Magazine

Table: A U.S. Game Plan


PHASE I

THE OCCUPATION

U.S. and allied troops, led by General Tommy R. Franks, disarm Iraqi forces, secure oil fields and borders, establish a national police force, and repair key infrastructure. After a few months, the U.S. begins supervising everything from public finances to schools. Outside agencies provide humanitarian aid.

DURATION

Up to two years and beyond

CHALLENGE

U.S. civilian agencies may be ill-equipped to do the job. Damage to oil fields and infrastructure, or continuing civil strife, could complicate matters.

PHASE II

THE TRANSITION

With at least 5,000 troops for security, U.S. agencies help U.N.-linked organizations, aid groups, and Iraqi civil servants assume various administrative duties. The World Bank and International Monetary Fund restructure government debt as well as manage finances, oil revenue, and trade. Transition government leaders are selected.

DURATION

One to four years

CHALLENGE

Without clearly improving living standards and maintaining political stability, the U.S. and its allies risk a backlash.

PHASE III

THE HAND-OVER

Iraqi leaders assume control of the government, judiciary, police force, and oil fields as a new government is elected. Oil output is at least double 2003 levels. The U.S. maintains military base for as long as needed.

DURATION

Five years or longer

CHALLENGE

Finding popular political leaders with respect for human rights and putting economy on a solid footing will be tough.

Data: Conrad C. Crane and W. Andrew Terrill, U.S. Army War College, Pentagon, State Dept.


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