Drill A Gas Well, Bring Home A Soldier: How It Came to Be

Vic Furman - American PrideVictor Furman
Upstate New York Landowner, Shale Gas Activist


Vic Furman tells how “Drill A Gas Well, Bring Home A Soldier” became the slogan of Upstate NY landowners and explains why it’s important this Memorial Day.

It was 2009. Three of us, Bryant LaTourette, Sue Dorsey and I were riding home together in a van after a town board meeting in Oneonta, New York.

All of us were, at the time, land owner coalition leaders and/or active in the Joint Land Owners Coalition of New York. We were advocates for clean safe responsible gas drilling here in New York. We also understood the relationship of natural gas development to our national security and what today, Memorial Day, is all about.

Our education on the subject of hydraulic fracturing was self-learned by attending scientific presentations in several different forums given by geologists,  engineers and gas and oil experts in their fields. We attended one event, I recall, where a physicist told us gravity helps keeps frack fluid deep in the ground, as it is impossible for the fluid to penetrate upwards through 5,000 feet of bedrock to a water aquifer.

We had facts, not fictitious stories, like the ones perpetrated by paid representatives of Food and Water Watch, or the Catskill MountainKeeper, to name two. That reality recently unfolded in an ongoing trial in Montrose Pennsylvania. Testimony at a hearing in Albany, New York about a contaminated well water was also a lie. The brown water jug paraded around by Hollywood elitist Mark Ruffalo was yet another. Some people were paid as much as $6,000 month to carry that brown jug and claim “this is our water….”

But, for most of you this is not new information, just denied information by those who believed, religiously, Al Gore’s predictions that global warming would eradicate the polar caps as well as the polar bears, that rising sea levels would put costal cities under water in a few years and that mankind’s very existence would be endangered by 2012. But, this how things have unfolded later. Let me get back to that meeting that Bryant Sue and I attended in Oneonta. 

My memory of the event from a decade ago is a bit faded except for the gist of the testimony we gave in our plea for common sense on the subject of gas drilling. Several speakers on the pro-drilling side brought up the fact we had soldiers dying to protect oil and gas fields in the Middle East.

Our opposition claimed this was simply not true but, yet, the Navy’s mission statement was to protect shipping lanes and ports of commerce including oil barges from terrorist. We had soldiers in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, protecting oil interests, in Afghanistan protecting pipelines. The simple fact is since 1973 up to half of all are wars were fought to save American oil imports! From 1973 until today, nearly every war fought by American troops has been to protect the free world’s interest in our Middle East energy supply. And, we aren’t the only ones who saw it this way, as this information from the Harvard Kennedy School indicates:

Though the threat of “resource wars” over possession of oil reserves is often exaggerated, the sum total of the political effects generated by the oil industry makes oil a leading cause of war. Between one-quarter and one-half of interstate wars since 1973 have been connected to one or more oil-related causal mechanisms. No other commodity has had such an impact on international security.

The influence of oil on conflict is often poorly understood. In U.S. public debates about the 1991 and 2003 Iraq wars, both sides focused excessively on the question of whether the United States was fighting for possession of oil reserves; neither sought a broader understanding of how oil shaped the preconditions for war.

When we left the Oneonta meeting we were troubled by the fact that, suddenly, people who often protested sending our troops to protect oil were now denying that it ever happened. We were heavily into discussion on our trip back to Chenango County; why the turnabout? What was triggering the anti-drilling zealots to abandon their war protest past? Why was discussing military lives lost, now such a threat to them? Then it hit us like a ton of bricks…

If we became less independent on foreign fossil fuels due the miracle of hydraulic fracturing, then fewer soldiers would be sent to countries to face death and dismemberment. Hydraulic fracturing would be revered as the miracle that would allow some of our soldiers to come home and stop fighting wars in the Mideast. That would be a public relations nightmare for them and their anti-gas movement, which was more important to them than our soldiers. To drill a gas well was worse, in their eyes, than our soldiers fighting foreign wars for oil.

That was how our “Drill A Gas Well, Bring Home A Soldier” bumper sticker campaign was born; to bring home the reality and challenge those who put their anti-gas agenda before that of our nation and its youth.

Drill A Gas Well, Bring A Soldier Home

This Memorial Day weekend, whether your pro-gas or an anti-gas gas user,  thank one of those soldiers. If you know a soldier, whether it’s your friend’s daughter, your brother’s son, your dad, your uncle or someone else, don’t pass up the opportunity to thank them for their service to you and our country. Without their personal sacrifice there might not be a home to be proud of or a country as rich and prosperous as the United States of America.

And, if and when you attend your local parade, as the living veterans from many wars march by, clap and shout “Thank You!” Ever so more important, remember those who gave all, life and limb, and pray that their’s is the peace of an eternity filled with Love and Joy.

Thank you,

drill a gas well

Victor J Furman, Specialist 4th Class, The Big Red1 & The Battling Bastards of the Second Division

Proud to have served! Drill a gas well and bring a soldier home!

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10 thoughts on “Drill A Gas Well, Bring Home A Soldier: How It Came to Be

  1. Yes, we also protest war as I have for many years and don’t want any soldiers in the Middle East.
    And now more are being talked about being sent over to the Middle East by our present President.

    We have an anti-war and peace event today in Elmira, NY at Mark Twain’s grave, and reciting “The War Prayer”. this morning. And will place flowers on soldier graves there.

    Soldiers are still in the Middle East despite fracking for ovre ten years….
    It never seems to end.
    Some make big money off of war.
    need to end the profits of war.

    • Don’t be silly Vera. Humanity, in order to preserve itself must have war as an option, especially if negotiation and diffusion are no longer applicable.
      Even “Marxists” like Sanders and most of Hollywood are “pro-war”. Nobility is Nobility, no matter how you slice it. How else can you keep down the masses in order for their own oligarchy to remain in control and live in the laps of luxury? It doesn’t always have to include the use of conventional firearms.. war is war. Hypocrites.

    • Laying flowers on a grave of a soldier does not justify the hypocrisy of using fossil fuels that were bought with their blood as you insult them for their sacrifices. Many who have fallen on foreign soil in the interest of America’s progress would not respect the ideology that they did it to make corporations profitable which is your strongest falsity. They were called and answered, those who didn’t flee anyway. I would and have no regrets serving my country and it’s interest. So you give your speeches, you tell your story, but men and woman like myself know the truth… you got to Elmira in a gas filled car after cooking your breakfest with heat provided by fossil fuels, and you may have remembered to shut the lights off and power down the computor as you left your home that couldn’t have been built without those evil fossil fuels you love to use

  2. Thanks, Vic…and to everyone else out there who has served.

    That was well said… however, I doubt the elitists like Ruffalo will bother to care about anybody else but themselves.
    They never try to solve problems because the mission of their business ($$$$$$) is to be one.

  3. It’s very true that energy independence will reduce the number of U.S. military in harm’s way. However, another fact the anti fossil fuel whackos overlook, choose to ignore or are just too ignorant to grasp is when Edwin Drake stumbled across oil in Titusville, PA 160 years ago, he unwittingly saved many of the great whale species from almost certain extinction…..!!! Drill a well….save Moby Dick..!!

  4. Wow, thanks for the memory, Victor.

    I have since been able to make sense of a lot of the protest behind NG.

    It has nothing to do with facts. There are people out there that pray upon mentally handy capped. The special interest groups sunk as low to use many of these folks. Very sad to take advantage of people period. I guess it was good in one way, they were given star light attention and were hungry for the attention something life has left out for them.

    What I found more sad than the abuse of the handicapped was that towns boards actually fell for their crap? This leaves me to believe many town board have people that are just bodies to fill a space driving away the real talent that can can think on their own.

    Be it as it may we learned that still to this day a huckster can still become rich in small towns right on up to their boards and past.

  5. Hi Vic how are you? You were saying about people not telling the truth. What about the ones who were/are? What about the non functioning,disgusting,moldy,improper treatment system that goes against Dep regulations and the appalling way Cabot & Dep have & continue to conduct themselves? Permits inspections NOPE not needed for them. What about those who lease& addendums aren’t honored or the fact the Dep & gas co have stated their lease/addendums were trumped by the “consent” orders that Dep & Gas co drew up & agreed to. The homeowners NEVER agreed to alter their lease & addendums. Dep seems to get paid for NOT doing their jobs. They get new cars,promptions & pay raises.(they brag about what they get) Had Dep properly done their job in 2008 none of this would have happened. If a person from dep who came here stating he was “just learning” and that his job with dep had actually been to work in the “stone quarries “. If someone knowledgeable had actually been around maybe this wouldn’t have happened. This weaseling puppet should be fired. People who test provided water and make it appear they test the actual water. Testers who admit their testing is bogus. Studies supposedly done on homeowners water without their knowledge consent or approval & then hidden from the homeowners & questions not answered or improperly answered. Information kept from homeowners. Disgusting and appalling!!! Company & Dep who claim they have NOT kept track of what was done,how many times their people were here and are clueless as to how much things cost. Running wells out of water multiple times not telling the homeowners and then quickly leaving without saying anything. Leaving the homeowners with NO water at all. (Claims they NEVER kept track of how many times they did this) Testing not being done,not doing what they told homeowners they would or not properly doing things. No warranty,service,lemon law or anything. What happened again in Feb 2019 & what has been/is being done about it. (Nothing) I believe DEP is being paid by tax dollars Fire them all immediately!!!

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