Burma: American Corporate Complicity

Last Friday's Democracy Now! program ran a story about Chevron's business dealings in Burma. Chevron is the only remaining major U.S. corporation in Burma. In 2005 Chevron purchased Unocal, an oil company that was accused of actively assisting the Junta in "the torture, murder and rape of villagers during construction of a pipeline". There are also reports of forced labor by the nearby villagers. That's right, an American corporation using a foreign military government to force its citizens to provide labor for that coporation. Chevron has been allowed to continue doing business in Burma despite U.S. sanctions against the government because it was "grandfathered" in. Of course, this exemption only works because Unocal was purchased by Chevron thus allowing Chevron to gain the exemption that would have gone to Unocal.

It should be noted that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is a former Board Member on the Chevron Board of Directors and had a tanker named after her in the Chevron fleet, The Condoleezza Rice...seriously!

I am sure this has nothing to do with Chevron's continued business in Burma, afterall the tanker's name was changed after it received too much attention. And Rice was only on Chevron's Board for ten years, resigning when she was appointed Bush's National Security Advisor.

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