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Political sciencemiddle east - Essay Example They failed to protect key strategic resources and national treasures. In addition, they failed to have a workable form of rule and order in place to replace the ousted Sadaam Hussein, This failure to plan resulted in a weakened and fragile economy, social upheaval, and political instability that will continue to burden Iraq for years to come. The war in Iraq wrecked an already declining economy and failed to deliver on the promises of prosperity and oil revenues. In the 20 years leading up to the war, the per capita income had declined by 75 percent and the first year of the war cut that in half again to just $450 (Schifferes). The country was burdened by high unemployment, massive numbers of people employed in "inefficient state-owned enterprises", and half the population that was dependent on food aid (Schifferes). At the time there was a plan to privatize the industries, and increase oil revenues so that Iraq would have a self-sustaining economy. However, oil production, which accounts for 90 percent of Iraq's economy, continues to stagnate at about 2.4 million barrels per day, far off the peak production of 3.5 million barrels reached in 1990 (Kumins CRS-1; Iraq Economy 2008). In addition, unemployment continues to hover between 18 and 30 percent (Iraq Economy 2008). ... But it didn't last. Both the privatizations and the pension conversion were rushed into place before the country had the infrastructure or investor sophistication to support them". Without a long term plan and commitment to the restructuring of Iraq's economy, the US will be mired down for years continually trying to jump-start it. A recent effort at privatizing the oil industry has met with considerable resistance due to its demands that Iraq surrender a significant degree of sovereignty. The 2003 invasion of Iraq set off one of the bloodiest periods in Iraq's history, and had been responsible for a period no less violent than the era of Sadaam Hussein. There is little debate about the ruthlessness and cruelty of Sadaam Hussein and his inappropriateness as a leader in the modern world. However, when Hussein was ousted, the US had made no plans for a system to replace him. Religious factions rushed in to fill the void, and resulted in a civil war with the US forces attempting to act as referee. While accurate body counts are difficult to estimate, counts range from between 100,000 to over 2 million. The Lancet, a well-respected British medical journal estimated that 600,000 deaths had been attributable to the war as of 2006 (Polya). This is on an even par with the number of deaths blamed on Sadaam Hussein in the 20 years leading up to the war. In addition, the social strife has caused many people to flee the country and "approximately two million Iraqis have fled the conflict in Iraq, with the majority taking refuge in Syria and Jordan, and lesser numbers to Egypt, Lebanon, Iran, and Turkey" (Iraq Economy 2008). This has torn apart families, communities, and social institutions. If the US had planned a stable transfer of power in Iraq after the invasion, the
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