The reconstruction of Iraq

What bothers me most is not the fact that there is a war. It was pretty much unavoidable, ever since Bush decided that Iraq was a threat. And even more so when Bush set a 48 hour ultimatum for Saddam to get out of his own country (never mind the fact that that is in direct conflict with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights article 13 and 15)

Did UK see a threat before bush said so? Indeed - did anyone in the western world feel threatened by Saddam before Bush went out and said "Saddam has some of the deadliest weapons in the world?" (Who invented those weapons in the first place? Not American corporations, by any chance?) France, Germany and a load of other countries have said that they don't see an immediate and specific threat. When that is said, even Blair has been unable to convince his own people, his own government and a large part of his own party, that this is the case.

But all of this doesn't bother me that much. The fact of the matter is, once the US started their war rhetoric, there was no turning back. You cannot swing a sword menacingly in the air and then back off - it makes you look like a wimp. And there are many things to be said about Bush, but he is not a wimp.

Hence, war.

Okay, so the rhetoric changed from weapons of mass destruction (Saddam: "We don't have any, but if you find some that breach the contract, we'll destroy them") to weapons inspections (Saddam: "come right this way, gentlemen") to "We suddenly care about the well-being of the Iraqi people under the horrible reign of that horrible Saddam, and we must rescue them", to Saddam, get the hell out of your own country (Saddam: "I don't think so!"). Getting more preposterous with every demand. Begging for an excuse to go to war.

But, as I said, it does not bother me.

What bothers me most is the reconstruction. We know a war has started, and that a large part of Iraq is going to be bombed to rubble. But who is going to pay for the rebuilding of the country?

It is only fair that the US and UK should do it. But - as those familiar with international and US domestic economics will be well aware of - the US has no such money. Strictly speaking, the US cannot afford the war, much less the reconstruction. Don't even get me started on the UK.

So the job of reconstruction will probably land on the UN.

Read that sentence again. The cheque for the rebuilding of Iraq will end on the UN writing desk. Whose security council have been working their asses off trying to get a diplomatic solution to the conflict. To avoid the war.

So who are the main contributors to the UN? All rich countries, pretty much. Which (to put it generalising and bluntly) means all of northern Europe, the US, Canada, etc. Which were the countries who opposed the war in the first place. Whose tax paying euros, kroner, dollars and pounds are now gong to have to rebuild a country devastated by a war they feel could have been avoided.

Whose national economies will suffer from a testosterone-laden Texas cowboy, who can't keep his six-shooter in his pocket, and his war rhetoric toned down: Both of which are mere tools in his constant flirting with the American people, an effort to keep the illusion that he is on top of the war on terror.

It really, really pisses me off.

A kind noder informs me that the US "began tendering for agencies to help in the reconstruction or Iraq last week. They are all, without exception, American agencies (No other agencies have US.Gov clearances), and they are all dealing directly with the US says Government. No UN involvement whatsoever."

The problem with this is that the reconstruction of the country is to be funded with oil money coming from Iraq.

Let us look at that one, shall we?

Iraq is a state that is blamed (without proof) for having weapons of mass destruction. USA wants to attack Iraq for reasons that keep changing (see above). A long standing theory has been that USA wants to attack Iraq because Iraq has oil, and lots of it. USA attacks Iraq, destroying a large portion of the country in the process. Because USA is responsible for the damages, they offer the kind gesture of rebuilding Iraq, using oil money from Iraq to fund it. The oil money goes to companies based in USA, who are contracted by the US government to rebuild Iraq.

Imagine living in Iraq. A foreign nation bombs your country, and then you have to pay that very same nation to rebuild your country.

I don't know about you, but to me - even leaving possible conspiracy theories about manipulation with the oil prices and the prices of the rebuilding of the country, offering a massive earning potential for the US companies, and - through taxes - the US government - this doesn't sound too fair.