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Re: [casi-analysis] rewriting history

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Not likely to be deliberate misinformation.  Probably an ongoing topic of
debate inside BBC News.

I heard a BBC Radio 4 news report on the story below which definitely said
"under years of sanctions" instead of "under years of mismanagement".
Perhaps some of the BBC News online journalists need/would welcome a
briefing guide?

Cathy Aitchison

> From: "Mark Parkinson" <>
> Date: Sun, 17 Oct 2004 12:42:49 +0100
> To:
> Subject: [casi-analysis] rewriting history
> [ This message has been sent to you via the CASI-analysis mailing list ]
> What can be done to counter the BBC's deliberate misinformation?
> They repeatedly try to put the blame on 'mismanagement' rather than
> the real reasons. Obviously the real reasons for the detroyed
> infrastructure would lay the US and UK open to a massive reparation
> bill. In my view, any reasonable redevelopment in Iraq needs this
> (and getting rid of the occupation). Otherwise, Iraqis will not get
> back to their 1990 standard of living in our lifetimes.
> Perhaps we could consider refocussing and campaigning? eg become
> CORFI: Campaign on Reparations for Iraq
> or CAFRI Campaign for Reparations for Iraq?
> Cost of Iraqi reconstruction
> The US-led invasion inflicted heavy damage on Iraq
> The effort to rebuild Iraq is in the spotlight again as a conference
> of donor nations gets underway in Tokyo.
> Rebuilding Iraq's shattered infrastructure ranks as one of the most
> challenging reconstruction tasks faced by the international community
> since the World War II.
> Last year's US-led invasion caused widespread damage, but much of the
> country was already in a decrepit state after years of mismanagement
> under Saddam Hussein's regime.
> An eight-year war against Iran during the 1980s, coupled with
> economic sanctions imposed in the wake of Saddam's ill-fated invasion
> of Kuwait in 1990, also took their toll.
> Last year, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund
> calculated that restoring Iraq's water, power, road and
> telecommunications networks would cost $35.8bn (20bn ; 28.8bn
> euros).
> Repair bill
> The Coalition Provisional Authority, which governed Iraq in the
> aftermath of the invasion, estimated that reconstruction work not
> taken into account in the World Bank/IMF study, including repairs to
> the oil industry, would cost another $20bn.
> To put these figures into perspective, the World Bank estimates that
> Iraq's gross domestic product - the combined value of all the goods
> and services the country produces - stood at just $18.4bn in 2002,
> the year before the US-led invasion.
> In October 2003, a group of 37 countries agreed to provide a total of
> $32.1bn towards the reconstruction effort.
> By far the biggest contribution came from the US, which set aside
> $18.6bn, followed by Japan, with $4.9bn.
> Other major donors included Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, which pledged
> $500m each, the UK, with $452m, and Spain, with $220m.
> Spending delays
> However, the reconstruction programme has made disappointing progress
> since then, mainly because work on the ground has been hampered by an
> unexpectedly fierce campaign of violence by Iraqi insurgents.
> The most telling measure of the difficulties faced by contractors
> operating in Iraq is the unexpectedly slow pace at which the
> reconstruction money is being spent.
> According to the US government, just $1.2bn of its budget had been
> spent by 22 September.
> Of this, $623m - more than half - was spent on security-related
> measures, including training and equipping the Iraqi army and police
> force.
> Repairs to the electricity network were the second biggest item of
> expenditure, absorbing $300m.
> Moreover, the US in August diverted some $3.4bn it had set aside to
> rebuild Iraq's water and power networks towards measures aimed at
> improving security and creating jobs.
> Meanwhile, the other donor nations - who between them pledged $13.5bn
> - have so far released only about $1bn of the total, partly because
> of concerns over the deteriorating security situation.
> Iraqi leaders are urging them to disburse the rest of the cash,
> saying that speedily completing the reconstruction work offers the
> best hope of ending the violence that plagues the country.
> Mark Parkinson
> Bodmin
> Cornwall
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