The Political Economy of the Oil Import Quota; Myth, Oil and Politics; The Soviet Union and International Oil Politics; The Arab Oil Weapon; The Politics of Crude Oil Pricing in the Middle East, 1970-1975

In This Review

The Political Economy of the Oil Import Quota

By Yoram Barzel and Christopher D. Hall
Hoover Institution, 1977
96 pp. $8.95

Myth, Oil and Politics

By Charles F. Doran
Free Press, 1977
211 pp. $12.95

The Soviet Union and International Oil Politics

By Arthur Jay Klinghoffer
Columbia University Press, 1977
389 pp. $16.50

The Arab Oil Weapon

By Jordan J. Paust and Albert P. Blaustein
Sijthoff/Oceana, 1977
370 pp. $27.50

The Politics of Crude Oil Pricing in the Middle East, 1970-1975

By Richard Chadbourn Weisberg
Institute of International Studies, University of California, 1977
170 pp. $3.50

Neither governments nor analysts have found a way to meet the need to coordinate domestic and foreign energy policies, financial policies, and foreign policy in general. But efforts to understand the multifold political aspects of oil in the international system now abound. Barzel and Hall's short study attempts to analyze the entrepreneurial capacity of the domestic petroleum industry to evade restrictions imposed by import quotas and the effects of those quotas on market behavior and on the market's contours. Professor Doran's excursion into the political economy of oil is rich in observations and assessments. After examining carefully the central shibboleths surrounding international oil - the just price, the role of Israel in OPEC pricing, excessive profits, the role of consumer solidarity, the effects of divestiture, and OPEC durability - the author proposes a theory of co-dependence among consuming and producing nations on the one hand and the oil industry on the other. Similar conclusions are developed in Weisberg's study, which develops a model to explain bargaining between and among these three parties in the first half of this decade. Professor Klinghoffer and Paust and Blaustein are more narrowly focused. After analyzing the much-neglected political economy of state trading in oil by the Soviet government, Klinghoffer examines the domestic and geopolitical bases of the Soviet Union's international energy policies. Paust and Blaustein's book is a rich source for documents and commentaries on the political use of oil embargoes as an instrument of Arab governmental policy.

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