About this blog...

I am a former leader of a Human Terrain Team in Iraq. My intent with this blog was to identify relevant, open-source materials on Iraqi culture, society, politics, religion and economics - just about anything on or about the Iraqi population in general.

I am continuing the blog now only sporadically, as a means of information distribution in support of efforts to improve a vital program hamstrung by failures in execution.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Playing with Numbers

There's been quite a bit in the press lately--Iraqi and international--about refugees suddenly returning to Iraq in droves. However, other reports have suggested that all the hype is just a government PR job that's been particularly effective, and that the numbers are pretty exaggerated.

This is important stuff, since it wasn't that long ago that all the reports were about refugees that were leaving the country in droves, or about the countries turning them away and the horrible conditions they faced in the few countries that would accept them.

Of course, all of this is beyond Iraq's internally displaced persons (refugees that don't cross a border)--both current and historical--and groups whose plight is so desperate that they came to Iraq as refugees.

It's no surprise that every little development gets lots of play in the media, though; as one of the reports noted, "returnees have essentially become a currency of progress".


RT said...

Do we even want a reverse diaspora at this point anyway? I know that returning refugees may be a sign of some progress, but it only seems to complicate an already precarious situation.

It makes perfect political sense to trumpet such returns, but it risks putting the cart before the horse...

Jake said...

Read this yet?
It mentions you by name...