$2.6 Billion in U.S. Money Diverted to Taliban

Last week I reported on an “audit by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction [which] concluded that lack of oversight or control of where money is disbursed has left vast sums of U.S. aid “vulnerable to fraud or diversion to insurgents.” Today there is a story that “part of a $2.16 billion transportation contract was diverted through a murky network of subcontractors and into the hands of a group of Afghan power-brokers, criminals and Taliban insurgents.”

Roughly $600 million of the contract had been spent before authorities were alerted to the scandal, the source said, citing an internal report.

Only part of that money, however, is believed to have been diverted to “nefarious elements,” the source added.

A Pentagon official told CNN the full $2.16 billion contract covered the movement and transportation of 70% of the material needed for U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

Officials were first alerted to the possibility of a scandal in June 2010, after a Congressional inquiry prompted the creation of a joint task force to investigate potential criminal dealings surrounding U.S. contracts.

“There were indications dollars were flowing to criminals or to the enemy,” sad the Pentagon official, who declined to be identified because he was not authorized to speak on the record but who has direct knowledge of the U.S. assessment.

As I tried to make clear in my article last week, this kind of thing is common in Afghanistan. Our military efforts there alone are troubling enough, but rampant waste, fraud, and funding of Taliban insurgents surely highlights the futility of the war.

110 thoughts on “$2.6 Billion in U.S. Money Diverted to Taliban”

  1. How much of this is actually lost and how much was given away just so they'd have someone to shoot at and another reason to stay?

  2. The headline is quite misleading. It is clear from the substance of the article that only a part of the contract was diverted to the Taliban. Articles lose credibility when headlined in this way.

  3. As if we are any safer for the Billions that were diverted to Halliburton and its subsidiaries. Or Blackwater/Xe for that matter.

  4. "Nefarious Elements", refers to the occupiers or those defending their country against the occupiers? This is getting very confusing.

  5. Afghanistan is "the graveyard of soldiers and of empires" – but – stupid arrogant America does not believe the same will happen to US – the most powerful military on planet Earth is losing the war in Afghanistan – same as EVERY invader has lost a war there.

    1. But…it's what the US military does now. Since WW2 (the last actual declared war) the military has lost interest in actually winning. They have become a mechanism for the continuation of the transfer of US taxpayer funds from the treasury to the MIC – and their bankers and investors. What better way than to put incompetent mid-level officers and contract managers (can't have generals and cabinet officers getting caught you know) in charge of billions of $$$ and then pay the enemy to stick around – giving the politicians a reason to continue the fighting – forever…

      "…To give up now would be to admit that those who have died already have died for nothing…"

      Well, yeah, they have.

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