Bitter experiences of reconstruction in the last two decades have made the international community hesitant to engage in robust reconstruction activities. Iraq’s reconstruction after the United States-led invasion in 2003 contributed significantly to this reluctance. Between 2003 and 2014, more than $220 billion were spent on rebuilding the country. Despite the huge amount of money spent and extensive projects and programs implemented, the international community and the Iraqi people view the effort critically. This perception makes the international community focus mainly on humanitarian relief and much less on engagement that requires medium- to long-term commitment.
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