$1 Billion Funneled to Taliban-Ruled Afghanistan Since Biden’s Retreat; Agencies Refusing to Hand Over Details

Long after the fog of war has dissipated from Afghanistan, the fog of the Biden administration is preventing American taxpayers from knowing how more than $1 billion given to Taliban-controlled Afghanistan is being spent, according to a new report.

The report from the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction said the Treasury Department and the United States Agency for International Development stonewalled any investigation into where the money had gone, while the State Department gave nominal assistance at best.

“The U.S. continues to pour money into Afghanistan — and, if SIGAR is correct, the American public will have no idea how many of their tax dollars are being spent on the aftermath of a failed nation-building effort overseas,” Jared Keller wrote on the website Task and Purpose.

Inspector General John F. Sopko noted the significant barriers to doing the agency’s job.

“SIGAR, for the first time in its history, is unable this quarter to provide Congress and the American people with a full accounting of this U.S. government spending due to the noncooperation of several U.S. government agencies,” according to Fox Business.

Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz of Florida, in letters to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and U.S. AID Administrator Samantha Power, called it “shocking, and maddening, that much of these illicit fund transfers are unaccounted for because your Department withheld information in violation of federal law.”

Gaetz said this level of keeping the public in the dark is unprecedented

“Fifty-seven times when SIGAR has issued their quarterly report they have declined to level this type of an indictment against [the] Trump Administration, the Obama Administration or the Bush Administration,” he said.

[firefly_poll]

“The unwillingness to participate in transparency is the highest with the Biden government after the Biden government left the Taliban a military and now insists on unreviewed transfers of aid that has already exceeded a billion dollars,” he said, adding that the issue will be investigated after Tuesday’s elections. “This is going to be near the top of my list on the Armed Services Committee.”

The report said that the United States has given the Taliban more than $1 billion.

“The United States remains Afghanistan’s single largest donor, having provided more than $1.1 billion in assistance to support the Afghan people since the Taliban’s takeover in August 2021,” the report said.

“However, SIGAR, for the first time in its history, is unable this quarter to provide Congress and the American people with a full accounting of this U.S. government spending due to the noncooperation of several U.S. government agencies,” the report said.

The report said the agencies’ balking “is in direct violation of Section 1229(h)(5)(A) of the NDAA for FY 2008 (requiring the agencies to provide information and assistance upon request) and Section 6(c)(1) of the Inspector General Act of 1978, as amended.”

“A State official has informed SIGAR that department staff have received internal direction to not engage with or speak to SIGAR without prior clearance from State legal counsel,” the report said.

The report said it examined “allegations that senior Afghan officials stole funds as the government collapsed.”

“Although SIGAR found that some cash was taken from the grounds of the presidential palace and loaded onto helicopters, evidence indicates that the amount did not exceed $1 million and may have been closer to $500,000. Most of this money was believed to have come from several Afghan government operating budgets normally managed at the palace,” the report said.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.