‘Utter chaos': Glenn explains why energy independence is the only answer to the crisis in the Middle East

From our southern border to the Middle East, chaos is all around. With ISIS on the move in Iraq and targeting oil refineries in the country, energy prices will necessarily skyrocket. Given the strength (or lack thereof) of the global economy, $150 to $200 per barrel oil is a frightening reality we may soon face. On Thursday’s Glenn Beck Program, Glenn took an in-depth look at the situation in the Middle East and the possibility of energy independence.

Get Glenn Live! On TheBlaze TV

Saudi Arabia is predicting the Middle East will devolve into a civil war, and if that is the case there is no limit to how high crude oil prices would soar. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

As Glenn explained, America was not a military superpower on the eve of World War II. Designing sophisticated aircrafts and weaponry simply wasn’t a priority, and yet the country rose to the occasion when faced with no other option.

The U.S. is facing a similar dilemma today. As it is, North Dakota is already producing 1 million barrels a day, while Texas leads the nation with 2 million barrels daily. Looking to our neighbors up north, only 19 Canadian provinces have a similar capacity. While the pipelines and fracking operations would be not be able to handle the level of production needed to allow complete independence in their current state, incremental changes now could help stave off “utter chaos” later.

“Now is the time to make sure we can remain free and not intervene in the Middle East,” Glenn said. “We don’t have the resources, and we don’t have the passion for it anymore.”

Remaining “free” is going to require a chance of strategy. Glenn brought in energy expert Chris Martenson, co-founder of Peak Prosperity, to discuss what exactly an energy independence strategy would entail.

Get Glenn Live! On TheBlaze TV

Martenson was very pragmatic in his thinking about the situation. He explained that even with an all out blitz, energy independence is at least five to 10 years away. He was quick to clarify, however, that there are questions as to whether the necessary supply is actually there.

“People need to understand: This is a complete game changer,” Martenson said. “We have to get serious… We have to have a vision… And I don’t see any of those things right now.”

Ultimately, Martenson did admit that the United States and the rest of the world needs to start taking a serious look at energy and economy and recognizing how one impacts the other.

  • Robert Starkand

    What you don’t explain Glenn is why our military commitment and our development of our energy assets can’t be done at the same time. We did both before.

    • Jeff Lambeau

      We did both before because we actually had the money to do it before.

      • Kelly Myers

        No, we had the will.

      • Robert Starkand

        No, we did both in WWII and we were in the midst of a depression. If you say you can’t, you can’t. Its the loser mentality that Glenn has taken up that upsets me.

        • Anonymous

          Why do we have a military commitment there? Yes we went to Iraq and liberated the people but we screwed up our post war responsibilities and now they call for us to leave without reservations. We had a commitment there, but its too late. The more we try to right our wrong, the more we grow the insurgency.

          • Robert Starkand

            What you say is false. We went to Iraq to establish a bulwark in the Middle East against funded and supported terrorist attacks against us from all over the world. We were not called on by the Iraqis to leave, they wanted us to leave a sufficient residual force with them. The military wanted to leave between 14,000 and 18,000 troops, quite a reduction from 160,000. The military offered 10,000 troops to Obama. When Obama refused and offered 3000, a number of troops that is woefully ineffective, the Iraqis knew Obama was not serious about helping them. The Iraqis begged us for troops. Obama is not trying to right a wrong. Obama is continuing his ruinous policies and our enemies perceive weakness. This action fits a pattern, he destabilized Egypt and Libya, and Syria, and strengthened Al Queda. If you wanted to sabotage our policy, Obama could not have done a better job. We have a bad leader, but the answer is not to comply with the bad leader, the answer is to fight and get a good one. Lincoln kept on looking until he got Sherman and Grant. Washington kept losing and losing until Trenton. Surrender and we end up a poorer and tributary country to Russia and China, because they will hold sway with rest of the world. Under Obama, our friends don’t trust us and our enemies don’t fear or respect us. Glenn’s call for retreat falls in line with this pattern. How can you say you pledge your life, your fortune, your sacred honor, when you call for surrender. Did you ask yourself what good will come of this? They won’t attack us anymore? Of course they will. They attacked us on 9/11 before we did any of this. Our economy will be better? How, with no allies to speak of? Canada already agreed to do the pipeline into Asia. Wake up.

  • Kelly Myers

    Glenn. If you really really want to help solve the energy crisis that is coming, learn EVERYTHING YOU CAN about Power from Thorium. Please watch these videos http://www.thoriumremix.com and have some of the people featured in the videos on your program and educate the American public that we OWN this technolgy, we invented it. It’s ours, but we are going to lose it to the Chinese.
    Let’s get serious and get on LFTR (Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor). Technology. We can do it as little as 3-5 years for utility grade reactors if not less for reactors that can be used exclusively for water desalination, and chemical production plus medical isotopes that we need , the good plutonium that we need for space travel which we are completely out of now and the things can even make a replacement for diesel in a carbon neutral fashion. It is the SILVER BULLET that America needs.
    For the rest of you who are reading this. WATCH THE VIDEOS. And then post on this site so that hopefully someone at the Blaze picks up on it and they do a piece on it so more people across the country are aware. If you want to take back the country, this needs to be made an election campaign issue, a platform of policy for energy for the next 1000 years and it needs to be ours.
    For the price of a crappy healthcare website we could have had a working reactor in about the same amount of time, from which copies of that reactor would be rolling off American assembly lines!
    This isn’t your great grandfathers nuclear reactor. This is your grandfathers nuclear reactor but it got side lined in the 70s because you can’t use it to make nuclear weapons.



    • Anonymous

      Thorium isn’t going to fuel your car. Oil is a fantastic portable energy source.

      • Kelly Myers

        How much do you even know about LFTR? I just said it can be used to produce a replacement for diesel (in a carbon neutral fashion btw) which can certainly fuel your car, and what the heck do you expect all these future electric cars to plug-in to to charge? An outlet connected to a coal burning or oil burning electricity generation plant? A solar farm that loses half of its pathetic capacity in the transmission lines on the way to that outlet?

        Think about it frgough.

  • ken.

    i keep reading articles and see news programs which state that america exports more oil then we import, then how do we not already have energy independence? opec is a political scam to buy peace from several middle east countries, while the other middle east countries cause trouble. it screws us more then it helps us.

  • Chris Layton

    Good report thanks.

  • Nicholas White

    two words bio-diesel

  • Anonymous

    I agree with Glenn that we need energy independence ASAP. Why he doesn’t include renewable or “green” energy sources in his discourse is beyond me. He is either afraid of doing an about-face on Obama’s energy independence views, or he isn’t looking far enough down the road.

  • landofaahs

    Energy independence would require all energy in the U.S. stay in the U.S. I am against selling any energy overseas. We should use a surplus if we have one to make energy cheap for consumers and businesses. But the Obama administration wants to add 18 cents a gallon gasoline tax. This is additional. Your costs will necessarily skyrocket as Obama said. He wants your gas prices to be higher. Why would you vote for a arty of people called democrats who have no more respect for your standard of living than to jack up your taxes and increase the costs of food too? What a bunch of democrat sheep.

    • WalkesRoy

      The Obama administration has nothing to do with high cost of gas. I stand sure that if your using it for business, you’ll get you 18cents. Now let’s talk about the other 3 and a half to 4 dollars. Do you remember a decade and a few years ago it was one dollar per gallon. Also are you knowledgeable to the fact that there is a separate committee that decides the actual prices that have nothing to do with the government. This mid westerner way of thinking is messing up our country! It built on ignorance and trust me the republican and tea bag sects that really running things arent for a real America. They stand for prejudice, suppression of regular folk, fear momgering and subtraction of the truth and logic. Too easily you follow. Read in between the lines of those you look up to and those you call your enemies. This will free you from the mid western mindset simulation of armed cattle for the slaughter

      • landofaahs

        Frankly your post has the reads like the level of a third grader. I understand OPEC setting supply targets. I know that the Federal reserve is destroying the dollar which causes oil producing countries to raise the price of their crude. But those added costs to business will be added to the final cost that the consumer will pay for the good or service purchased. Just a hint dude, Business does not pay taxes. ?They pass them on to the consumer in the form of higher prices. As far as the Midwest way of thinking, that is the only thing keeping this basket case of an economy producing. You’re so stupid you think Tea Party people are controlling the country.? None of the branches of government are running the country and Obama certainly is not a tea party person. The conservative Tea Party types built this country and the welfare recipient class along with crony capitalist corporations have destroyed this country. But when the split of the country comes and divides into 3 or 4 parts. We will see which survives. I hate to see this country split but it will because history shows it in so many examples.
        Oh and by the way, your condemnation of the Tea Party is not prejudice huh? Frankly, you’re not only too stupid to know the answers, you don’t even know which questions to ask.

  • Anonymous

    We are energy independent. One of the best kept secrets is the Bakken formation in North Dakota that is larger than any oil field found in the world. The first oil refinery being built in decades is being built in Dickinson, ND. Bakken oil field is what is going up into Canada. Does Keystone Pipeline ring a bell. There is a bigger oil field found below the Bakken that is bigger than the Bakken. Obama wants to shut this down as well as OPEC. OPEC is paying the environmentalist to shut down all things that will make us energy independent. Does United Nations Agenda 21sound familiar with getting the cars off the road?

  • Michael J. Fell

    I’ve only been saying this for the past 15 years. “progressives” in California attacked me for being “brainwashed” by “big oil.” They then hopped in their gas (fossil fuel) guzzling SUVs with their plastic (fossil fuel) interiors and drove off to their well heated (fossil fuel) homes and cooked dinner on their gas (fossil fuel) ranges.

  • Anonymous

    This is Glenn at his best

  • Anonymous

    Good time to live in Houston.

  • Pearls to Swine

    It seems to me a bit of wishful thinking to believe that if America doesn’t intervene in the middle east that America will be able to preserve it’s security. Aside from the oil issue there is the issue of radical Islamic terrorists with nuclear bombs. Thats the future of the world if America takes a back seat.

  • Pearls to Swine

    Watching the undoing, in a week, of victories that US forces won in Iraq at great cost over many years, Americans are asking themselves what, if anything, should be done.

    What can prevent the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) – the al-Qaida offshoot that President Barack Obama derided just months ago as a bunch of amateurs – from taking over Iraq? And what is at stake for America – other than national pride – if it does? Muddying the waters is the fact that the main actor that seems interested in fighting ISIS on the ground in Iraq is Iran. Following ISIS’s takeover of Mosul and Tikrit last week, the Iranian regime deployed elite troops in Iraq from the Quds Force, its foreign operations division.

    The Obama administration, along with Republican Sen. Lindsay Graham, views Iran’s deployment of forces in Iraq as an opportunity for the US. The US, they argue should work with Iran to defeat ISIS.

    The idea is that since the US and Iran both oppose al-Qaida, Iranian gains against it will redound to the US’s benefit.

    There are two basic, fundamental problems with this idea.

    First, there is a mountain of evidence that Iran has no beef with al-Qaida and is happy to work with it.

    According to the 9/11 Commission’s report, between eight and 10 of the September 11 hijackers traveled through Iran before going to the US. And this was apparently no coincidence.

    According to the report, Iran had been providing military training and logistical support for al-Qaida since at least the early 1990s.

    After the battle of Tora Bora in December 2001, al-Qaida’s leadership scattered. Many senior commanders – including bin Laden’s son Said, al-Qaida’s chief strategist Saif al-Adel and Suleiman Abu Ghaith – decamped to Iran, where they set up a command center.

    From Iran, these men directed the operations of al-Qaida forces in Iraq led by Abu Musab Zarqawi. Zarqawi entered Iraq from Iran and returned to Iran several times during the years he led al-Qaida operations in Iraq.

    Iran’s cooperation with al-Qaida continues today in Syria.

    According to The Wall Street Journal, in directing the defense of Bashar Assad’s regime in Syria, Iran has opted to leave ISIS and its al-Qaida brethren in the Nusra Front alone. That is why they have been able to expand their power in northern Syria.

    Iran and its allies have concentrated their attacks against the more moderate Free Syrian Army, which they view as a threat.

    Given Iran’s 20-year record of cooperation with al-Qaida, it is reasonable to assume that it is deploying forces into Iraq to tighten its control over Shi’ite areas, not to fight al-Qaida. The record shows that Iran doesn’t believe that its victories and al-Qaida’s victories are mutually exclusive.

    The second problem with the idea of subcontracting America’s fight against al-Qaida to Iran is that it assumes that Iranian success in such a war would benefit America. But again, experience tells a different tale.

    The US killed Zarqawi in an air strike in 2006.

    Reports in the Arab media at the time alleged that Iran had disclosed Zarqawi’s location to the US. While the reports were speculative, shortly after Zarqawi was killed, then-secretary of state Condoleezza Rice floated the idea of opening nuclear talks with Iran for the first time.

    The Iranians contemptuously rejected her offer. But Rice’s willingness to discuss Iran’s nuclear weapons program with the regime, even as it was actively engaged in killing US forces in Iraq, ended any serious prospect that the Bush administration would develop a coherent plan for dealing with Iran in a strategic and comprehensive way.

    Moreover, Zarqawi was immediately replaced by one of his deputies. And the fight went on.

    So if Iran did help the US find Zarqawi, the price the US paid for Iran’s assistance was far higher than the benefit it derived from killing Zarqawi.

    This brings us to the real threat that the rise of ISIS – and Iran – in Iraq poses to the US. That threat is blowback.

    Both Iran and al-Qaida are sworn enemies of the United States, and both have been empowered by events of the past week.

    Because they view the US as their mortal foe, their empowerment poses a danger to the US.

    But it is hard for people to recognize how events in distant lands can directly impact their lives.

    In March 2001, when the Taliban blew up the Bamiyan Buddhas statues in Afghanistan, the world condemned the act. But no one realized that the same destruction would be brought to the US six months later when al-Qaida destroyed the World Trade Center and attacked the Pentagon.

    The September 11 attacks were the blowback from the US doing nothing to contain the Taliban and al-Qaida.

    North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic-missile tests, as well as North Korean proliferation of both nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles to rogue regimes, like Iran, that threaten the US, are the beginnings of the blowback from the US decision to reach a nuclear deal with Pyongyang in the 1990s that allowed the regime to keep its nuclear installations.

    The blowback from Iran’s emergence as a nuclear power is certain to dwarf what the world has seen from North Korea so far.

    Yet rather than act in a manner that would reduce the threat of blowback from Iraq’s disintegration and takeover by America’s worst enemies, the Obama administration gives every indication that it is doubling down on the disastrous policies that led the US to this precarious juncture.

    The only strategy that the US can safely adopt today is one of double containment. The aim of double containment is to minimize the capacity of Iran and al-Qaida to harm the US and its interests.

    But to contain your enemies, you need to understand them. You need to understand their nature, their aims, their support networks and their capabilities.

    Unfortunately, in keeping with what has been the general practice of the US government since the September 11 attacks, the US today continues to ignore or misunderstand all of these critical considerations.

    Regarding al-Qaida specifically, the US has failed to understand that al-Qaida is a natural progression from the political/religious milieu of Salafist/Wahabist or Islamist Islam, from whence it sprang. As a consequence, anyone who identifies with Islamist religious and political organizations is a potential supporter and recruit for al-Qaida and its sister organizations.

    There were two reasons that George W. Bush refused to base US strategy for combating al-Qaida on any cultural context broader than the Taliban.

    Bush didn’t want to sacrifice the US’s close ties with Saudi Arabia, which finances the propagation and spread of Islamism. And he feared being attacked as a bigot by Islamist organizations in the US like the Council on American Islamic Relations and its supporters on the Left.

    As for Obama, his speech in Cairo to the Muslim world in June 2009 and his subsequent apology tour through Islamic capitals indicated that, unlike Bush, Obama understands that al-Qaida is not a deviation from otherwise peaceful Islamist culture.

    But unlike Bush, Obama blames America for its hostility. Obama’s radical sensibilities tell him that America pushed the Islamists to oppose it. As he sees it, he can appease the Islamists into ending their war against America.

    To this end, Obama has prohibited federal employees from conducting any discussion or investigation of Islamist doctrine, terrorism, strategy and methods and the threat all pose to the US.

    These prohibitions were directly responsible for the FBI’s failure to question or arrest the Tsarnaev brothers in 2012 despite the fact that Russian intelligence tipped it off to the fact that the 2013 Boston Marathon bombers were jihadists.

    They were also responsible for the army’s refusal to notice any of the black flags that Maj. Nidal Hassan raised in the months before his massacre of his fellow soldiers at Fort Hood, or to take any remedial action after the massacre to prevent such atrocities from recurring.

    The Muslim Brotherhood is the progenitor of Islamism. It is the organizational, social, political and religious swamp from whence the likes of al-Qaida, Hamas and other terror groups emerged. Whereas Bush pretended the Brotherhood away, Obama embraced it as a strategic partner.

    Then there is Iran.

    Bush opted to ignore the 9/11 Commission’s revelations regarding Iranian collaboration with al-Qaida. Instead, particularly in the later years of his administration, Bush sought to appease Iran both in Iraq and in relation to its illicit nuclear weapons program.

    In large part, Bush did not acknowledge, or act on the sure knowledge, that Iran was the man behind the curtain in Iraq, because he believed that the American people would oppose the expansion of the US operations in the war against terror.

    Obama’s actions toward Iran indicate that he knows that Iran stands behind al-Qaida and that the greatest threat the US faces is Iran’s nuclear weapons program. But here as well, Obama opted to follow a policy of appeasement. Rather than prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons, or stem its advance in Syria and Iraq, Obama treats Iran as though it poses no threat and is indeed a natural ally. He blames Iran’s belligerence on the supposedly unjust policies of his predecessors and the US’s regional allies.

    For a dual-containment strategy to have any chance of working, the US needs to reverse course. No, it needn’t deploy troops to Iraq. But it does need to seal its border to minimize the chance that jihadists will cross over from Mexico.

    It doesn’t need to clamp down on Muslims in America. But it needs to investigate and take action where necessary against al-Qaida’s ideological fellow travelers in Islamist mosques, organizations and the US government. To this end, it needs to end the prohibition on discussion of the Islamist threat by federal government employees.

    As for Iran, according to The New York Times, Iran is signaling that the price of cooperation with the Americans in Iraq is American acquiescence to Iran’s conditions for signing a nuclear deal. In other words, the Iranians will fight al-Qaida in Iraq in exchange for American facilitation of its nuclear weapons program.

    The first step the US must take to minimize the Iranian threat is to walk away from the table and renounce the talks. The next step is to take active measures to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power.

    Unfortunately, the Obama administration appears prepared to do none of these things. To the contrary, its pursuit of an alliance with Iran in Iraq indicates that it is doubling down on the most dangerous aspects of its policy of empowering America’s worst enemies.

    It only took the Taliban six months to move from the Bamiyan Buddhas to the World Trade Center. Al-Qaida is stronger now than ever before. And Iran is on the threshold of a nuclear arsenal.

    Caroline B. Glick is the author of The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East.


  • Anonymous

    We need a oil piple throught texas from canada more offshore drilling, I hope we could reduce our dependance down to 30%, but I don’t think we are ever going to be able dump our dependance all together.

  • CharlyO

    Energy independence would be a great thing but if you think it will drop your own gas prices at the pump you are dreaming.

  • Anonymous
  • Mr. Sequel

    Since the world is devoid of all-knowing people, liberty provides the leeway for each of us to adapt to the unpredictable circumstances and conditions we face.

The 411 From Glenn

Sign up for Glenn’s newsletter

In five minutes or less, keep track of the most important news of the day.