Thursday, March 10, 2011
Hawaii most vulnerable state as unrest in Saudi starts oil price spike
by Larry Geller
Reports have been tweeted in of demonstrations in Saudi Arabia. At first, there was uncertainty about their authenticity because they originated from Egypt, but now wire services seem to have confirmed that there are clashes between protestors and police in an Eastern Shiite province. Videos have been posted allegedly showing police firing on demonstrators in the city of Al Qatif (see bottom video) and documenting well-attended demonstrations (see first video below).
Following the breaking tweets, reports of police gunfire and stun grenade attacks on protestors are being posted on the web by usually reliable news and wire services (Google for the latest news).
Friday may see a massive protest—and violent police reaction—as plans are made in Saudi for a “Day of Rage” after prayers on Friday.
Meanwhile, in Hawaii, we remain seemingly complacent, with the major energy action on the horizon spurred by the profit expectations of rich Maui County landowners. Their visions of wind farms and undersea cables (shared with many legislators and others) are likely to meet some opposition, which means we may be paying high energy costs on into an uncertain future. Plus higher food costs as merchants make secondary profits on claims of increased shipping costs, and of course even higher gas prices than we pay now.
Remember, Saudi oil was expected to stabilize the markets should the Libyan spout be turned off. Hawaii’s oil doesn’t come from that region, but that won’t prevent energy companies from opportunistically raising prices on us.
It’s time we got together—peacefully—and reviewed our state’s energy and food prospects over the short and medium term.
Saudi protest videos
The title indicates this video was taken in Al Qatif on the night of Thursday, March 10, 2011.
The Arabic title of this next video translates as “firing live ammunition at peaceful demonstrators in Qatif.”