The Blogiston Post

Politics, money, and war.

Monday, August 22

Iraqi Defense Ministry

Millions embezzled at Iraqi ministry
by Ed Vulliamy and Richard Norton-Taylor
A report compiled by the Iraqi Board of Supreme Audit has concluded that at least half, and probably more, of $1.27bn (£700m) of Iraqi money spent on military procurement has disappeared into a miasma of kickbacks and vanished middlemen - or else has been spent on useless equipment.

The report, leaked to the US news organisation Knight Ridder, comes as a blow to the credibility of the Iraqi army and its ability to contain the increasingly cogent insurgency.

According to the report, led by former human rights minister Abdel Baset al-Turki, the vanished money came solely from Iraqi funds, not from foreign donations to Iraq's military or the US-funded training budget.

The report focuses on an eight-month period after the transfer of sovereignty from the US-led occupation to caretaker Iraqi authorities on June 28 2004.


Nine ministry officials, all of them appointed by the US, have been fired by the ministry, and face possible criminal charges. Among them is the ministry's procurement chief, Ziad Cattan.

It doesn't look good that so many of the offiicals were appointed by the US. Next question: who from the US recommended the Iraqi officials to begin with? They didn't just pop up out of nowhere.


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