Corrupt US State Department – Paul Bremer

No wonder Iraq hates us. It’s not because we removed Saddam from power or have killed many of the militant factions that seem to thrive on violence in that part of the world. It has more to do with very corrupt politicians, including the president, exploiting the War in Iraq as a way to make a tremendous amount of money and murder innocent people with total immunity from any laws. Where are the weapons of mass destruction? Where are the Al-Queida terrorists? Where are all the dangers the President of the United States of America, Mr. President Bush, sold the people of America that war was justified? None of them are true. None of those dangers ever existed in the first place.

Mr. President Bush, his neoconservative politicians and supporting cast waged a war with Iraq to steal the resources and sell the country. The man put in charge to do this was Paul Bremer III. He was the person in charge of Iraq’s civil administration after the United States invaded and was appointed by President George W. Bush. His official title was was Director of Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance, which as you will see was about as hypocritical of a job title as one could imagine.

Paul Bremer arrived in May of 2003 and made an immediate impact in a negative way. Bremer pretty much became a proconsul, or a person who oversees everything and retains all power above anyone and everything else with complete veto power (just like Saddam Hussein had). The problem is, he wasn’t in Iraq to help the people. He was in Iraq to find and exploit as much money from the country as possible and funnel it directly into Unites States or other countries in the world for which the United Stated directly benefited from. Instead of reconstructing Iraq as his job title suggested, he destroyed it and stole it from the people.

Example #1: One of the first things he did was disband the Iraqi army. When he did this, he essentially fired close to 350,000 people and put them on the street with no job. He also took away their pension and offered no severance pay. As one might expect, this angered all 350,000 people, many of whom then joined the insurgency against the US occupation.

Example #2: Bremer was mandated under UN Resolution 1483 to use Iraqi oil profits to “benefit the people of Iraq”. However, because the oil shipments were flowing while the meters were inoperable, some of the oil was smuggled and sold which could have been an avoidable loss. Bremer, nor any of his staff gave any explanation as to why they failed to repair the meters and misrepresented their progress on repairing them. He basically allowed Iraq’s only real natural resource and source of money to flow out of the country without benefiting the people of Iraq. This technically violated the UN resolution, but resulted in no reprimand or punishment.

Example #3: Paul Bremer was responsible for rebuilding the Iraqi Infrastructure. However, only 2% of the reconstruction contracts were awarded to Iraqi firms. Again, money flowed out of Iraq and into the United Stated where companies like Halliburton (formerly run by Dick Cheney) received huge contracts.

Example #4: Paul Bremer basically sold Iraq to the rest of the world by issuing the following orders against the peoples best intentions:

    • Order #39 allows privatization of Iraq’s 200 state-owned enterprises; allow up to 100% foreign ownership of Iraqi businesses; national treatment of foreign firms; unrestricted, tax-free remittance of all profits and other funds; and 40-year ownership licenses.
    • Order #40 turns the banking sector from a state-run to a market-driven system overnight by allowing foreign banks to enter the Iraqi market and to purchase up to 50% of Iraqi banks.
    • Order #49 drops the tax rate on corporations from a high of 40% to a flat rate of 15%. The income tax rate is also capped at 15%.
    • Order #12 enacted on June 7, 2003 and renewed on February 24, 2004, suspended all tariffs, customs duties, import taxes, licensing fees and similar surcharges for goods entering or leaving Iraq, and all other trade restrictions that may apply to such goods.
    • Order #17 grants foreign contractors, including private security firms, full immunity from Iraq’s laws.

He stole the country of Iraq against the peoples will and sold it to the rest of the world. He broke apart every financial aspect of the country and allowed foreign states and investors to buy the pieces.

Example #5: Days before his departure, Paul Bremer signed Order #17 which gave all staff and American Government officials immunity from Iraqi law. This protected the “private security contractors”, such as Blackwater, from criminal prosecution and gave them what amounted to diplomatic immunity from any prosecution both under Iraqi and US laws. These Blackwater security guards used this as their motto in running business. They are a bunch of guys resembling GI Joe action figures who run around with tacky wrap-around Oakley sunglasses sporting fully automatic weapons that run people and cars off the road. They shoot up the place, have killed a couple dozen innocent civilians, and suffered no criminal recourse at all. Here are some of the crimes for which Blackwater has never been prosecuted:

    • The U.S. military reports corroborate the Iraqi government’s investigation that Blackwater was totally at fault in the shooting incident on September 16th, 2007 in Nisoor Square, in which hospital records say at least 14 innocent people were killed and another 18 were wounded. There was a second deadly shooting just minutes afterward in which another 2 innocent civilians were killed. Both of these attacks were unprovoked (source: Washington Post).
    • Another incident happened Christmas eve of 2006 when an Iraqi guard for the Iraqi vice president was murdered by a drunken Blackwater security guard. Instead of the guard being prosecuted, he was whisked out of the country with full immunity by order of the US State Department which infuriated the Iraqi government and people (source: World Socialist Website).
    • A Blackwater security detail was passing through Al-Khilani Square when they ordered construction workers at an intersection to back up. Instead, the construction workers began throwing rocks. The Blackwater security guards flagrantly sprayed the intersection with bullets in which a woman was shot in the leg as she exited the Iraqi Customs building. As she clambered to her feet, the Blackwater security guards finished her off by putting another 4 bullets into her body, killing here instantly. Three days later, Blackwater guards were back in al Khilani Square. This time, they didn’t shoot anyone, but witnesses said they instead hurled frozen bottles of water into store windows breaking the glass (source: McClatchy).
    • The 15-page report from the House of Representatives oversight and government reform committee says Blackwater has been involved in 195 shooting incidents since 2005, or roughly 1.4 a week. In a vast majority of the incidents, Blackwater guards would fire their weapons from a moving vehicle, then immediately leave the scene never knowing what casualties ensued. A majority of these incidents were unprovoked attacks on the civilian people of Iraq by Blackwater Security contractors (source: CBC News).

To this day, not a single Blackwater guard has been prosecuted and never will be by order of the United Stated State Department and Iraqi laws put in place by Paul Bremer III. This has enraged the Iraqi people who see the occupation as a tyrannical takeover of their country.

Paul Bremer (with help from the US State Department) never reconstructed Iraq nor offered humanitarian assistance to the people of Iraq. He leached the resources, offered immunity to murderous contractors, stole the assets, destroyed the financial industry and sold the country of Iraq.

Now, ask yourself this question … if someone came to America and did this, would you be upset?

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