Roberto Cantoni, Oil Exploration, 2017

Roberto Cantoni: Oil Exploration, Diplomacy, and Security in the Early Cold War. The Enemy Underground (London: Routledge, 2017)

 The importance of oil for national military-industrial complexes appeared more clearly than ever in the Cold War. This volume argues that the confidential acquisition of geoscientific knowledge was paramount for states, not only to provide for their own energy needs, but also to buttress national economic and geostrategic interests and protect energy security.

By investigating the postwar rebuilding and expansion of French and Italian oil industries from the second half of the 1940s to the early 1960s, this book shows how successive administrations in those countries devised strategies of oil exploration and transport, aiming at achieving a higher degree of energy autonomy and setting up powerful oil agencies that could implement those strategies. However, both within and outside their national territories, these two European countries had to confront the new Cold War balances and the interests of the two superpowers.


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