Bloomberg selects TDW as one of best books of 2008

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Bloomberg joins The Economist and the Telegraph in naming The Three Trillion Dollar War as one of the best books of 2008.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601088&sid=aCFP_ZdAdKVM&refer=home

A new 513-page report by the Office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, Stuart Bowen, concludes that the US reconstruction effort in Iraq was a massive, unmitigated fiasco and waste of taxpayer money.

The new report confirms our writing in the Three Trillion Dollar War, in which we point out that the huge effort (in which we spent 3 times per Iraqi what we spent per European during the the Marshall Plan)  was hampered by bureaucratic infighting in the Pentagon — preventing billions of dollars from being spent in 2003 when it mattered most.  As a result, the situation in Iraq deteriorated and much of the money was squandered or spent on providing enhanced security for contractors.

Hard Lessons: The Iraq Reconstruction Experience” concludes that the $100 billion in US money spent to rebuild things was simply spent to restore what was destroyed during the US invasion and the looting that followed.

Today — more than 5 years since the money to rebuild Iraq was made available — the Inspector General concludes that Iraq STILL does not have the technical capacity or organizational structure to conduct a reconstruction program on this scale.    Current efforts underway are controlled by tribal chieftains and local political hacks who dish out contracts and patronage to their buddies.

See EXCERPTS OF THIS REPORT:

http://www.propublica.org/special/iraq-hard-lessons-excerpts

Economist Magazine picks “Three Trillion Dollar” War as one of best books of 2008

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http://www.economist.com/books/displaystory.cfm?story_id=12719711

The Three Trillion Dollar War: The True Cost of the Iraq Conflict.

By Joseph E. Stiglitz and Linda J. Bilmes.

Norton; 311 pages; $22.95. Allen Lane; £20

With the patience of auditors and the passion of polemicists, two academics, one a Nobel prize-winning economist and the other a public-finance expert at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, take an unflinching look at the hidden cost of invading Iraq.

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