• Afghan Economy in Fragile Condition, Worsening

    February 1, 2016

    Tags: , ,
    Posted in: Afghanistan, Embassy/State


    Hey, did you wake up today wondering what was going on in Afghanistan, America’s 51st state, you know, the one we’ve been occupying for over 14 years, that one where thousands of Americans have died and where thousands still serve? Yeah, that Afghanistan.

    The truth? Things kinda suck donkey over there.

    Sure, of course, I can be more specific. But better let the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) tell the tale, via it released its thirtieth Quarterly Report to Congress. The quarterly report notes:

    — Despite more than a decade of reconstruction and development efforts, the Afghan economy remains in fragile and worsening condition. Intractable insurgents, cutbacks in foreign military personnel, persistent emigration of people and capital, and a slowing global economy are shifting Afghanistan’s economic prospects from troubling to bleak.

    — Afghanistan is even more dangerous than it was a year ago. The Taliban now controls more territory than at any time since 2001.

    — The lack of security has made it almost impossible for many U.S. and even some Afghan officials to get out to manage and inspect U.S.-funded reconstruction projects. The dangers of absent oversight were exposed when a task force appointed by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani found millions of dollars were being embezzled while Afghanistan pays for numerous nonexistent “ghost” schools, “ghost” teachers, and “ghost” students.

    — Members of Congress have asked SIGAR to conduct an inquiry into the U.S. government’s experience with allegations of sexual abuse of children committed by members of the Afghan security forces the U.S. is paying for.

    — Afghanistan’s domestic revenues paid for only 40% of the nation’s budget expenditures. The country’s large budget deficits and trade imbalances will require substantial donor aid for the foreseeable future.

    — Cumulative funding for Afghanistan reconstruction increased to approximately $113.1 billion, with approximately $11.5 billion more in the pipeline for disbursement. A total of $8.4 billion of the reconstruction funding has been provided for counternarcotics efforts in Afghanistan.

    — This quarter, Afghan National Defense and Security Forces assigned force strength was 322,638 (including civilians). This reflects a decrease of 2,078 since July 2015 and 9,306 since May 2015.

    — Since 2003, USAID has spent at least $2.3 billion on stability programs in Afghanistan. The findings of a USAID-contracted, third-party evaluation program on the impacts of its stabilization projects raise worrying questions. They reported, for example, that villages receiving USAID stability projects scored lower on stability than similar villages that received no such assistance.

    — Some villages under Taliban control that received USAID stability projects subsequently showed greater pro-Taliban support. USAID appears to be largely indifferent to the implications of these findings.

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  • Recent Comments

    • John Poole said...


      The results suggest that American beneficence may not have been pure in intent but tainted by hubris and peculation.

      02/1/16 9:53 AM | Comment Link

    • jim hruska said...


      hope i’m not OT,but what is Karzai doing these days?
      jim hruska

      02/1/16 11:29 AM | Comment Link

    • Bruce said...


      Currently wears a US’ business suit (so, civilized
      enough)! http://www.khaama.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/Ashraf-Ghani1.jpg
      Jest time To GO! : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zy7reOn76Ew

      02/1/16 11:46 AM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...


      Bruce- As evidenced by his continued existence Karsai always had ironclad protection while in office.
      He probably still has American contractor protection due to an “understanding” that in the event of his assassination foolproof evidence of American criminal misbehavior in his country will be distributed to the press.

      02/1/16 1:54 PM | Comment Link

    • bloodypitchfork said...


      “Afghan Economy in Fragile Condition, Worsening”

      Damn you Peter. One more thing I have to worry about now. Fuck. Ok ok. I guess I can squeeze my budget a little more and donate my beer allowance. geezus, and tonight was two for one during happy hour. fuck. Well..they better ‘preciate it cause I’m givin up free popcorn and pretzels. Can’t eat that stuff without beer ya know.
      Hell, I’m gettin thirsty just thinkin bout it.

      uhmmm..on second thought.. maybe they can sell that gas station to the highest bidder instead. I’m sure they’ll make at least twice what my beer allowance for the month is. Ok..that’s it. Sorry Afghanistan. I’ve got my own thirst..er…economy to think about. Even though my GDP is probably three times as much as yours. Can’t be too careful..know what I mean? Ok, think about that gas station idea. Meanwhile..I’ve got an appointment with some popcorn.


      02/2/16 5:55 AM | Comment Link

    • wemeantwell said...


      Or… work with me… you move to Afghanistan and declare yourself an undecided voter, leaning Taliban. The U.S. aid you get will keep you in beer and pretzels long after you buy that apartment tower in Dubai.

      02/2/16 7:36 AM | Comment Link

    • bloodypitchfork said...


      ps.. hey, Afghanistan look on the bright side. At least ya’ll don’t have to worry bout this shit..


      fuck. Just when you think things in Murika couldn’t get more goddamned bizarre. Next thing ya know the thought police will be knocking. …er…wait..

      Edward R. Murrow must be rolling in his grave.

      bartender… more popcorn…. and beer.

      02/2/16 6:10 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...


      Repeat after me: It’s not about improving the lives of these people. It’s about providing a permanent base for the empire.

      02/2/16 7:16 AM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...


      We got kicked out of the Land of Sand, then Iraq kicked US out because we trashed the place, and now we are left with this dump. We got no place else to go.

      02/2/16 7:20 AM | Comment Link

    • Links 2/2/2016: Chimpbox Quad Core, UNICEF Supports FOSS | Techrights said...


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      02/2/16 7:28 AM | Comment Link

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