Fashion may be a priority for former Afghanistan Defense Minister, Abdul Rahim Wardak, when it comes to military uniforms. A recent report by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction shows that the Pentagon spent nearly $28 million on Afghanistan’s camouflage uniforms because, as the inspector general told USA Today, the defense minister “thought that that pattern was pretty.” Making matters worse, U.S. taxpayers paid for these uniforms – which are designed for an environment that makes up only 2 percent of Afghanistan’s countryside.
This is yet another example of wasteful spending by the DOD. With the House Budget Committee about to unveil its budget resolution that increases military spending, stories like this show that serious reforms need to be made instead of hoping that throwing more money at the DOD will solve its problems.
This is not the first time the U.S. has been accused of wasting taxpayer money in uniform procurement – a GAO report in 2012 stated that a “fragmented approach” of the Defense leaders led to the failure “to collaborate and standardize the development of introduction of camouflage uniforms causing “millions of dollars in potential cost savings.” In this case, according to Military Times, the U.S. government could have given other multiple camouflage pattern schemes to the Afghan army at no cost.
As to why the Pentagon did not refuse the Afghanistan Defense Minister’s request, the report stated:
“DOD was unable to provide documentation demonstrating that the Spec4ce Forest specification was essential to the U.S. government’s requirement, or documentation justifying and approving the Spec4ce Forest requirement in the ANA uniform specification.”
The DOD is rife with waste, and reforms should be implemented so that more instances such as this do not occur. Defense spending is the biggest structural driver of our national debt. Our out-of-control debt imperils our national security and will make it more difficult for the DOD to provide an effective national defense.
Concerned Veterans for America issued a report today on recommend reforms for the FY2018 National Defense Authorization Act (FY2018 NDAA). These reforms aggressively seek out savings and will help the Pentagon become more efficient and effective. We urge Congress to implement these reforms so that the Pentagon focuses on funding critical priorities – and spends less time on uniforms that aren’t needed.
The post Pentagon Spends $28 Million on Afghanistan Uniforms for Fashion Reasons appeared first on Concerned Veterans for America.