I haven’t seen any comment on this rather troubling item. The Bush Administration is confiscating frozen Iraqi funds and demanding, with the threat of exclusion from the US banking system that others do likewise. The concern is that countries such as France will seek to use the money to repay debts, rather than giving it back for the benefit of the Iraqi people. But the Administration is keeping $300 million to settle suits brought by US citizens against Saddam Hussein’s regime. As with the announcement that only US firms will be permitted to tender for reconstruction work, there are defences that can be offered for this inconsistent treatment. But a pattern is starting to form, and it’s not looking good.