Suit cases, backpacks and plastic shopping bags

david52_gwApril 29, 2013

(Reuters) - Tens of millions of U.S. dollars in cash were delivered by the CIA in suitcases, backpacks and plastic shopping bags to the office of Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai for more than a decade, according to the New York Times, citing current and former advisers to the Afghan leader.
The so-called "ghost money" was meant to buy influence for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) but instead fuelled corruption and empowered warlords, undermining Washington's exit strategy from Afghanistan, the newspaper quoted U.S. officials as saying.
"The biggest source of corruption in Afghanistan", one American official said, "was the United States."
The CIA declined to comment on the report and the U.S. State Department did not immediately comment. The New York Times did not publish any comment from Karzai or his office.
"We called it âÂÂghost money'," Khalil Roman, who served as Karzai's chief of staff from 2002 until 2005, told the New York Times. "It came in secret and it left in secret."
For more than a decade the cash was dropped off every month or so at the Afghan president's office, the newspaper said.
Handing out cash has been standard procedure for the CIA in Afghanistan since the start of the war.
The cash payments to the president's office do not appear to be subject to oversight and restrictions placed on official American aid to the country or the CIA's formal assistance programs, like financing Afghan intelligence agencies, and do not appear to violate U.S. laws, said the New York Times.
There was no evidence that Karzai personally received any of the money, Afghan officials told the newspaper. The cash was handled by his National Security Council, it added.
U.S. and Afghan officials familiar with the payments were quoted as saying that the main goal in providing the cash was to maintain access to Karzai and his inner circle and to guarantee the CIA's influence at the presidential palace, which wields tremendous power in Afghanistan's highly centralized government. snip end quote

Sheech. Then we complain that they're corrupt.

Here is a link that might be useful: Your tax dollars at work

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    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 2:14PM
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And this comes as a surprise WHY?????

    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 2:19PM
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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

Tens of millions of U.S. dollars in cash were delivered by the CIA...

Very convenient to use the CIA as the public will never know how much is spent on bribery and corruption in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.

From the CIA's website: 3. How many people work for the CIA and what is its budget?

Neither the number of employees nor the size of the Agency's budget can, at present, be publicly disclosed. A common misconception is that the Agency has an unlimited budget, which is far from true. While classified, the budget and size of the CIA are known in detail and scrutinized by the Office of Management and Budget and by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and the Defense Subcommittees of the Appropriations Committees in both houses of Congress. The resources allocated to the CIA are subject to the same rigorous examination and approval process that applies to all other government organizations.

In 1997, the aggregate figure for all US government intelligence and intelligence-related activities -- of which the CIA is but one part -- was made public for the first time. The aggregate intelligence budget was $26.6 billion in fiscal year 1997 and $26.7 billion for fiscal year 1998. The intelligence budgets for all other years remain classified.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 3:14PM
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hamiltongardener(CAN 6a)

I wonder how many teachers could have been employed for that money?

How many scholarships could have been given to American students?

How many low income senior citizens could have had their monthly cheque bumped up?

Reminds me of those pallets of cash that were unaccounted for in Iraq. What was that...billions of dollars?

    Bookmark   April 29, 2013 at 11:11PM
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Why not? Bribery, it works over here so why not over there. Greasy money makes the world go round don't ya know....until it spins (or spends) out of control.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2013 at 5:42PM
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