The great Iraq loot

IT'S more than five years since Iraq was invaded by the so-called Coalition of the Willing led by the United States. A great deal has been written and said about how the case for this war was built by the neocons on a mountain of half-truths, myths and complete lies — from Saddam Hussein's non-existent Weapons of Mass Destruction to his so-called links to Al Qaeda and 9/11 attacks.

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Published: Thu 14 Aug 2008, 10:32 PM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 3:55 PM

But what has happened after the Invasion in 2003 is equally outrageous. From the top US officials like Paul Bremer to big corporate sharks like Halliburton to small time thugs from private security contractors like Blackwater, just about everyone seems to have helped himself to the big loot that this imperial enterprise has been from the word get-go.

According to a new survey, the US government paid out $85 billion dollars in four years to contractors providing services to various government agencies in Iraq. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report said the Bush administration awarded $85-billion-dollars in contracts between 2003 and 2007, or over $21 billion dollars annually.

Large contracts awarded to the Halliburton energy services firm, once led by Vice President Dick Cheney, and KBR — a Halliburton subsidiary and the biggest US military contractor in Iraq — have been criticised and come under scrutiny from Democrats as well as the US media. Congress has also been investigating the role of private security contractors who have been involved in the shooting deaths of Iraqi civilians, including employees of the private US security firm Blackwater USA.

But this money is peanuts compared to what the occupation powers and their numerous big sharks like Halliburton have been making out of the massive reconstruction and rebuilding projects across Iraq. When this whole project called Operation Iraqi Freedom is completed, trillions of dollars in Iraqi money would have shifted hands and moved to the US and Western banks. They first destroy your country and then rebuild it with your own money. Who says war is not nice!

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