While the Pentagon
states that there are 132,000 US troops deployed in Iraq, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) estimates that total
US troop deployments for the Iraq war, including providing support in Kuwait and other Middle Eastern countries, is nearly double that number — 260,000.
The Knight Ridder Newspapers agency reported on April 28:
“If Congress passes the emergency spending request that’s before the Senate, the cost of military operations since
the 9/11 terrorist attacks will top $439 billion, with $320 billion of that for
war alone, according to a report this week by the Congressional Research Service.
“Even with a significant reduction in US forces in
Iraq and Afghanistan
over the next several years, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that total war spending could top $811 billion by 2016.
“For comparison, the 1991 Persian Gulf War cost about
$89 billion in today’s dollars, while the Korean War cost $455 billion and the Vietnam War cost $655 billion, according
to Steven Kosiak, an analyst with the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, an independent policy research group
congressional inspection team set up to monitor reconstruction in Iraq
published a scathing report on May 1 of failures by private contractors, mainly from the US,
to carry out projects worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
The detailed and lengthy report was written by Stuart Bowen,
the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction. Bowen’s
office was set up after the US Congress expressed concern about the slow rate of reconstruction and the misuse of funds on
a massive scale. Congress has approved $21 billion for reconstruction since the US-led invasion, of which 67% has been allocated.
Last year the congressional team reported that almost $9 billion in Iraqi oil revenues disbursed to US-supervised Iraqi ministries
had gone missing.
The inspection team found that three years after the invasion
only six of 150 health centres proposed for Iraq had been
completed by a US contractor, in spite of 75% of the $186
million allocated having been spent. The report stated: “Fourteen more will be completed by the contractor, and the
remaining facilities, which are partially constructed, will have to be completed by other means.”
Revealing how the “fully sovereign” Iraqi government
remains a puppet of the US occupation forces, the April 28 US News reported that several “US diplomats will
serve as unofficial advisers to Iraqi prime minister designate Nouri al Maliki to help him create a transition team and prepare
him to assume the top post once he assembles a cabinet. The team will include officials from the US
embassy in Baghdad, along with James Wilkinson, a key aide to Secretary of State
Wilkinson, it reported, stayed behind in Baghdad
after the joint visit by Rice and US defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld on April 26, five days after Maliki was appointed by
Iraqi President Jalal Talabani as the country’s new PM.
US News added: “Washington
does not want to be seen as meddling in Iraqi politics, but the Bush administration is clearly eager to see Iraq’s
next government get up and running quickly. Maliki has announced that he wants to form his government by early May, but the
constitutional deadline appears to be May 22. More US advisers
might come in from outside Iraq in the coming days to assist
From Green Left Weekly, May
Visit the Green Left Weekly home page.
Comments by jk
The 9/11 attack was singularly successful for the Moslem zealots. We asked for it by invading Afghanastan and our political, social, and economic
involvement in their region. The U.S. is an ungodly society: loose sexual morals of women, materialism, scientific explanation of the nature of things, and worship
of a false god and his son. Moreover, the US is the chief exponent of them through
the media. Allah, the one true god, wants them to stop this satanic tide of U.S. culture.
To weaken the US economically is to slow the spread of the US culture, thus their 2nd attack upon the world
trade center, and their ongoing attacks upon Iraq oil, for to drive up the prices have been quite effective.
With 9/11 they have succeed in disrupting the US economy, which included the sharp economic
downturn lasting over 2 years (the stock market took a dump and the economy slowed to zero growth). Instead of spending funds on social programs to address social injustices which could bring the US up to European standards, the US has diverted $438 billion in emergency
spending, of which $320 billion has gone for the Iraq war. The
U.S, based on a perception of decisive leadership, has reelected the worst president in our history. Consider what those funds could have accomplished if there
had been a president like Gore. Moreover, with the Democrats in control, they
would not have passed a $10 trillion dollar take break to the wealthy. The Bush
Republicans have made the U.S. being the greatest debtor nation based on percentage of debt to GDP in recent history. Our dollar has fallen
(a major part of the rise in the cost of foreign imports including oil) for to slow the exodus of the trillions of foreign dollars invested in the U.S. Election of Republicans and their
fiscal irresponsibility, foreign wars, rising oil prices, and a 2-year recession all principle caused by 9/11.
Not since the murder of the Archduke
Ferdinand and his wife has so few done so much.