Talk:Paul Bremer/Archive04

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Historical Purpose

I came upon this letter somewhere on the internet, don't know where exactly (maybe here) but it has some historic value (Source: NY Times Article http://www.nytimes.com/ref/washington/04bremer-text1.html):

Letter from L. Paul Bremer to George W. Bush, May 22, 2003 This letter was drafted on May 20, 2003 and sent to the president on May 22 through Donald H. Rumsfeld, then secretary of defense.

May 22, 2003

From: Paul Bremer

To: The President of the United States Through: The Secretary of Defense

Mr. President:

After a week on the ground, I thought it might be useful to give you my first impressions of the situation here. We have two important goals in this immediate period. We must make it clear to everyone that we mean business: that Saddam and the Baathists are finished. And we must show the average Iraqi that his life will be better.

I have now visited cities in the North and South and have traveled around Baghdad every day, speaking often to Iraqis on the streets or in stores. As I have moved around, there has been an almost universal expression of thanks to the US and to you in particular for freeing Iraq from Saddam's tyranny. In the northern town of Mosul yesterday, an old man, under the impression that I was President Bush (he apparently has poor TV reception), rushed up and planted two very wet and hairy kisses on my cheeks.( Such events confirm the wisdom of the ancient custom of sending emissaries to far away lands).

No doubt you have seen reports of demonstrations criticizing America. But these relate almost entirely to the continued lack of order (which is largely a Baghdad phenomenon) and basic services. No one publicly supports Saddam.

The dissolution of his chosen instrument of political domination, the Baath Party, has been very well received. Several Iraqis have told me, literally with tears in their eyes, that they have waited 30 years for this moment. While the resulting dismissal of public servants has caused some inefficiencies and griping, in most cases younger civil servants have expressed pleasure, even joy, at the measure. (At a minimum they are attracted to the prospect of promotion opportunities.) I will parallel this step with an even more robust measure dissolving Saddam's military and intelligence structures to emphasize that we mean business. We are seeing signs that the outlawed organizations are behind some of the street violence here.

We will combine these declaratory policies with vigorous steps to impose law and order on the streets of Baghdad. This, far more than the much-discussed evolution of political structures, is what dominates the life of the average urban resident. General McKiernan and I are cooperating closely to increase the visible presence of police and armed forces on the streets. People must no longer fear to send their children to school or their wives to work.

Restoring law and order is a necessary but insufficient condition for success. We face a series of urgent issues involving the restoration of basic services. We have made great progress under Jay Garner's leadership. Iraqis in the north and south have more electricity, and residents of Basra have more water, than they had before the war. In Baghdad our priority remains getting electricity back to prewar levels, for on it also depend the water and sewer systems.

I have relaunched the political dialogue with Iraqi leaders. My message is that full sovereignty under an Iraqi government can come after democratic elections, which themselves must be based on a constitution agreed by all the people. This process will take time. Patience will be a virtue (though evidence of it is thus far lacking). At the same time, I am stressing that we are prepared to move that process as quickly as the Iraqis provided it is one that leads to a representative government at peace with its neighbors.

Our immediate goal will be to arrange a National Conference this summer which will set in motion the writing of a constitution, and reform of the judicial, legal and economic systems. As the Iraqis are progressively more prepared to assume responsibility, we would be prepared to give it to them. But we must be firm and clear: a legitimate sovereign Iraqi government must be built on a well-prepared base.

Respectfully,

Jerry Bremer

Baghdad May 20, 2003 —Preceding unsigned comment added by 65.188.22.40 (talk) 07:32, 9 January 2008 (UTC)


The above letter does indeed seem to be authentic, as it is on a web page on the New York Times web site. I have no idea how this letter got into the public domain.
A personal comment, for what it's worth: I think L. Paul Bremer displays a somewhat arrogant attitude towards the Iraqis, a "we know it all, and you poor ignorant natives will be all right if you just do what we tell you" sort of thing. He also comes across as a bit of a sexist:
  • "And we must show the average Iraqi that his life will be better."
  • "People must no longer fear to send their children to school or their wives to work."
(my emphasis added) --RenniePet (talk) 16:04, 10 January 2008 (UTC)
RenniePet, you've lost me there. Later. 65.188.22.40 (talk) 05:10, 12 January 2008 (UTC)

New Edits on De-Baathification

RenniePet included new information regarding De-Baathification. RenniePet, in what way was the Baath party partially restored? Wikipedia has its own rules on keeping edits "neutral".

Reuters press release reported that a new law had been passed by Iraqi Parliament allowing former, less Senior Baath party members to return to public office [if he/she so chooses to do so]]. There is still a very small percentage of former top Baath party members excluded from this law but will be receiving their pensions. This new law allowing others to return to public office was decided to encourage more Sunni involvement in the new Iraq. Choices and being allowed to make own choices and own mistakes are so important these days, don't you think Mr. RenniePet? So why don't we all just get along. We all live on the same planet. 65.188.22.40 (talk) 03:01, 13 January 2008 (UTC)

Now you've lost me. :-)
I'm not trying to be confrontational or anything. I'm too old for that - when you get to my age you realize that most conflicts are needless and stupid. The reason I've deleted some of your edits from time to time in the past is that they were not sourced when you first posted them. As soon as you provided sourcing I had no objections.
Regarding the new section on De-Baathification, I hope you agree that this should be (and should have been long ago) included in the article. Previously there was only one sentence about it, ("Critics claimed his extreme measures, including the firing of thousands of school teachers and removing Ba'ath party members from top government positions, helped create and worsen an atmosphere of discontent among those who did not "fit in" with the socioeconomic profile the Americans were working with."), in the "Governor of Iraq" section. Most people now think that was one of the biggest mistakes of the CPA, so I think it deserves a section of its own, among the first items in "Criticism and controversies".
As for my use of the word "partial", that was based on another source I'd seen, this CNN article: http://edition.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/meast/01/12/iraq.baathists/index.html There it says, "Iraq bill allows some Baathists back into government", and "Senior Baathist leaders who were involved in implementing Hussein's oppressive policies remain excluded from government jobs under the bill, but former low-level Baathists not implicated in crimes could take advantage of the change." (My emphasis added.) But also the Reuters press release you quote from also talks about limitations. Therefore "partially reversed", because not all Ba'ath party members are allowed back in public office.
Anyway, I'll add the CNN article as a reference. You're welcome to add the Reuters press release if you want. You and others are also welcome to decide the wording of that section - and everything else on Wikipedia, for that matter. :-) --RenniePet (talk) 14:56, 13 January 2008 (UTC)
Renniepet, does anyone really know for certain, in absolute terms, that de-Baathification added fueled to the conflict in Iraq?
Philosophically speaking, Mr. Renniepet, as a fellow on-looker and by-stander, do you think there was ever a solution to the age old problems of Iraq? Just because Iraq is known in history as Mesopotamia where civilizations began, Iraq is also widely known by us, as the place where the fall of man began. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 65.188.22.40 (talk) 04:53, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for your comment, and for your contributions here at Wikipedia. I think this is an amazing experiment we're all participating in, creating a repository for all human knowledge, and attempting to achieve some kind of "consensus" (which unfortunately is not the same as the truth). I'm a firm believer in knowledge being much better than a lack of knowledge, and I really think that Wikipedia will be a resource that improves human conditions.
As for L. Paul Bremer and Iraq and the Iraq war, on one hand I would love to debate these topics with you, but on the other hand this is not the place for it, and also I have my doubts that we would ever agree. If you really want to continue this discussion, you can e-mail me at: renniep at-sign inet dot uni2 dot dk
--RenniePet (talk) 18:36, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Perhaps later, Mr. RenniePet. 65.188.22.40 (talk) 00:33, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

Quantifying the Term Washington In-Fighting

The term "Washington In-fighting" was first coined by a journalist. To quantify the differences, a film titled "No End in Sight" was made favoring the views of Garner and some others who disagreed with the handling of Iraq. 65.188.22.40 (talk) 22:34, 26 January 2008 (UTC)

If a journalist said that, you should have no problem adding a citation. -- Diletante (talk) 04:17, 29 January 2008 (UTC)
Perhaps, you can explain why you need a citation? English is my second language, so excuse me if I don't grasp your point. 65.188.22.40 (talk) 04:36, 29 January 2008 (UTC)

WikiSource: letter to Paul Bremer

Has anyone checked to see if this relic of a letter is legitimate? Wikisource claims to have part of a letter written by an unknown author. And, the title "Esquire" is normally reserved for individuals with a law degree, and a license to practice law. As far as we can gather from research, L. Paul Bremer, III was not a licensed attorney in 1979. 65.188.22.40 (talk) 14:08, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

My error. Goes to show how little the American public is informed. Apparently, the letter which WikiSource has copies of, is authentic. According to Wikisource, this letter among other confidential if not classified letters was obtained by Iranian University students in whole; not in shredded pieces like they were suppose to have been. Not shredded that is, some thirty odd years ago (10 years shy of becoming an antique). That is why this letter is called a relic. 65.188.22.40 (talk) 05:14, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Bremerbook.gif

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BetacommandBot (talk) 04:23, 12 February 2008 (UTC)

Post Iraq

The content under Post Iraq needs cleaning up. The changes made over the years have re-arranged the original contributions to the point where none of it makes any sense. 65.188.22.40 (talk) 04:53, 15 February 2008 (UTC)

Since no one else took the initiative, certain paragraphs under the subheading of Post Iraq have been re-organized. Feel free to edit or change them again ... 65.188.22.40 (talk) 02:27, 20 February 2008 (UTC)

Saddam's Army

More recent contributor of this article "FifthEstate" brought up again, the issue of the old defunct Iraqi Army and its supposed post invasion dismantling.

Looks like male ego got in the way when a man's idea did not get implemented and so, the male ego takes over and sets forth to prove the man's idea is the correct one and saw to it that the alternative is bunk and should be proven as so. Thus, the new guy who was in charge got the blame after all was said and done. The new guy got a medal and wrote a book. The male ego and the man's idea made an Oscar-nominated movie.

And all of us little people who watch the tube and readz the internet are like dumb LOLCats who believez everythinkz we readz. Teh male ego takez uz for foolz. 65.188.22.40 (talk) 12:51, 17 March 2008 (UTC)

the Blame Game?

Some anonymous contributor added a sentence pointing to Bush Admin using some strategy called the "blame game". Apart from Bremer being grilled by Waxman's committee about the missing Iraqi funds, does anyone have indisputable evidence to back up the "blame game" statement?

National Review Article by L. Paul Bremer, III

National Review Online March 20, 2008

Title: Facts for Feith CPA history.

By L. Paul Bremer III

A recent article in the Washington Post previewed the forthcoming book by former undersecretary of defense Douglas Feith. In his book Feith apparently alleges that I was responsible for what he calls the single biggest mistake the United States made in Iraq. He claims that I unilaterally abandoned the president’s policy, promoted by Feith and others before the war, to grant sovereignty to a group of Iraqi exiles immediately after Saddam’s defeat. On March 16, Richard Perle of the American Enterprise Institute elaborated on this theme, arguing that a key error was that “we did not turn to well-established and broadly representative opponents” of Saddam.

Here are the facts.

Before the war, there had been disagreements within the American government about the length of the occupation of Iraq. Some, including Feith, argued that as soon as Saddam was ousted, we should turn over sovereignty to a small group of Iraqi exiles our government had been in touch with. Others, including officials at the State Department and CIA, emphasized the deep divisions in Iraqi society caused by Saddam’s long tyranny, and suggested the U.S. would be obliged to undertake a long-term effort to put Iraq on the path to representative government. The president apparently agreed with the short-occupation version sometime in March.

But by late April, and before I was asked to return to government, doubts had arisen among top American officials about a quick handover.

At the fall of Baghdad, there were no Iraqi political leaders inside the country commanding a significant following to whom we could hand over power. In contrast to Afghanistan, no one figure was acceptable to the entire country. Thus the only choice for an early transfer of power would have been to establish an Iraqi government made up of exiles who had been leaders in the pre-war Iraqi opposition abroad. But the group of Westernized exiles the American government had worked with before and during the war was far better known to American officials than to Iraqis who had remained in Iraq (except the Kurdish leaders). The exiles’ thinking, speech, and dress were those of men who had been living in another world.

Moreover, the exile leadership group did not reflect a balance of Iraq’s population. Sunnis were hardly represented; Kurds were overrepresented. The group included no women or members of important Iraqi minorities, such as Christians and Turkomen. In sum, this group was neither “well-established” nor “broadly representative.”

In my first meeting with the president, on May 6, 2003, he made clear that his policy was to take the time necessary to create a stable political environment in Iraq. Secretary of State Colin Powell repeated this guidance at a meeting of the NSC principals two days later (attended by Feith). The vice president added that “we are not at the point where people we want to emerge can yet emerge.” The next day, at a full NSC meeting, after a discussion of the political process, the president said his message was “that this will take a long time.”

Whatever Feith may have made of the president’s clear guidance, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld the same day circulated to NSC members a paper titled “Principles for Iraq,” in which he stated: “The transition from despotism to a democracy will not happen fast or easily. It cannot be rushed.” To underline the point, Secretary Rumsfeld sent a memo to Feith on May 21 (copied to me in Baghdad, where I had arrived on May 12 to head the Coalition Provisional Authority, or CPA) which said, “We need to lay a foundation for self-government. . . . We should not rush to elections.”

As we moved to implement the president’s plan, I kept Washington informed of our meetings with Iraqi political leaders. They asserted that the country needed a new constitution to give structure to post-Saddam political life. This led me to outline to Secretary Rumsfeld, on May 22, our proposed plan to move first to a constitution and then elections. The same day I forwarded through Rumsfeld my first report to the president, which reflected his guidance before I left for Iraq and which said that “full sovereignty under an Iraqi government can come after democratic elections, which themselves must be based on a constitution agreed by all the people. This process will take time.” The next day the president wrote back: “You have my full support and confidence. You also have the backing of our Administration that knows our work will take time. We will fend off the impatient.

That same day, May 23, I sent another memo to Rumsfeld, which described in detail the plans for an interim Iraqi administration that we hoped to set up by the end of June. First, though, I said that we needed to broaden the small unrepresentative group of exiles our government had been talking to. And I described the process of writing a new constitution, leading to elections that “might be held about a year from now.”

In the months following, I regularly reported our thinking on the political process to Washington. For example, on June 2, I sent a memo to Rumsfeld again describing the process we foresaw, noting the range of authorities we intended to give to the interim Iraqi government and stating that there was agreement among the Iraqis from across the spectrum “that a new constitution must precede a national election.” In meetings with the president, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, and Powell in Qatar on June 4-5, I went through the proposed plan again, and, in response to a question, said that in the best case we might get a constitution and more or less democratic elections within a year. But, I cautioned, it would be difficult to pull it off in that time frame.

Rumsfeld apparently concluded that the political process would take time. On June 17 he forwarded to me a memo sent to him by Paddy Ashdown, former high commissioner for Bosnia, in which Ashdown stated his concern that we not move too quickly to elections in Iraq, as he said we had done in Bosnia. He emphasized that the move to democracy would take time. “Plan on a decade, not months or years.” Two days later, the CPA sent a cable to the secretary of defense and secretary of state describing at length a meeting my British deputy, Ambassador John Sawers, and I had held with 25 Iraqi politicians the previous day. Sawers and I again described our plans for the political process, including the need for a constitution followed by elections for a sovereign Iraqi government. I told the Iraqis, as the cable reported, that “the length of this process would depend on the Iraqi people.”

In early July, former deputy secretary of defense John Hamre visited Iraq at Rumsfeld’s request and reported back to the secretary that “we believe the process outlined by Ambassador Bremer is sound. . . . [and the] formula for putting first priority on creating a near term governance council with a follow on constitutional process [is] right for the circumstances.” A CPA press release on July 3 reiterated this sequence of steps.

On July 4, I forwarded to Rumsfeld the first version of the CPA’s Strategic Plan for Iraq. We would “encourage the Iraqis to write as quickly as possible a modern constitution embodying democratic and individual rights and the rule of law. . . . The constitution will then be ratified, elections held for a sovereign Iraqi government at which point the coalition relinquishes sovereignty.” The process was laid out again in a public speech I made at the National Press Club in Washington on July 23. That day a copy of the Strategic Plan was hand-carried to the offices of all 535 members of Congress.

The next day, Hamre, in his capacity as president of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, sent Rumsfeld a report on a workshop his organization had held, at the request of Feith, to gather a group of American and Iraqi experts to examine “the problems of creating a solid basis for the long term political environment in Iraq.” Their conclusion? “There was unanimous agreement that rushing political reconstruction will critically handicap it, locking in a permanent advantage for well-organized groups whose interests are inimical to ours. . . . We need to buy some time.”

As late as September 2003, some at the Pentagon continued to push for a quick end of the occupation. When Rumsfeld asked for my views on September 13, 2003, I sent him a short memo arguing for following a steady path to constitutional government. The same day, the secretary wrote back to me that “I agree with your memo and will send it to POTUS (the president) and members of the NSC. You’re on the mark.”

<image of memo from Rumsfeld to Bremer dated 9/13/2003 titled: "No Quick Fix On Sovereignty.>

Mr. Feith is an honorable public servant; possibly he was unaware of the many discussions my colleagues and I had with the president and his top advisers in the months after the establishment of the CPA. That record makes clear that the president’s policy was to take time setting up the interim Iraqi government as part of a longer-term process to build support for democracy in Iraq. As far as I know, Mr. Perle did not visit Iraq during the CPA time. So his inaccurate impressions of the exiles’ status in Iraq must have come to him secondhand.

President Bush’s decision not to rush the political process was correct. True, it sacrificed immediate Iraqi sovereignty; but it gave the Iraqis time to put in place the political structures needed for a democratic Iraq, to organize politically, to develop connections to voters, and to work with the CPA to establish a viable legal framework—including a constitutional process and elections — on which to build a new democracy.

Admittedly, it was an imperfect political process. The occupation lasted 14 months, which no doubt frustrated and angered some Iraqis. But the time we bought allowed the Iraqis to write a progressive constitution and to embark on the long, difficult path to democratic government.

Ambassador L. Paul Bremer III is the former presidential envoy to Iraq

Recent Airing titled "Bush's War" On Education TV

Hey, my comment to those who missed this 4 hour show: you missed a very informative documentary, indeed!

Someone in the academia world started comparing Bremer to that of a proconsul; but this show shed some light on the subject, but used the word "viceroy" instead. The documentary presented Bremer as someone who thought he had some say over the U.S. military, but quickly discovered that he actually did not have the backing of the U.S. military. This explains why Rumsfeld had a heavy hand in how things went in Iraq during occupation. Then we finds out Bremer released to the press some strategy he planned for Iraq without telling members of the Washington inner circle.

So we begins to wonder. Has the quality of this article in Wikipedia been compromised because of "oops, I meant to tell ya, but thought you should read about it in Washington Post first"? We has always wondered why article is so heavy on the critical side, and not more on the biographical account????? 65.188.22.40 (talk) 04:24, 26 March 2008 (UTC)

Disbanding Saddam's Army

There was this one sentence in this section that was hard to follow. This sentence originally read like this:

"The thought is we that we don't want the residuals of the old army."

The "we that" had to be removed (disbanded) to make the sentence easier to understand. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 65.188.22.40 (talk) 02:08, 30 March 2008 (UTC)


Factual Contents Removed by Recent Editing Not Acceptable

Sections of this article (in italics) that have been removed recently:

Bremer called this argument of disbanding the Iraqi army a cat-like issue with nine lives. In his Fox News interview on July 31, 2006 he repeated again what he said before "...And no matter how many times I answer with the facts, it still comes back. But let's look at the facts. Let's take a minute. There was no Iraqi army to disband. The Iraqi army basically self-demobilized, as the Pentagon said. There wasn't a single unit standing anywhere in the country. So the question was should we recall the army. Now, let's think about what the army...".[1]
The above is basically a rant by Bremer that doesn't belong here. The only useful information is Bremer's assertion that the "Iraqi army basically self-demobilized"; however, that assertion is presented/disupted at length in the section "Disbanding of the Iraqi Army."Factfindingmission (talk)
This article is a biographical article about L. Paul Bremer, III. The protocol is usually to get a general consensus about making big changes to a Wikipedia article - hence, the purpose of this TALK page where editorial discussions should have taken place first. Please don't turn controversial issues (not connected with the writing of this article) into a debate. I agree with the others, this is not the place for political debates.


Sections of this article (in italics) that have been removed recently:

September 11, 2001
On the day Al-Qaeda terrorists crashed two hijacked American commercial jetliners into the World Trade Center in New York City, Bremer and 1,700 of his employees at Marsh & McLennan had offices in both towers. Bremer's office was in the South Tower. He and his people occupied floors at and "above where the second aircraft hit."[2] At the time of his television interview with CNN on September 14, 2001, 450 of his people were unaccounted for; 295 were eventually counted as dead.<ref>Milestones of Marsh & McLennan Companies (MMC)::</ref>
This section is not useful. What he did/where he was on September 11th is irrelevant unless he was injured. Being in the WTC is not noteworthy. The wording of the first paragraph is so purposely vague - "Bremer and his people occupied floors at and 'above where the second aircraft hit," - so as to make it seem as though he had a heroic escape down through burning floors. If that's the case, then feel free to replace this section with verifiable references to his heroism.Factfindingmission (talk) 17:44, 5 April 2008 (UTC)
Sinebot, is that you?
This article is a biographical article about L. Paul Bremer, III. The protocol is usually to get a general consensus about making big changes to a Wikipedia article - hence, the purpose of this TALK page where editorial discussions should have taken place first. Please don't turn controversial issues (not connected with the writing of this article) into a debate. I agree with the others, this is not the place for political debates.
This September 11th section is just plain dippy. Bremer's having an office in the World Trade Center is unremarkable. Was he even in his office that day? Also the repeated references to "his people" makes him sound like some sort of slaveowner. And the fact that he gave an interview shortly thereafter and expounded on what he thought might happen is also useless information. I agree with everyone else, this whole paragraph is useless. Try to provide useful information instead.Factfindingmission (talk) 05:16, 10 April 2008 (UTC)
Useful information for whom? I doubt anyone else but YOU would try to compare Bremer's leadership to that of a slave-owner's. If you are truly looking for facts, you got it wrong. 98.25.244.98 (talk) 00:49, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
I would suggest in place of "his people" you might try "his colleagues"? "His people" sounds pretty crass. Anyway, can you at least confirm whether he was in his office that day? Did he have a heroic escape? If he did, feel free to replace the paragraph. Regardless, the stuff about appearing on a talk show shortly thereafter is not noteworthy. And he certainly wasn't the first to link the attacks to Osama Bin Laden.Factfindingmission (talk) 04:47, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
So, why did you not edit the section instead of deleting it? The use of "His people" to describe his staff or colleagues (as you call them) did not have its orgins here. Apparently, you watched the video and discovered it was in fact an African-American reporter who reiterated the link to Osama Bin Laden. Was that your point?98.25.244.98 (talk) 16:37, 12 April 2008 (UTC)
I deleted the paragraph because the gyst of it was this: Paul Bremer's company had offices in the World Trade Center. This is not notable. As I said, I certainly won't challenge you if his having an office in the WTC was noteworthy because he narrowly escaped death by fleeing to safety. As for the video, I'm not sure what you're referring to - can you include the hyperlink please? If the reporter referred to Bremer and "his people" then he must have been a real amateur; "his people" is vague (who were his people - were they "colleagues" as I call them?) and much too informal for any kind of decent journalism. As for Osama Bin Laden, Paul Bremer was not the first person to draw a link between him and September 11th. Does the video try to make that assertion? Factfindingmission (talk) 02:12, 13 April 2008 (UTC)
When you deleted the section titled September 11, 2001 you managed to also delete the link to the video clip. If I didn't know any better, I think you're just looking for someone to debate with you in the English language. Unfortunately for you, the English language is not my original native language. So, perhaps you should talk to a Wikipedia adminstrator who can communicate to you in the Queen's English, eh? 98.25.244.98 (talk) 03:22, 13 April 2008 (UTC)
Obviously your English is excellent; I never would have guessed that you were a non-native speaker so please accept my apologies if you intepreted my criticism in that way. Many native speakers would have chosen to use "his people," but it's nevertheless improper. I would be very happy if this paragraph could be replaced with some allusion to the importance of his office being in the World Trade Center (preferably a description of his actions on that day), and if "his people" were to be replaced with "his colleagues." Factfindingmission (talk) 16:02, 13 April 2008 (UTC)
Very mature behavior on the part of 98.25.244.98! Replace the September 11th section without any improvements, and then delete the relevant discussion on the talk page.
The changes were your suggestions; therefore, you perhaps should have done the honors of doing so yourself. It would not be appropriate for user 98.25.244.98 to take all the blame if it is not he who provided the information in the first place.98.25.254.39 (talk) 02:30, 23 April 2008 (UTC)


New York Times Op Ed "Baghdad Must Pay Its Way"

by L. PAUL BREMER III Published: May 4, 2008

THE success of the coalition’s counterinsurgency strategy has opened new, and under-reported, opportunities for Iraq’s economy. Per capita income is more than four times 2003 levels. Inflation is coming down. Polls show that Iraqi businessmen are overwhelmingly optimistic about the country’s future and new enterprises are being opened every day. With oil production running at prewar levels, it is time for America to insist that Iraq make fuller use of its oil revenues for equipping and training its security forces and for economic reconstruction.

Iraq’s government revenues this year may exceed $60 billion (roughly three times the revenues in the year after liberation). Since the fall of Saddam Hussein, successive Iraqi governments have had a poor record of putting this growing income to good use.

Under the Baathists’ centralized system, more than 90 percent of state revenues were dispensed directly by the president’s office. So Iraqi ministries, especially the Ministry of Finance, developed little capacity to distribute state revenues. In 2006, the central government spent only 24 percent of funds budgeted for capital expenditures. This figure improved to 63 percent last year, but the central government nonetheless left unspent billions of dollars which should have gone for security and reconstruction.

Americans have given enormous amounts of blood and treasure helping get democratic Iraq on its feet. Now with major uncertainty in our economy, Americans can rightly ask if it isn’t time for the Iraqis to cover much more of the costs for training their security forces and for reconstruction projects.

Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki’s successful operations against Shiite militias in southern Iraq and Baghdad have encouraged the Kurds and Sunnis to agree on the elements of laws on oil industry development and revenue sharing. So the Maliki government should have the latitude and authority to quickly use Iraq’s oil revenues for urgent projects all over the country, including training Iraq’s own security forces. This would relieve the American taxpayer’s economic burden and show Iraqis that a federal political structure can serve all the people. —

L. PAUL BREMER III is a former presidential envoy to Iraq.


I had to copy/paste and remove the content a Wikipedia editor added using my IP address (correction: an anonymous editor using a girrrrrrrl's IP address).
You see, readers, when people like me read about some empty rhetoric from some anti-American buffoon, it only reinforces my belief that there are some really stupid people on this earth. In my girrrrly mind, major combat means F-16s unloading as many heat seaking missiles each fighter jet can carry at enemy targets, Nuking Afghanistan and its Pakistani border, and blow a huge gigantic crater into Sadr City.
Just girly girrrrrrrl moment. And FYI, I'm still a liberal! Hah!98.25.253.103 (talk) 00:41, 3 July 2008 (UTC)
  1. ^ Transcript: Amb. Paul Bremer on 'FOX News Sunday'
  2. ^ CNN.com - Transcripts