Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Iraq has depleted its defense procurement budget due to widespread corruption, torpedoing plans to end the military's dependence on the United States. An official Iraqi audit said $1.27 billion allocated by the Defense Ministry for military procurement in 2005 was embezzled by officials and suppliers. In a report completed in May, the Board of Supreme Audit blamed the theft on U.S.-appointed senior Defense Ministry officials, including a former defense minister. (World Tribune)