Corruption, Reconstruction and Oil Governance in Iraq
With the world's second largest oil reserves, Iraq is potentially a very prosperous country. Like many other oil-dependent countries, however, Iraq's recent history points to a pattern of authoritarianism, corruption and violence. The US administration has portrayed its occupation of Iraq as an effort to break with this pattern and ensure democracy, security and a shared prosperity for Iraqis. This article engages with the challenges of oil governance and reconstruction in Iraq, focusing on the role of corruption and the record of the Coalition Provisional Authority. Iraq's political legacy, oil dependence and transition under US occupation suggest that the new Iraqi regime may once again rest on corruption-based patronage; but of a type more accommodating to US interests.
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