Reconstruction of Iraq Post – Saddam Hussein
Paper and keynote address by Dr. Jawad Hashim at the Royal Canadian Military Institute (RCMI) in May 22, 2003. Successful post-conflict reconstruction does not begin “the day after.” It begins “the day before.” For that purpose, well before the liberation of Iraq, the U.S. Administration, together with several research institutes, think-tanks, and scores of Iraqi technocrats, have prepared a wealth of studies, reports, documents, and seminars on the subject of post-Saddam Iraq. Quarter a century of totalitarian regime has virtually decimated Iraq civil society and destroyed almost all independent institutions that could have paved the path for a smooth and eventless transition to a democratic form of government. Thus, reconstructing post- Saddam Iraq calls for a coherent strategy of interrelated phases for the reconstruction of almost all aspects of Iraqi life. This task is a challenge and, at the same time, a great opportunity for opening the gates for a new, prosperous and democratic Middle-East. Indeed it is a history in the making to reshape the entire region in a manner that cleans-up the anomalies inherited from the demised Ottoman Empire and what followed it. In undertaking this challenge, the West led by the United States can play the pivotal role in the reshaping process. In my opinion, the United States should not leave this historic challenge to the antiquated bureaucracy of the United Nations or to the diverse interests of members of the Security Council who, until recently, extended a life-line to Saddam Hussain. Simply stated, the ultimate goal of reconstructing Iraq should be the creation of necessary and fundamental structures for democracy and sound economic growth which will be a powerful model for others to follow.