A federal watchdog criticized U.S. agencies on Thursday for squandering taxpayer money on facilities in Afghanistan that are too complex and costly for the Afghan government to maintain.
U.S. officials acknowledge that they plan to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to hire contractors to operate a complex of buildings in troubled Kandahar and other facilities in Afghanistan for the next 10 years.
“Why in the world are we continuing to construct facilities all over Afghanistan that we know, and the Afghans know, they will not be able to sustain once we hand the facilities over?” asked Arnold Fields, the special inspector general for Afghan reconstruction.
This is not the first time Washington has been accused of overbuilding projects for a frail allied government. During the George W. Bush administration, U.S. agencies were faulted for building power plants in Iraq that were never employed to capacity because they were too complex for Iraqi engineers to operate.