CIA Dumps 'Bags of Cash' on Corrupt Hamid Karzai
Can we declare victory and go home already?
KABUL, Afghanistan — For more than a decade, wads of American dollars packed into suitcases, backpacks and, on occasion, plastic shopping bags have been dropped off every month or so at the offices of Afghanistan's president — courtesy of the Central Intelligence Agency.
All told, tens of millions of dollars have flowed from the C.I.A. to the office of President Hamid Karzai, according to current and former advisers to the Afghan leader.
"We called it 'ghost money,'" said Khalil Roman, who served as Mr. Karzai's deputy chief of staff from 2002 until 2005. "It came in secret, and it left in secret."
Whole New York Times article here. This passage should get your week off to a bad start:
"The biggest source of corruption in Afghanistan," one American official said, "was the United States."
The United States was not alone in delivering cash to the president. Mr. Karzai acknowledged a few years ago that Iran regularly gave bags of cash to one of his top aides.