02 August 2006

WHERE is the oversight????

I am enraged by a story I just read on washingtonpost.com...

Click HERE for the complete article

The headline reads:
Much Undone In Rebuilding Iraq, Audit Says

Here are several choice quotes I plucked from the article that need further commenting:

"NASIRIYAH, Iraq, Aug. 1 -- A flailing Iraq reconstruction effort that has been dominated for more than three years by U.S. dollars and companies is being transferred to Iraqis, leaving them the challenge of completing a long list of projects left unfinished by the Americans.

While the handover is occurring gradually, it comes as U.S. money dwindles and American officials face a Sept. 30 deadline for choosing which projects to fund with the remaining $2 billion of the $21 billion rebuilding program. More than 500 planned projects have not been started, and the United States lacks a coherent plan for transferring authority to Iraqi control, a report released Tuesday concludes."

So we're handing back to Iraqis a stalled, actually FAILED, reconstruction effort that they should have been involved in in the first place.

This next part really takes the cake:

"This story is a very disappointing one. Everywhere you look, goals have not been achieved," said Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who will hold a hearing on the reconstruction today. "I don't think we can ever get back the billions of dollars that have been lost to poor planning, outright fraud and corruption."

"We paid for air conditioning and ended up with a ceiling fan," Dorgan said. "You had a big pot of money and you had a lot of hogs in the creek wallowing and shoving and grunting, trying to get some of it. It looks like they were a lot more effective at getting the money than they were at doing reconstruction."

So U.S. hired private contractors to do reconstruction work in Iraq, work that plenty of Iraqis were probably MORE than qualified to do. We spent, or squandered rather, billions... BILLIONS!!! of dollars for projects that 1. have NOT been completed or 2. have NOT been started, and yet these contractors STILL get paid!!!???!!?!?


If a private citizen hired a contractor to do work at their home and the contractor didn't show up for work and didn't complete the project, would it seem out of line to NOT pay the contractor for services NOT rendered?

Why should it be ANY different for THIS COUNTRY??

If the head of a company were to squander 21 BILLION dollars, that person would at the very least be fired and hopefully be thrown in jail AND asked to pay restitution. Hmm, wait... That DID happen to the head of a company. Does anyone remember ENRON???

WHERE is the oversight?

I REALLY hope that come this November, the Democrats take at least one of the Houses. They don't even have to take both... I'll settle for ONE... then maybe, JUST MAYBE we'll get some MUCH NEEDED oversight.


Marty said...

I was under the impression that the American contractors were over there, for the most part, to help the Iraqis rebuild their infastructure. It ain't so. My son told me that only a few, very few, American contractors were helping to rebuild Iraq. Most of them are building and working on the military bases that are being constructed over there. So it is no wonder that not much has been accomplished. And that is breeding ground for anger among Iraqis and fuels the insurgency.

j.cro said...

I want to know why the Iraqis weren't involved from the get-go in the "reconstruction" of their own country?

I mean, I KNOW why... so Bush and Cheney's friends could all make millions of dollars off this war, but HOW does this keep happening? And more importantly, WHY ARE WE STILL PAYING FOR IT and WHY WASN'T MORE DONE???

We alienated SO many people by this and it outrages me!