Taxpayers spent $100 million on Afghan army uniforms that may have actually made them a better target for enemies because an Afghan minister "liked what he saw."
The Department of Defense has purchased 1.36 million uniforms at a cost of $94 million for the Afghan National Army since 2007 without assessing whether or not they were appropriate for the battlefield, according to a new Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction report.
Afghan ministers requested that the department purchase proprietary uniforms rather than existing camouflages, including patterns best suited for forest combat, despite the fact that forest only covers about 2 percent of Afghan terrain. The Afghan preference for uniforms made by HyperStealth Biotechnology Corp. increased costs between 40 and 43 percent. The decision, which ended up costing American taxpayers up to $28.23 million more than comparable uniforms on the market, may have been made for aesthetic reasons.
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