January 27, 2006

Time For An Update On Iraq

So what sort of country does $226 billion buy you these days?

Not much, it seems. 20% of the country is still living in dire poverty. The US says funding has dried up, while the Iraqis say they still need another $60 billion to get their primary industries back on their feet. Oil production in 2005 was less than half what it was in the final years of Saddam's rule.

Violence continues to escalate: there were 34,000 guerrilla attacks in 2005, up 30% from 2004. And let's not even talk about the political situation, which still threatens to collapse into all-out civil war.

Little wonder the US private sector is already pocketing their massive profits, packing up shop and heading back home. Iraqi professionals are leaving in droves. Even the journalists are leaving. Shit, even the bloggers have gone!

What a cock-up.

Thanks to Juan Cole for the links.

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