their own unique chemical composition, that make it possible to ID where and when it appeared on the surface of the earth. It is possible to trace the entire path of the oil produced by the killing and the looting.

And it is terrible to imagine what will happen when they start finding out that the oil in the pipelines and the refineries of the country of victorious Maidan -- i


Translated from Russian by Tom Winter

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