01.31.13 7:43 PM ET
Is the Pentagon Buying Iranian Oil?
A new report by the Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction (SIGAR) suggests there is a likelihood that the Department of Defense inadvertently purchased fuel from US-sanctioned Iran.
The United States paid for the purchase and delivery of fuel to the Afghan security forces for years, totaling $1.1 billion for just the Afghan army since 2007. But the Pentagon's lack of internal controls means that some of that fuel might have come from Iran, the SIGAR office found. New checks and balances were put in place last year, but there is still a risk that U.S. taxpayer funds are being sent to Iran.
While these new checks and balances require vendors to prove they did not purchase oil from Iran, it is unclear as to what vendors must do to validate the origin of the oil. As of now, though, no evidence has been shown that the oil is in fact coming from Iran. Then again, there are very few ways to prove that a diamond is not a blood diamond, so I am skeptical.