As is becoming clear, Im really big on learning from history. This is one of two threads designed to continue this fruitful process. I am going to throw up some quotes relating to the US post-war efforts to rebuild Germany and Japan, with the obvious intention of finding some insights on how to go about dealing with the rebuilding of Iraq. REBUILDING AND OCCUPYING POSTWAR GERMANY ----------- QUOTE No.1 ----------- Nobody talked to me about what our policies were in Germany, Clay later recalled. They just sent me over there. I did not want the job. After all, we were still fighting a war, and to be the occupying deputy military governor in a defeated area while the war was still going on (in the Pacific) was about as dead-looking an end for a solider as you could find. ~ General Lucius D. Clay, succeeded Eisenhower as Military Governor of the US-occupied zone. ----------- QUOTE No.2 ----------- Clay could not wait to get rid of this unlooked for responsibility. From the outset he planned that the military government would be short-lived; he aimed to cut his staff from twelve thousand to six thousand by February 1, 1946, and set July 1 as the target date for handing power over to a completely civilian government. Like Eisenhower, he believed that the Government of Germany should, at the very earliest practicable moment, pass to a civilian organisation. But until this was possible, he argued, it was the job of the State Department, not the US Army, to run the occupation. After a reverse power struggle between the State and War Departments, in which each side sought to pass the buck to the other, Truman fudged the issue by entrusting policy making to the former but leaving the administrative work to the latter. ~ p92-97, Gimbel Governing the American Zone & p95, Clay to War Department, Sept. 18, 1945, in Smith (ed.), Clay Papers. ----------- QUOTE No.3 ----------- With 10,000 people I couldnt do the job of denazification. Its got to be done by the Germans. ~ p172, in Smith (ed.), Clay Papers. ----------- QUOTE No.4 ----------- The democratisation of Western Germany was, without question, one of the great successes of American postwar policy. But it is important to recognise that it was driven forward in large measure by Clays desire to hand over power to a civilian authority as soon as possible. ~ p.74, Ferguson, Colossus. ----------- QUOTE No.5 ----------- the newborn West German government of 1949 was conceived and delivered by the American Army . ~ p102, Gimbel Governing the American Zone.