Coups and Corruption……

From Scout:

From Stars and Stripes….

On Coups……

WASHINGTON — The former commander of Multi-National Corps-Iraq said Tuesday that U.S. agencies other than the Defense Department need to be more engaged in Iraq if that country is to succeed in rebuilding.

Lt. Gen. John Vines, speaking before a Defense Department conference on military health, praised the work of Defense Department personnel in Iraq but said there is “far less cooperation” between other U.S. agencies and their Iraqi counterparts.

“We have to develop capacities in these other ministries for the government to be coherent,” he said.

“A worst-case scenario to me is that we develop a security force that is so competent and it’s the only thing truly working that we build a coup into it. We’ll have a security force that looks around and says ‘Nothing else is working, we’ll take over and run the country.’ ”(emphasis mine)

On Corruption………

Vines said officials continue to be concerned with the possible infiltration of the Iraqi brigades by insurgents, but that the situation is improving. A greater concern is the potential for corruption, especially when it comes to the country’s oil reserves.

“There are not many ways to legally make money when oil flows from a wellhead to a ship at sea, because the government controls all of that,” he said.

“However, you might get paid to attack that pipeline, or if you have a repair contract you might get paid by the number of repairs you made. If you have a trucking contract you might get paid by the number of barrels of oil you haul. … That’s not an insurgent problem, that’s a contracting problem. All the incentives there are for the oil not to flow.”(emphasis mine)

There’s just so many ways to get Iraq wrong. Though I’m sure all this was covered in the post war plan……

In March 2003, days before the start of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, American war planners and intelligence officials met at Shaw Air Force Base in South Carolina to review the Bush administration’s plans to oust Saddam Hussein and implant democracy in Iraq. Near the end of his presentation, an Army lieutenant colonel who was giving a briefing showed a slide describing the Pentagon’s plans for rebuilding Iraq after the war, known in the planners’ parlance as Phase 4-C. He was uncomfortable with his material – and for good reason.

The slide said: “To Be Provided.”