Thanks to Peak Oil and the jump global demand and the advent of the Russian-Chinese-Indian "strategic triangle," the price of oil and other energy resources is plenty volatile these days. To mitigate the volatility somewhat, senior leaders and everyday managers need to arm themselves with as much relevent current energy affairs knowledge as possible. For those not already paying attention to the recent mini-war between Russia and Georgia, Business Week has a nice, brief primer on what Russia's been up to in the Caspian region, the effects of which ripple around the world to reach to us and our allies.
If an until we achieve 100% independence from the rest of the world, the US has a huge strategic interest in what's going on in every oil rich region of the world. For more info on the long history of US geopolitics and oil, Daniel Yergin's The Prize is essential reading.