Official History Spotlights Iraq Rebuilding Blunders

Discussion in 'Politics' started by JustChristian, Dec 14, 2008.

  1. JustChristian

    JustChristian
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    Official History Spotlights Iraq Rebuilding Blunders
    By JAMES GLANZ and T. CHRISTIAN MILLER
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/14/world/middleeast/14reconstruct.html?hp


    BAGHDAD — An unpublished 513-page federal history of the American-led reconstruction of Iraq depicts an effort crippled before the invasion by Pentagon planners who were hostile to the idea of rebuilding a foreign country, and then molded into a $100 billion failure by bureaucratic turf wars, spiraling violence and ignorance of the basic elements of Iraqi society and infrastructure.

    The history, the first official account of its kind, is circulating in draft form here and in Washington among a tight circle of technical reviewers, policy experts and senior officials. It also concludes that when the reconstruction began to lag — particularly in the critical area of rebuilding the Iraqi police and army — the Pentagon simply put out inflated measures of progress to cover up the failures.
    In one passage, for example, former Secretary of State Colin L. Powell is quoted as saying that in the months after the 2003 invasion, the Defense Department “kept inventing numbers of Iraqi security forces — the number would jump 20,000 a week! ‘We now have 80,000, we now have 100,000, we now have 120,000.’ ”
    Mr. Powell’s assertion that the Pentagon inflated the number of competent Iraqi security forces is backed up by Lt. Gen. Ricardo S. Sanchez, the former commander of ground troops in Iraq, and L. Paul Bremer III, the top civilian administrator until an Iraqi government took over in June 2004.

    Among the overarching conclusions of the history is that five years after embarking on its largest foreign reconstruction project since the Marshall Plan in Europe after World War II, the United States government has in place neither the policies and technical capacity nor the organizational structure that would be needed to undertake such a program on anything approaching this scale.
    The bitterest message of all for the reconstruction program may be the way the history ends. The hard figures on basic services and industrial production compiled for the report reveal that for all the money spent and promises made, the rebuilding effort never did much more than restore what was destroyed during the invasion and the convulsive looting that followed.

    By mid-2008, the history says, $117 billion had been spent on the reconstruction of Iraq, including some $50 billion in United States taxpayer money.


    More of the Bush legacy.
     
  2. canadyjd

    canadyjd
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    Wow! There's some good news. All during the election we were repeatedly given the (inflated) allegations that we had been spending 10 billion a month in Iraq for the last 3 years. Estimates of wasted money ranged from 500 billion to 750 billion.

    Looks like we only wasted about 50 billion of taxpayers money.

    I know 50 billion is a lot, but considering we are flushing 750 billion down the toilet on the bailout, 50 billion doesn't seem so bad.

    Thank you Bush adminstration for keeping a handle on wasteful spending in Iraq!:applause:

    peace to you:praying:
     
  3. JustChristian

    JustChristian
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    The $10B a month includes the substantial costs of waging war. The $119B is only for "reconstruction" or actually undoing all the damage we've done in 6 years of war.
     
  4. Petra-O IX

    Petra-O IX
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    This was sarcasm, right?:confused:
     
  5. canadyjd

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    Hey, you posted the numbers. I see nothing about 10B a month to wage the war.

    Total Reconstruction cost= 117B
    U.S taxpayer money = 50B

    Looks like the demoncrats have been lying again....but they never really stop, do they?

    BTW, when will the Bush-haters finally get over their obsession with Bush?

    peace to you:praying:
     

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