on Iraq Archives War
on Iraq [Home]
Audit: U.S.-Led Occupation Squandered Aid
A U.S. government audit found American-led occupation authorities squandered tens of millions of dollars that were supposed to be used to rebuild Iraq through undocumented spending and outright fraud. In some cases, auditors recommend criminal charges be filed against the perpetrators. In others, it asks the U.S. ambassador to Iraq to recoup the money. Only a quarter of $23 million entrusted to civilian and military project and contracting officers to pay contractors ever found its way to those contractors.
* One contractor was paid $14,000 on four separate occasions for the same job.
* Of $7.3 million spent on a police academy near Hillah, auditors could account for just $4 million. They said $1.3 million was wasted on overpriced or duplicate construction or equipment not delivered. More than $2 million was missing.
* U.S. personnel "needlessly disbursed more than $1.8 million" of the estimated $2.3 million spent for renovating the library in the Shiite holy city of Karbala.
* The library contractor delivered only 18 of 68 personal computers called for and did not install Internet wiring or software. The computers worked only as stand-alones.
* The U.S.-led security transition command spent $945,000 for seven armored Mercedes-Benzes that were too lightly armored for Iraq. Auditors were able to account for only six of the cars.
* At one point, several paying agents kept cash inside the same filing cabinet in the Hillah vault. One agent took $100,000 from another's stack of cash to clear his own balance. "This was only discovered because the other paying agent had to make a disbursement that day and realized that he was short cash," the report says.
posted by Hal 12:08 PM