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Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Amazing interview with Riverbend, the Iraqi blogger of Baghdad Burning

BuzzFlash Interview Riverbend:

Riverbend: Many people believe the attacks against the police force and security forces are the work of outsiders or people who want Iraqis to hate the resistance. It's difficult to tell at this point just what is going on. Some attacks are meant to cause sectarian violence between Sunnis and Shia


BuzzFlash: Is it true that the reconstruction money is being spent on employing American companies like Halliburton and that the Iraqi unemployment rate is 50%?

Riverbend: It is true. The Iraqi unemployment rate is atrocious. People literally wander the streets looking for some sort of employment. Factories have shut down, companies, ministries, etc. and the decision to disband the Iraqi army has resulted in hundreds of thousands of unemployed Iraqis. Many Iraqis currently graduating from college spend months and months looking for work, even if it isn't related to what they studied.

Many American companies are getting millions of dollars for reconstruction contracts and then giving the work to Iraqi sub-contractors who have 'relations.' Reconstruction work right now is not about the good job a contractor can do, but just who he is related to or how many people he's bribed to get the contract. This has resulted in shoddy work, and millions of dollars literally going to waste, because the contract is given to American companies for very large sums of money and then to Iraqi sub-contractors for a pittance.


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