There is only one *possible reason for doing this, and that’s to use the loan as leverage to get France and Russia to dismiss their loans, or at least an equal amount.
It goes like this:
“Okay, Iraq owes us 20 billion, and we’re the lenders of first resort. So if you guys want to stick to your guns and demand that you get repaid, we figure you’ll get your money in, say, 2085. On the other hand, we’re willing to forgive our debt if you do the same. Or perhaps we’ll forgive our 20 billion if you each forgive 20 billion of yours, and then maybe a payment plan can be arranged whereby you guys actually get *some money before the century is out.”
That said, I still think it’s a bad idea, because the political ramifications are devastating. You don’t invade a country and then give them a forced loan used to hire your own businesses to reconstruct it. It’s true that the majority of reconstruction work is NOT to repair damage done in the war, but to repair infrastructure damaged by a decade of neglect. That doesn’t change the perception of this in the middle east, though.
The U.S. should: A) pony up the 20 billion or more. B) Declare Iraq a U.S. free trade zone to encourage positive contact between Iraqis and U.S. companies. And encourage other nations to do the same. Get some reconstruction money to flow in their through business investment.