From the administration that brought you the Katrina debacle... we have this:
The chairman of the House of Representatives' Foreign Affairs Committee on Tuesday criticized reconstruction efforts in Iraq as "mired in the mud of incompetence."
Rep. Tom Lantos said some American contractors are not accountable to anyone and have lined their pockets with U.S. dollars.
But, Lantos also told a committee hearing the incompetence was no surprise, "knowing the administration's abysmal track record on Iraq reconstruction planning."
Testifying that the record was a mixed one, Stuart W. Bowen Jr., the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction, said the program faced enormous challenges, especially an unstable security environment.
"There have been notable accomplishments," but also significant shortfalls, he said.
But in a report three weeks ago, the special investigator reported that Iraqis would not be capable of managing reconstruction anytime soon. The report cited daily violence, corruption and poor maintenance.
We've been lied to by this administration for way too long.
An axiom of development, Lantos said, was that if you give a man a fish he will eat for a day but if you teach him how to fish he will eat for the rest of his life.
"When it comes to Iraqi reconstruction, we have not even stocked the ponds, let along taught the Iraqis how to fish," he said.
Similarly, Rep. Gary L. Ackerman said Iraq was not producing oil or electricity at prewar rates. And, he said, last week, the Government Accountability Office, a U.S. watchdog group, reported that 100,000 to 300,000 barrels of oil a day went unaccounted for.
The next time a Republican whines because their is no good news about Iraq reconstruction in the media, point them here...
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