In the Scrapyards of Jordan, Signs of a Looted Iraq

(New York Times) As the U.S. spends billions of dollars to rebuild Iraq's civil and military infrastructure, there is increasing evidence that parts of sensitive military equipment, seemingly brand-new components for oil rigs and water plants, and whole complexes of older buildings are leaving the country on the backs of flatbed trucks. By some estimates, at least 100 semitrailers loaded with what is billed as Iraqi scrap metal are streaming each day into Jordan, just one of six countries that share a border with Iraq. "There is a gigantic salvage operation, stripping anything of perceived value out of the country," said John Hamre, president of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a Washington research institute. "This is systematically plundering the country....You're going to have to replace all of this stuff."

2004-05-28 00:00:00

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