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Coalition Provisional Authority

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Cpa_iraq.jpg
The seal of the CPA in Iraq
Contents

History of the CPA

Following the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the Office for Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance (ORHA) was the organization established by the United States Government that acted as a caretaker administration in Iraq until civilian rule resumed on June 28, 2004.

Its administrator (from April 21, 2003) was Jay Garner. On May 11, Paul Bremer arrived in Baghdad as head of the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), which superseded ORHA. Bremer's office was a division of the United States Department of Defense, and as Administrator he reported directly to the United States Secretary of Defense. Bremer's original deputy was Sir Jeremy Greenstock, the former British ambassador to the UN. Sir Jeremy's role was then taken over by David Richmond, a relatively junior British diplomat.

On July 22, 2003, the CPA appointed a special Iraq interim governing council made up of prominent Iraqis from various sectors of Iraqi society. Though still subject to the authority of the CPA administrator, the council had several key powers of its own. Their duties included appointing representatives to the United Nations, appointing interim ministers to Iraq's vacant cabinet positions, and drafting a constitution that will later be voted on by the Iraqi people. The presidency of the council rotated every month (see president of Iraq). The CPA was dissolved at 10:26 AM local time on June 28, 2004 and power was transferred to the Iraq provisional government.

Criticisms of the CPA

The CPA's lack of adequate audit controls

In May of 2003 the CPA took over the responsibility for administering the Development Fund for Iraq (DFI). This 20 billion dollar fund was what remained of Iraqi oil revenue held in trust on behalf of the Iraqi people. Previously it had been administered through the United Nations, and was known as the Oil for food programme. The CPA also administered 18.4 billion dollars which the US Congress allocated for Iraqi reconstruction.

Ambassador Bremer expended funds almost exclusively from the DFI. By June of 2004 the CPA had spent, or allocated, 19.1 billion dollars of the Iraqi funds -- while spending only 400 million dollars from the American reconstruction funds.

Critics suggest that Bremer selectively spent from the DFI because it was more free from accounting oversight by the GAO.

The CPA's staffing policies

CPA chief Paul Bremer replied to criticisms of the CPA by pleading that he was burdened by an inexperienced staff, with a high turnover. However, critics of Ambassador Bremer would suggest that he bore the responsibility for setting the CPA's hiring practices, and those hiring practices give the appearance of being highly partisan.

In a Washington Post profile of CPA staff quotes a Pentagon spokesman:

Pentagon spokesman Lt. Col. Joseph Yoswa said the CPA was satisfied with the quality of applicants. Some staffers may have been young and inexperienced, he said, but "we have people right out of college leading troops on the ground.
Yoswa said the recruiting office had to hire quickly for the Madrid donors conference that fall and "turned to the Heritage Foundation, an educational facility, albeit a conservative one, but primarily a place where you can get good, solid people." He said this was a one-time event and that there was no organized effort to hire Republicans.
In late October, he said, the Pentagon set up a job site on the Web. Eleven thousand people filled out an application and several hundred of them were hired. "Nowhere did we ask party affiliation," he said.

The Washington Post article quotes Colonel Yoswa for official acknowlegement of something the several dozen CPA staffers revealed. The sole criteria the CPA used to choose their staff was a referral by the controversial Heritage Foundation think tank. The Heritage Foundation website allowed young neoconservatives to post their resumes for possible employment with the CPA. Ambassador Bremer was responsible for the hiring policy that caused his staff to be composed of young and inexperienced staff, who were then assigned responsibilities outside their nominal fields of expertise.


See also

External links

ja:連合国暫定当局 nl:Coalition Provisional Authority zh-cn:联盟驻伊拉克临时管理当局


Preceded by:
Saddam Hussein
President of Iraq
April 9, 2003 – June 28, 2004
Succeeded by:
Ghazi Mashal Ajil al-Yawer

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