The blue areas are the only places the U.S. will still be able to oversee taxpayer-funded reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan when 2014 rolls around. Outside those blue areas are more than $1 billion worth of projects run by contractors that will have to be overseen by additional contractors. See how this map has changed from 2009 to 2014.
“I am deeply troubled that the U.S. military can pursue, attack, and even kill terrorists and their supporters, but that some in the U.S. government believe we cannot prevent these same people from receiving a government contract.”
John Sopko, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction.
This building might not look like much, but it cost $34 million. It was meant to serve as command headquarters in Helmand Province, Afghanistan in support of the surge yet will go unused instead. The Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction has released an alert letter today raising concerns about the building, which the I Marine Expeditionary Force requested be canceled in May of 2010, a few months after the request for funds went to the Pentagon. The facilities were constructed anyway, and are costly to maintain. There has even been money spent on it to add to it as recently as this year. It will now either be demolished or handed over to Afghan forces.
The SIGAR, John Sopko writes:
I toured the facilty and, as the photographs show on the following page, in my opinion it appears to be an impressive and well-constructed building. In fact, it appears to be the best constructed building I have seen in my travels to Afghanistan. Unfortunately, it is unused, unoccupied, and presumably will never be used for its intended purpose.
Photo, and others of the facility, at Flickr.