Karzai’s Bag Men: CIA Dropped Off Monthly Bags Of Cash To Karzai

225px-hamid_karzai_2004-06-14We have previously discussed reports of billions disappearing in Afghanistan and the long record of corruption surrounding the family and friends of President Hamid Karzai. Now a new report details how for more than a decade, the CIA has been dropping off monthly suitcases, backpacks and even shopping bags filled with cash to Karzai at his office. Despite these reports of grotesque corruption, the money continues to flow into Karzai’s pockets even as he attacks the U.S. and Americans as “demons”, and moves to shift alliances to Iran and China.

It appears that the CIA has dropped off “tens of millions” in cash to Karzai personally according to the report below. His former chief staffer, Khalil Roman says that they called it Karzai’s “ghost money” and that it simply disappeared with the president.

Officials are quoted as saying that it was the CIA and the Americans who were “the biggest source of corruption in Afghanistan.”

The cash deliveries to Karzai were viewed as necessary to keep access to him as if the thousands of killed and wounded Americans (and hundreds of billions in aid) was not enough to keep the door open.

Because no one (including Obama) wants to be blamed for the disaster in Afghanistan, we continue to pour billions into the country and sacrifice military personnel to prop up this corrupt government and maintain a country that is increasingly denying basic rights to women and religious minorities. The bags of cash however truly sum out the lunacy of American policy in Afghanistan.

Source: NYTimes

74 thoughts on “Karzai’s Bag Men: CIA Dropped Off Monthly Bags Of Cash To Karzai”

  1. An excerpt from Radack’s piece:

    “But the CIA’s secret pay-offs are sometimes at odds with other US efforts, as illustrated by the CIA cash handlers,

    …a small clique at the National Security Council, including its administrative chief, Mohammed Zia Salehi…

    Mr. Salehi, though, is better known for being arrested in 2010 in connection with a sprawling, American-led investigation that tied together Afghan cash smuggling, Taliban finances and the opium trade. Mr. Karzai had him released within hours, and the C.I.A. then helped persuade the Obama administration to back off its anticorruption push, American officials said.

    After his release, Mr. Salehi jokingly came up with a motto that succinctly summed up America’s conflicting priorities. He was, he began telling colleagues, “an enemy of the F.B.I., and a hero to the C.I.A.”

    The CIA’s covert under-the-table and apparently ineffective dealings undermine the sacrifices of the men and women fighting overtly.”

    Jesselyn Radack is National Security & Human Director for the Government Accountability Project

  2. http://legalinsurrection.com/2013/04/the-benghazi-open-wound/

    At least four career officials at the State Department and the Central Intelligence Agency have retained lawyers or are in the process of doing so, as they prepare to provide sensitive information about the Benghazi attacks to Congress, Fox News has learned.

    Victoria Toensing, a former Justice Department official and Republican counsel to the Senate Intelligence Committee, is now representing one of the State Department employees. She told Fox News her client and some of the others, who consider themselves whistle-blowers, have been threatened by unnamed Obama administration officials.

    “I’m not talking generally, I’m talking specifically about Benghazi – that people have been threatened,” Toensing said in an interview Monday. “And not just the State Department. People have been threatened at the CIA.”

  3. rafflaw,

    “hence the word “any” country. Buying goodwill is another name for bribery or extortion”

    Sorry, raff, but your comment:

    “The CIA has a purpose, but it should not be propping up dirty leaders of any country.”

    reeked of historical ignorance, as if Karzai is the first vassal this country has employed — your use of the adjective “any” ignores its connotation.

  4. gbk,
    hence the word “any” country. Buying goodwill is another name for bribery or extortion.

  5. “Zones of Interest”. “Zones of Occupation”. It might have been Kipling or perhaps an American political theorist. The notion was that large nation states have neighbors which are in their zone. Russia should take care of the pirates in Afghanistan and we should take care of the drug dealer pirates of the Caribbean or Mexico when Mexico does not come through. Cuba broke the code. The Russians came over here and got in our back yard. So, when we wanted to kick the Russians out of Afghanistan we made a big mistake. We are in over our heads. We do not understand how to deal (good word) with these people. We created al qaeda by promoting brothers of the Muslim Brotherhood to go fight the Russians in Afghanistan. al Zawaraie, (sp) The Doctor is the big case in point. He is number two in al qaeda now.
    I will repeat what BarkinDog said the other day. Obama, pull out now like your mother should have. That was a bumper sticker during Vietnam with Nixon’s name interposed.

  6. anonymously posted at 3:15pm: Jim White Excerpt:

    “….the CIA is notorious for admitting to problems first by broaching the subject through admitting a small transgression and then later admitting the full scale of the problem. ….We should not be surprised then, if the CIA bags o’ cash program turns out to be hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars instead of the tens of millions currently admitted.”

    Right, Nixon put the name to that- “a limited, modified hang-out” and it’s the way all information comes to the citizen from every government, agency and politician. Good catch AP.

  7. Does the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (15 U.S.C. § 78dd-1) not apply to government officials? Because if this was done my a US corporation or citizen it would be a crime.

  8. rafflaw,

    Or for that matter — Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, East Timor, Philippines, Somalia — the list goes on much farther than my disgust allows in enumeration.

  9. rafflaw,

    “The CIA has a purpose, but it should not be propping up dirty leaders of any country.”

    Ever been to Central or South America?

  10. The military can do that and better.

    From http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/mar/01/bradley-manning-wikileaks-statement-full-text
    The video depicted several individuals being engaged by an aerial weapons team. At first I did not consider the video very special, as I have viewed countless other war porn type videos depicting combat. However, the recording of audio comments by the aerial weapons team crew and the second engagement in the video of an unarmed bongo truck troubled me.

    As Showman and a few other analysts and officers in the T-SCIF commented on the video and debated whether the crew violated the rules of engagement or ROE in the second engagement, I shied away from this debate, instead conducting some research on the event. I wanted to learn what happened and whether there was any background to the events of the day that the event occurred, 12 July 2007.

    Using Google I searched for the event by its date by its general location. I found several new accounts involving two Reuters employees who were killed during the aerial weapon team engagement. Another story explained that Reuters had requested for a copy of the video under the Freedom of Information Act or FOIA. Reuters wanted to view the video in order to understand what had happened and to improve their safety practices in combat zones. A spokesperson for Reuters was quoted saying that the video might help avoid the reoccurrence of the tragedy and believed there was a compelling need for the immediate release of the video.

    Despite the submission of the FOIA request, the news account explained that CENTCOM replied to Reuters stating that they could not give a time frame for considering a FOIA request and that the video might no longer exist. Another story I found written a year later said that even though Reuters was still pursuing their request. They still did not receive a formal response or written determination in accordance with FOIA.

    The fact neither CENTCOM or Multi National Forces Iraq or MNF-I would not voluntarily release the video troubled me further. It was clear to me that the event happened because the aerial weapons team mistakenly identified Reuters employees as a potential threat and that the people in the bongo truck were merely attempting to assist the wounded. The people in the van were not a threat but merely “good samaritans”. The most alarming aspect of the video to me, however, was the seemly delightful bloodlust they appeared to have.

    They dehumanized the individuals they were engaging and seemed to not value human life by referring to them as quote “dead bastards” unquote and congratulating each other on the ability to kill in large numbers. At one point in the video there is an individual on the ground attempting to crawl to safety. The individual is seriously wounded. Instead of calling for medical attention to the location, one of the aerial weapons team crew members verbally asks for the wounded person to pick up a weapon so that he can have a reason to engage. For me, this seems similar to a child torturing ants with a magnifying glass.

    While saddened by the aerial weapons team crew’s lack of concern about human life, I was disturbed by the response of the discovery of injured children at the scene. In the video, you can see that the bongo truck driving up to assist the wounded individual. In response the aerial weapons team crew – as soon as ( they assert) the individuals are a threat, they repeatedly request for authorization to fire on the bongo truck and once granted they engage the vehicle at least six times.

    Shortly after the second engagement, a mechanized infantry unit arrives at the scene. Within minutes, the aerial weapons team crew learns that children were in the van and despite the injuries the crew exhibits no remorse. Instead, they downplay the significance of their actions, saying quote “Well, it’s their fault for bringing their kids into a battle” unquote.

    The aerial weapons team crew members sound like they lack sympathy for the children or the parents. Later in a particularly disturbing manner, the aerial weapons team verbalizes enjoyment at the sight of one of the ground vehicles driving over a body – or one of the bodies. As I continued my research, I found an article discussing the book, The Good Soldiers, written by Washington Post writer David Finkel.

    In Mr. Finkel book, he writes about the aerial weapons team attack. As, I read an online excerpt in Google Books, I followed Mr. Finkel’s account of the event belonging to the video. I quickly realize that Mr. Finkel was quoting, I feel in verbatim, the audio communications of the aerial weapons team crew.

    It is clear to me that Mr. Finkel obtained access and a copy of the video during his tenue as an embedded journalist. I was aghast at Mr. Finkel’s portrayal of the incident. Reading his account, one would believe the engagement was somehow justified as “payback” for an earlier attack that lead to the death of a soldier. Mr. Finkel ends his account by discussing how a soldier finds an individual still alive from the attack. He writes that the soldier finds him and sees him gesture with his two forefingers together, a common method in the Middle East to communicate that they are friendly. However, instead of assisting him, the soldier makes an obscene gesture extending his middle finger.

    The individual apparently dies shortly thereafter. Reading this, I can only think of how this person was simply trying to help others, and then he quickly finds he needs help as well. To make matter worse, in the last moments of his life, he continues to express his friendly gesture – only to find himself receiving this well known gesture of unfriendliness. For me it’s all a big mess, and I am left wondering what these things mean, and how it all fits together. It burdens me emotionally.

    I saved a copy of the video on my workstation. I searched for and found the rules of engagement, the rules of engagement annexes, and a flow chart from the 2007 time period – as well as an unclassified Rules of Engagement smart card from 2006. On 15 February 2010 I burned these documents onto a CD-RW, the same time I burned the 10 Reykjavik 13 cable onto a CD-RW. At the time, I placed the video and rules for engagement information onto my personal laptop in my CHU. I planned to keep this information there until I redeployed in Summer 2010. I planned on providing this to the Reuters office in London to assist them in preventing events such as this in the future.

    However, after the WLO published 10 Reykjavik 13 I altered my plans. I decided to provide the video and the rules of engagement to them so that Reuters would have this information before I re-deployed from Iraq. On about 21 February 2010, I described above, I used the WLO submission form and uploaded the documents. The WLO released the video on 5 April 2010. After the release, I was concern about the impact of the video and how it would been received by the general public.

    I hoped that the public would be as alarmed as me about the conduct of the aerial weapons team crew members. I wanted the American public to know that not everyone in Iraq and Afghanistan are targets that needed to be neutralized, but rather people who were struggling to live in the pressure cooker environment of what we call asymmetric warfare. After the release I was encouraged by the response in the media and general public, who observed the aerial weapons team video. As I hoped, others were just as troubled – if not more troubled that me by what they saw.

    For TLDR people, a video of the most of the incident with the audio that troubled Manning – and overdubbed with extracts of the illicitly-recorded Manning’s statement is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6L79wWAFUqg

    So.. the military…..as she is spoke:
    Yes to what?
    Don’t you care?
    SIR! NO SIR!
    Go f*ck yourself.

    A while back I watched the move “The Last Detail”
    “Two Navy men are ordered to bring a young offender to prison but decide to show him one last good time along the way.” – sort of sums up the lazy interpretation.

    A Navy guy barely out of nappies transgresses something silly. He’s sentenced to time in a military prison.
    His Navy escorts, knowing what this poor kid is facing into, decide to show him a good time during their journey to the prison. We get beer, laughs, generous whores and general feel-good warm-hearted stuff.
    At the end however, they hand him into the care of a prison run by army types who unlock and lock gates in drill movements and are supervised by a total a**hole.
    These are people whose crowning ambition in life is to stand to attention and gaze into the middle distance. They think this is Patriotic. (Hint: It’s Nationalistic.) They are an offence to the planet. At best, they simply consume oxygen and fart methane. At worst, they kill real people. In between, they cause misery, but occasionally are kind to fluffy kittens. Awwwwwww!

    Two dissatisfactions with the movie arose for me:
    1) An attempt was made to end it happy-Hollywood style by concentrating on the two escorts and not showing the processing of the innocent.
    2) I watched the movie waiting for Jack Nicholson to show up – only to realize near te end that one of the Navy escorts was played by Jack Nicholson before he began to look like Jack Nicholson.

    The reason I drag that movie in is that it seems that GITMO was originally run by the Navy.
    Then the Marines/Army took over
    – and it went significantly downhill from there
    – which is quite a stunning achievement considering how much downhill it was already

    How does “SIR! YES SIR!” deal with people who go on hunger strike after 10+ years of abuse with no end in sight?

    More than two hyperlinks in a comment on this blog sends a comment into unending moderation, so copy/paste/edit
    www dot guardian dot co.uk/world/video/2013/apr/29/guantanamo-hunger-strikers-animals-lawyer-video

    Major Jack D Ripper : Mandrake, do you recall what Clemenceau once said about war?
    Captain Lionel Mandrake : No, I don’t think I do, sir, no.
    Major Jack D Ripper : He said war was too important to be left to the generals. When he said that, 50 years ago, he might have been right. But today, war is too important to be left to politicians. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought.

    So who d’ya call?
    …… Con-tractors!

    1. “The military can do that better………..’

      Sling T,

      An excellent, alarming, anger provoking and ultimately depressing comment.

  11. When the tribal warfare in Afghanistan resumes following our departure, Mr. Karzai’s tribe will need all the money it can lay its hands on.

    So plus ca change after visitations by:

    US aka Coalition
    Britain x2 – both times with the intention of limiting Russian influence in the country and quelling local tribal leaders – eh…… hello?
    Timor (caused the deaths of 17 million people apparently)
    Genghis Khan and friends
    Islam (aka terrorists of the 8th century)
    Alexander The (got his butt whupped) Great
    People even historians want to delete

    So you think Pilgrims landing at Plymoth Rock is “history”?

    I’m sensing…..

    “When the situation was manageable it was neglected, and now that it is thoroughly out of hand we apply too late the remedies which then might have effected a cure. There is nothing new in the story. It is as old as the sibylline books. It falls into that long, dismal catalogue of the fruitlessness of experience and the confirmed unteachability of mankind. Want of foresight, unwillingness to act when action would be simple and effective, lack of clear thinking, confusion of counsel until the emergency comes, until self-preservation strikes its jarring gong–these are the features which constitute the endless repetition of history.”


  12. When the tribal warfare in Afghanistan resumes following our departure, Mr. Karzai’s tribe will need all the money it can lay its hands on.

  13. What Blouise said about stopping the flow of secret money to the CIA to distribute to the tyrant of the month. The CIA has a purpose, but it should not be propping up dirty leaders of any country.

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