Exxon, China and Russia: Cause for Concern?

Commentary by

Dave Harbour

We have never criticized ExxonMobil’s excellent business practices.

Let us just say today that we are ‘concerned’ about any of our free market companies, 1) transferring technology to Russia or China, 2) trusting communist/authoritarian governments that are hegemonically threatening the U.S. and our allies, and 3) trusting communist/authoritarian partners who are siding one degree or another with U.S. adversaries including Cuba, Venezuela, North Korea, Iran, Syria, etc.

We are concerned after a tour of China that, ExxonMobil may build a petrochemical plant and LNG import terminal in China.  We are also concerned, having visited Exxon’s magnificent Sakhalin development and reviewing its plans in 1996, re: Exxon to exit Russian joint ventures set up in 2013/14 with Rosneft.

Yes, we understand the massive energy market China has become and the massive energy reserves controlled by Russia.

And…we understand the importance for global companies to acquire and execute world class development projects from a limited list of feasible prospects.

But our concern about decisions of some of our greatest companies, like the venerable ExxonMobil, is that shareholder demands for quarterly or even annual ‘success announcements’ could outweigh long-term investment security.  Free market companies that negotiate with communist/authoritarian entities are disadvantaged.  The Chinese and Russians are not very well bound by the rule of law.  We could find ourselves in an active state of war with either at any time.  And our great shareholder-owned companies risk much by playing with politically controlled government companies that focus on long-term strategic advantages, as do Chess Grandmasters.

As Alaska citizens, some of us are additionally concerned about multi-decade probing by Russia of our airspace and of a bizarre effort by our present governor to continue streaming public funds into his government-owned LNG company that seeks to establish multi-decade gas export agreements and other entanglements with Chinese communist-owned companies (Question: a prospective marriage made in heaven or hell?)

We wish ExxonMobil and our other magnificent U.S. based international oil companies well, but we cannot help but be concerned for them, their trusting investors and for us citizens.


Dear Reader:

Our friends at the Resource Development Council for  Alaska suggest the future of our state requires, “ALL HANDS ON DECK”, AS FOLLOWS:

“The U.S. Forest Service is initiating an environmental impact statement (EIS) and public rulemaking process to address the management of inventoried roadless areas in the Tongass National Forest.

“In response to a State of Alaska petition, the U.S. Forest Service agrees that the long-standing controversy surrounding management of roadless areas in the Tongass may be resolved through rulemaking creating a state-specific Roadless Rule. Both the State and the Forest Service believe a long-term durable approach to roadless area management is needed that balances preservation with social and economic needs in the Tongass and the region. While exempting the Tongass from provisions of the Roadless Rule, the proposed rulemaking would leave the nationwide rule in place in the Chugach National Forest.

“RDC believes the 2001 Roadless Rule prohibitions are unnecessary in both the Tongass and Chugach National Forest, which can be adequately protected under amended land management plans.

“Action Requested

“This rulemaking is an opportunity to revisit a sweeping federal rule that never made sense in Alaska and to help create local sustainable economies. What happens next will depend on how Alaskans react. Let the Forest Service know that Alaska is unique and deserves a rule that is modeled to the needs of Alaskans. Please see the RDC Action Alert for additional information, comment points, a schedule of public hearings, and the various methods on how comments may be submitted.”



On Patriot Day, we honor the memories of the nearly 3,000 precious lives we lost on September 11, 2001, and of every hero who has given their life since that day to protect our safety and our freedom.

We come together, today, to recall this timeless truth: When America is united, no force on Earth can break us apart. Our values endure; our people thrive; our Nation prevails; and the memory of our loved ones never fades.

Although that fateful Tuesday 17 years ago began like any other, it erupted into horror and anguish when radical Islamist terrorists carried out an unprecedented attack on our homeland.

In New York, Virginia, and Pennsylvania, the enemies of liberty took aim on America, but their evil acts could not crush our spirit, overcome our will, or loosen our commitment to freedom. Through the dust and ashes, we emerged resilient and united — bruised but not broken.

On September 11, 2001, the world came to understand the true source of America’s strength: A people of an indomitable will and a society rooted in the timeless values of liberty.

Our love of country was made manifest through the examples of Americans engaging in countless acts of courage, grit, and selflessness. Their actions gave us hope and helped to sustain us in the days of healing that followed.

We were moved by the heroism of the passengers and crew aboard United Flight 93, who sacrificed their lives to prevent further acts of terror.

We were inspired by police and first responders as they rushed headlong into burning buildings to rescue the injured and trapped, and as they courageously braved fire, smoke, and debris, descending deep into piles of rubble, ash, and twisted iron to search for survivors.

We were stirred to service by the deeds of those who labored in the ensuing days and months, often in dangerous conditions, to help our Nation rebuild and recover. The noble sacrifices of these true patriots are forged into the great history of America.

Today, we honor the memories of the souls we lost on September 11, 2001, and pay tribute to all of the patriots who have sacrificed their lives in defense of freedom.

We pray for the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen currently serving our Nation in harm’s way.

We thank the dedicated men and women who keep our homeland safe and secure.

We applaud the unsung patriots in city halls, community centers, and places of worship across our country whose simple acts of kindness define the greatness of America.

By a joint resolution approved December 18, 2001 (Public Law 107-89), the Congress has designated September 11 of each year as “Patriot Day.”

NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim September 11, 2018, as Patriot Day.

I call upon all departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the United States to display the flag of the United States at half‑staff on Patriot Day in honor of the individuals who lost their lives on September 11, 2001.

I invite the Governors of the United States and its Territories and interested organizations and individuals to join in this observance.

I call upon the people of the United States to participate in community service in honor of those our Nation lost, to observe this day with appropriate ceremonies and activities, including remembrance services, and to observe a moment of silence beginning at 8:46 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time to honor the innocent victims who perished as a result of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

Donald J. Trump, President