Some Big Indians Grab Iron Ore in Nunavut
The Imperial Global Elitist Plan Continues to Unfold
January 11, 2011
A battle has been waging in the financial markets since September over Baffinland Iron Mines BIM. The giant steel producer, ArcelorMittal AM has been trying to buy up 100% of the yet to be developed but huge iron deposits on Baffin Island 160 kilometres south of Pond Inlet in Nunavut Territory. Their adversary, Nunavut Iron Ore Acquisitions has been manoeuvering to gain controlling interests in BIM.
The directors of Baffinland Iron Mines are advising the shareholders to take the latest ArcelorMittal offer of about $551million. The head of BIM, Richard D. McCloskey, the second largest shareholder, stands to make $millions. BIM's largest shareholder is private equity firm Resource Capital Funds RCF, based in Denver Colorado. David Thomas is RCF's Toronto representative.
The Inuit people of Nunavut, the Nunavummiut, are uneasy and have no say in the deal. The bids keep getting higher and higher. Some greedy elitists are set to make a lot of money. This is bad news for the Inuit people and for steel workers everywhere.
Nunavut Iron Ore Acquisitions was set up for the express purpose of bidding on Baffinland Iron Mines. It is wholly owned by US-based Iron Ore Holdings which is owned by Canadian professional dealmaker Bruce Walter, former consultant to BIM Jowdat Waheed, and "funds" managed by the Energy & Minerals Group EMG, based in Dallas, Texas. Typically, EMG is providing the majority of the equity financing. Investors are people who like their money to work for them. They are willing to take big financial risks for big gains.
Nunavut Iron Ore is currently negotiating with the Ontario Securities Commission to keep them in the bidding. Though the deal is not officially final yet, the continued bidding keeps the price going up and up. It looks obvious that AM will win the prized iron ore deposits.
ArcelorMittal claims about 10% of global steel production with operations in the whole process from mining and milling the iron ore through smelting to selling various steel products. It already has 26 per cent of Baffinland in so-called "lockup agreements" with Baffinland board members and RCF. Their focus markets are China and India where they are stockpiling steel for future use.
Steel is needed for thousands of bomber planes, ships and all kinds of trucks being built for militaries all over the world to wage war and control resource plunder. The Canadian military industry is a big part of this imperial picture. ArcelorMittal anticipate lots of business. The costs in human suffering are not included in their ledgers.
Lakshmi Mittal is Chairman and CEO of ArcelorMittal while chip off the ole block, Aditya Mittal is chief financial officer.
Lakshmi is one of the 2010 top ten billionaires in the world. He owns the most expensive house in England. Is this some kinda reverse colonialism?? Born in India, Lakshmi went to the Jesuit College, St. Xavier's in Calcutta and owned his own steel business at the age of 26. He wanted to go global. He bought up companies in Canada and Germany and then Kazakhstan where he "saved" the national economy.
Lakshmi created Mittal Steel in 2004 "via a takeover of his private company, “LNM” by his public one; Ispat. Mittal Steel became the largest steelmaker in the world, with shipments of 42.1 million tons of steel and profits of over $22 billion in 2004".
With merger after merger, Lakshmi finally joined the big Luxembourg-based Arcelor Steel, a company created through a merger of firms from Spain, France, Luxembourg and Belgium, to his Mittal, creating an even bigger top global steel producer. ArcelorMittal then launched into a worldwide commodities boom that has seen steel prices skyrocket from $240 a tonne in 2002 to $1,000 in 2009. Arcelor Mittal was the first to produce more than 100 million tonnes of steel a year.
Lakshmi had achieved his dream but he kept on going. Seems guys like Lakshmi get a big rush from wielding power and wealth. The company's goal is to produce 200 million tons per year by 2015.
Zbigniew Brzezinski describes people like Lakshmi Mittal,
"A...general phenomenon is the appearance of a distinct global elite with a globalist outlook and a transnational loyalty. Fluent in English and using that language to conduct its business, the new global elite is characterized by high mobility, a cosmopolitan lifestyle and a primary commitment to the workplace, typically a transnational business or financial corporation. Non-native senior executives within such firms are now common with 20 percent of Europe's largest companies even directed by indiviudlals who once would have been considered foreigners. The annual meeting of the World Economic Forum WEF [chaired by the ubiquitous Maurice Strong] has become a party congress for the new global elite: top politicians, financial tycoons, captains of commerce, media moguls, academic heavyweights and even rock stars. That elite increasingly displays its own distinctive sense of interest, camaraderie and identity."
Needless to say, Lakshmi Mittal is part of the IN club at the WEF. He is a member of its International Business Council.
ArcelorMittal is a Corporate Member of Chatham House, originally known as the Royal Institute of International Affairs. Chatham House is the headquarters in St James's Square, London, England for a global network of groups or "round tables" with the job of maintaining and sustaining British imperialism.
According to Carroll Quigley,
"The Round Table Groups were semi-secret discussion and lobbying groups organized by Lionel Curtis, Philip H. Kerr (Lord Lothian), and (Sir) William S. Marris in 1908-1911. This was done on behalf of Lord Milner, the dominant Trustee of the Rhodes Trust in the two decades 1905-1925.
"The original purpose of these groups was to seek to federate the English-speaking world along lines laid down by Cecil Rhodes (1853-1902) and William T. Stead, (1840-1912), and the money for the organizational work came originally from the Rhodes Trust.
"By 1915 Round Table groups existed in seven countries, including England, South Africa, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India, and a rather loosely organized group in the United States..." which became the Council on Foreign Relations CFR. Canada has the Canadian International Council CIC.
Another corporate member of Chatham House, the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), has a membership of 15,000 Parliamentarians in Commonwealth, ie British imperial countries around the globe.
Nunavut Premier Eva Aariak told the Globe and Mail the proposed deal [to sell Baffinland Iron Mines to ArcelorMittal] is "good news for Nunavut."
"I hope they'll invest in our people as much as they've invested in the mine," she said.
The Nunavut premier was recently dazzled by money when the Canadian government promised $1billion to Nunavut for schools, health clinics and government infrastructure where the bureaucrats can hang out in comfort while robbing the Indigenous. It's not all that different from the days of the Hudson's Bay Company. It's still colonialism.
This one mine is going for $1/2billion. There is plenty of other mineral wealth in Nunavut like uranium, diamonds, zinc and gold. Most of the riches from the land and the profits will be leaving the territory with the pirates. They'll scurry away as they have always done and always do, avoiding responsibility for the huge mess they have made.
Communities in the North are still relatively isolated. Contact with the outside world is expensive and many people still do not speak English. Conversely, traveling to the North is costly.
What do people in the North know about global corporatists and their selfish plans for pillage and plunder? They're about to find out. For that matter, what do people in the South know about Indigenous struggles in the face of climate change in the Arctic? The Inuit are on the front lines of 21st century resource extraction. The Canadian oligarchs are paving the way for a free for all in the North.
ArcelorMittal already owns mines and processing plants in Cree/Innu territory in Quebec, producing 40% of Canadian iron ore for global use.
According to their web site,
"ArcelorMittal Mines Canada operates two large open-pit mines: one in Mont-Wright, the largest of its kind in North America, and one in Fire Lake. Also at Mont-Wright ... a concentrator, massive workshops and an automated concentrate train loading system. The site is linked by Company rail to the Port-Cartier industrial complex [on the St. Lawrence River], which comprises the pellet plant, storage areas and port facilities for shipping."
With frequent blasting at the Mont-Wright mine, the billions of tons of iron ore are being dug up by a workforce of 1,000. The mine site covers 24 square kilometres. An endless convoy of 250-ton trucks make 1,000 trips daily with the raw ore. It's a non-stop 24-7 energy-consuming, polluting, destructive assault on the land.
The processing of the ore also uses large quantities of electricity and water. ArcelorMittal says they'll clean up their growing tailings ponds when the mining is done. They get cheap electricity from the Quebec government who stole it from Cree territory through the destructive James Bay hydro projects.
DIRT ON ARCELORMITTAL
ArcelorMittal likes to cut corners. They have a reputation for making the cuts on their workers' wages and pensions. They would rather dismantle the plant and close the doors before paying higher wages to workers. As true global corporatists, ArcelorMittal would then shift operations to another country where wages are very low. Safety and environmental violations are widespread too.
Last June, several thousand workers went on indefinite strike over wages at ArcelorMittal's steel plant in Algeria. Algerians are also resisting the privatization of industries in their country.
In 1998, Lakshmi Mittal purchased the Irish Steel plant based in Cork from the government for a nominal fee of £1. Three years later, the plant was closed, leaving 400 people redundant. Subsequent environmental issues at the site have been a cause for criticism. The Government tried to sue in the High Court to have Mittal pay for the clean-up of Cork Harbour but failed. The clean up was expected to cost €70m. (wiki)
According to one report, "...191 people have died in accidents in the past 12 years at Mittal's Kazakhstan operations, where campaigners argue that more money should have been spent on safety measures. The company has strongly rejected allegations of negligence, but later earmarked an extra $1.2bn for improvements."
According to Wikipedia,
"In Kazakhstan, employees of Mittal have accused him of "slave labour" conditions after multiple fatalities in his mines. During December 2004, twenty-three miners died in explosions in Mittal mines in Kazakhstan caused by faulty gas detectors."
While manufacturing is way down in the US, the financial sector is booming for investors and financiers. Roger Bybee describes it this way,
"Money could be made solely out of money, without the intervention of actual production. The new secret was presumed to be leverage and risk management, which allowed the purchase of assets that promised higher returns even if they carried a higher risk.
"This was both an economic and a political development, as the financial sector gained leverage over the rest of the economy, in effect gaining the power to dictate priorities to debtors, vulnerable corporations, and governments. As its power grew, it could demand greater deregulation, allowing it to grow still further and endangering the stability of the larger financial system.
"“The decimation of employment in legacy American brands such as General Motors is a trend that’s likely to continue,” said Robert E. Hall, an economist at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution."
Wiki reveals, "In December 2008, ArcelorMittal announced several plant closings, including the former Bethlehem Steel plant in Lackawanna, New York and LTV Steel in Hennepin, Illinois."
After ArcelorMittal rushed to dismantle complex, custom-built ovens and other equipment that would take months to replace, the Lackawanna workers were able to find a friendly buyer at the last minute, no thanks to ArcelorMittal who had already moved on to other prey.
"On 30 June 2010, the European Commission fined 17 steel producers a total of €518M for running a price-fixing cartel, with ArcelorMittal being hit the hardest." (Wiki)
That means ArcelorMittal was the leader of the pack and stood to gain or lose the most, depending on the final outcome. It's a dog eat dog world out there, they tell us.
The global village isn't looking very friendly. Yet, we know somehow it doesn't have to be that way.
Already tottering on the brink of complete collapse, capitalism depends on market growth and constant development. It is not a sustainable system. With consumer manufacturing at a glut, there is only one option left for the capitalists, the military one. Constant warfare means more machines and weapons and the constant need for reconstruction.
The imperial, colonial economic system of capitalism must be scrapped and replaced with a more balanced system. How much longer can the People and other Life Forms of the Earth bear the burden for the elitists and their fears and insatiable desires? Enuf is Enuf!