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Could Iraq become the fifty-first state?

posted by Jason Kottke   Sep 25, 2002

After talking with several experts over a period of months, James Fallows explores some possible outcomes of a war with Iraq:

“Regardless of these differences, the day after a war ended, Iraq would become America’s problem, for practical and political reasons. Because we would have destroyed the political order and done physical damage in the process, the claims on American resources and attention would be comparable to those of any U.S. state. Conquered Iraqis would turn to the U.S. government for emergency relief, civil order, economic reconstruction, and protection of their borders. They wouldn’t be able to vote in U.S. elections, of course—although they might after they emigrated. (Every American war has created a refugee-and-immigrant stream.) But they would be part of us.”