We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
The best review of the history of the American role in the ME, by Bacevitch in the Wilson Quarterly. He contends that the seeds of our current World War IV were planted by FDR, that the war was declared by Carter, and reaches its full development now. And yes, it's about oil. And a pact with the devil - a pact not so much for oil itself as a pact for politically-necessary growth and prosperity.