Inspector General: Officials Trying to Silence Me on Afghanistan

Officials Mad at Publicity Generated by Fraud Reports

In a speech yesterday at the New American Foundation, Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) John Sopko revealed that he has been under pressure from officials across several departments for publicizing his audits on waste and fraud in the Afghan War.

Sopko, who has held the position of SIGAR since last summer, said it surprised him how many in the administration didn’t understand the role of an independent inspector general, and accused him of “embarrassing” the White House by doing his job.

He went on to say that officials had repeatedly demanded to “pre-screen” his reports before they were released, and that many wanted to edit them before they were made public, again totally negating the entire point of having an independent auditor in the first place.

While Sopko insisted the attitude was most prevalent among bureaucrats it went all the way to the top, and that a number of senior officials who “you think would know better” had also accused him of undermining the war.

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.