Convincing Afghans Justice System Is Fair No Small Task

US Contractor Organized 'Kite-Flying Events'

Massive amounts of money poured into US programs in Afghanistan have just plain gone missing, but even in those cases where the contractor and the program can be accounted for the results are mixed, at best.

The latest case, brought to us by McClatchy, is Tetra Tech (NASDAQ: TTEK), which the US government paid $15 million to “boost Afghans’ confidence in their justice system.” Mostly a company that consults for water companies, they had no experience in Afghanistan at the time.

Not that anyone really has experience in successfully convincing Afghans that their notoriously crooked justice system isn’t notoriously crooked, but the project appears to have gone off the rails, with the company’s team holed up in a five star Kabul hotel.

So far, the sum total of their events, beyond some pretty hefty hotel bills, has been a pair of kite-flying events. People in Afghanistan do like to fly kites, its true, but handing out free kites with “pro-justice messages” on them has been mocked as a rather silly use of US taxpayer dollars, even more-so when they are used in regions where the majority of the population can’t read anyhow.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.