Business: The Political Power of Mideast Oil

In terms of international economics and politics, Middle Eastern oil is the world's balance wheel.

—John Emerson, Chase Manhattan Bank Economist

EACH time a new crisis flares in the Middle East, Western oilmen are beset by a thousand and one Arabian nightmares. That has never been more the case than now, when the unstable elements of conflict in the post-Nasser Arab world could bring trouble at any time. Will the Arabs turn off the oil taps? Might Russia grab control of the world's richest reserves? And how badly would an interruption hurt the U.S.?

Those nightmares are not likely to come true, if only...

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