“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Sunday, March 09, 2008

What is Iraq Doing With Its Oil Revenue?

Why is Iraqi oil money tied up?

Warner wants to know why billions of Iraqi dollars aren't helping pay for reconstruction.

BY DAVID LERMAN | 202-824-8224
March 8, 2008 Daily Press

WASHINGTON - Virginia Sen. John Warner, a centrist voice on Iraq war policy, wants to know why Iraqi oil revenues can't be used to pay for more of the costs of rebuilding the country.

When the war began in 2003, the Bush administration argued that the reconstruction of Iraq would not require huge sums of U.S. tax dollars, mostly because of Iraq's oil revenues.

Five years later, the U.S. has spent tens of billions of dollars on Iraqi reconstruction and more may be needed.

Warner, joining forces with Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, called Friday for an investigation by the Government Accountability Office, the investigative arm of Congress.

"We believe that it has been overwhelmingly U.S. taxpayer money that has funded Iraq reconstruction over the last five years, despite Iraq earning billions of dollars in oil revenue over that time period that have ended up in non-Iraqi banks," the senators wrote in a letter to the GAO.

Warner and Levin asked the GAO to estimate how much Iraq earns in oil revenues annually, how much Iraq and the United States spend on reconstruction and how much oil revenue sits unspent in foreign banks.

"Why has the Iraqi government not spent more of its oil revenue on reconstruction, economic development and providing essential services for the Iraqi people?" the senators asked in their letter.

They estimated that Iraq will earn at least $100 billion in oil revenues in 2007 and 2008.

At a hearing this week, the top U.S. military commander of the Iraq region told Levin that most of Iraq's oil revenue is sitting in banks.

"The facts are that their ability to institutionalize and effectively distribute those funds is lacking," said Adm. William Fallon, commander of U.S. Central Command, which oversees Iraq. "This is not going to happen overnight. We've got to continue to engage with them."

Levin, a war critic, quickly pounced.

"I can't accept the answer that they're not capable of administering their own revenues," he said.

"They have a budget which is approximately this amount. And it's totally unacceptable to me that we are spending tens of billions of dollars on rebuilding Iraq while they are putting tens of billions of dollars in banks around the world, from oil revenues. It doesn't compute, as far as I'm concerned."

Fallon also argued that Iraqi government leaders are leery of spending the oil revenues quickly because they are "highly sensitive to the image of corruption" and fear "the perception that they might somehow misuse these funds."

Levin rejected that argument with equal vigor, telling Fallon: "Well, if they can't figure out how to spend their own money, and if the fear of being perceived as being corrupt is the reason, they surely can transfer those resources to us. We'll administer them the way we administer our own funds for their reconstruction."

Fallon noted that Iraq has begun spending more than the U.S. on reconstruction after years of heavy American investments.

Since 2002, he said, Iraq has now spent $51billion of its money on reconstruction, compared to $48 billion spent by the United States.

But when the war began, few predicted the expense would be nearly so great.

In 2003, then Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz told Congress that Iraqi oil revenues could generate $100 billion over two or three years.

"We are dealing with a country that can really finance its own reconstruction and relatively soon," Wolfowitz told a House Appropriations subcommittee at the time.


  1. Like Saddam & Sons, the folk at the top are lining their own pockets, I'd bet. And they don't have to spend a lot on a military, as Saddam was doing.

    The suggestion that we should administer the country is a good one. We would do a marginally better job.

    $3.26/gallon here, how about in your area? Makes one want to erupt in joy, right?

    What's gas in Hawaii now, Doug?

  2. They're discussing whether Iran is pursuing nukes at BC, and zenster says what I've wanted to say, only much better--

    Zenster said...
    Addressing the IAEA board on Monday, ElBaradei said his inspectors had resolved all but one of the unanswered questions over Iran's nuclear programme, the exception being the weaponisation studies.However, Smith, speaking on behalf of Britain, Germany and France at the IAEA board yesterday, said Iran's cooperation had been "abysmal". "Over a wide range of issues on which the agency asked for clarification the answers are less than satisfactory," he said.

    First off, how idiotic must someone be in order to believe a Muslim's findings regarding the agenda of a Muslim nation? Doesn't taqiyya—whether it is in active play or not—totally destroy any chance of credibility? This makes a fox guarding the henhouse look like sound strategy.

    Secondly, do the math. As an insecure Shiite nation amidst a sea of surrounding Sunni countries, what best serves Iran's interests? By a process of exclusion one can rather easily trace around the outline of Iran's goal.

    No single item more capably serves the entirety of Iran's current military, political and relegious agenda than acquisition of nuclear weapons. Increased wealth, self-sufficiency in food production, industrial modernization, none of these, repeat NONE OF THESE so categorically address Iran's current overall agenda like possessing nuclear arms.

    Regional hegemony, deterrence of Western intervention, countering Sunni dominance, enabling heretofore unthinkable levels of terrorism and even the incomprehensible notion of summoning forth the 12th imam all are fulfilled by this one single achievment.

    How is it possible for anyone of reasonable intelligence to believe that Iran has abandoned pursuit of something which simultaneously satisfies the vast majority of its short-term and long-term goals? Iran's entire modus operendi is so comprehensively served by this one single objective that drawing any other conclusion simply defies logic.

    Furthermore, every bit of external evidence, be it public pronouncements, continued enrichment activity, reactor construction, hardening of all R&D facilities and so forth all fit the exact pattern of weapons development.

    Regardless of whether or not Iran is actually attempting to construct nuclear weapons, all outward appearances point towards such a conclusion. It matters not one whit that—similar to Saddam's own boasting about WMDs—Iran may be encouraging this perception as a form of defensive propaganda.

    Just as Ahmadinejad's hideous rhetoric must be taken at face valus, so should all of the apparent evidence that Iran is seeking nuclear arms.

    Couple this fact with how such an achievement would represent nothing short of a total calamity for regional stability including overall military strategy with respect to containing the threat of Islamic terrorism and even the most remote possibility of Iran's success looms as a complete catastrophe for all involved.

    To wilfully ignore this—not to mention dismiss it outright—is a direct indication of such stunning incompetence that it verges on malfeasance when demonstrated by political and diplomatic leaders. It is this blindingly obvious fact that begets suspicion of connivance on the part of IAEA director Mohamed ElBaradei. Little else can adequately explain how he continues to downplay the strategic importance of concretely denying Iran nuclear armaments of any sort.

    Moreover, Islam's quest for global domination is so well-served by ElBaradei's potential ongoing collusion that it is utterly impossible to ignore the possibility of his complicity as a Muslim in this ghastly scenario.

    The perfect fit of nuclear weapons into Iran's strategic agenda, when combined with how totally disastrous such an outcome is for Iran's enemies all interlock into an undeniable configuration that demands immediate and overwhelming military intervention against Tehran's nuclear aspirations. Nothing less will serve to protect both the Middle East region and the global economy from total mayhem in the form of a nuclear armed Iran.

    As I have repeatedly observed here and elsewhere:


    3/09/2008 02:55:00 PM

  3. After a minute, Keith came out and sat with me. He was an old guy, comfortably into his sixties, with almost no teeth and a body that looked as if it had put up with all kinds of tough stuff in its day. He was real friendly.

    "You didn't try to pet the dog, did ya?", he said.

    "No." I had seen it out the window: an ugly vicious mongrel that was tied up out back and got stupidly and disproportionately worked up by any noise or movement within a hundred yards.

    "You don't wanna try to pet the dog. Take it from me: you do not wanna pet that dog. Some hiker petted him last week when I told him not to and it bit him in the balls."


    He nodded. "Wouldn't let go neither. You shoulda heard that feller wail."


    "Had to hit the damn dog with a rake to get him to let go. Meanest damn dog I ever seen in my life. You don't wanna get near him, believe me."

    "How was the hiker?"

    "Well, it didn't exactly make his day, I tell you that." He scratched his neck contemplatively, as if he were thinking of having a shave one of these days. "Thru-hiker, he was. Come all the way from Georgia. Long way to come to get your balls nipped." Then he went off to check on dinner.

    from 'A Walk in the Woods'

  4. I completely agree that far too much of the funds being used in the reconstruction of Iraq is coming straight from U.S. taxes.

    However, I respectfully disagree with the assumption that the U.S. has the right to police the way that the Iraqis spend their money.

    The money that is being made from the oil in Iraq does not belong to the U.S. so why would the U.S. be trying to dictate how it is spent. Also, the Bush Administration is responsible for the destruction in Iraq, starting with the bombs that were dropped at the start of this war in the "Shock and Awe" campaign.

    If the U.S. did not engage in war in Iraq in the first place, then the problem regarding the money that is being used to rebuild Iraq would not even be an issue.

  5. Hundreds of billions in US charity for Iraq reconstruction? The whole thing is one lie. I just don't care to believe any of it anymore.

  6. I think I was told here that Canada's number 2 position includes their reserves in Oil Shale Deposits.
    Is that correct? Link Handy?
    Unlimited, Unregulated, Unreasonable, Free Trade Dogmatists

    If you watched the Republican presidential debates — and had no other knowledge of economic history — you might believe that Ronald Reagan, the personification of modern conservatism, was a pure free trader. During a debate in Michigan, for example, Mr. McCain said that President Reagan “must be spinning in his grave” to hear Republicans expressing concerns about free trade. But while free traders like to quote some of President Reagan’s open-markets rhetoric, they did not like many of his actual trade policies.

    President Reagan often broke with free-trade dogma. He arranged for voluntary restraint agreements to limit imports of automobiles and steel (an industry whose interests, by the way, I have represented). He provided temporary import relief for Harley-Davidson. He limited imports of sugar and textiles. His administration pushed for the “Plaza accord” of 1985, an agreement that made Japanese imports more expensive by raising the value of the yen.

    Each of these measures prompted vociferous criticism from free traders. But they worked. By the early 1990s, doubts about Americans’ ability to compete had been impressively reduced.

    President Reagan’s pragmatism contrasted strongly with the utopian dreams of free traders. Ever since Edmund Burke criticized the French philosophes, Anglo-American conservatism has rejected ivory-tower theories that disregard the realities of everyday life.

    Modern free traders, on the other hand, embrace their ideal with a passion that makes Robespierre seem prudent. They allow no room for practicality, nuance or flexibility. They embrace unbridled free trade, even as it helps China become a superpower. They see only bright lines, even when it means bowing to the whims of anti-American bureaucrats at the World Trade Organization.
    They oppose any trade limitations, even if we must depend on foreign countries to feed ourselves or equip our military. They see nothing but dogma — no matter how many jobs are lost, how high the trade deficit rises or how low the dollar falls.

    Conservative statesmen from Alexander Hamilton to Ronald Reagan sometimes supported protectionism and at other times they leaned toward lowering barriers. But they always understood that trade policy was merely a tool for building a strong and independent country with a prosperous middle class.

    Free traders like Mr. McCain instead rely too often on the notion that we should change the country to suit their trade policy — an approach that is not in the best traditions of American conservatism.

    Robert E. Lighthizer, a trade lawyer, was a deputy trade representative in the Reagan administration and the treasurer of Bob Dole’s 1996 presidential campaign.

  7. Why does this NOT surprise me? Someone, somewhere is lining their pockets with oil revenues from Iraq while we (U.S. taxpayers) finance everything. All this while oil companies show RECORD profits, and pump prices keep climbing. Something really stinks about all this. Nice going Mr Bush!

  8. If you have to ask, you shouldn't drive Albob!
    Since I don't drive enough to have filled up in the last year, or so, I can't say!
    (strategy is to only drive after the wife has filled up!)
    Educators or Kingmakers?

    IF the Democratic race is settled at the party’s convention this summer — not unlikely, given Hillary Clinton’s victories over Barack Obama in Ohio and Texas — certain delegate constituencies are going to be the object of much affection from the candidates. Most prominent among these is the delegate and superdelegate bloc affiliated with the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers, the nation’s two largest teachers’ unions. In 2004, more than 400 regular delegates to the convention were members of the two unions, making up a group bigger than every state delegation except California’s.
    The same can be said about school choice. Despite compelling evidence that it improves student achievement, the national teachers’ unions regularly stand against the policy.

    The list goes on.

  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

  10. The US Government proves that it cannot effectively manage financial investments, mat thinks it's all a lie.
    Not that the folks that inhabit the US Government are just operating beyond the capacities. Beyond their abilities, way out of their depth.

    The more likely story.
    Rather than lies.

    The Federal folks that have proven they cannot manage Iraqi reconstruction, mat believes should be in charge of US energy development.
    Fools and knaves, on both counts.

    The solution is to leave Iraq to the Iraqis. There is no need for the US to administrate their economy, there are no Federals with the skill sets working in the US Government for such an endeavour.
    Time to leave Iraq to the Iraqis, as promised by US, long ago.

    With over 350,000 US trained men at arms, they have all the internal security they'll ever have, already.

  11. Did you see this Walmart link the other day, 'Rat?
    Too bad Walmart ain't in charge, instead of the Feds!

    Wal-Mart plants seeds of alliance with Latin farmers

    Now THERE'S a trade agreement I can get behind!
    Replace the F...... Federal Govt with Walmart, and real benefits will accrue to all.

    Wal-Mart has 40 agronomists on staff in Central America who work closely with farmers such as Fermin Pec, who grows radishes, lettuce, cabbage and other vegetables in San Pedro Sacatepequez. “Their pickiness has helped me improve,” Pec says of Wal-Mart's requirements.

  12. "Conservative statesmen from Alexander Hamilton to Ronald Reagan sometimes supported protectionism and at other times they leaned toward lowering barriers. But they always understood that trade policy was merely a tool for building a strong and independent country with a prosperous middle class."

    Lighthizer says that sometimes free trade is beneficial and that other times free trade is bad, without indicating either way in what instances, exactly, either protectionism or trade liberalization is call for.

    If trade policy is merely a tool for building a strong and independent country with a prosperous middle class, one must ask how limiting imports and thereby raising the costs of raw materials and finished goods for domestic manufacturers and consumers benefits the middle class. And because exports are simply the way in which imports are paid for, how restricting the latter does not inevitably harm the former.

    Or as P J O'Rourke helpfully points out, it seems awfully counterproductive to do to ourselves in peacetime what we try to do to an enemy nation in time of war: that is, restrict his importation by blockade. But this is what neo-mercantilists pawn off as necessary in order to somehow promote or maintain 'the strength and independence of the national economy'. Done to an enemy, we call it a policy of weakening and isolating.

    But whomever the present protectionists have in mind to benefit from increased intervention, it's certainly not ordinary citizens.

  13. Now that's a great strategy, as long as you don't have a joint checking account with the wife, as I do:(

  14. But it does not often succeed against the "enemy", as Cuba stands testament to.

    While "embargoed" they have exported violence to both Africa and Central America. They have stood strong against US interests, regardless of those sanction imposed by US.

    In the past twenty years, or so, economic sanctions have been effective against South Africa. The list is not much longer than that.

    The governments in Syria, Iran, Cuba etc. all have prospered against US sanctions. So will the US Government, which is what the protectionists are most concerned about. Government, not the citizens.

    Wal-Mart, doug, has a great impact on US policies that you deplore. The are an integral part of the IBECing of Mexico. Without a open US/Mexican border the Mexicans will not be
    choose the adjective that you will.

    The consumer banking system that Wal-Mart is attempting to develop across Mexico is another segment of the IBEC modernization program.

    Wal-Mart does hold the solution, it is being implemented, however unevenly, in practice. The fact that it must be done more or less covertly makes it all the more uneven.

    If the over all dimensions of the cultural modifications were known, many would be emotionally opposed to the intended results. Both in the US, but even more so amongst the Nationalists in Mexico.

  15. Even the BoA bank accounts for undocumented workers in the US, is part of the stratergery, for the modernization of Mexico.

    Consumer cresit will, it is believed, lead to greater property rights, in Mexico.

    It will, the theory goes, expand the Mexican economy and lift their per capita GDP to the $25,000 USD per annum range.

    As noted in the NAFTA thread, Mexico and Canada are essential energy suppliers to the US. The NAU is going to be a US dominated Union, one that will benefit the US more than the other partners, even as our southern partner makes greater strides, by direct comparison. Catching up with US, as they must, to avoid an explosion.

  16. The Walmart Story refers to another reality:
    "Progress" removing the little guys from the system, in general, except for exceptions like the Walmart plan.
    Certainly that has been the case in Mexico, judging by the disintegration of their society.
    Until the Larson model produces positive results, I don't buy it.
    ...Mexico being much closer to explosion now than before NAFTA.

  17. ...but w/o the loss of all those healthy, young workers, who knows where they'd be.
    ...each year that we were told that removing those workers was their only salvation.
    So far, not so much.

  18. "Supermarkets are rapidly displacing informal channels through which peasants traditionally sold their harvests. Growers used to hawking dusty potatoes out of the back of a truck are finding shoppers defecting to chains whose produce is clean, uniform in size and often lower in price.

    Consumers are thrilled at the savings and convenience. But the trend worries some agricultural economists and development experts. Now simply growing a good crop is not enough to ensure the survival of many small-scale farms; they must get their products onto supermarket shelves.

    "As the food retail and manufacturing sector becomes more and more concentrated, market access becomes the binding constraint for small producers," said Dave Weatherspoon, an associate professor of agribusiness at Michigan State University."

  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

  20. Exactly the Italian model, doug. The destruction of the local markets, in favor of the supermarket model.

    That is the Rockefeller program, now taken up by Wal-Mart.
    Cultural modification. Both north and south of the border, the modifications much greater to the south, than the north.

    As you decry, with some justification, to the changes here. The Mexican Nationalists feel even more strongly than you do. Which makes the process more covert in nature than publicly acknowledged.

    But the seeds wwere sown in the 1950s, Grandpa Rat worked on the project in the 1960s, directly with and for the Rockefellers.

    There are many positive results to the blending of North America, there are also some bumps in the road. Since the process is more covert than public, the debate on the real concept is outside the lines of "acceptable" political discussion

  21. "Even the BoA bank accounts for undocumented workers in the US, is part of the stratergery, for the modernization of Mexico."
    VDH Points out that areas where they have the highest numbers of checks coming in from the USA have the highest rates of crime and social disintegration.
    ...people still being people, and the mass removal of young males from a society does not a healthy society make.
    Nor does our position number 44 in quality of education bode well for our future, besting only Turkey and Mexico.

  22. "There are many positive results to the blending of North America"
    If the majority of that blending had the quality results of the Walmart example, the positive would outweigh the negative.
    In fact, on balance they opposite has been true, not only for us, but for Mexico.

  23. As to where Mexico would be, without NAFTA and the mass migration of the young workers to the US and the remittances the deliver to Mexico, that's, as Mr Rumsfeld would say, an "unknowable".

    We are where we are, there is no "going back" to some ideallic past.

  24. All true and accurate points, doug.

    But not even in the public discussion.

    Instead the "News" is concentrated upon the Florida Primary, past and future.

    The "real issues" not on page 1, not even mentioned below the fold.

  25. Our hospitals and schools have gone to hell, 40% of the recent arrivals are on some sort of welfare, and Mexico has suffered in different ways, but in tandem.
    It is a bogus accounting that does not include the social costs of either country, or the disintegration of the cultures and institutions that got us here.

  26. Before there can be a debate, there must be an understanding of what is ocurring, why and whom are the movers and shakers behind the process.

    Again, never publicly discussed.

    As to VDHs' point ...
    Immigrants almost always live in the highest crime areas. True of both the Irish and Italians in New York, or so the current perception exists of the past.

  27. VDH say the social cost of eliminating young males and replacing them w/remittance checks is indeed a demonstrable knowable.
    The higher the rate, the greater social disintegration.
    How much worse off would the USA be if a similar percentage of young workers fled the scene, and only returned in the form of a check.
    Workers being fathers, mothers, and elements of the community.

  28. Again, all true, doug.

    Truer here in AZ than in HI.
    Which is one reason I have advocated "change" in Federal policy for many years.

    Securing the border and expanding work visas, both part of a comprehensive policy I would support.

    But the cultural modifications are the real issue and not part of the debate, but taken as a given by the MSM and the politicos, both.

  29. ...that crime goes up in MEXICO, in proportion to the exodus of workers/members of their society.

  30. "Securing the border and expanding work visas, both part of a comprehensive policy I would support."
    Amen to that:
    Cane needs to take the Kevin James Pledge:
    Fire Chertof upon taking office!

  31. The objective is the destruction of "old" Mexican culture and society, doug.

    That is central to the IBEC model, an "itended consequence".

    Just as it was in Europe.

  32. Clinton had more competent cronies that W does now.

  33. Clinto is smarter than W

    So his cronies and subordiantes were smarter, too.

    Very few folk choose underlings that are smarter than they are

  34. So far, the model's done a damn fine job of dismantling our culture too.
    ...most of which might not have occured had we not become a PC Welfare state ruled by Monopolist "Educators," among others.

  35. "mat thinks it's all a lie."

    If it doesn't make sense (and it doesn't), it's a lie. Show me what there's to show for all those billions that were spent. A new paint job on a school's wall?

  36. Part of the Rockefeller "Plan".

    The Globalization process.
    The levelling of the masses.

    Of which John D Rockefeller was quite proud.

  37. Couldn't remember Karen Hughes name, so searched for "Bush Muslim Outreach." interesting results.

  38. Water treatment plants, built and destroyed, electrical grids and generating stations, schools and hospitials rebuilt. Sewer lines and prisons. Courthouses and oil industry infrastructure.

    All done to varied levels of success and failures. At Government standard price points, by cronie capitialists.

    But not a lie. Just stuff which the US Government had no business being involved in. No expertise in, no experience with.

    Much like energy development and policy.

    Just Government doing what it does best, wasting taxpayer monies. Whether in Chicago or Baghdad.

  39. which Bush ignored the reformist Muslims, and communed w/the phoney "moderate muslims" like CAIR.

  40. "The conflict began to emerge on January 31, at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference in Arlington, Va., when Gaffney participated in a panel discussion entitled "Safeguarding Civil Liberties in a Time of War." He discussed the threat posed by recruitment programs run by radical Wahhabi Islamists inside U.S. prisons, on military bases, and on college campuses. And there's more, Gaffney said: "I'm sorry to say there is an active and, to a considerable degree successful, [Wahhabi] political operation aimed not least at the Bush White House."
    ...the Byron York link.

  41. "Water treatment plants, built and destroyed, electrical grids and generating stations, schools and hospitials rebuilt. Sewer lines and prisons. Courthouses and oil industry infrastructure."

    Show me. Cause I don't believe any of it. And I certainly don't believe it costs 100s of billions to do this.

  42. Hey, Bush is a big-govt "Conservative."
    Outsourcing while still growing govt.

  43. He threw money at education,
    he threw money after Katrina,
    he threw money at the WOT,
    he threw money at "Border Security."
    ...prescription drugs, economic stimulus, on and on.
    Very Compassionate and results-based, I would agree.

  44. He threw money at education,
he threw money after Katrina,
he threw money at the WOT,
he threw money at "Border Security."

    I want to know who's catching this money.

  45. Michael Totten ( keeps a photo blog of his trips to Iraq. I've yet to see where all those 100s of billions of US dollars have been spent.

  46. The whole thing is one ^big lie.

  47. Who's catching this money? Is it Trish and her CIA comrades in their 400 sqft marble gilded toilets?

  48. This comment has been removed by the author.

  49. Not hundreds of billions. $48 Billion USD.
    Most of it wasted, as Government would do in all endevours.

    Especially if it's industrial in nature. Militarymen in charge of the reconstruction.
    Not their field of expertise.
    Tasked those missions, regardless.

    One of the reasons some of US have been opposed to the course the US has been on, since 2004.

    It's only been $12 Billion USD per year. Peanut dough in the total spent on the Iraq adventure.

    Get up to speed on the facts, before speaking of 100s of billions. We are speaking of just $48 Billion, wasted, as Government always does when working outside of its' field of expertise.

    Garbage collection and mail delivery.

    Even delivery of healthy water is beyond Governmental capacity, which is why they cannot be trusted with Energy Policy or, especially, development.

  50. The US is spending, on average, $12 Billion USD per month in Iraq.

    We have been in Iraq almost 60 months. A direct expenditure of $720 Billion USD.
    The $48 Billion spent on reconstruction, just 6.66% of the total.

    That the entire $720 Billion USD has been spent with little to show for it, not a lie, but further proof of Government's inability to complete a mission, successfully.

  51. "It's only been $12 Billion USD per year. Peanut dough in the total spent on the Iraq adventure."

    Peanuts, huh? Anyway, show me what $12 Billion USD per year has been spend on, I want to see. Why is that so hard?

  52. doug had the link, a hospitial that the US spent millions upon, plus the equipment. Within a year the equipment was lost, the building inoperable, the Iraqi flooded the floors, to clean them.

    Ruined the building.

    Ramadi, millions spent on sewer lines, millions more upon water lines.
    Electrical plants, doug had the links, ruined by lack of maintainence. Powerlines stolen for the copper content.

    The cement barricades that protect US and Iraqi troops at the check points, those were funded by the reconstruction accounts.

    The money went to Halliburton and the other various construction companies. Not "black funding" for the CIA.

    Prove the lies you claim even exist.

    There have been multiple studies done that the money was wasted, doug linked, contemporaneously, to many of them. No need to rehash those Bush Team43 failures.

    Did so at the time, when you were extolling the virtues of the mission, you're a fool or knave.
    Perhaps both.

  53. That doesn't even add up to one billion, let alone 50 billion.

  54. "Prove the lies you claim even exist."

    That there's no accounting of this fraud is proof enough.

  55. Here, mat, the spending broken down in 43 pages of Congressional documentation. Every dime accounted for.

    Iraq: Reconstruction Assistance
    Updated November 15, 2007
    Curt Tarnoff
    Specialist in Foreign Affairs
    Foreign Affairs, Defense, and Trade Division

    It's a PDF.

    You are a fool

  56. About $19.2 billion in U.S. appropriations has been aimed at building Iraqi security forces.

    Almost half the money, spent on standing up the Iraqi Army.

    The rest is all laid out, in detail.

  57. "About $19.2 billion in U.S. appropriations has been aimed at building Iraqi security forces... Every dime accounted for."

    Amazing that anyone can even say that with a straight face. And you call me a fool.

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