Monday, August 06, 2007

New Front In War on Terror

The world is stunned today after new evidence emerged which proves that the U.S. Government is supplying arms to evil Iraqi insurgents. Up to 190,000 U.S. supplied weapons may have made their way into the hands of our sworn enemies in the War on Terror. The word from Washington is that President Bush has decided to declare war on his administration in the autumn of this year...

I'd could expand that out but the reality is quite ridiculous enough. It's a recurring theme of U.S. and U.K. foreign policy in the 21st Century.

Something like 30% of the weapons supplied to Iraq over the last three years are missing. The U.S. government really has flooded the streets of the highly unstable sectarian battleground which is today's Iraq with large numbers of AK47's and pistols. The distribution method the Pentagon decided to adopt was apparently modelled on that of Widow Twankey giving out sweets at the Christmas panto. Guns anyone? Who wants guns?

Here's the intro to the report (PDF):
As of July 2007, DOD and MNF-I had not specified which DOD accountability procedures, if any, apply to the train-and-equip program for Iraq. Congress funded the train-and-equip program for Iraq outside traditional security assistance programs, providing DOD a large degree of flexibility in managing the program, according to DOD officials. These officials stated that since the funding did not go through traditional security assistance programs, the DOD accountability requirements normally applicable to these programs did not apply.
Read that first sentence again. Note the "July 2007" and particularly the "if any".

Here are the "Recommendations for Executive Action" from the report:
To help ensure that U.S. funded equipment reaches the Iraqi security forces as intended, we recommend that the Secretary of Defense take the following two actions:
  1. Determine which DOD accountability procedures apply or should apply to the program.
  2. After defining the required accountability procedures, ensure that sufficient staff, functioning distribution networks, standard operating procedures, and proper technology are available to meet the new requirements.
Four years on and countless dead and they've still not decided on an accountability procedure for the hundreds of thousands of weapons they're shipping to Iraq. Four years on, they still need others to tell them the tragically bloody obvious.

Generally speaking, anyone whose staggering incompetence results to massive loss of life can expect to find themselves in a spot of bother. Promotion probably isn't on the cards for the policeman who leaves his loaded Heckler and Koch MP5 submachine gun in a kebab shop for some drunken fool to find and take on a killing spree down the high street. Saying "yes, it was my gun but it was the evil drunk man who pulled the trigger, not me" probably won't be enough to save his career.

In politics, apparently, things are rather different.


niels said...

AK-47 rifles: 110,000
Pistols: 80,000
Body armour pieces: 135,000
Helmets: 115,000

Sounds like they're equipping the Iraqis better than their allies. Utterly appaling.

OneEar said...

You reference "staggering incompetence" as though it were a bad thing. Imagine the problems they could create if they were competent.