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Seemingly unfazed at being ousted from the Asian Athletics Association, scam-tainted Suresh Kalmadi on Monday said losing the presidential re-election bid to Qatars Dahlan Jumaan Al-Hamad has actually given him a chance to work at the grassroots level.
I have no issues today and I congratulate Mr Al-Hamad for being elected as President. I am rather relieved that I will be able to work at the grassroots level in athletics, Mr. Kalmadi said after losing the vote during the ongoing AAA Congress in Pune.

International News

US contracts Taliban's ‘second biggest’ source of funds: Report

Thursday - Sep 01, 2011, 02:51pm (GMT+5.5)
[+] Text [-]

Washington - US contracts have been the Taliban's biggest source of funds except for the opium harvest, a report issued by the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan has said.

It is no secret that war is expensive, but the report said the United States has wasted billions in Iraq and Afghanistan, and more tax dollars will go down the drain unless the government makes big changes.

The commission was told that except for the opium harvest, US contracts were the Taliban's biggest source of funds, while a separate investigation estimated that 360 million dollars have ended up in the hands of the Taliban, CBS News reports.

"We are wasting between $30 and $60 billion during the course of our engagements in Iraq and Afghanistan." Commission on Wartime Contracting Chairman Christopher Shays said.

The sheer volume of spending- as many as 260,000 contractors on the payroll at any one time- amid the chaos of war was simply too much for the US to manage, the report said.

A 60-million-dollar project to distribute seeds and fertilizer to Afghan farmers became a 360-million-dollar cash for work program "paying villages for what they used to do voluntarily."

The commission also warned of massive new waste. For instance, there is a planned 82-million-dollar Afghan defense university that the Afghanistan Government cannot afford to keep up.

"What is the point of spending hundreds of millions on projects that will then fall into disuse?" asked commission member Dov Zakheim.

The commission warned that, without a major overhaul of wartime contracting, the US might waste more tax dollars as the wars drag on.


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