A much more mercenary and much more commercial motive lies behind the American intervention in Somalia and its support for one side .
US oil companies, including Conoco, Amoco, Chevron and Phillips were positioned to exploit Somalia’s rich oil reserves during the reign of pro-US President Mohammed Siad Barre. These companies had secured billion-dollar concessions to explore and drill in large portions of the Somali countryside prior to the coup led by warlord Mohammed Farah Aidid that toppled Barre. Conoco’s Mogadishu office housed the US embassy and military headquarters. Diplomats and oilmen hand-in-hand once again .
"It's there. There's no doubt there's oil there," said Thomas E. O'Connor, the principal petroleum engineer for the World Bank, who headed an in-depth, three-year study of oil prospects in the Gulf of Aden off Somalia's northern coast."You don't know until you study a lot further just how much is there," O'Connor said. "But it has commercial potential. It's got high potential . . . once the Somalis get their act together."
Although the above was written in 1993 , this more recent article confirms the continued interest of American oil companies in the Horn of Africa .
“A new US cleansing of Somalian ‘tyranny’ would open the door for these US oil companies to map and develop the possibly huge oil potential in Somalia..." F. William Engdahl , author of ‘A Century of War: Anglo-American Oil Politics and the New World Order,’