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Post War Iraq: Understanding and Shaping the Forces of Positive Changes

PAM, Vol. 10 No. 1, (2005)

The U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003 has triggered international
condemnations and a worldwide fear. The speed at which the regime of
Saddam Hussein crumbled has left the people in the Middle East in great
astonishment, disbelief, deep suspicions and dismay. Initially, the Iraqi
people displayed intense hope for a better future. Gradually, however, the
Iraqis have witnessed increasing violence, chaos and insecurity under a
lingering foreign occupation. The paper discusses the role of Iraq in the
Arab and Islamic World, the major political players in Iraq, and the policy
options for Washington. Three policy options are identified: exiting Iraq,
monopolizing power, and working with moderate Iraqi leaders for building
sound institutions and free direct elections. These options are discussed and
their strengths and shortcomings are identified.

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