The Non-Rebuilding of Iraq


 The Washington Times reports on the rebuilding of Iraq:

Increased Iraqi oil revenues stemming from high prices and improved security are piling up in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York rather than being spent on needed reconstruction projects, a Washington Times study of Iraq's spending and revenue figures has shown….

Out of $10 billion budgeted for capital projects in 2007, only 4.4 percent had been spent by August, according to official Iraqi figures reported this month by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO). The report cited unofficial figures saying about 24 percent had been spent.

Meanwhile, some $6 billion to $7 billion from last year's budget is "being rolled over" and invested in U.S. treasuries, said Yahia Said, director of Iraq Revenue Watch, part of the private watchdog group Revenue Watch Institute.

The good news, such as it is? Oil production is approaching pre-war levels, coming in around 2.5 million barrels a day and is likely to increase over the course of the year. I'm sure we will be reading stories for years to come about all sorts of flim-flammery, corruption, fuck-ups, and more coming out of Iraq (and U.S. entities associated with same).

Whole story here.