U.S. finalizing its plans for postwar Iraq:

President George W. Bush’s national security team is assembling final plans for administering and democratizing Iraq after the expected ouster of Saddam Hussein, including a heavy American military presence in the country, military trials of the most senior Iraqi leaders and quick takeover of the nation’s oil fields to pay for reconstruction.

(…) While many elements remain highly classified and some are still being debated, as Bush’s team attempts to allay concerns that the United States seeks to be a colonial power in Iraq, the broad outlines show the complexity of the months ahead and some of the difficulties that would follow even a swift and successful attack.

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Among the main features are the following… [more] International Herald Tribune

Notably absent from the planning are any representatives of the Iraqi people themselves. It is likely that the post-Saddam Iraqi people, not to mention the rest of the Arab world, will begin to see the U.S. as conquerors rather than liberators. Evidence is that the appropriation of the oilfields to “protect” them will end up a permanent boon to U.S. petrochemical industry cronies of the dysadministration more than anyone else, of course.

“We’ve established a clear link…”:

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