IRAQ

Audit Describes Misuse of Funds in Iraq Projects - New York Times
A new audit of American financial practices in Iraq has uncovered irregularities including millions of reconstruction dollars stuffed casually into footlockers and filing cabinets, an American soldier in the Philippines who gambled away cash belonging to Iraq, and three Iraqis who plunged to their deaths in a rebuilt hospital elevator that had been improperly certified as safe.

I just finished the 2 books from Thomas Barnett (The Pentagon's New Map and Blueprint For Action) about reconfiguring our military into a war force and a seperate "peace force" that deals with rebuilding countries like Iraq after we take down their corrupt governments. Right now we're forcing our war force to act like a peace force with little or no training, no oversight, nothing. They weren't trained for this. We have nobody telling anybody how to handle things like, say $2 million dollars in cash. Without a dedicated group of administrators who can handle this stuff, we'll continue to have this crap going on. There are large parts of Baghdad who only have electricity for 2 or 3 hours a day while we're spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, money that belongs to the Iraqis, refurbishing an Olympic swimming pool for their Olympic team. I have a feeling some of the people in Iraq without running water would give up the chance to have a Olympic boxing team (for 2 years away no less) so they could take showers and drink clean water. I'd even go so far as to suggest that spending this money on water and electricity and not swimming pools might, just maybe, make people feel a little less like bombing the shit out of our guys over there.

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