Iraq project not worth the millions spent
New report suggests major problems with Fallujah Waste Water System project in Iraq.
October 30th, 2011
12:01 AM ET

Iraq project not worth the millions spent

By Charley Keyes, CNN Sr. National Security Producer

As the U.S. military heads towards the exits in Iraq, a new report released Sunday on a major reconstruction project there reads like a critique of the war in general - poorly planned, unexpectedly costly, years behind schedule and with an uncertain future.

The Fallujah Waste Water System was hailed as a showpiece of American efforts to rebuild and improve Iraq. It was designed to serve more than a 100,000 people, win public support and boost the economy.

After seven years of work, deadly insurgent attacks amidst some of the heaviest fighting inIraq, cost overruns and other problems, the system opened in May. But rather than a rush of success, the effect has been just a drip. By last month, only 6,000 houses were connected to the system. The initial cost estimate was $35 million but the actual cost so far has reached $100 million and may take much more before completion.During construction, workers were continually under attack and stretches of pipeline repeatedly were blown up. ThreeU.S.reconstruction officials returning from the site were killed by an improvised roadside bomb in 2009, among other deadly incidents related to the project.

"In the end, it would be dubious to conclude that this project helped stabilize the city, enhanced the local citizenry's faith in government, built local service capacity, won hearts or minds, or stimulated the economy," the report from the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR) said. "Coupled with the fact that the outcome achieved was a wastewater treatment system operating at levels far below what was anticipated, it is difficult to conclude that the project was worth the $100 million investment and the many lives lost."

The volatile Fallujah region was selected as the site of high visibility public works projects after four U.S. private security contractors were killed there in 2004, their bodies dragged through the streets and hung from a bridge over the Euphrates. A subsequent military operation there left hundreds dead and the city wrecked.

Even now there are questions about the project going forward, whether the Iraqi government will be able to expand the system to its full potential and operate it efficiently.

"The plant operators are not properly treating the sewage because they have not been trained in using the required consumables, such as polymer and chlorine," the report says.

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Filed under: Iraq
soundoff (189 Responses)
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    August 4, 2012 at 9:14 am | Reply
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  8. David Schwab

    No surprise there. it's going on in afghanistan as well. i don't understand why we pay excessively to afghan contractors when they show up with a spoon to dig with

    November 3, 2011 at 11:13 pm | Reply
  9. Paul

    "reads like a critique of the war in general – poorly planned, unexpectedly costly, years behind schedule and with an uncertain future." it reads like a critique of ALL GOVERMENT PROJECTS no matter how necessary or pointless.

    November 3, 2011 at 10:16 am | Reply
  10. Jo

    I am very angry that the US can spend 100 million dollars on a waste plant for another country but can only give $38 dollars a month to people on Social Security and that only comes after we haven't had a raise in 3 years. A person is expected to live on $650 a month. All this money spent overseas could go to the american people. Homelessness is Rampant. American people are starving. all these billions of dollars going out to help these people in other countries could be spent here at home making life livable. I am a Special Forces veteran that has been through 2 conflicts and I have a couple of holes in me from each one. I am barely making it I say take your 38 bucks and shove it in your asses. give us some of those billions that you are sending over seas. "Yeah That'll Happen"

    November 3, 2011 at 6:37 am | Reply
  11. Joe R

    Whats new........This is another government Project.........Croton Plant in Bronx, NY stated with 1.3 Billion and now its 3.6 ans still not finished. This is just one small example.....We are closing schools in this country so US can build waste treatment plants in Iraq???????????WOW lucky them...................US should tax them not US people....

    November 2, 2011 at 12:20 pm | Reply
  12. English Major

    typical government B.S.

    October 31, 2011 at 6:43 am | Reply
  13. Jim

    This is representative of big government spending everywhere. One party – the one whose president pushed this project through – says less government is in order and "nation building" is wrong. The other party looks at big jobs programs in America that devoted millions to each new job and sheepishly explains that the economy hasn't turned around because we didn't spend enough last time. Fortunately, there is an unlimited supply of tax money and taxpayers to foot the bills for both levels of mistake, right?

    October 31, 2011 at 6:16 am | Reply
    • Michael

      I'm sure those that planned the war profited very well. Check Dick Cheney's bank accounts.

      October 31, 2011 at 8:41 am | Reply
      • StanCalif

        Surely Hallibuton was "involved"! Just like Dick's other "no bid" contractors who caused Americans to be electrocuted while taking a shower! Be sure there are many more such "projects" paid for by the US taxpayers to "win the hearts and minds" of the Iraqi people! Our installed "free and democratically elected government" has sent how much Iraqi oil to the US? NONE, Zero! Yet Chinese and Russian oil companies were awarded contracts to develop Iraqi oil fields! How many Chinese or Russians died in Iraq? Good ole George promised that our "liberating" Iraq would be fully paid for! Ha, ha, ha! The US needs to send a bill to the Iraqi government for everything we have "invested" in their "freedom"! If they don't pay up, well . . . how about another "shock and awe" campaign?

        October 31, 2011 at 9:00 pm |
    • Byron

      hahaha, I love how people immediately start blaming Obama and the Democrats who are for huge government, despite the FACT that the article clearly states the project started 7 years ago, which for those of you who are too lazy to figure this out, BUSH was president, and this was his administration's idea...................... Once again, the conservative propaganda machine ignorantly strikes again, and fails miserably...

      October 31, 2011 at 11:15 am | Reply
  14. Dennis

    Big deal. Everyone forgets that 12 Billion in cash, loaded on Pallets disappeared.

    October 31, 2011 at 5:41 am | Reply
  15. Mike

    Not worth the millions spent?
    What about the thousands of lives wasted?
    Seems pretty fn cold to be thinking about the money. But that's how we roll.

    October 31, 2011 at 5:37 am | Reply
  16. joe

    Above is the product of the failed school system

    October 31, 2011 at 5:10 am | Reply
  17. Thereals

    It does seem that this project was like a giant target sign. How many human lives is it worth to build this? I hope the residents of Fallujah are grateful for the tremendous sacrifices that have been made by US and allied servicemen on their behalf. Hopefully it will inspire them to remember and reject violent extremism, so that they can have a future.

    October 31, 2011 at 4:47 am | Reply
  18. r4bbit

    If you do not plant seed in a garden that will keep insects from destroying what was formally planted in the garden you will have no good crop.By planting it a show of goodwill and actual caring to stop the barbaric ways in Iraq,then the people of Iraq will not rise up against those who hold them in bondage by controlling their way of thinking to more or less enslave them to keep them doing what the controllers want . Controllers being extremists making their way into Government .I have seen it done before and planting the seeds of hope are about the only way besides fighting to achieve national freedom. It is really a sad thing religion is being used on them when religion purpose is to install a conscience ,morals,pride, among other things with conscience & morals the most important for the government running that country and the entire population.

    October 31, 2011 at 4:19 am | Reply
  19. Michael B.

    Is anyone really surprised about this? You could say the same thing about every single dollar spent on the invasion, occupation, and rebuilding of Iraq. In another generation we'll be back to square one, bombing the next hostile regieme. Probably run by Muquta Al-Sadr.

    October 31, 2011 at 3:45 am | Reply
  20. Anon

    Before the Iraq war started I was posting as much as possible about the Carlyle Group and Halliburton getting rich off the war. The Carlyle Group is headquartered right there in downtown Washington DC. Made up of world leaders and ultra rich, it supplied weapons and other services to Iraq. GWB and his daddy are deep in to Carlyle. We should have impeached Bush and arrested those involved for conflict of interest issues!

    October 31, 2011 at 3:34 am | Reply
    • Dion

      Keep posting your info. It took me a long time to start putting the pieces together, but I finally did. I couldn't have done it with out reading the posts of others who knew things that I did not. The corruption goes really deep. Most Americans are not willing to harm others to line our own pockets. Let's take our country back!

      October 31, 2011 at 3:47 am | Reply
    • Bob Ramos

      We elected Bush; Bush started the Iraq War; So, we do owe the Iraq people something for that. But since it is impossible to pay in full for many reasons, we simply need to pull stakes and get out lock stock and barrell. If Iran wants this nightmare, let them have it.

      October 31, 2011 at 5:11 am | Reply
  21. colt45

    "Government cheese" must be about 15. Incredibly uneducated and misinformed–and totally in denial.

    October 31, 2011 at 3:11 am | Reply
  22. Rob

    What some of you dont realize that is the American public is getting fed up with all this bs, their doing demonstrations around the country, the police is trying to keep an order by arresting innocent protesters. Things need to change for AMERICA and this is coming from an American Solider who fought in Iraq and Afghanistan, I'm not your average citizen who sits at home and all they do is complain! Please get a life or leave this country already and stop bitching!

    Stop giving our Jobs to CHINA, STOP SUPPORTING all these companies from leaving the USA to offer JOBS to Asia, China, Japan, India and God knows who else. Please let us wake up and smell the coffee, ALL POLITICIANS are responsible for what is happening TODAY, NOT OBAMA, BUSH, CLINTONS, etc etc etc ALL OF THEM are responsible! but most of all IS US THE AMERICAN PEOPLE who has let this country completely down. What is next for us to star speaking Chinese??? What the hell is wrong with our Country? LET YOUR VOICES BE HEARD LOUD AND CLEAR NOW! DONT WAIT!!! Let us ask ourself what can we do for our own country and not what the country can do for you! It's that simple!

    Good luck!

    October 31, 2011 at 2:31 am | Reply
    • bob

      Very said and I could agree more, three tour over there. American are lazy and want thing given to them. You're right it not one person or party that ruining this country, it the American people that do NOTHING.

      November 1, 2011 at 10:02 am | Reply
  23. CAPITALISTpigs

    so who got the contract to build the facility? haliburton

    October 31, 2011 at 1:53 am | Reply
    • government cheese, M.D.

      ACORN got the contract.

      October 31, 2011 at 2:04 am | Reply
      • JimmySD

        You think that M.D. after your name is a fraud?

        I'd be impressed if you have a diploma, dip!!!!!!!!!!

        October 31, 2011 at 2:16 am |
      • government cheese, M.D.

        JimmySD- What does the SD stand for? Short d!ck? LOL

        October 31, 2011 at 2:22 am |
      • JimmySD

        cheesy balls doesn't have a diploma.
        Big surprise.

        October 31, 2011 at 2:26 am |
    • PacerLJ35

      Halliburton did not build the facility. It was contracted through USACE to a waste-water company from South Carolina, and most of the work was sub-contracted to a local Iraqi-owned company in-country. The news isn't reporting all the details... Here are some (I worked in Iraq as an advisor from 2008-2009):

      First, the contract was developed for a lagoon-style facility (which is cheaper) serving most of the city. The government of Iraq, in a desire to have the "latest and greatest", changed that requirement and requested USACE to develop a more modern style system. This more modern design costs a lot more, and the sub-contracting only was able to do the design for part of the city. In my experience working with Iraqis, it is pretty standard to have seemingly obvious things left out of construction. So it doesn't surprise me that the system is limited in capacity. I observed them build new dorms for the Iraqi Air Force and they forgot to add electrical power to their own dorm buildings...

      Back to the original post, for what it's worth I saw and observed numerous building and infrastructure projects. Nearly all of them were sub-contracted to local Iraqi or sometimes Turkish firms, and I never saw Halliburton running any of the projects. I did see several French firms and a few other American firms as overall contractor...but I think it's popular to automatically assume any project boon-doggle is associated with Halliburton just because Cheney was on the board.

      While I understand the frustration with Cheney, it's disingenous to basically "make stuff up" just to complain and whine. 90% of the people that hear that stuff will believe it whether it's true or not.

      October 31, 2011 at 2:56 am | Reply
      • ib42

        Nice try, but I'll bet cheney and his criminal kind found a way to cover up their involvement in this, and all other contracts where billions of dollars were up for grabs. That's what cheney and people like him do, what they live for.

        October 31, 2011 at 3:06 am |
      • PacerLJ35

        Nice try? So what you're saying really don't know, but you're gonna "guess"...where as I was actually over there and dealt with the contracts and have real knowlege. No wonder why politics in this country is so messed up. I'm glad you know all about the contracting over there since you've obviously slept in a Holiday Inn Express last night.

        October 31, 2011 at 6:26 am |
  24. Terry Brookman

    Want to talk political party's the try this. Obama has run up the debt by thirteen trillion, he sold it as bail out money for company's here but ten trillion has gone to bail out the Euro and we get the bill. There is not one honest politician in Washington with perhaps a exception of Ron Paul. The two party system is a sham to keep us divided, it is just like pro wrestling. In the spotlight they hate each other but off stage they hang out together and get richer while the fans get in fist fights over the phony mach, What a joke on a bunch of stupid party believers, there are only to real party's the rich and getting richer and the poor and getting poorer.

    October 31, 2011 at 1:49 am | Reply
    • JimmySD

      Why are people so full of crap?

      Do I need to create a website on how to do internet research?

      October 31, 2011 at 2:34 am | Reply
  25. kt

    this what is wrong with you people no regard for humanity always complaining of money. Trying to justify an illegal war. Killed millions of innocent people. Now cracking down on OWS protestors. I hope china some day comes and teaches you the same good democracy lessons that you told the innocent people all over the world and then the chineses complain about their tax dollars. Hope you feel the same ways then as you do now.

    October 31, 2011 at 1:48 am | Reply
    • Buzzer

      Can you honestly say with at straight face that the U.S. Military was directly involved in the killing of MILLIONS of Iraqi civilians?...No you can't. You're standard foolish commment about who has actually carried out the vast majority of INTENTIONAL killings of innocent civilians laughable, has no creditability and is getting old. Do you research and get educated before you make a idiotic statement.

      November 1, 2011 at 12:18 pm | Reply
  26. El Duderino (if you're not into the whole brevity thing)

    The United States is literally insane. They put Bill Clinton on trial for getting a BJ and lying to the people about it (as if he has to answer for such personal activities), and yet Bush and Cheney aren't put on trial for their crimes. I use to love America, now I just want to puke when I think of what it has become in terms of its mismanagment and stupidity.

    October 31, 2011 at 1:44 am | Reply
    • government cheese, M.D.

      The only president to ever be charged with war crimes is Obama for killing a prisoner of war. Gadhaffi's family already filed the paper work with the UN.

      October 31, 2011 at 1:48 am | Reply
      • Terry Brookman

        You don't know the half of it. The war against Libya was about the fact that he was trying to establish a African Union bank with no interest payments plus he was dealing with China for a trade of oil for communication satellite coverage for all of Africa, Phone, high speed INTERNET and entertainment. Europe is in control of most of that now and the Rothschild's did not want a independent bank plus the existing communication Co's. did not want to lose there very profitable deals. Now simple phone service is limited to perhaps one phone for a village with no Internet or TV. Obama the racist against his own people just like here, the poor get hit the hardest with no jobs and rising food and other services like simple shelter.

        October 31, 2011 at 2:07 am |
      • Dion

        If I were Gaddafi's family, I'd shut up the hell up. With their billions they are targets for a hostile take over of their bank accounts. Just watch; you'll hear of some bogus bs from the US how their a treat of some sort and next thing you know their accounts are being frozen.

        October 31, 2011 at 3:54 am |
    • El Duderino (if you're not into the whole brevity thing)

      Gaddafi's whole family can all get r_ped by my machete while sucking a bag of horse d__s for all I care.

      October 31, 2011 at 1:53 am | Reply
      • government cheese, M.D.

        Just the facts, mam. Just the facts.

        October 31, 2011 at 2:00 am |
    • Rob

      You are really an idiot! Wow, people are just amazing! Goverment Cheese? WTF, you probably on public assistance and proud of it, fool! Get a life!

      October 31, 2011 at 2:24 am | Reply
  27. kt

    this what is wrong with you people no regard for humanity. Trying to justify an illegal war. Killed millions of innocent people. Now cracking down on OWS protestors. I hope china some day comes and teaches you the same good democracy lessons that you told the innocent people all over the world and then the chineses complain about their tax dollars. Hope you feel the same ways then as you do now.

    October 31, 2011 at 1:38 am | Reply
  28. The Dude

    The Bush presidency was a complete failure, just like everything else he did in his life (except his daughters, they seemed to turn out ok)

    October 31, 2011 at 1:32 am | Reply
  29. Huge

    When will the end of the joke be finally told?

    October 31, 2011 at 1:20 am | Reply
  30. Aaron

    You cannot force things on people. They won't tolerate it. You may feel like you're helping (and you may well be), but if it's being done through force, they will fight you every step of the way. Leave it alone. Get out of the entire region. Leave them to their dirty water and their theocracies.

    October 31, 2011 at 1:15 am | Reply
  31. government cheese, M.D.

    Liberals have bankrupted the country. Their spending habits are going to lower America's credit rating again in December. Trillions spent with nothing to show for it.

    October 31, 2011 at 1:07 am | Reply
    • JimmySD

      Looking at your posts, it is quite clear that you are so dumb that you don't even realize that you are dumb.

      Onward christian soldier.

      October 31, 2011 at 1:15 am | Reply
      • government cheese, M.D.

        Truth too hard to swallow, huh?

        October 31, 2011 at 1:20 am |
    • JimmySD

      Whoever is paying you to dis inform is flushing money down the toilet.

      You make yourself out to be an idiot by blaming the debt on the progressives. Could you please remind me with an overview of what the federal budget looked like when GWBUSH stole the 2000 election?

      Anyone that has two brain cells close enough to touch can see that you are FOS.

      October 31, 2011 at 1:31 am | Reply
      • Joker

        With regard to the two brain cells, I guess that means you must be pregnant, huh?

        October 31, 2011 at 1:53 am |
      • JimmySD

        Another conservative idiot bites the dust.

        October 31, 2011 at 2:21 am |
    • Jeff

      If you cared to read the article before commenting you'd see that this project started long before Obama took office, so it would be W's spending that you are criticizing, not the liberals.

      October 31, 2011 at 1:49 am | Reply
    • Bernard Webb

      What a shallow, dumb comment. From a right-winger with a stupid username. Par for the course.

      October 31, 2011 at 5:39 am | Reply
  32. america's sympethiser

    Thanks from Osama Bin Laden to the consecutive presidents of America for continuing his work from where he has stopped i.e.destroying America.

    October 31, 2011 at 1:05 am | Reply
    • JimmySD

      Bin Ladin would be shaking hands with Charles and David Koch. These spoiled little brats that inherited 300 million dollars each 30 years ago have the balls to say that anyone who isn't a billionaire is lazy.

      October 31, 2011 at 1:22 am | Reply
      • stan

        they took 600 million and turned it into a 50 BILLION empire over 30 years. you can hate them cuz you aint them all you want, but that requires a LOT of work. 16% annualized rate of return year after year. if you think they did it sitting on their spoiled behinds thats why they are rich and you likely arent.

        October 31, 2011 at 1:41 am |
      • JimmySD

        Who the hell are you stan?!?!?!?!?!

        Are you kidding?!?!?!?!?!

        This crap would be funny if it wasn't so sad.

        So, a couple spoiled brats get 300 million each just because they had a silver spoon. Then, these spoiled brats (four brothers) fight over the fortune until the most wicked assess (Charles and David) let the other brothers (Bill and I'm not going to look it up) cry mercy. Charles and David use their money to buy politicians, write laws, engage in business with terrorists, influence the SEC, and I can go on and on and on and on.

        You think they earned it??????

        They bought control. They ARE corruption. And somehow you think they earned money...ever...from what?!?!

        October 31, 2011 at 1:54 am |
      • stan

        I'm someone who realizes that an annualized 16% rate of return consistantly over 30 years takes a TON of hard work. even if you bribe politicians in the process. you can be jealous of their (excessive) success all you want, but that doesnt change reality.

        October 31, 2011 at 2:02 am |
      • JimmySD

        Thanks for setting me straight stan

        I didn't realize that is was so hard to bribe politicians when a person only has 300 million in their pocket

        I see much more clearly now.

        So it's true. People who are not billionaires are just lazy.

        October 31, 2011 at 2:09 am |
  33. Brian

    Have they found those WMD yet? Wolfowitz told Bush that WMD was a "slam dunk" in Iraq.

    October 31, 2011 at 12:56 am | Reply
    • sawolf

      Brian, he used them on his own people, where did they go; there were satellite recon of russian convoys trucking across the desert into syria then the bekka valley, before the start of hostilities. Also these people have built miles long sophisticated tunnels for 5000 years, because they were NOT found doesn't mean they won't come back to bite us on the backside.

      October 31, 2011 at 1:22 am | Reply
      • stan

        i cant believe that even after all this time people still think this way. where did they go? they were USED. iraqi chemical weapons were so poor in quality that the final stages of the chemical synthesis were done literally in the field before a shell was fired. whatever small stocks remained after the iran iraq war possessed ZERO military threat to anyone because the chemicals degraded so fast that the only way a many years old iraqi chemical weapon round would hurt anyone is if it fell out of the sky and landed on your head.

        October 31, 2011 at 1:45 am |
    • JimmySD

      Stan is a shill

      Hey Stan,

      I have an absurd amount of education. It's pretty much all science related, and I'm not even making this up. I have a Medical Degree and a Bachelor's Degree in Biology.

      Do you have an job openings? Seems like all the money is in propaganda. Can you help me break into that field?

      October 31, 2011 at 2:02 am | Reply
  34. Sharp

    Reminds me of the sabotage that the Republicans have substituted for participating in our government.

    October 31, 2011 at 12:56 am | Reply
  35. Joe

    I've served in Fallujah,Iraq and observed this waste water treatment plant being built and trust me anything is an improvement over what they had prior to this project. Even if it is moderately effective and trust me it wasn't paid for in full with your American Tax Dollars. Therefore, if you haven't been there do your homework before you talk about an issue that you don't know anything about! I've seen Fallujah go from a total hell hole to a halfway decent place during two seperate 7 Month Deployments there. I lost several great friends there and I don't feel that they died in vain. They died making a difference.

    October 31, 2011 at 12:49 am | Reply
    • Jeplin

      Thanks Joe for filling in the blanks the media always seems to forget in order to make a story and thank you, your friends for your service to this country...

      October 31, 2011 at 1:16 am | Reply
    • sawolf

      Thanks for your service

      October 31, 2011 at 1:24 am | Reply
    • Buzzer

      And the criticisms from the other side are strangely quiet or they that pressed on to engage other that have no first hand expericence...typical "I love to hear myself talk, and say "oh the humanity of it all!"", but when someone calls them on their igornant statement...crickets...cowards. 14 year USAF active duty, keep you head up and press.

      November 1, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Reply
  36. MAC

    It looks like Iraq is having the same problems as the USA with corruption, cost over runs, and politics and regulations affecting its shovel ready projects. Also they are having problems training unqualified personnel as we have in the USA due to our poor quality education system.

    October 31, 2011 at 12:35 am | Reply
    • AnAnarchist

      Of course they're having the same problems. Iraq is part of the U.S. imperialist archipelago.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:45 am | Reply
  37. Gopherit

    Did the U.S.blow up a previous waste water treatment plant during one of the battles for Fallujah? Ironic but business as usual that U.S. taxpayers are on the hook for $100+++ million for something which very possibly won't be completed or if it is, will not be run properly, while in the U.S. necessary and beneficial projects go begging for funding which probably won't materialise.

    October 31, 2011 at 12:32 am | Reply
  38. AnAnarchist

    Too bad we anti-war activists couldn't stop the human/economy/rationality-killing machine in the months leading up to this fiasco. The neo-cons, deep-pocketed contractors, and embedded media voyeurs snowed an ignorant electorate, as always, and bullied the aware masses into complicit silence. At what cost? A debilitated generation and broken economy. Let the American public reap what they sowed in their patriotic silence and hatred.

    October 31, 2011 at 12:30 am | Reply
    • William

      Yes, I remember those days well. Anyone who protested was labelled anit-American and told to "shut up". You were either "with us or aginst us" as the pres said. I doubt if GB and Cheney could have pulled it off if they didn't have such wide support from the American people.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:44 am | Reply
      • AnAnarchist

        Yeah, William. But it was "agin'" us. You must get the spelling right! I have scars from the domestic war years of the bin Laden decade, Bush/Cheney and the enabling silence of the American public that voted those two in twice. Unbelievable. I don't vote anymore and never will after that sad decade out of respect for all the bloodletting and denigration of human welfare and aspirations.

        October 31, 2011 at 12:51 am |
      • Beverly NC

        That is exactly how I remember it too. Bush and Cheney bullied anyone who dared to question their war. Karl Rove even committed treason by outting CIA agent Valerie Pflame when her husband would not lie for Bush to Congress on how Iraq was getting nuclear rods from Liberia- which was not happening. Cheney thought he could walk into Iraq and steal their oil for his company,Halibuton, but all we got was murdered soldiiers, trillions in debt, Iraqis who hate us, the US commiting war crimes on torture, and nothing but one giant lie that was a giant failure.I am so thrilled President Obama is bringing home our troops from this10 yr fraud. We need that money here for OUR people and projects.

        October 31, 2011 at 12:55 am |
      • sawolf

        So if you give up aren't you as bad as the people you oppose, because you claim to know better but won't stand up?

        October 31, 2011 at 1:27 am |
      • Buzzer

        AnAnarchist: if you're not voting, then your bitching needs to stop. You say you have scars...I'm assuming that you did it on active duty...what the hell did you fight for in the first place? So much sacrifice just to stop fighting with your vote?

        November 1, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
  39. us1776

    What did you expect?

    This was "war-for-profit". So huge cost overruns are part of the game that these GOP crony companies play to maximize their profits on the taxpayers dime.


    October 31, 2011 at 12:29 am | Reply
  40. aLaska

    So funny there are places in Alaska that do not have water treatment and wastewater facilities. Too bad they didn't use the money on homeland to support!

    October 31, 2011 at 12:27 am | Reply
  41. Sarah

    For Pete's sake, all you "adults" stop pointing fingers! The Democrats said this, the Republicans did that, the Iraqis are this, the Christians are that. You all sound like 2 year olds. Get over your differences, educate yourselves about opposing sides, stop being blinded by your political parties, get to the root of the problem and fix it with the best interests of our citizens. -A Teenager Losing Hope with Society

    October 31, 2011 at 12:22 am | Reply
    • Jay

      Sarah, how does it feel to be the only adult in the room? My age is 71. If I could say it better than you, I'd do so, but you don't need my help. Just please accept my thanks.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:37 am | Reply
    • JimmySD

      I wish it was as simple as you say. Unfortunately, the people that have gained control of our wealth, our society, our media, and our government did it because they had a selfish mean streak and because the liberal idea of "tolerance" went a little too far.
      A lot of pure corrupt evil wicked folks that will stop at nothing to maintain control are now in charge. They don't care if nations die, if people die, or if your nation dies. The stakes are high, and the battle will be ugly. They have no shame when it comes to lying, cheating or stealing.
      This is far from over. It will get worse before it gets better.

      October 31, 2011 at 1:02 am | Reply
  42. William

    Does anyone remember the Dixie Chicks? I'll bet most of you were ready to run them out of the country back then. It sure is a different bandwagon now!

    October 31, 2011 at 12:18 am | Reply
    • WhackyWaco

      I don't like their music.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:37 am | Reply
      • Jay

        I didn't like their music until they made the album after the Bush dust-up. Before that they sounded like the rednecks who turned against them.

        October 31, 2011 at 12:39 am |
  43. Fix-your-website!

    Even without saying anything about how much cash was skimmed off of the top of this project by the war profiteers… this story pretty much puts an exclamation point at the end of the statement about just how stupid the people of Iraq are. This wastewater treatment facility has been attacked over & over while it’s under construction. Some of the work has had to be re-done because of these attacks. Even the most uneducated welfare recipient knows enough to smile, and hold out his hand while the Gov’t is handing him his benefit check...even if he does say evil things as he’s walking out the door. These Camel Jockeys can’t even can’t even keep the peace long enough to accept something that might keep them from living in a lake of their own excrement.

    October 31, 2011 at 12:15 am | Reply
    • Johan S

      You know, 2000 years ago .. hm actually a couple hundred years ago .. somehow people survived and lived without their sewage resulting in a lake of excrement in which they live. Long before water treatment plants. I believe they had latrines and septic tanks.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:23 am | Reply
      • will

        they didn't live as long though...

        October 31, 2011 at 12:35 am |
      • sawolf

        Population was a lot smaller too.

        October 31, 2011 at 1:29 am |
      • Fix-your-website!

        That’s great Johan. Thanks for impressing all of us with your extensive knowledge about waste water treatment, and basically the entire history of civilization. Was there a point to your essay, or were you going to next tell us about the first typewriter, or something else that’s equally off topic? I want to make sure that I tune in, because I’d sure hate to miss that story.

        October 31, 2011 at 1:53 am |
    • hunter

      I think the people pouring money into this are the stupid ones. The insurgents were keeping the gravy train flowing by continuing to blow it up. I'm sure some of the attacks were done by the builders themselves just to get more money out of the deal. If it had been completed on time with no hassle and only the original 35 million was spent then they would have received far less money in which to enrich themselves. If I were building that, being paid for by a foreign country I hated then it make a lot of sense to blow pieces it up too every now and then. Fix it and send a bill then fix it again and send another bill and repeat the process over and over again. Watch, when we leave, that thing will be up and running and will work just fine without it being attacked. As long as we keep sending millions and millions of dollars to fix it then it is going to continue to have all sorts of problems.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:31 am | Reply
      • Fix-your-website!

        That's a good point, and could very easily be true.

        October 31, 2011 at 1:44 am |
  44. k

    it is inconceivable what this Iraq war has done to the USA economy, but Republicans will keep telling Americans that it is poor people who want help with healthcare and food as the reason why our economy is in a mess

    But Bin Laden got his wish, the Republicans and the Muslims helped to destroy the US economy, Bin Laden wanted to drag the US into a war that would destroy our economy, and the Republicans who had 6 years from 2000-2006 to start 2 wars with no care to pay for it helped them

    October 31, 2011 at 12:09 am | Reply
    • Mb

      The Iraq war accounts for less than 1/15 of our national debt. The country isn't anywhere near bankrupt. It says in the article, the pipelines were repeatedly blown up and the project was under attack. Certain people don't want to see the public works succeed and that's what it costs.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:21 am | Reply
  45. Johnny 5

    They've gained all investment losses back from poppy harvesting and the oil business so no worries for our good ole government. An export value for opium @ around 4 billion dollars X a said 50 years of trafficking. You do the math friends.

    October 31, 2011 at 12:04 am | Reply
  46. JayEm

    The title should say and talk about "Iraq war not worth the trillion spent"

    October 30, 2011 at 11:58 pm | Reply
  47. Jbm66

    Hearts and Minds? lol. They hate our guts over there no matter what we do. Let's just get the he'll out of there and not sacrifice any more of our soldiers for these people. It is amazing how Bush got us into the dumbest war in American history. At least Viet Nam had a purpose to stop communism. But all we did is help our enemy the Iranian regime. Bush has got to rank as the worst ever presidents for this fiasco. It is ludicrous that the Jesus lovers still blind themselves with religion when it comes to the Republican party.

    October 30, 2011 at 11:52 pm | Reply
    • government cheese, M.D.

      Iraq is only the one true democratic country in the Middle East, while Obama is letting the others fall under the influence of the muslim brotherhood. That area will be a safe haven for terrorists in years to come. Very similar to Carter and Iran.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:00 am | Reply
      • BigRed

        Actually you are wrong. Try the following; Israel (democratic govt), Jordan (democratically elected parliament), and oddly enough the Palestinian Authority which was also democratically elected. Morocco is a constitutional monarchy, and Tunisia is in the process of free and open elections.

        October 31, 2011 at 12:25 am |
  48. brown

    Your U.S.A Congress has laid the foundation for WW III. Keep on re-electing them, it will be
    your sons and daughters in unmarked graves!

    October 30, 2011 at 11:49 pm | Reply
  49. rep r morons

    REPUBLICANS ARE MORONS ! especially the poor christian ones .

    October 30, 2011 at 11:48 pm | Reply
  50. FUNR

    " poorly planned, unexpectedly costly, years behind schedule and with an uncertain future...' sounds like your typical DoD project, here or there, war or peace, same thing all the time.

    October 30, 2011 at 11:47 pm | Reply
  51. robroy

    maybe Micheal Moore could do a well documented movie on the spending mishaps in Iraq and Afghanistan.this has got all the smellings of a military ponzi scheme. has anyone been charged or raked over the coals?you could start with those 2 morons who led the U.S. for 8 years.those 2 handed blank checks over hand over fist and you Americans waved your flags and sobbed that this money was to protect your men and women in uniform and mentioning protecting,what happened in Afghanistan on the weekend maybe you folks could call the Germans on some high quality armor !!!!!!

    October 30, 2011 at 11:46 pm | Reply
    • government cheese, M.D.

      Just that you think that Michael Moore is a news source, says it all.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:54 pm | Reply
    • Johan S

      Maybe he could do a training DVD for the plant operators. I'm serious.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:26 am | Reply
  52. american taxpayer

    past time to bring that "wasted" monies back...get our involvement out and bring the projects back here to us. I for one, as a taxpayer am disgusted with not rebuilding America 1st. Where does it say we have to save the world?

    October 30, 2011 at 11:42 pm | Reply
  53. waycist

    one hundred million wasted?
    Thats a bargain,,,,At their height the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were costing us 2B per week.
    A hundred million was getting spent every 8 hours for a couple of years.

    October 30, 2011 at 11:39 pm | Reply
  54. wyobob

    It's amazing that obama is getting blamed for something that was started 7 years ago, just like solara or whatever that solar company was called..
    Haliburton probably made out like bandits.
    Thanks dickie.

    October 30, 2011 at 11:32 pm | Reply
    • pat carr

      that's about right, there's one on here claiming this is the liberals fault. what an idiot

      October 30, 2011 at 11:40 pm | Reply
    • john turner

      how the heck can you be amazed????? the guy is pulling out without finishing the job, hes had 3 years to get 6 months of work done, all he can do is blame the past for not doing his job,

      October 30, 2011 at 11:41 pm | Reply
      • neal

        NO concept of money?.....GWB. came into office with a $3trillion suprlus.

        left office..with a $10 trillion plus deficit...and yet repukes claim to be the "fiscal responsible" party!?!?


        October 31, 2011 at 12:09 am |
      • 12-21-12

        yeah...let's spend billions more there...screw America...let's continue the Bush policies...Obama sucks...republicans are brilliant!

        October 31, 2011 at 12:15 am |
    • government cheese, M.D.

      pat carr is a ho.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:42 pm | Reply
    • Mrsb

      So true. I would like to see the figure of where our deficit would be without the Iraq war and all of the related expense. A sad chapter in US history.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:42 pm | Reply
      • government cheese, M.D.

        $3.5 trillion deficit for the war for a total of $8.5 over the years. During Obama, $14.5 trillion and counting.

        October 30, 2011 at 11:46 pm |
      • BigRed

        govt cheeze the problem is that the Bush administration never figured in the cost of the war as part of the budget. It was funded through a continuing resolution which meant that no one knew the cost of the war nor was it reflected in government spending costs. Obama has funded the wars up front and the cost of the war plus DOD and the rest of government spending is apparent. To recap. Bush hid the cost of conducting the wars. Obama placed the cost of wars out there for all to see.

        October 31, 2011 at 12:29 am |
  55. nighttalk

    leave these more of my more American deaths...any private contractors who want to remain in this cesspool...they are on their own...

    October 30, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Reply
  56. scott

    thank you president bush

    October 30, 2011 at 11:27 pm | Reply
    • government cheese, M.D.

      I remember when Al Gore said his divorce was because of Bush...what a loser excuse. This project has been overseen by liberals for 3 years now.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:31 pm | Reply
    • John

      Cheese: But the project's first four years was created, built, and overseen by the previous administration. Like the wars and the economy, Obama just inherited the garbage created by Bush, Inc. Yours is the bigger "loser excuse."

      October 30, 2011 at 11:40 pm | Reply
      • government cheese, M.D.

        If you want to play that game, then Bush inherited the terrorists from Clinton.

        October 30, 2011 at 11:49 pm |
      • Ken

        No, Clinton inherited bin Laden and Saddam from Reagan . . . old Ronnie funded their training and WMDs. Nice try, though.

        October 31, 2011 at 12:07 am |
      • government cheese, M.D.

        Ken- They were on our side until Clinton came into office.

        October 31, 2011 at 12:17 am |
  57. Son of Buck

    You want to understand the reasoning behind Iraq as well as every other country the US has invaded over the last 30 plus years? Just go read "Confessions of an Economic Assasin."

    October 30, 2011 at 11:25 pm | Reply
  58. LouAZ

    Why do we Americans believe that the Middle East can go from the back of a camel to the pilot seat of a F-16 in one generation ?

    October 30, 2011 at 11:18 pm | Reply
  59. PGelsman

    And this revelation is a surprise? I think not.

    October 30, 2011 at 11:17 pm | Reply
  60. government cheese, M.D.

    Just add this to the $1 billion that the liberals spent on the "Stimulus."

    October 30, 2011 at 11:14 pm | Reply
    • D

      Umm, you mean Republicans... I know, common mistake.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:17 pm | Reply
      • government cheese, M.D.

        You think that the liberals did not pass and approve the Stimulus package? What a re-tard.

        October 30, 2011 at 11:24 pm |
    • Dapedape

      This project was started during the bush administration as was this entire fiasco. How can you possibly be so ignorant??

      October 30, 2011 at 11:23 pm | Reply
      • government cheese, M.D.

        Is Obama using the 'dog ate my homework' or 'it was Bush's fault' again? People in charge if the government are responsible for running it, not playing golf. Liberals have been over seeing this project for 3 years now.

        October 30, 2011 at 11:29 pm |
    • pat carr

      Bush started this war, retard.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:34 pm | Reply
      • government cheese, M.D.

        Did Bush spend $1 trillion and have nothing to show for it? What a re-tard.

        October 30, 2011 at 11:38 pm |
      • John

        Yes, Cheese, he did. Do you have a single intelligent response, other than blaming those not responsible?

        October 30, 2011 at 11:41 pm |
    • pat carr

      GC please go away and be stupid somewhere else, especially if you can't remember who has done what.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:39 pm | Reply
    • BigRed

      All this started from a republican wanting to be known as a successful wartime president. He manufactured an unnecessary war from wishful thinking that he told the intelligence agencies to justify with disparate information. Since then America has consumed a steady diet of republican lies......and we are sick of it.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:37 am | Reply
  61. William Chemko

    Ah, remember the Dixie Chicks.

    October 30, 2011 at 11:05 pm | Reply
    • arkie115

      I wonder if we'll ever get around to apologising to them?

      October 30, 2011 at 11:27 pm | Reply
  62. government cheese, M.D.

    Liberals do not seem to grasp the concept of money and how to spend it.

    October 30, 2011 at 11:00 pm | Reply
    • Hawk

      Ding bat this was all done under bush and a republican controlled senate and congress.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:07 pm | Reply
    • pat carr

      and conservatives are too stupid to remember who started this debacle

      October 30, 2011 at 11:35 pm | Reply
    • BigRed

      Actually under Clinton we had eight years of economic stability, a time when the world admired us, and where his tenure ended with a budget surplus. Bush quickly reversed everything and gave the largest portion of that surplus to his corporate buddies. No, liberals know how to fix the economic chaos that conservative extremists cause time and time again. Ever heard of the Depression?--Republicans, the chaos during post war reconstruction of the South?......Republicans, the panic of 1849.......Republicans. Anytime there is an economic meltdown it is because of Republicans.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:43 am | Reply
  63. Akhan

    If I was an Iraqi, I wouldn't trust that water.

    October 30, 2011 at 10:58 pm | Reply
  64. James Boland, M.D.

    This is so typical of the Republicans and why after years as a fairly conservative voter, it will be a cold day in hell before I vote for another Republican.

    October 30, 2011 at 10:55 pm | Reply
    • Mrsb

      The Republican party has been hijacked. I can not imagine a statesman such as Eisenhower, or even Reagan, enter such a senseless war. This radical segment of the Republican party has ruined it. As a once Republican, now independent, I can't see voting Republican again. We need real statesmen

      October 30, 2011 at 11:50 pm | Reply
  65. government cheese

    The Obama administration even wastes money in other countries.

    October 30, 2011 at 10:54 pm | Reply
    • mendoza

      Construction began 7 years ago.

      October 30, 2011 at 10:58 pm | Reply
      • government cheese, M.D.

        Liberals are in charge. Sounds a lot like Solyndra and Lightsquared.

        October 30, 2011 at 11:01 pm |
    • Hawk

      I know that you tea party nut jobs are slow but this is beyond reason. or should i say typical republican thinking. all this money and construction was done by bush and the republicans Obama had nothing to do with it.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:01 pm | Reply
      • government cheese, M.D.

        Are you saying that a CEO (president) has been running a company for 3 years, is not responsible for what he is running?

        October 30, 2011 at 11:03 pm |
      • pat carr

        "governmentcheese" is incredibly stupid. this project is years old, started from a fraudulent war, by the republicans. Maybe he was home schooled

        October 30, 2011 at 11:38 pm |
      • Landen

        Pat: homeschooling typically results in people who are more politically informed. Maybe Cheese went to a really bad public school. Or worse, a Christian private school...

        October 31, 2011 at 12:15 am |
    • Ian

      The project is seven years old.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:01 pm | Reply
    • D

      Republicans, always lost and confused. Let me try and make this as simple as possible. You did this. Got it?

      October 30, 2011 at 11:18 pm | Reply
  66. John

    That right keep Republican back Company doing the Jobs and It will cost America over a Billions dollars be for the are done. Now why do you think the Republican want to keep America Troops In Iraq and Afghanistan for. To keep these Big Business they have over there happy. No matter how many America Live It will cost.

    October 30, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Reply
    • it's not like we don't have our own problems

      couldn't they just build sewer systems in hawaii? and work on the lead in the water problems? why aren't we working on our own problems? schools by the coal mines could use some help.

      October 30, 2011 at 10:53 pm | Reply
    • Codepwned

      Stop.. think about what you're trying to say then type it out again. That came out all ass backwards.

      October 30, 2011 at 10:56 pm | Reply
  67. luckluck

    spending money on Iraq or any other nation won't make the people to love America. What make them to love America is to stop supporting Israel of killing Palestinians for the past 65 years like animals and torturing and killing millions from infants to handicapped. Destroying their home and taking over their properties. Spread Justice not Money. That is what bring love and security. Not sending soldiers of give F16s to Israel to kill Palestinians everyday and attack its other neighbors

    October 30, 2011 at 10:43 pm | Reply
    • Frank

      Israel should just kill all of them so this problem can be put into the history books.

      October 30, 2011 at 10:52 pm | Reply
    • Yan

      Buddy, I don't know where you get your info, but since 1947, thousands of Palestinians have died during their wars against Israel. Where do you get off talking about millions? The Syrian government has killed more Syrians in the last months than Palestinians killed by Israelis in the last years. Time to leave your delusional fantasy world and come back to reality. Or are facts just to inconvenient for you?

      October 30, 2011 at 11:02 pm | Reply
    • BigRed

      Wow, someone has been reading the terrorist version of Fox News.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:46 am | Reply
    • sawolf

      Don't know where you get your info,but do remember in 67 the arabs loudly telling the world they were going to finish the job hitler started, didn't work out the way they planned. Also heard nasrallah in lebanon claim he knows how to hurt the Jews. Claimed that they love life so he would take it away from them because he and hezbollah love death.

      October 31, 2011 at 1:36 am | Reply
  68. Cassandra Chu


    October 30, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Reply
  69. Steve

    I would not be surprised if Haliburton was one of the main contractors on this "waste" water project. We should send Dick Cheney and his sidekick G W to finish the project.
    Would somebody please publlish a list of all the stupid projects started in Iraq and in Afghanistan with price tag.

    October 30, 2011 at 10:39 pm | Reply
    • Hawk

      No matter that this was bush and cheneys doing all the republicans and tea party idiots still blame obama for it.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:03 pm | Reply
      • pat carr

        that's right, we have one on here blaming liberals for this! what stupid arrogant idiots.

        October 30, 2011 at 11:37 pm |
    • BigRed

      Just look at the Federal Register from 2002 to the present. It's plain old scary the amount of money that has been wasted in Iraq.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:48 am | Reply
  70. jay howard

    We must never forget that Republican George W. Bush sold the United States to China in order to get the money to fight the Iraq war for Iran. It will not be long before Iran puts GWB on a stamp as its national hero.

    October 30, 2011 at 10:34 pm | Reply
    • Steve

      The Iraq war was ordered by the Saudi King through Cheney to eliminate Sadam. Cheney sold it to Bush as the revenge for the attempt on the life of G H Bush. Cheney and Haliburton got money and permission tp setup shop in Bahrain. G W got his revenge, our military could test their latest gadgets. The Chinese and the Russians were laughing how we bled ourselves to death. The losers: the young men and women who died and the american taxpayers footing the bill.

      October 30, 2011 at 10:46 pm | Reply
  71. Larry

    I spent two years in Iraq. Whoever came up with this plan is a raving lunitic. Throwing money does not solve all problems.

    October 30, 2011 at 10:32 pm | Reply
  72. Bill

    Billions spent by a GOP administration to build iraq – GOOD.
    Billions spent by a Democrat Congress and President to build America – BAD.
    One can only conclude that people have become clinically, veritably insane.

    October 30, 2011 at 10:27 pm | Reply
  73. ban the koran

    who cares about Iraq? we shouldnt be "nation building", its a war. This idea that the monroe doctrine is going to work in ME is so stupid. These savages do not share any of the same cultural values as western civilization. If they provoke us we should simply bomb them into the stone age and walk away. Let them sort it out. We dont need to endanger our people in some ME shiite-hole.

    October 30, 2011 at 8:32 am | Reply
    • TeaPartyIdiot

      I heartily agree. The rebuilding effort was nothing more than a veiled attempt to funnel money into the pockets of Haliburton and other companies with similar ties to the Bush administration.

      Just think of what that money could have been used for here at home.

      October 30, 2011 at 10:34 pm | Reply
    • Ben

      ha i see what you did there

      October 30, 2011 at 10:39 pm | Reply
    • Cassandra Chu

      Your ignorance and racial profiling is sickening. We invaded (based on the lie of WMD), killed about 300,000 humans and destroyed a decade. Not very "civilian" of us.

      October 30, 2011 at 10:43 pm | Reply
      • Buzzer

        Cassandra, how IN THE HELL can you say with a straight face that the U.S. Military INTENTIONALLY killed 300,000 humans in Iraq? If I'm implying specific things that you didn't mean then I suggest you cease with you own NEGLIGENT and generalized statement and CORRECT YOURSELF...if thats exactly what meant let oblige you with a butt chewing...I am 14 year active duty in the USAF with 2 tours to Operation ENDURING FREEDOM and I take OFFENSE to your statement...I know 1st hand the painstaking care and consideration our men and women in uniform took in ensure to the best of our ability to minimize collateral damage to innocent civilians at GREAT RISK to our own people, DESPITE the fact that these COWARDLY militants used their own people as human shields by embedding themselves in the civilian Ma'am need to check yourself about things you know nothing about.

        November 1, 2011 at 1:47 pm |
    • JPo

      ban the koran – lets not call them savages. I will say they are already in the stone age but with internet. much like the arab spring if the people there want paved roads and electricity they should press their own government and do it themselves. no wonder some (who will remain nameless) say the US is imperialist with all the nation building. money a few years ago was said to make the world go 'round but as of late its money/greed thats has made it sow down. the arab spring was a surprise to everyone – just let those people be, leave them alone. its obvious we're there for money otherwise theres a few mountain top communities in need of high speed internet, toilets and such if we really want to help people. now we've lead them to water and taught them to fish so lets get the heck out of dodge stop throwing money at them and teaching them to shoot.

      October 30, 2011 at 11:03 pm | Reply
    • BigRed

      I'm a little confused on your citing of the Monroe Doctrine. I had no idea that it included the Middle East as part of the Western Hemisphere.

      October 31, 2011 at 12:50 am | Reply

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