One of the largest thefts in history has taken place in Iraq with more than $1 billion reportedly stolen. The money was originally earmarked to buy
equipment for the Iraqi defence forces but, in a series of shady deals, has been channeled out of the country.
The equipment purchased with the money includes 28 year old Soviet helicopters (life-span 25 years), military vehicles so badly made that their armour
can be penetrated by a single AK47 bullet, supposedly American MP5 machine guns (worth $3500 each) which turned out to be Egyptian copies (worth $200
each) and 7,62mm ammo purchased for 16 cents each which usually costs 4-6 cents each.
Senior Iraqis have said that they cannot understand how the disappearance of almost the entire military procurement budget has passed unnoticed by the
US military or their advisers working in Baghdad. They have also suggested that the Iraqis involved were simply front men for rogue elements within
the US military.
One billion dollars has been plundered from Iraq's defence ministry in one of the largest thefts in history, The Independent can reveal, leaving the
country's army to fight a savage insurgency with museum-piece weapons.
The money, intended to train and equip an Iraqi army capable of bringing security to a country shattered by the US-led invasion and prolonged
rebellion, was instead siphoned abroad in cash and has disappeared.
Please visit the link provided for the complete story.
Well, someone is certainly getting rich from this war. First we have the scandal of the US military being grossly overcharged on no-bid contracts,
now it's the Iraqis turn to be robbed. The article also mentions that nearly $500 million has gone missing from the electricity and transport
ministries which goes some way to explain why no reconstruction seems to be happening.
The big question is, who has the money? Before we start blaming the US officials, it might be worth remembering that Saddam managed to steal more
than a billion and get it out of the country. Are the same officials who helped him do that still working there?
Either way this stinks.
(credit for finding the story goes to twitchy who gave permission for it to be posted here)
Related AboveTopSecret.com Discussion Threads:
1 Billion Dollar Scam Arming Iraq With Junk
[edit on 20-9-2005 by Chris McGee]