(Yael T. Abouhalkah — Kansas City Star)
Both Barack Obama and John McCain are engaging in xenophobia with their complaints about America’s use of foreign oil. Check it out:
Obama says on his Web site that “energy security requires stemming the flow of money to oil-rich regimes that are hostile to America and its allies....” Obama fails to give any examples, however.
McCain says on his site that the next president needs to make “the hard choices that will break our nation’s strategic dependence on foreign sources of energy...”
Both presidential candidates ignore some facts with their statements.
The largest supplier of petroleum to America is ... Canada, which meets about 25% of our monthly needs. Mexico is the third biggest with around 13%. In other words, 38% of the U.S.’s monthly imports come from our two most important North American allies.
Sandwiched at second place (supplying 15% of our petroleum) is Saudi Arabia, which certainly sits in a long-unstable region. But Saudi Arabia is hardly “hostile” to America, as Obama implies. In fact, it’s been one of the steadiest suppliers America has had in the past two decades.
Indeed, the only nations that supply a rather significant amount of petroleum and are openly hostile to America are Venezuela and Nigeria, both at about 12%. So where’s Iran? The United States buys little or no oil from that nation, which supplies China and other countries instead. Others in the top 15 suppliers include Russia, the Virgin Islands, Brazil, Kuwait and the United Kingdom.
Hardly a list of rogue nations.