From the June 2008 Idaho Observer:
Montana governor announces 40 billion barrels of crude oil in eastern Montana HELENA, Mont.—
Montana governor announces 40 billion barrels of crude oil in eastern Montana
HELENA, Mont.—Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer announced May 28, 2008, that as much as 40 billion barrels of crude oil is lying untouched in eastern Montana. By comparison, Saudi Arabia has the largest known oil reserves at 260 billion barrels.
The US Geological Service currently estimates that there are 4.3 billion barrels of recoverable oil in the Bakken region of eastern Montana, which also reaches into North Dakota.
Governor Schweitzer, an agronomist with an advanced degree in soil science, has a picture on his office wall of his grandfather operating a one-man refinery. He believes the government’s estimate is "conservative" and claims there is a lot more crude in the region and estimates the amount will "…probably be more like 40 billion."
Interestingly, the Montana governor is also the nephew of LeRoy Schweitzer—one of the Montana Freeman who was convicted of various federal charges after the 81-day federal siege of "Justice Township" near Jordan, Montana. Under Justice Township and the Clark family ranches in Garfield county, coincidentally, sits large amounts of this virtually untapped crude oil reserve.
Irish Journalist Red O’Hara believes that a covert motivation for the feds seizing Justice Township and manufacturing convictions against seven Montana Freemen was to wrest from private control the underlying oil resource. In 2003, The American’s Bulletin published "The Land of the Freemen is Slated to be Buffalo Commons and Wildlife Game Preserve." In the article O’Hara poses the question, "Why did it take 850 FBI agents 81 days to arrest 14 Freemen?"
"Common sense," O’Hara observes, "will tell you that it doesn’t take 850 FBI agents 81 days to arrest 14 Freemen."
O’Hara believes that the Freemen were arrested and their property seized so the feds could nationalize the ground, declare it a national park and exploit the oil resource at its pleasure. "At $130 a barrel, it won’t be long until the drilling begins," O’Hara said.
Having an oil deposit of this magnitude on American soil rather obviates the need to secure access to Middle East oil through military occupation. This energy independence capacity alone reduces the Iraq war to the senseless and belligerent mass murder of innocents for no reason.
Montanans are ready to go. "We’ve been drilling out there for 70 years," said Schweitzer of the Bakken area. "People there like new oil production. In fact, the city of Sydney [the county seat] wants to build a refinery. Where else in America do you have a community that says, ‘we want to build a refinery in our backyard?’"
There has been no comment by the Bush administration on developing domestic oil resources to help save the economy and end the war in Iraq.