US Contracts with Afghan Companies That Make the IG’s Hair Stand on End

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Four Afghan civilians were killed in a bomb attack aimed at US soldiers in Kost, Afghanistan

ABC News reported today that ‘The US has paid more than $150 million to companies in Afghanistan for which there is powerful evidence that they finance terrorist attacks on American soldiers and facilities. This is according to the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. The US has no intention of discontinuing the contracts.

The Inspector General, John Sopko, a former prosecutor, who uncovered the links between al-Qaeda and the companies we contract with said it made ‘his hair stand on end.’

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) told Diane Sawyer, during a broadcast last evening that we are subsidizing  groups shooting and killing our soldiers.

We have known about this for some time. The Sentinel reported on this in August but the Pentagon refuses to interfere with the contracts which are given to suspect al-Qaeda operatives despite the strong evidence they have been presented with.

Why? Wait for it…because they don’t want to mess with their ‘due process rights.’

You can’t make this stuff up.

The US Army was given a report by the Special Inspector General John Sopko asking the Army to dump 43 contractors who are tied to Al-Qaeda but the Army pencil pushers will not!

Others have been pleading with the Army as well, including the chief watchdog for Afghanistan reconstruction, but the Army is emphatic – they will not interfere with the insurgent contractors’ ‘due process rights.’

Due process rights are reserved for citizens, for trials, for firings, not for Al-Qaeda operatives!

Your tax money is going to Al-Qaeda! And we are killing our own soldiers!

In a scathing passage from his report to Congress, Sopko said that the Army should suspend or debar 43 contractors because they are connected to the Afghan insurgency (insurgency is the PC word for terrorists), including ‘supporters of the Taliban, the Haqqani network, and Al-Qaeda.’

The Army rejected Sopko’s request.

According to Fox News, Sopko said the Army’s position is this: ‘The Army Suspension and Debarment Office appears to believe that suspension or debarment of these individuals and companies would be a violation of their due process rights if based on classified information or if based on findings by the Department of Commerce.’

They want more evidence! They want a ‘preponderance’ of the evidence to show they are tied to terrorist groups for an ARMY contract!

Instead of treating these people as enemy combatants, they are being treated as citizens who are merely suspected of crimes.

The IG said he did indeed send detailed supporting evidence that the contractors are providing material support to the enemy.

The IG said in his report that ‘They may be enemies of the United States, but that is not enough to keep them from getting government contracts.’ Sopko added this is ‘legally wrong’ and ‘contrary’ to good policy and national security goals.

It’s also morally wrong and it should be illegal.

“I am deeply troubled that the U.S. military can pursue, attack, and even kill terrorists and their supporters, but that some in the U.S. government believe we cannot prevent these same people from receiving a government contract,” Sopko wrote in a letter attached to the report, according to Fox News.

We have military risking their lives to fight these villains and our Army is supplying them with the funds to do it.

ABC News reported that ‘among the 3 companies cited is a road construction company the U.S. says is partly owned by a leader of the brutal Haqqani network, which was blamed for an attack on the U.S. Embassy in Kabul that claimed 16 lives in 2011.’

The cover letter of a classified investigation by the U.S. Army said there was evidence of a direct role of both the company and its owners “in the facilitation and operation of the Haqqani Network” and that “approximately $1-2 million per month flow[s] to Haqqani Network to finance its activities,” ABC reported.

The company of course denies it but who cares? Any risk to our soldiers must be ended immediately.

The Pentagon won’t do it and they will continue to give them US contracts because of this ‘due process’ absurdity being peddled by the lawyers.

Sen. Shaheen, a member of a bipartisan group of Senators, sent a letter to the Army in late 2012 “expressing concern” about the delays in handling what is an emergency:

“We believe that these 43 cases deserve special attention from the Army due to the nature of their allegations,” the letter said, according to a copy posted on the website for Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn.

The Pentagon has not arranged for a spokesperson to also be interviewed by ABC News.

In a statement to ABC News, the Army said:

It has “extensive vendor vetting procedures to prevent the awarding of contracts to such vendors.” It said most of the 43 companies were not awarded any new contracts “as a result of measures currently in place.”

“The army takes seriously any allegations of improper contractor activities and has vigorous processes to ensure that those with whom we do business are not supporting the insurgency or otherwise opposing U.S. and collation forces in Afghanistan” the statement said.

Inspector General Sopko says the Army needs to permanently block the companies from receiving any more U.S. taxpayer money, given the seriousness of the information.

“I am a former prosecutor, I’ve seen the information and it made my hair stand on end,” Sopko told ABC News.

How we even consider not blocking these companies immediately? What kind of Administration is this? How stupid and amoral. When the government tries to say these groups might be al-Qaeda-linked, they are al-Qaeda. There is no such thing as an al-Qaeda affiliate in the end. They are all the same people and we are doing business with them despite strong evidence of their crimes.

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