The Iraqi state is not representing Iraq in a globalising world: it is representing the globalising world in Iraq. The fact that the USA physically occupied Iraq, installed a government and passed a raft of legislation by decree might suggest almost total US dominance over broader globalising forces and thus that the Iraqi state is almost solely an instrument of US empire. Certainly, Iraq's imperial globalisation from above is not primarily decentred in terms of the actors involved or the interests served: US actors and interests are at the forefront. However, other actors have played a significant role, and the actions of the US agents have tended to favour US political power and the US-based fraction of capital less than the fact of occupation would suggest. Furthermore, this advantage has declined over time. In addition, there is a second force for decentred globalisation in Iraq, namely, globalisation from below by means of the workings of the transborder informal economy. Many but not all of the activities of this informal economy are closely related to the insurgency. The interaction of all these forces is generating sometimes competing and sometimes mutually reinforcing effects, and these effects are highly contingent and continue to be contested.