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.




One Response to “Iraq Reconstruction effort is a failure, says new report by Bowen”

  1. Sea Change Media » Blog Archive » The Sustainability of the War Economy? on January 6th, 2009 4:21 pm

    […] Linda Bilmes, co-author with Joseph Stiglitz of The Three Trillion Dollar War, discusses her blog post this week about the report issued by the Office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction. She […]