Probe Looms for US Billions to Pakistan

LIttle accounting for use of mammoth payments
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 21, 2008 6:12 AM CST
Pakistan army troops patrol in Miran Shah, capital of North Waziristan, Pakistan's tribal area along the Afghan border. Suspect payments of billions of dollars by the US to pay for Pakistan's military...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The electoral defeat of President Pervez Musharraf may prompt Congress to scrutinize the Coalition Support Funds—billions of dollars paid by the US to Pakistan to foot the bill for military action against al-Qaeda near the border with Afghanistan. US officials approve some $80 million a month despite only vague accounting by the Pakistan government for how the money is spent, reports the Washington Post.

About $6 billion has been paid to Pakistan since 9/11.  "Padding? Sure. Let's be honest, we're talking about Pakistan, which has a legacy of corruption," said one US official. But another analyst cautioned: "My sense is that the Pakistani military would not be out on the border if not for the Coalition Support Funds. That's the baseline cost of getting them out on a mission that is really our mission."