In "We Have a Winner" (Commentary, March 19), Arianna Huffington omits a crucial point: Long-term financing for Iraqi reconstruction. As Huffington notes, the initial contracts will be funded by the U.S. taxpayer, and those contracts will be awarded to a select few companies. However, once the U.S. military grabs control of Iraq's oil, the funds generated by the sale of Iraqi oil will be deposited in an escrow account that will be American-controlled -- and used to finance the long-term reconstruction.
So, the situation may be: The U.S. government awards oil contracts to American oil companies to sell Iraqi oil in the U.S. The oil royalties will be used to pay for the rebuilding. The contracts will be awarded to primarily U.S. and British companies. If readers still doubt that oil is a reason for war, then note that on Tuesday, President Bush's advisor for Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad, warned the northern Kurds not to attempt to take over the Mosul and Kirkuk oil fields.