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Corker: ‘No Accountability’ with Bags of Cash to Karzai

Tenn. Sen.: CIA deliveries of cash suitcases contributing to corruption in Afghanistan

• May 6, 2013 7:16 pm

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Sen. Bob Corker (R., Tenn.) said he believes the recently revealed CIA policy of delivering suitcases full of cash to Hamid Karzai's government is fueling corruption in Afghanistan Monday on "The Situation Room":

WOLF BLITZER: I just want to point out, based on everything I've heard, senator, and I'm sure you've heard the same thing this is not just the Obama Administration, this goes back for years and years and years during the Bush Administration, the CIA was handing out huge bags of cash, millions and millions of dollars going to Hamid Karzai for him to do with what he wants with no accountability whatsoever. But that's just millions. Maybe tens of millions, maybe a few hundred million dollars in cash. But here's the real issue. The U.S. is still shelling out even in the midst of all these forced budget cuts at home right now $2 billion a week to maintain 60,000 or 70,000 troops in Afghanistan, to build roads, bridges, schools, hospitals there. Can you justify $2 billion a week that U.S. taxpayers are spending in Afghanistan?

BOB CORKER: Wolf, as you know, we're winding down. I raised questions two years ago when we really began this nation building effort. It was a very different policy. It was actually three years ago than what we had been carrying out. I think the nation building that we've conducted there has actually led to much of the corruption that has occurred there. But in addition Wolf, even after we leave, I think you know we will be obviously greatly downsized in 2014, even after that, there will be a huge number of troops on the ground that will be Afghani, we will have police on the ground that will be Afghani. Our contribution to Afghanistan will go on for years as it will from allies who helped us in this effort. But again, we understand that. As part of transitioning, that's the kind of thing that is going to occur. But there's a accountability that goes with that. At least we try have some. Bags full of cash, as you rightly mention for the last decade, there is no accountability. And, again, it breeds the kind of thing that we're really trying to keep from happening. One of our big efforts, Wolf, as you know, has been to try to get the government from being corrupt but yet it appears that we are participating in that process ourselves.