Millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars were being foolishly wasted paying for the salaries of non-existent “ghost” soldiers and policemen in Afghanistan under the Obama administration, but no more.
According to the special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction, John Sopko, who recently sat down for an interview with Sharyl Attkinson of Full Measure, the ongoing problem may have been worse than anyone realized, but was being addressed by President Donald Trump’s Pentagon.
“We’ve been raising this concern about ghosts going back a number of years,” Sopko said. “Actually I want to say we heard about it from (Afghan President) Ashraf Ghani years ago, before he became president, he warned me about ‘ghosts,’ so we started looking three years ago.”
“What we’re talking about are policemen, Afghan policemen, Afghan military, Afghan civil servants who don’t exist or they have multiple identity cards and we’re paying their salaries,” he explained. “By ‘we’ I mean the United States and the international community. And we started finding out that we had no capacity to measure the number of soldiers, teachers, doctors, military people who we are paying their salaries.”
Fox News reported in October that the fraud could have amounted to more than $300 million annually.
Asked if this indicated fraud had been taking place, Sopko replied: “Major fraud. And what’s happening is the commanders or generals or other higher officials are actually pocketing the salaries of the ghosts.”
“And I remember President Ghani again, at that time he wasn’t president, saying, ‘John, you the United States government are paying the salary of an Afghan who’s a teacher, he’s a civil servant, he’s a doctor, he is a policeman, and he’s a soldier. And it’s the same Afghan. And he doesn’t exist,'” Sopko explained.
“It’s not just the salaries,” he added. “But we’re funding schools based upon the number of students, so if you invent or inflate the number of students, you’re going to be paying more money. On the soldiers and the police, we’re paying for extra boots, for food, for everything else, logistics for numbers that don’t exist.”
Sopko had alerted the Pentagon on numerous occasions to what he had discovered in 2016, but little was done to address the issue by the administration of President Barack Obama, though Fox News reported that the Pentagon had stated at the time that they would soon implement certain measures to try and combat the rampant fraud bilking U.S. taxpayers of hundreds of millions of dollars.
Guided by the new no-nonsense leadership of the Defense Department under Trump, it would appear that those measures, among many others, were being implemented in Afghanistan with measurable results.
According to the Independent Journal Review, Attkinsson noted that the Pentagon had implemented a biometric system that checked such things as fingerprints, photographs and even blood type in an effort to obtain “proof of life” of Afghan service members in order to weed out the non-existent “ghosts” that have cost taxpayers so much.
In fact, the Pentagon claimed that it had already enrolled in the program “up to 95 percent of the Afghan police and 70-80 percent of soldiers” in the Afghan National Army.
While it is highly doubtful that any of the taxpayer dollars lost through this fraud will ever be recovered, at least steps have been taken to ensure more dollars aren’t similarly wasted in the seemingly never-ending bid to reconstruct Afghanistan.
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The two investigators who went missing after traveling to Arkansas have been found in a shallow grave in a wooded area more than 100 miles from where their truck was found. The two men, deputized agents of the federal government, were interrogated, tortured, covered with garbage bags and buried while still breathing, according to the local medical examiner.
The site was discovered after a local hiker saw a skull that an animal had most likely dug up and left on top of the grave. The surface was also scratched away, revealing some of the green Hefty bags.
Their bodies are being moved to Quantico for follow-up autopsies. The nature of their mission to Arkansas is still considered classified, but a spokeswoman for Congressman Gowdy said that they were headed to the Clinton Presidential library with a warrant to search the residence attached to it.
Since the men seem to have been abducted and killed before reaching their destination, there is no physical evidence tying them to the Clintons. While the US Attorney has fallen short on probable cause to even question the power couple about their involvement, a new warrant to search the Clinton Library was issued and served.
Of course, with so much warning since the men went missing, any evidence would have most likely been moved or destroyed. The Clintons have once again dodged a bullet by adding two more bodies to their count.
The Obama administration spent eight years lying to the American people and engaging in anti-American policies. Obama cared more about pleasing our enemies than our own safety.
The Iran deal was a bad idea from the start, but Obama and his team of spinsters hid some dangerous facts. During the controversial “prisoner swap” and nuclear deal, Obama lied, claiming the seven men he freed were “civilians” or simply “sanction violators,” but Obama’s own Justice Department accused and prosecuted these seven men of posing serious threats to national security. (via Politico)
Patriots, this news is coming from the mainstream media. The same media that defended Obama for eight years and after. Even the mainstream media is going after Obama. This is huge.
Three of these terrorists engaged in illegal procurement of U.S. technology required for surface-to-air missiles; the same technology recently used by Tehran in a missile test that enraged the Trump administration. Another terrorist was serving an eight-year prison sentence for conspiring to supply Iran with satellite technology. Patriots, this is terrible. Obama enabled our worst enemy to produce nuclear weapons with advanced technology.
Additionally, as part of this terrible Iran deal, the Justice Department dropped charges against 14 other fugitives. Three of these terrorists were attempting to lease a Boeing aircraft for an Iranian airline connected with Hezbollah, a terrorist organization. Fourteen fugitives? What did we get in return for such a ridiculous offer?
The fifth freed terrorist was charged with smuggling dangerous communication technology to Iran. This man was also apart of a smuggling network that brought components used for IIEDs into the Middle East; the same technology that killed our fellow patriots during the Iraq war.
The worst terrorist, Seyed Abolfazl Shahab Jamili, was also freed by Obama. He was involved in a long term conspiracy to obtain thousands of components with nuclear applications for Iran. The nuclear technology consisted of American-made sensors designed for uranium enrichment centrifuges–the same technology that prompted this ridiculous nuclear deal. This is proof that the Obama administration was truly anti-American.
Patriots, American soldiers were killed because of these men, and Obama just lets them free. Obama freed these men for nuclear deal that has put us at serious risk. Wow!
The Obama administration has proven time and time again that they ruined for our country. We need to hold them accountable for their actions.
We need to hold the Left responsible for this nonsense. The Left has put our entire country at risk, and Obama still walks free. There is no defending these lies. Even the mainstream media is reporting on this story. This may be the final nail in Obama’s coffin. What will his legacy be?
The establishment and the Left will try to spin this story, but this is the worst lie Obama has spread. He knowingly put our entire country in danger. We need to hold this man accountable. Thank goodness we have Donald Trump to clean up Obama’s mess and expose the truth.