Alexandria Digital Research Library

Global capitalism and political control : investigating the invasion and occupation of Iraq

Baker, Yousef Kazem
Degree Grantor:
University of California, Santa Barbara. Sociology
Degree Supervisor:
William I. Robinson
Place of Publication:
[Santa Barbara, Calif.]
University of California, Santa Barbara
Creation Date:
Issued Date:
Middle Eastern Studies, Political Science, International Relations, and Sociology, Social Structure and Development
Middle East
Global Capitalism
Dissertations, Academic and Online resources
Ph.D.--University of California, Santa Barbara, 2014

Global Capitalism and Political Control: Investigating the Invasion and Occupation of Iraq explores state and elite formation within the current structures of global capitalism through a rigorous study of Iraq in the period between the 2003 U.S. invasion and 2012. Based on fieldwork conducted in 2005 and 2009, it traces the intent and strategies of the U.S. administration in Iraq by examining laws implemented, agreements signed with and on behalf of the Iraqi government, contracts awarded, and policies that were favored and lobbied for in Iraq. It also examines extensive reports published by the Iraqi government, the U.S. government, international financial institutions, and various other international governing institutions and non-governmental organizations.

This study posits that one of the central goals of invading Iraq was to integrate the country into the global economy. The radical neoliberal policies and the light-speed at which the occupation administration implemented these policies are evidence of the centrality of this goal to U.S. objectives. The American occupation of Iraq built a neoliberal state whose aim was its full integration within transnational circuits of capital accumulation. This inverted the state-capitalist class relations by subordinating the Iraqi state to the interests of the transnational capitalist class and the emerging local faction of that class.

Neoliberalism continued unabated following the transfer of formal power to Iraqi forces on June 3, 2004, and is taking root in the economy of Iraq. This study demonstrates how the process of neoliberal reforms imposed by the U.S. occupation enabled the rise of an unlikely alliance of Iraqi elites supportive of these reforms. The emerging neoliberal state, however, was saddled with competing expectations: on the one hand, it must be weak in order to allow capital unfettered access and mobility; on the other hand it must be strong enough to bolster and support it. These competing expectations played out in the creation of the Iraqi state and are reflected in its governing documents. Combined with the sectarian polices of the occupation, these factors fueled sectarian conflict in Iraq.

Physical Description:
1 online resource (310 pages)
UCSB electronic theses and dissertations
Catalog System Number:
Inc.icon only.dark In Copyright
Copyright Holder:
Yousef Baker
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