by Naomi Klein
. . . Rather than rebuilding, the country is being treated as a
blank slate on which the most ideological Washington neo-liberals
can design their dream economy: fully privatised, foreign-owned and
open for business. . . .
Entirely absent from this debate are the Iraqi people, who might -
who knows? - want to hold on to a few of their assets. Iraq will be
owed massive reparations after the bombing stops, but in the absence
of any kind of democratic process, what is being planned is not
reparations, reconstruction or rehabilitation. It is robbery: mass
theft disguised as charity; privatisation without representation.
A people, starved and sickened by sanctions, then pulverised by war,
is going to emerge from this trauma to find that their country had
been sold out from under them. They will also discover that their
new-found "freedom" - for which so many of their loved ones perished
- comes pre-shackled by irreversible economic decisions that were
made in boardrooms while the bombs were still falling. They will
then be told to vote for their new leaders, and welcomed to the
wonderful world of democracy.
[Enver Masud, "Corporate Globalization Threatens World's Poor, Middle Class"]
["Spoils of War"]
["The Americans have, though, put hundreds of troops inside two
Iraqi ministries that remain untouched . . . . the Ministry of
Interior, of course - with its vast wealth of intelligence
information on Iraq - and the Ministry of Oil."--Robert Fisk, "Americans defend two untouchable ministries from the
hordes of looters," Independent, April 14, 2003]
[Enver Masud, "An Open Letter to the People of Iraq"]
["As the Bush administration rushes to jump-start the reconstruction
of postwar Iraq, it may want to consider the recent woes of Pete
Henderson. . . .
"The decision boiled down to this: he was moving too early to make a
profit and might get a jump on his competitors. . . .
"Many other entrepreneurs are having the same experience."--Edmund
L. Andrews, "U.S. Officials Ground an Entrepreneur in
Iraq," New York Times, May 15, 2003]
Gethin Chamberlain, "$4bn
Iraq cash has vanished, claims charity," The Scotsman, October 23, 2003
Naomi Klein, "
The multibillion robbery the US calls reconstruction: The shameless
corporate feeding frenzy in Iraq is fuelling the resistance," The Guardian,
June 26, 2004