Published by Foreign Affairs, Vol. 83 no. 5 Sept./Oct. 2004
Although the early U.S. blunders in the occupation of Iraq are well known, their consequences are just now becoming clear. The Bush administration was never willing to commit the resources necessary to secure the country and did not make the most of the resources it had. U.S. officials did get a number of things right, but they never understood-or even listened to-the country they were seeking to rebuild. As a result, the democratic future of Iraq now hangs in the balance.