Sorry for the delay in blogging today–I got distracted with something.I should be back at this blogging thing shortly.
In the meantime, I wanted to link to this post Spencer did at Danger Room:
The Pentagon quietly announced yesterday that Rear Admiral Kathleen Dussault is out as commander of Task Force 2010, a unit co-established by General David Petraeus to ensure that the military’s contracting dollars in Afghanistan don’t inadvertently fund corrupt businesses, warlords or insurgents. A congressional report issued shortly before her arrival found that the U.S.’ lack of visibility into the practices of its often-shady subcontractors undermines Afghan stability. In an interview with Danger Room shortly after arriving in Kabul in June to stand up the command, Dussault predicted that getting the military out of the thicket of unintended kickbacks to “powerbrokers” and the Taliban would require “limiting some partnerships that we’re in right now, apply more controls in a number of them, and in some cases, we’re going to need to walk away from some providers.”
A spokesman for the NATO command in Afghanistan, Major Joel Harper, said that Dussault wasn’t fired and only “planned on having the job for four months.” Her team’s performance of what she called “financial forensics” contributed to Petraeus’s revised guidelines on troop contracting, and she participated in Kabul press briefings during its roll-out last week, Harper added. According to the top brass in Afghanistan, Dussault didn’t under-perform.
But the task force’s future operations are in question — and the Obama administration is engaging in a Hamlet-esque debate about how central anti-corruption efforts really are to the Afghanistan war. Dussault is a two-star admiral. Her replacement is an Army one-star, Brigadier General Ross Ridge.
I honestly think that if the Administration has formally decided that corruption is no big deal and that cracking down on corruption would hurt their war aims, they should formally announce that fact, along with a reminder that our tax payer dollars eventually fund this corruption.
And while they’re announcing that, maybe they can tell us what the war aim is in Afghanistan finally?