Tuesday :: Oct 30, 2007

State Department Botches Another One

by Steve

MSNBC image

The “Pottery Barn” rule comes to mind right away.

The largest dam in Iraq is in serious danger of an imminent collapse that could unleash a trillion-gallon wave of water, possibly killing thousands of people and flooding two of the largest cities in the country, according to new assessments by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and other U.S. officials.
Even in a country gripped by daily bloodshed, the possibility of a catastrophic failure of the Mosul Dam has alarmed American officials, who have concluded that it could lead to as many as 500,000 civilian deaths by drowning Mosul under 65 feet of water and parts of Baghdad under 15 feet, said Abdulkhalik Thanoon Ayoub, the dam manager. "The Mosul dam is judged to have an unacceptable annual failure probability," in the dry wording of an Army Corps of Engineers draft report.
At the same time, a U.S. reconstruction project to help shore up the dam in northern Iraq has been marred by incompetence and mismanagement, according to Iraqi officials and a report by a U.S. oversight agency to be released Tuesday. The reconstruction project, worth at least $27 million, was not intended to be a permanent solution to the dam's deficiencies.
And who mismanaged the reconstruction project while being unable to reach agreement with the Iraqis on a course of action? Why, those fine State Department folks holed up in the new billion-dollar embassy, that’s who. These are the same folks who have bungled billions of dollars in failed reconstruction projects that were never supported by the Iraqis themselves, but were taxpayer-funded boondoggles for the contractors.

Why does Condi Rice still have a job?

Steve :: 9:17 AM :: Comments (13) :: Digg It!