Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Do You Love It, Or What?!

Remember all that money and weapons that couldn’t be accounted for in Iraq? A bunch of agencies including the Army Criminal Investigation Command, the Department of Justice, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation have been looking into these discrepancies. This morning the New York Times reported that officials from these agencies said “the missing money and matériel amounted to the largest ring of fraud and kickbacks uncovered in the conflict here.” And get this: a senior American officer being investigated worked closely with General David Petraeus when Petraeus was in charge of training and equipping iraqis forces in 2004 and 2005. Of course the NYT made sure to say, “There is no indication that investigators have uncovered any wrongdoing by General Petraeus.” But guess what Petraeus’s response is. Petraeus said the Iraqi’s were ill equipped and having to deal with mounting violence, so he decided not to wait for formal tracking systems to be put in place. “The imperative to provide weapons to Iraqis was more important than maintaining impeccable records,” Petraeus said. WHAT? I mean, WHAT? Sounds like wrongdoing to me. Petraeus is the man who next month is going to decide the future of American soldiers in Iraq. This is the man who is going to say that President George Bush’s ego-war in Iraq must be fought until the last American soldier is dead. This is the man who will lie and claim that President George Bush’s puny and irresponsible little surge is making progress. And this asshole decided that knowing where money and arms were ending up in Iraq was not important. Back when Petraeus was in charge of disbursing cash to Iraqis, American contractors were told to turn up with big duffel bags to pick up their payments. Some were paid from the back of pick-up trucks. Cash was loaded onto giant pallets for shipment by plane to Iraq, and paid out to contractors who carried it away in duffel bags, for God’s sake. Back when Petraeus was in charge of disbursing weapons to Iraqis, 190,000 AK-47 assault rifles and pistols were mislaid. But Petraeus says he didn't think knowing where they had ended up was important. “We made a decision to arm guys who wanted to fight for their country,” Petraeus says. And once again the underlings are going to get rounded up and frog-marched to the hoosegow. According to the NYT: “part of the criminal investigation is focused on Lt. Col. Levonda Joey Selph, who reported directly to General Petraeus and worked closely with him in setting up the logistics operation for what were then the fledgling Iraqi security forces.” Another let me get this straight moment: We’re blaming the Maliki government for everything that has gone wrong in Iraq even though the Bush administration set up the Maliki puppet government and anointed it as the great hope for Iraq. Then General Petraeus doled out arms and money from the backs of trucks with never a thought that the stuff would get into the wrong hands. So now that nearly everyone George W. Bush has ever had confidence in has resigned under a cloud and/or is involved in some nefarious sexual assignation, we have put the fate of American soldiers in Iraq in the hands of George Bush and General Petraeus. Is that about the size of it? It is interesting though isn’t it, that this stuff about Petraeus’s malfeasance is suddenly getting attention just when he’s preparing to be center stage and handing out more baloney about Iraq.

1 comment:

slskenyon said...

The problem is just how easily this kind of ignorance can be exploited. If any of the "insurgents" in Iraq had any idea this was the case, it would only escalate problems--if it hasn't already. Amazing incompetence.