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View Diary: Iraq Embassy Unsafe to Occupy - the Stench of Formaldehyde and Corruption (228 comments)

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      http://thinkprogress.org/...

      Construction of the U.S. embassy in Iraq, set to open in September, is projected to cost $592 million, with a staff of 1,000 people and operating costs totaling $1.2 billion a year. It will be a 104-acre complex, which is the size of approximately 80 football fields. On May 10, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) criticized the ballooning size and cost of the embassy in a hearing with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice:

      Now, having said over and over again that we don’t want to be seen as an occupying force in Iraq, we’re building the largest embassy that we have — probably the largest in the world — in Baghdad. And it just seems to grow and grow and grow. ... We agree that we should focus our aid locally not in Baghdad, but we have 1,000 Americans at the embassy in Baghdad. You add the contractors and the local staff it comes to 4,000.

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