Monday, August 07, 2017

Diseconomies of scale and the US failure in Iraq

Bigger ain't always better

The high cost of efficiency

When we look back at what went wrong in Iraq, it is hard to ignore the myriad mistakes made by Paul Bremer and his merry band of modern nation builders.

This talk by Col. Peter Mansoor from 2009 offers and incisive analysis.

One key point he makes is that Bremer centralized reconstruction spending and took it out of the hands of the military commanders on the ground.

While that may have seemed like a great way to maximize efficiency, it had the opposite effect. Instead of flowing directly into the local economy, the money ended up going to multi-national companies and foreign contractors. This helped pave the way for the insurgency and the rise of ISIS.


Diseconomies of scale

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