Report Reveals Poor Planning On Reconstruction Of Iraq

A detailed official history of the U.S. effort to reconstruct Iraq after Saddam Hussein’s overthrow in 2003 blamed its failings on “blinkered and disjointed” prewar planning, a deadly insurgency and wasteful and ill-managed contracting.

The 500-plus page document also asserts that the Bush administration, in early stages of the war, exaggerated the number of Iraqi forces trained to help American troops provide adequate security.

The study, “Hard Lessons: The Iraq Reconstruction Experience,” was produced by a special U.S. auditing group that has dug deeply into the multibillion-dollar reconstruction effort since 2004. It is a detailed summation of the findings from many previous audits and reviews by the Office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, led by Stuart Bowen.

Among its central conclusions is the Washington was unprepared and ill-equipped to reconstruct Iraq in the aftermath of an invasion that led to an insurgency, a collapse of government and an economy that “switched off.” The document also suggests that this arose from an ill-fitting U.S. national security structure, which it said could produce an equally ineffective reconstruction effort in future conflicts.

Thus far the United States has spent about $50 billion on Iraq reconstruction.

FULL STORY

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