• Nooooooooooooooo! Iraq Asks U.S. for Marshall Plan Reconstruction Funds

    May 1, 2017

    Tags: , , ,
    Posted in: Embassy/State, Iraq


    Iraq’s Foreign Minister this week asked the United States to develop a financial plan for the reconstruction of the country after ISIS, similar to a program developed for Western Europe after the Second World War.

    In discussions with Special Presidential Envoy to the Coalition Brett McGurk, Ibrahim al-Jaafari stressed the need for “collective support from the international community to contribute to the reconstruction of infrastructure after the defeat of terrorism.” Jaafari suggested “the adoption of a project similar to the Marshall Plan which contributed to rebuilding Germany after the Second World War.”

    Iraq will need billions of dollars to rebuild after ISIS. Large portions of major cities were destroyed in the war, infrastructure was neglected under ISIS, villages are riddled with mines and booby-traps. The deputy governor of Anbar estimated that his province would need $22 billion alone for reconstruction.
    Um, never mind invoking the Marshall Plan. What needs to be cited here is that the United States already spent billions to reconstruct Iraq, from 2003-2010. I know. I was there. It was my job to help spend some of those billions. We accomplished less than nothing. In fact, our failure to reconstruct Iraq then lead in a direct line to the Iraq of now. I cannot believe I am writing this. Again.

    See, in fact, I wrote a whole book about it: We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People, in 2011. I just sent a copy to Special Presidential Envoy to the Coalition Brett McGurk, and asked him to pass it on to the Iraqi Foreign Minister after he’s done reading it.
    But in case Brett or the Minister don’t get around to reading a whole book, here’s a shorter version.

    I spent a year in Iraq as a U.S. Foreign Service officer, leading two of the then-vaunted Provincial Reconstruction Teams. We were charged with nothing less than winning the war for America by rebuilding Iraq’s infrastructure, creating a functioning democracy and stable economy that would preclude terrorists like ISIS (well, it was al Qaeda then) from gaining a foothold, and thus ensuring Iraq would be an ally of the United States in the war on terror. This is the same mission statement that the Iraqi Foreign Minister would want tagged to his proposed reconstruction plan.

    When my book came out in September 2011, most people I met with threw out skeptical comments: “Well, maybe it will work out like in Germany and Japan,” they said. When I met with staffers from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in 2012, they said, “We’d like to believe you, but everything that State tells us contradicts your thesis that the money spent was just a big waste.”

    But now it’s official. The Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction concluded “$60 billion in American taxpayer funds later, Iraq is still so unstable and broken that even its leaders question whether U.S. efforts to rebuild the war-torn nation were worth the cost.”

    Then Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said “that $55 billion could have brought great change in Iraq,” but the positive effects of those funds were too often “lost.”

    Then Iraqi parliament speaker Osama al-Nujaifi, the country’s top Sunni official, told auditors that the rebuilding efforts did not “achieve the purpose for which it was launched. Rather, it had unfavorable outcomes in general.” Like ISIS.

    There “was usually a Plan A but never a Plan B,” said Kurdish official Qubad Talabani, son of Iraqi President Jalal Talabani.
    Shiite, Sunni, Kurd. Trust me, about the only thing everybody agrees on is the United States spent a bundle of money between 2003-2011 and got nothing for it but ISIS.

    According to the Associated Press, the United States has spent more than $60 billion in reconstruction grants on Iraq. That works out to about $15 million a day. Overall, including all military and diplomatic costs and other aid, the United States has spent at least $767 billion since the U.S.-led invasion began.

    And guess who was one of the people in charge of the last Iraq reconstruction? Special Presidential Envoy to the Coalition Brett McGurk. Maybe this time around he’s smart enough to not get fooled again. In fact, I’ve recommended a book for him to read to help out.

     

    McGurk Bonus: McGurk spent a good portion of the last 14 years working for the U.S. Government in Iraq, advising several ambassadors and leading the failed negotiations to secure permanent U.S. bases there. You’d kinda think having that on your resume – “I am partially responsible for everything that happened in Iraq for the last ten years, including America’s tail-between-its-legs retreat” — might make it hard to get another job running Iraq policy. Who goes out of their way to hire the coach that lost most of his games?

    The other side of McGurk’s failed attempt at being ambassador to Iraq was his questionable personal life, which in turn raised issues of judgement, decorum, discretion, and class. It was his sexual misconduct that brought the real questions of competence and ability to light. For no apparent gain, but whatever, Iraq.

     

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  • Recent Comments

    • jo6pac said...

      1

      The plan worked great the first just ask those Amerikan con-arts-tactors that made billions with doing not a dam thing. I’m sure a few general walked a why bundles of $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.

      05/1/17 9:30 AM | Comment Link

    • chuck said...

      2

      “War Is A Racket” S.B.

      05/1/17 9:53 AM | Comment Link

    • RICH BAUER said...

      3

      McGurk, the biggest crime dog.

      05/1/17 10:50 AM | Comment Link

    • RICH BAUER said...

      4

      I would advise you to send a copy of WMW to our presidense, but the idiot only has a third-grade reading level. Could you dumb it down with lots of drawings, perhaps a comic book version for his supporters too?

      05/1/17 10:53 AM | Comment Link

    • RICH BAUER said...

      5

      Suggested new title: The US Taxpayer, My Pet Goat.

      05/1/17 11:06 AM | Comment Link

    • chuck said...

      6

      “Collateral Damage” would be good to send.Great night time viewing. May 17th Chelsea is free. Enjoy!

      05/1/17 11:23 AM | Comment Link

    • Bruce said...

      7

      Can US Leavz, N0W? (Syria, Korea, et al, too?)!

      05/1/17 12:23 PM | Comment Link

    • RICH BAUER said...

      8

      This is progress:

      “The spending deal struck by congressional negotiators Sunday includes an additional $15 billion in military funding, half of the $30 billion President Donald Trump requested in March. Some of the extra funding would come with strings attached: The bill would fence off $2.5 billion of the $15 billion until the Trump administration sends a plan to Congress explaining the US strategy to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.”

      So that was the problem. We never had a plan to defeat ISIS.

      Better late than never.

      If I worked at the Pentagon, I would be ashamed to admit it.

      05/1/17 12:33 PM | Comment Link

    • chuck said...

      9

      Damn, Did Peter delete my comment?! I repeat, “War Is A Racket”. Don’t google the Times!

      05/1/17 1:21 PM | Comment Link

    • Mitch said...

      10

      So….. Peter…….. The point being….. No one could beat Hillary???

      PS.

      Look out…. Rich is off his Meds again.

      M

      05/1/17 2:51 PM | Comment Link

    • StarkNakedTruth said...

      11

      Throwing good money after bad.

      Some people never learn, do they?

      05/1/17 3:30 PM | Comment Link

    • Mitch said...

      12

      Starknaked.

      Ain’t that the truth.

      M

      05/1/17 5:37 PM | Comment Link

    • RICH BAUER said...

      13

      Better save the money for the reconstruction this dumbass country is gonna need.

      A dumbass Trumpie described how President Donald Trump notified visiting Chinese President Xi Jinping of the Syria airfield strike while the two were enjoying dessert at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort.

      “Just as dessert was being served, the president explained to Mr. Xi he had something he wanted to tell him, which was the launching of 59 missiles into Syria,” Ross said, according to a report in Variety. “It was in lieu of after-dinner entertainment … The thing was, it didn’t cost the president anything to have that entertainment.”

      (Hey dickhead, the actual cost of launching the 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles was about $60 million.)

      The dumbass crowd went wild after Ross’ remarks, Variety reported. The dumbshit billionaire was speaking at an event hosted by the Milken Institute, a California think tank. Conference-goers paid at least $12,500 each to attend unless they had ties to event sponsors like Goldman Sachs, Reuters noted in a story that called the event a meeting of the “global elite.”

      05/1/17 8:44 PM | Comment Link

    • Mitch said...

      14

      Rich.

      Do you Ever get tired of always being Wrong??????

      I can’t believe you would dare Quote that “think tank”….

      But… Since you did…. Here is the rest of the story….

      “Back in the early 90’s, Michael Milken was in prison for securities fraud. Now he’s on top of the world again — hosting, for the 20th year, a very high brow conference for the elite. This week, the Milken Institute Global Conference…..”.

      He’s a convicted criminal.

      So…. How’s your next source?????????

      M

      05/1/17 9:53 PM | Comment Link

    • jhoover said...

      15

      Before Answering Iraqi FM Ibrahim al-Jaafari, ask him

      What he had when he left Iraq?
      And What he got after 2003?
      How Many House around the word?UK, Bahrain, Dubai
      Who Many Building? In UK
      His Bank account in Swiss, UK, NZ, Australia?

      Then ask him to give back his loving country to be develop and see what his replay

      05/12/17 8:39 AM | Comment Link

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