Iraq and Kuwait aren't the only nations that suffered heavily in the Persian Gulf war.

A United Nations study shows that the war has had devastating economic consequences for the countries that can least afford it, the very poorest of the poor.Countries like Bangladesh and Yemen, along with the destitute nations in sub-Sahara Africa, have had their already teetering economies further battered by fallout events from the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait.

They can least afford it when oil prices skyrocket, even if the rise is only temporary.

Many of the countries had thousands of their citizens employed as guest workers in the region and relied heavily on wages sent back from Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Iraq - earnings and jobs that mostly evaporated in the war.

Most of the poor countries rely on one or two basic export commodities, such as coffee or cocoa, and the war brought huge increases in shipping costs to cover anticipated insurance losses and transit through vital waterways in the war zone.

Tourism dried up and has yet to recover.

With Iraq and Kuwait in ruins, development capital and foreign aid grants from industrialized investor nations will become scarcer with interest rates higher.

It is said there are no real winners in war. But the actual number of losers, and the extent of the loss, is still being calculated.

Helping these innocent bystanders of the war may be difficult, but the poorest countries wounded by the conflict should not be forgotten while the other victims are recovering.