Fatih Abdulsalam / Azzaman & Mohamed Fadhil / Azzaman – 2008-05-30 00:16:52
Who’s to Pay for Iraq’s Reconstruction,
Iraqi or US Taxpayer?
Fatih Abdulsalam / Azzaman
BAGHDAD (May 25, 2008) — There have been calls in the US Congress demanding Iraq to pay for the post-war reconstruction from its oil revenues rather than American taxpayers’ money.
Such calls were never made before. US legislators started mulling them when expenditures on the twin wars of Iraq and Afghanistan skyrocketed to unreasonable levels.
Demands like these are not only unacceptable but are in a sense meant to punish Iraqis for the destruction and devastation US-waged invasion and occupation of their country has caused.
Does it mean that the US Congress wants us to pay billions of dollars for the reconstruction of bridges, hospitals, schools as well as cities, towns and villages US warplanes and military might have destroyed?
Does it mean that we the Iraqis are responsible for nearly 13-year long embargo which the US insisted on clamping on the former regime but its real sufferers and victims were the Iraqi people?
Are we going to pay for the mistakes and plunders of US-sponsored Iraqi governments whose ultimate aim has been to reinstate a state of sectarianism and manage the country and its resources to meet their sectarian goals?
Iraqis have been made to pay with their blood which has been flowing like rivers since the U.S. invasion. And shockingly the U.S. would like them to pay for the destruction it has inflicted on their country as if their blood is not enough.
The U.S. is morally responsible for the construction of Iraq but it is doubtful whether its political leaders have any more morality left. The whole Iraq war is morally wrong. It is too much indeed to ask the U.S. to get it morally right.
Foreign Firms Vie for $15 Billion Construction Contract
Mohamed Fadhil / Azzaman
BAGHDAD (May 29, 2008) — International firms are competing for one of the largest construction schemes in the country at a total cost of nearly $15 billion, a statement by Baghdad Municipality said.
The statement said 14 firms have supplied tenders to construct the Al-Rasheed City to be built on a former massive military camp bearing the same name.
The city will include a 4000-bed hospital and as well 21 specialized clinics to form the largest medical complex the Middle East in the future, the statement said.
The residential complex that will include six residential sectors with hundreds of 3-6 story building is expected initially to house 60,000 people, it added.
The return of some semblance of normalcy to Baghdad is encouraging some firms to submit offers.
Most foreign firms had fled Iraqi due to mounting insecurity. Many have migrated to the more peaceful Kurdish north, taking a wait-and-see attitude.
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