Aid Agencies in Iraq

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by ramblin_rover, Sep 21, 2005.

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  1. Anyone know where I can find out info on the number of agencies and the number of people on the ground, partcularly in the UK sector? Also, how much is being spent? I know the Office of National Statistics would have 2004 figures.

    Am pondering a thought about whether or not it is actually better to have more of them on the ground, than more troops? Okay, slightly more risk to the civvies but less of a direct and obvious target.
  2. Margaret Hassan wouldn't agree with you mate!
  3. Or Ken Bigley
    Although he may of been with the U.N.
  4. Best place to go to is the Essential Services Offices at British Army Brigade HQ Basrah International Airport and ask for the SO2 essential services coordinator. They should now be working closely with the aid agencies, more so than last year, and be able to shine a light for you. You could also try and contact the British Consulate and representatives of the aid authorities that are in one of the buildings at the old Palace in Basrah. During Telic 4 i met with US AID (Basrah International Airport), DiVID, Bechtel, CPA, Research Triangle Institute plus other minor agencies that had not got a foothold but were looking to see if they were able to help.

    My experience of the Aid agencies in Iraq was quite extensive during Telic 4. There were a number of major problems though. Firstly, they rarely spoke to each other so there were many repeats of projects when money could have been better distributed. Secondly, only a handful seemed to have regular meetings with the local governorate and I spent my whole tour (when not on lock down!) trying to get everyone (including the BGs) to talk to each other and share the knowledge. I found many OCs/COs (one or two exceptions) etc trying to win their OBE/CBE by trying too hard and p***ing the local governorate right off, by empire building through activating CERPs and QIPs for short term solutions not long term. Thirdly the sy situation was too dangerous for many aid agencies to have enough freedom to get to meetings and even just out on the ground. They have their own private sy but didn't trust them to do a good job and Snatch taxi services were too hard to provide all the time.

    Provided that they all communicate with each other and deconflict all the time Aid agency help would be nice. A fourth problem is that the local Iraqi governorate were fiercely proud of their organisation (as flawed as it was) and they continuously strived to show that they were able to help themselves. However, they wanted independance with one hand but snatched at money from aid agencies with the other (the Arab way perhaps?)

    The main drama will be the sy sitn.
    Hope this helps