US cannot account for 190,000 guns in Iraq: report
According to an investigation carried out by the US Government Accountability Office (GOA), the US cannot account for 190,000 weapons issued to Iraqi security forces in 2004 and 2005.
According to the July 31 report, the military "cannot fully account for about 110,000 AK-47 assault rifles, 80,000 pistols, 135,000 items of body armour and 115,000 helmets reported as issued to Iraqi forces."
The weapons disappeared from records between June 2004 and September 2005, as the military struggled to rebuild the disbanded Iraqi forces from scratch amid mounting attacks from Sunni insurgents and Shiite militias.
Since 2004 the military "has not consistently collected supporting records confirming the dates the equipment was received, the quantities of equipment delivered, or the Iraqi units receiving the items," the report said.
"Since 2006 the command has placed greater emphasis on collecting the supporting documents. However, GAO's review of the January 2007 property books found continuing problems with missing and incomplete records."
US commanders often accuse foreign powers, such as Iran, of supplying arms to illegal militias fighting in Iraq, but the report shows they cannot fully account for the hundreds thousands of weapons they brought in themselves.
Last month, Turkey raised concerns over reports that separatist Kurdish guerrillas launching cross-border raids from northern Iraq had received US-supplied guns supposedly destined for Iraqi security forces."
In further news, the US GOA has also determined the Bush administration has lost the plot, is missing the point, and are also unable to find their collective arses using both hands.
I think the thing which astounds me most about this is the cheerful inevitability of it. I mean, let's think about this particular military expedition: mounted on a false pretext; grossly understaffed initially; commanded by an administration who believe they're creating their own reality now (and therefore don't have to deal with the consensus one the rest of us live in); the troops from the US have been under-resourced at best and criminally neglected at worst; they've been facing constant hostility from the resident population; there's been no clear mission objective (this despite said mission being accomplished a few years ago); returning veterans are given sub-standard medical treatment when they get back (to add to their sub-standard treatment while they were over there); it's not popular at home; it's not popular overseas; and effectively it appears to have been a stand-up demonstration of how badly things can go.
Learning that they've managed to cock-up to the extent of being "unable to account for" nearly two hundred thousand weapons (among other things) does fit in with the rest of their administrative malfeasance - I'm sure that there are quite a few people from New Orleans who could supply more (as many people *still* haven't been rehoused two years after Hurricane Katrina blew through; by comparison, after cyclone Ian tore through Innisfail (Queensland, Australia) in 2006, most people had been rehoused within 1 year, and we had disaster relief people on hand almost as soon as the wind died down). My big question, I suppose, is why the *hells* the people of the US haven't been demanding at least some accountability?