Official Study: US Wasted Billions in Iraq, Afghanistan

Report Estimates $12 Billion Lost to Fraud Alone

Fraud, waste and general corruption have cost the US tens of billions of dollars between Iraq an Afghanistan, according to the new Commission on Wartime Contracting report released today.

The report says that “criminal behavior and blatant corruption” were directly responsible for much of the waste in the nearly $200 billion spent in “reconstruction” projects over the two nations since 2002.

It was unable to provide an exact figure for how much was lost, but estimated the loss just to overt fraud to be $12 billion. The report cited the use of contractors for inappropriate projects as a major source of such corruption.

The report built on a previous report by ousted Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction Arnold Fields, which revealed that there was virtually no oversight in place over the various projects.

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.