Tuesday, February 28, 2006

US postwar planning for Iraq almost nonexistent | csmonitor.com

US postwar planning for Iraq almost nonexistent | csmonitor.com:
"US postwar planning for Iraq almost nonexistent
Government report says poor planning left Iraq without enough skilled workers to rebuild efficiently.
By Tom Regan | csmonitor.com
A report from the office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) says that poor postwar planning for Iraq by the Bush administration meant that there were not enough skilled workers available to properly rebuild Iraq's economy and public works.

The Associated Press reports that previous surveys by the Bush administration and congressional auditors blamed the insurgency and the high price of security for the lag in rebuilding Iraq.

'Pre-war reconstruction planning assumed that Iraq's bureaucracy would go back to work when the fighting stopped,' it said. 'When it became clear that the Iraqi bureaucracy was in widespread disarray,' occupation authorities 'had to find coalition personnel to perform these tasks.'

'The US government workforce planning for Iraq's reconstruction suffered from a poorly structured, ad-hoc personnel management processes,' the report said, calling hiring practices 'haphazard.'"
One more report that points to the incompetence of our favorite emperor.

The TomPaine website puts it more succinctly:
After an investment of billions, Bowen reports that slightly more than a third of all water projects planned will ever actually be completed. Currently, two of three Iraqis are left with no potable water; only one in five has sewerage. Furthermore, recent figures suggest that at 4,000 megawatts, nation-wide electrical generating capacity is below pre-war levels and far below the goal of 6,000 MW. Instead of rebuilding several steam-turbine power stations— as Iraqi engineers and managers recommended—the CPA’s crony contractors chose to build new natural gas and diesel-powered combustion-turbine stations, despite the fact that Iraq doesn’t have adequate supplies of either. As a result of this arrogance and neglect, billions were wasted while the electricity in Baghdad is on for just a few hours each day.
Yes - its a war zone: shit happens. That's why you want the brightest guys in the room doing not only the war planning, but the planning for the occupation and reconstruction. We failed horribly in all 3 efforts thanks to our leaders faith-based leadership style. (I'm not even gonna attack the flawed rationale for war.)
What's amazing is that more than 1 in a thousand American's still support this buffoon and his league of incompetents.


Democracy Lover said...

It really depends on what you mean by "planning". If they were planning on ways to distribute Iran's wealth among corporate contributors to the Bush campaign, they did a great job. If they were planning on ways to bankrupt the federal government so they could trash those damned entitlement programs they hate so much, they did a great job. If they were planning on fomenting a dramatic increase in anti-American sentiment worldwide to scare the US public into supporting their unending global "war on terror", then they sure did a bang-up job.

Reign of Reason said...

DL - I stand corrected.

As others have pointed out the REAL conservative agenda: destroying government -- or at least weakening it to the point where they can drown it.

Intellectual Insurgent said...

The title of your post there was an intent to leave/end the war. This is a colonization and, as such, is never-ending until the oppressors are driven out.

Nice to have you back.

Reign of Reason said...

I took the title right from the monitor article I referenced...

As to your point, we are building bases, but I can hope that even if this administration doesn't see that our presence in Iraq is fueling anti-Americanism maybe the next one will

Possum said...


First, Saddam created the electricty/utility situation. Play SimCity and learn about the interaction of populace with power plants. He never had enough generation capablility and just used what he had to fuel Baghdad. "We" come in and try to distribute power more fairly and look bad to those in Baghdad (where the Journalists are).

As for the rest:

After seeing Frontline's in-depth report about Iraq/Bush/Powell I too am not at all pleased with Bush on this subject. Apparently Powell's state department had been planning for years with the exiled Iraqi congress to put together a post-war Iraq. I don't know anything about the plan, or how it addressed basic services.

Then because Powell didn't get along with Bush that got tossed in the circlular file. The questions are, is/was Powell just such an ass that he couldn't make it work? Or was Bush too hard on Powell for failing to cooperate work with Rumsfeld? Or was Rumsfeld the ass who hated Powell, which seems unlikely given the dynamics and where Powell is now.

Who knows if the Powell plan would have worked better? I would argue that we are seeing the fruits of so called "Anti-Americanism" from efforts of Syria and Iran tward the insurgency making us look like failure (see ABC NEWS exclusive on Iranian IEDs). I would also add that the journalist wants to show death and gore because that sells news and gets more attention from the boss because it brings more advertising dollars.

There is a bigger picture. One part is the plan, but the other is the result. The results aren't in yet.

Reign of Reason said...

Possum - thanks for your thoughts. You are correct concerning Powell and the state dept. State had a "post Saddam Iraq" plan on the shelves from the Clinton years. I haven't looked at the plan but it was supposed to be comprehensive -- addressing all aspects of society: economic, political, social ... as well as the mundane but important things like city services, the military, etc.

Powell is a brilliant man -- I wish I could say the same for the fools in charge: they shoot from the hip -- and not very straight. Rumsfeld, Cheney, Wolfowitz, et. al are all charter members of PNAC: the project for a new american century. These are the ideologues who pushed Clinton to "remove Saddam" back in the 90s. They reasoning (high flawed and oversimplified) is outlined in this letter to Clinton: http://www.newamericancentury.org/iraqclintonletter.htm

As for the rest of your post your facts are off:

Well over 90% of the insurgency is home grown: nationalists and baathists. I should know, I breifed it in-country to senior officers. The cross-boarder jihadist probelm exists, but it is less than 5% of the problem...

As for power, when I left Baghdad had about 4-6 hrs of power a day... That's still the case. Pre-invation it was consistently more than 12 hrs a day and most of the time more like 20 to 24.

Is it our "fault" -- not directly, the insurgents keep blowing shit up. But our fearless leader took responsiblity when he invaded.

All I know is that people who actually SPENT TIME IN THE REGION, former CENTCOM Commander (4-star) Zinni, General Powell, etc. ALL recommended AGAINST invading. They actually knew something of the culture and problems involved.

Besides, Iraq didn't attack us? The whole adventure is a huge waste of human life and our tax $$$.

How many more parents have to hear about their kid being killed 7000 miles away?