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U.S. Occupation Assistance: Iraq, Germany and Japan Compared

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This report provides aggregate data on U.S. assistance to Iraq and compares it with U.S. assistance to Germany and Japan during the 7 years following World War II. U.S. aid allocations all grant assistance for Iraq appropriated from 2003 to 2006 total 28.9 billion. About 17.6 billion 62 went for economic and political reconstruction assistance. The remaining 10.9 billion 38 was targeted at bolstering Iraqi security. A higher proportion of Iraqi aid has been provided for economic reconstruction of critical infrastructure than was the case for Germany and Japan. Total U.S. assistance to Iraq thus far is roughly equivalent to the total assistance adjusted for inflation provided to Germany -- and almost double that provided to Japan -- from 1946-1952. For Germany, in constant 2005 dollars, the United States provided a total of 29.3 billion in assistance from 1946-1952 with 60 in economic grants and nearly 30 in economic loans, and the remainder in military aid. Total U.S. assistance to Japan for 1946-1952 was roughly 15.2 billion in 2005 dollars, of which 77 was grants and 23 was loans. U.S. assistance to Germany and Japan largely consisted of food-related aid because of severe war-induced shortages and the need to provide minimum subsistence levels of nutrition. In Iraq, humanitarian aid has been a minor part of the assistance. Expectations also have changed. Countries today have much higher expectations of what the United States should contribute to reconstruction in Iraq relative to what was expected following World War II. Germany and Japan also are larger than Iraq -- both in population and in the size of their respective economies -- and the extent of war damage to each countrys industrial capacity has been different. Iraq also faces an insurgency that deliberately sabotages the economy and reconstruction efforts, whereas there were no resistance movements in either Germany or Japan. This report will not be updated.

Subject Categories:

  • Administration and Management
  • Government and Political Science
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

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